Is Pork Bad for You?


Quick Answer

Eating pork is not necessarily bad for you. Fresh pork, in particular the leaner cuts, is higher in protein than chicken. Cured pork is still very high in protein but also higher in saturated fat and processed with cures, smoking and salt. Other concerns arise because of the possible diseases pigs can carry and the conditions under which hogs are raised and processed.

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Full Answer

Typically, the pork tenderloin is the leanest cut, with approximately 75 percent of its calories coming from protein. Protein is essential for building and maintaining muscle and providing a healthy energy source. With pork, the trade-off between protein and fat is an important health consideration for many people. Health concerns also arise about cured pork because curing adds chemicals, such as nitrates, that may cause an increase in blood pressure. Pork packaged fresh and without preservatives is recommended for most commercially packaged cuts.

Many people object to eating pork because of the idea that pigs are considered dirty animals. Some people are concerned with how the animals are treated, and the lack of humane care renders the meat ethically unclean and, for them, inedible. Pigs can also carry trichinellosis, which can pass to humans in raw or under-cooked pork.

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