According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), lean meats are the most complete source of protein. Other foods high in protein include eggs, cheese and legumes, such as soybeans, peas, beans and peanuts.
What are the best types of lean meats? The USDA defines lean meat as any 3-ounce serving of meat (think the size of your palm or a deck of cards) with less than 10 grams of total fat (4.5 grams saturated fat, 95 milligrams cholesterol). Lean meats are rich in B vitamins, iron, magnesium and zinc. And they can be helpful in managing weight, when consumed with fresh vegetables and fruits, and foods rich in whole grains.
Excellent lean meats include:
- Chicken breasts
- Turkey cutlets
- Beef – the leanest types are ground round, ground sirloin, ground chuck, ground beef or any cuts with the word “loin” or “round” in the name
- Veal cutlet, blade or arm steak
- Pork products with “leg” or “loin” in the name
- Lamb – loin chops, arm chops or foreshanks
Learn more about the benefits of lean meat: