Dietary Recommendations For Protein

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The 2002 RDA for protein for both men and women is 0.8 gram per kilogram of body weight. For healthy adults, the RDA works out to be 0.36 gram of protein per pound of body weight. For example, if you weigh 140 pounds, you need 50 grams of protein each day.

140 pounds X 0.36 gram/pound = 50 grams of protein

This amount allows for adequate protein to make up for daily losses in urine, feces, hair, and so on. In other words, taking in enough protein each day to balance losses results in a state of protein balance called nitrogen balance. The RDA for protein is generous and is based on the recommendation that proteins come from both animal and plant foods.

The amount of protein needed daily is proportionally higher during periods of growth such as infancy, childhood, and pregnancy. Accordingly, the RDA for protein is higher than 0.8 gram/kilogram of body weight during these times.

0-6 months old 7-12 months old

1-3 years old 4-8 years old 9-13 years old 14-18 years old Pregnancy and lactation

(all age groups)

9.1 grams per day (this is an AI, not an RDA) 1.5 grams protein/kilogram body weight 1.1 grams protein/kilogram body weight 0.95 gram protein/kilogram body weight 0.95 gram protein/kilogram body weight 0.85 gram protein/kilogram body weight 1.1 grams protein/kilogram body weight OR 25 grams additional protein/day

(Pregnant and lactating women need to get 1.1 grams of protein per kilogram body weight or can eat 25 grams protein above their normal RDA before they were pregnant or lactating.)

During periods of growth when a person needs to eat more protein than is lost, the body is said to be in a state of positive nitrogen balance. Negative nitrogen balance occurs during starvation and some illnesses, when the body excretes more protein than is taken in.

The 2002 Dietary Reference Intake report established Acceptable Macronu-trient Distribution Ranges (AMDR) for protein. Adults should get from 10 to 35 percent of total kcalories from protein. The AMDR for children from 1 to 3 years old is 5 to 20 percent of kcalories, and for children 4 to 18 years old it is 10 to 30 percent. Tolerable upper intake levels for protein and individual amino acids could not be set due to inadequate or conflicting data.

mini-summary

1. The RDA for protein for both men and women is 0.8 gram per kilogram of body weight.

INGREDIENT FOCUS

INGREDIENT FOCUS: MEAT, POULTRY, AND FISH

  1. The amount of protein needed daily is proportionally higher during periods of growth because the body is in a state of positive nitrogen balance.
  2. Negative nitrogen balance occurs during starvation and illnesses, when the body excretes more protein than is taken in.
  3. The AMDR for protein for adults is 10 to 35 percent of total kcalories.

MEAT, POULTRY, AND FISH Nutrition

Figure 5-6 compares the fat and cholesterol content of a variety of meat, poultry, and fish. To choose nutritious cuts of meat, poultry, or fish, use these guidelines.

  • Most fish is lower in fat, saturated fat, and cholesterol than are meat and poultry.
  • Chicken breast and turkey breast (meaning white meat) without skin are low in fat—there is only about 3 grams of fat in 3 ounces of chicken or 3 ounces of turkey. By comparison, white meat with skin and dark meat (such as thighs and drumsticks) are much higher in fat. Also, chicken wings may be considered white meat, but they are fattier than the drumstick.
  • When buying ground turkey or chicken, make sure it is made from only skinless breast meat to get the least amount of fat. If the product includes skin and dark meat, it will be much higher in fat.
  • Trimmed veal is leaner than skinless chicken.
  • When choosing beef, you will get the least fat from eye of round, followed by top round and bottom round.

Meat is a good source of many important nutrients, including protein, iron, copper, zinc, and some of the B vitamins, such as B6 and B12. Meat is also a significant source of fat, saturated fat, and cholesterol.

In comparison to red meats, skinless white-meat chicken and turkey are comparable in cholesterol but lower in total fat and saturated fat. The skin of chicken and turkey contains much of the bird's fat. The skin should be left on during cooking to keep in moisture but can be removed before serving. Chicken and turkey are rich in protein, niacin, and vitamin B6. They are also good sources of vitamin B12, riboflavin, iron, zinc, and magnesium. Duck and goose are quite fatty in comparison, because they contain all dark meat.

Fish and shellfish are excellent sources of protein and are relatively low in calories. Most are also low to moderate in cholesterol and are a good source of certain vitamins, such as vitamins E and K, and minerals, such as iodine and r

figure 5-7

FAT CONTENT OF FISH

Low-Fat Fish

(fat content less

Medium-Fat Fish

High-Fat Fish

than 2.5 percent)

(fat content 2.5-5 percent)

(fat content over 5 percent)

Cod

Bluefish

Albacore tuna

Croaker

Swordfish

Bluefin tuna

Flounder

Yellowfin tuna

Herring

Grouper

Mackerel

Haddock

Sablefish

Pacific halibut

Salmon

Pollock

Sardines

Red snapper

Shad

Rockfish

Trout

Sea bass

Whitefish

Shark

Sole

Whiting

potassium. Certain fish (Figures 5-7 and 5-8) are fattier than others, such as mackerel and herring, but fatty fish are an important source of omega-3 fatty acids.

CHEF'S TIPS

The first step is to select a lean cut, such as one of these:

  • Beef: eye of round, inside (top) round, outside (bottom) round, sirloin tip, flank steak, top sirloin butt (Figure 5-9)
  • Veal: any trimmed cut except commercially ground and veal patties
  • Pork: pork tenderloin, pork chop (sirloin), pork chop (top loin), pork chop (loin)
  • Lamb: shank, sirloin, rack of lamb (chop)
  • Poultry: breast (skin removed after cooking)
  • Fish: all fish and shellfish
  • Use flavorful rubs, when appropriate, to develop new and creative flavor options. Rubs combine dry ground spices such as chili powders, cumin, and coriander and finely cut herbs such as oregano, basil, and thyme. Rubs may be dry or wet. Wet rubs, also called pastes, use liquid ingredients such as mustards, juices, and vinegars. Pastes produce a crust on the food. Wet or dry seasoning rubs work particularly well with beef and pork because of their density and texture. Rubs can range from a 13 Cajun Spice Rub to a Jamaican jerk rub. To make a rub, various seasonings are mixed

INGREDIENT FOCUS: MEAT, POULTRY, AND FISH HI

figure 5-8 SEAFOOD NUTRITION CHART (BASED ON 31/2

-OUNCE PORTIONS)

Saturated

Fat

Fat

Cholesterol

Species

Kcalories

(grams)

(grams)*

(milligrams)

finfish ■

Carp, cooked, dry heat

162

7

1

84

Cod, Atlantic, cooked, dry heat

105

1

55

Grouper, cooked, dry heat

118

1

47

Haddock, cooked, dry heat

112

1

74

Halibut, cooked, dry heat

140

3

1

41

Herring, Atlantic, cooked, dry heat

203

12

3

77

Mackerel, Atlantic, cooked, dry heat

262

18

4

75

Perch, cooked, dry heat

117

1

115

Pike, northern, cooked, dry heat

113

1

50

Pollock, walleye, cooked, dry heat

113

1

96

Pompano, cooked, dry heat

211

12

5

64

Salmon, coho, cooked, moist heat

185

8

1

49

Salmon, sockeye, canned, drained solids with bone

153

7

2

44

Sea bass, cooked, dry heat

124

3

1

53

Smelt, rainbow, cooked, dry heat

124

3

1

90

Snapper, cooked, dry heat

128

2

47

Swordfish, cooked, dry heat

155

5

1

50

Trout, rainbow, cooked, dry heat

151

4

1

73

Tuna, bluefish, fresh, cooked, dry heat

184

6

2

49

Whiting, cooked, dry heat

115

2

84

1

shellfish

Clam, cooked, moist heat

148

2

67

Crab, Alaska king, cooked, moist heat

97

2

53

Crayfish, cooked, moist heat

114

1

178

Lobster, northern, cooked, moist heat

98

1

72

Oyster, eastern, cooked, moist heat

137

5

1

109

Scallops, raw

88

1

33

Shrimp, cooked, moist heat

99

1

195

*A dash (—) means less than 1 g of saturated fat.

Source: U.S. Department of Agriculture.

together and spread or patted evenly on the meat a short time before cooking for delicate items or 24 hours plus in advance for heartier meat cuts (see Figure 5-10 for the ingredients in 13 Cajun Spice Rub). The larger the piece of meat or poultry is, the longer the rub can stay on. The rub flavors the exterior of the meat as it cooks.

Marinades bring out flavors naturally so that you don't need to drown the food in fat, cream, or sauces. Marinades allow a food to stand on its own with a light dressing, chutney, sauce, or relish (discussed more in Chapter 8). To give marinated foods flavor, try minced fruits and vegetables, low-sodium soy sauce, mustard, fresh herbs, and spices. For example, fruit-juice marinades can be flavored with Asian seasonings such as ginger and lemongrass. As another example, marinate top sirloin butt or sirloin tip with tomato juice, herbs, and spices. Cut into strips and use in fajitas or stir-fries. Cut into cubes and grill them as kabobs.

You can marinate fish without any citrus, which ruins the texture of the fish if it is marinated for very long. By eliminating citrus, you can marinate the fish longer, for two hours or even overnight. Try a marinade that includes fish stock, chives, tarragon, thyme, black pepper, and a touch of olive oil. The fish will absorb some liquid, which will keep it moister during cooking.

  • Choose a cooking method that will produce a flavorful, moist product and that adds little or no fat to the food. Possibilities include roasting, grilling, broiling, sauteing, poaching, and braising (discussed in detail in Chapter 8).
  • Smoking can be used to complement the taste of meat, poultry, or fish. Hardwoods or fruitwoods, such as the following, are best for producing tasty foods:
  • Fruit (apple, cherry, peach). These woods are too strong for light fish but work well with fatty fishes, pork, chicken, and turkey.
  • Hickory and maple. These are great for beef or pork.
  • Mesquite. Mesquite produces an aromatic smoke that works well with beef and pork.

FIGURE 5-9

Lean cuts of meat. Top row: flank steak, ground hamburger (95% lean meat, 5% fat), eye round roast. Bottom row: top round steak, sirloin tip steak, loin pork chop.

Photo by Frank Pronesti.

FIGURE 5-9

Lean cuts of meat. Top row: flank steak, ground hamburger (95% lean meat, 5% fat), eye round roast. Bottom row: top round steak, sirloin tip steak, loin pork chop.

Photo by Frank Pronesti.

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