Diana Nelson

Why Should You Eat Chicken Meat?

Chicken meat is one of the easiest foods to prepare and it is a great source of lean protein if you want to build a good-looking body.


The chicken’s finest hour came in 2004 when an international team of geneticists produced a complete genome map of the chicken. The chicken was the first domesticated animal, the first bird and, therefore, the first descendant of the dinosaurs to be so honoured.

The genome map provided an excellent opportunity to study how thousands of years of domestication may have changed the species. Researchers have discovered important mutations in the gene that regulates glucose metabolism. In humans, mutations in this gene were linked to obesity, but for chickens, this mutation bears a positive trait.

Chicken meat – nutrition facts

Chicken meat has high energy value, a good amount of protein and medium fat content. Also, zero carbs, sugar and fibre and zero glycemic index that is good for your blood sugar levels. Chicken contains a small amount of potassium, a good amount of vitamin B6 and a great amount of vitamin B3.

source: USDA
source: USDA

Chicken meat – Good news

Chicken is one of the most popular meats in people’s diets. However, despite the fact that chicken is a staple food, you may not know how healthy it is.

1Increases your protein supply

Chicken has a high protein content and is a top choice for people who want to build muscle mass. But it is not just bodybuilders who need protein. This nutrient is an important component for every cell in your body. Your body needs protein to make enzymes, hormones, and other chemicals. It also supports bones, muscles, tissues, blood and cartilage. Keep in mind that the body cannot store protein as it can do with other nutrients, so you must continuously nourish your body with it.

2Promotes heart health

Chicken is rich in vitamin B6 and this plays an important role in heart attack prevention. Vitamin B6 helps reduce levels of homocysteine which is an amino acid, one of the key components linked to an increased risk of a heart attack.

3Makes bones stronger

You probably couldn’t imagine that eating chicken can strengthen your bones.

According to a study dietary protein even increases the bone mineral mass and reduces the incidence of osteoporotic fracture. Dietary protein is crucial for the maintenance of bone tissue as well as for bone growth. Human bones are made up of 35% protein and require a supply of amino acids to be used for protein turnover.

35% of our bones are made of protein Source: CambridgeCore

4Helps to lose weight

When making a healthy eating plan, chicken is almost always the main dish. This is because chicken is lean and has much less fat and calories than other meats but contains much-needed protein. Eating it regularly can help you lose weight, given that the protein provides satiety and you do not overeat. You can use chicken for all kinds of soups, salads and casseroles, so you won’t feel like you are missing much. Plus, you will feel satisfied after your meal.

5Boosts your immunity


There is a good reason why you eat chicken soup when you are sick. Chicken helps strengthen the body’s immune cells to fight infection and help you cope with illness. Protein from chicken also contains amino acids that make antibodies to fight infection. When you combine chicken with fresh broth and vegetables, it is the perfect recipe for comfort and healing. Not to mention that vitamin B5, magnesium and tryptophan (an essential amino acid found in many protein-based foods and dietary proteins) relieve stress and improve mood.

6Affordable and versatile

One of the greatest things about chicken is that it is a relatively inexpensive source of protein for many households. It is often more budget-friendly than other sources of protein, such as beef, pork, fish and lamb. This makes it a great option for ensuring an adequate supply of essential nutrients while still being cost-effective.

Also, chicken is incredibly versatile in cooking. There are a variety of dishes you can make with it, such as fried chicken, barbecue, salads, and soups.

Cost of protein in different foods, stats Source: Healthypedia

Chicken meat – Bad news

Although chicken is good for our health, it has some side effects.

It may increase cholesterol levels

A small study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that white chicken meat may raise levels of ‘bad’ LDL cholesterol.

Most chicken breasts sold at retail are contaminated with bacteria

You might eat chicken contaminated with bacteria. 97% of chicken breasts tested by Consumer Reports contained bacteria, and it is even possible that these are making you sick. A 2014 study analysed more than 300 raw chicken breasts bought in grocery shops across the USA. Most chicken breasts from the test were found to be infected with bacteria.

More than half of the samples contained faecal contamination. And about half of them contained at least one bacterium resistant to three or more commonly prescribed antibiotics. It is definitely something to look out for the next time you go to the grocery shop to buy poultry meat.

Chicken meat can contain antibiotics

It is commonly believed that chickens on farms are given lots of hormones and steroids to promote rapid growth. This is not entirely true. Instead of using hormones and steroids, the poultry industry has created larger birds through the use of antibiotics and years of selective breeding. Selective breeding is the process of breeding two animals with desired qualities so that their offsprings also have those qualities.

Antibiotics are used in poultry farming when the birds are sick – when it is the only way to control salmonellosis, E. coli, or other infections. If the producer is unscrupulous and applies uncontrolled amounts of antibiotics to the birds, the chickens may develop resistance to the antibiotics given. And then not only the antibiotics but also these resistant bacteria will pose a danger to human health.

Fun & curious facts about chicken meat

  • Thanks to scientists, it was discovered that the mutation resulting from the selective breeding of chickens occurred in the thyroid-stimulating hormone receptor gene. In wild animals, this gene coordinates reproduction with the length of the day, limiting reproduction to certain seasons. A mutation that switches this gene off allows hens to breed and lay eggs all year round.

Chicken meat in the Blue Zones

Many of the long-livers of the Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Rica raise free-range chickens. When it is time for a special meal, they make polo guisado, or chicken stew. Almost every family has their own recipe for this dish, but it always consists of a whole chicken cooked in broth and lots of vegetables.

Let’s sum chicken meat up

Chicken meat raises the body’s protein supply, promotes heart health, makes bones stronger, helps you lose weight and boosts your immune system. But according to some reports, chicken can raise ‘bad’ cholesterol, and сhicken meat can also be contaminated with harmful bacteria, so try to buy from proven producers to avoid bad consequences.

Not enough? Here is more

In this video on Bestie’s YouTube channel, with almost 5 million subscribers, you’ll hear from the guys about why you should eat chicken.

Healthypedia FAQ

The 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA) Healthy U.S.-Style Eating Pattern recommends the average person eating 26 ounces (737 g) of poultry (including chicken) per week.

Fresh chicken should have a pinkish colour. Avoid damages, such as bruises or tears in the skin, which can affect the quality and freshness of the chicken. The chicken should also be plump, when pressed, the meat should be somewhat firm and regain its shape after a few seconds.

Chicken is a versatile form of high-quality protein which is why it is commonly found in so many recipes. You can make a simple chicken soup, sandwich, salad or chicken curry.

Store and cook chicken properly to prevent foodborne illnesses. Cross-contamination during cooking or storing chicken for too long can cause bacteria to multiply, which can cause serious illness. Also, you should store fresh, uncooked chicken on a low shelf of the refrigerator so it does not drip onto other items. For convenience, wrap separate pieces in foil or plastic bags.

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