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Fiona Haynes

Will Pork Become the New Chicken?

By June 22, 2007

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Those who have sworn off red meat may be interested to know that there is indeed another white meat out there, a claim that the National Pork Board has made for many years. But it seems that, thanks to the breeding of leaner hogs, pork is actually leaner than ever before, with pork tenderloin now as lean as an equivalent-sized skinless chicken breast.

Pork tenderloin now qualifies as extra lean, as it meets the government’s requirement that it contain less than 5 grams of fat, less than 2 grams of saturated fat and less than 95 milligrams of cholesterol per serving. Five other cuts of pork can now be considered lean, which means they contain less than 10 grams of fat, less than 4.5 grams of saturated fat and less than 95 milligrams of cholesterol per serving. These pork cuts include: boneless top loin chops, boneless top loin roast, center loin chops, center rib chops and bone-in sirloin roast. The six leanest cuts of pork are said to be 16 percent leaner than 15 years ago and 27 percent lower in saturated fat.

The findings are the results of a collaborative study between the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the University of Madison-Wisconsin, and the University of Maryland, which was funded by the National Pork Board. Scientists compared samples of nine cuts of pork and analyzed them for calories, total fat, saturated fat, trans fat, cholesterol, vitamins and minerals. The results were compared with the data collected in 1991.

Whether or not pork becomes as ubiquitous as chicken at the dinner table, it certainly offers us another lean-meat option if we’re eating low fat.

Lean Pork Recipes

Barbecued Pork Chops © 2006 Fiona Haynes, licensed to About.com, Inc.

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