When you are trying to figure out where to eat, you have a lot of places to choose from. America really is the land of options as well as opportunity and it has it all. From chicken wings and fast food to rib eye steaks and calamari, the food industry really has it going on in this country. Caterers and restaurants make a lot of money over all but those that make chicken, in particular.
Chicken is the number one protein that is consumed by people in the United States. They eat more than anyone else in the world. Just in the week alone that led up to the Forth of July, people across America collectively purchased 700 million pounds of chicken! Chicken wings, chicken drumsticks, chicken thighs, chicken breast, rotisserie chicken; almost every part of the chicken is available for consumption. And in so many different ways: fried, baked, boiled, broiled, grilled; the list goes on. Don’t forget chicken nuggets. It’s not clear which category nuggets would fall in to but they are likely to be at least part chicken, usually. Then of course you have chicken soup, chicken chili and chicken salad. By the time you finish reading this article, you are going to be sick of the word chicken! But, it’s probable that it won’t stop you from eating it!
Now, there is a good reason that poultry is so popular. It is actually good for you. America has long since been known to have obese people and unhealthy food but as the generations go on, people are more and more concerned about their health and weight. That is one of the main reasons that poultry has become such a staple item for many people’s fridges and freezers. Here are just a few benefits of chicken.
- Chicken is high in protein
Poultry is an excellent source of lean, low fat, good protein. Protein is what helps muscles to grow and develop efficiently. This aids weight loss as the more muscle you have, the easier it is to burn fat. Eating a lot of protein can help you lose weight as well maintain your current weight and muscle mass. Having a lot of protein in your diet will also help to prevent bone loss and osteoporosis as well as arthritis.
- Chicken is an anti depressant
It’s true. You’ve heard that turkey is high in tryptophan- the sleepy amino acid that puts us in a food coma after Thanksgiving meals. Chicken has a lot of it to. Tryptophan not only makes you tired and helps you sleep but it will also give you a very comforting feeling as it lifts the serotonin levels in your brain. This aids stress elimination and enhances your mood. So, the next time you are feeling down, try eating a big bowl of chicken noodle soup or a plate of delicious chicken wings and you’ll see how it makes you feel better. The great part about it is that while you will be comfort eating, you won’t gain weight from it!
- Chicken helps the heart
Ever heard the phrase, “chicken soup is good for the soul?” Well, while your soul might not be a physical body part, it’s closest relative is the heart. There is an amino acid called homocysteine that actually can cause cardiovascular disease when the levels are too high. Chicken breast actually has an element in it that controls homocysteine levels in our bodies.
- Chicken contains phosphorus
Phosphorus is the essential mineral that helps your teeth and bones. Not only that but it can have a positive effect on the kidneys, liver and nervous system overall.
- Chicken has selenium
This is what improves the metabolic performance by enhancing function in the thyroid, hormones, metabolism and immune system.
- Chicken boosts the metabolism
If you felt guilty about the extra chicken wings you ate last night, keep in mind that while the sauce the wings were in might not have been great, chicken has B-complex vitamins that boost your metabolism and give you energy. So, you may have burned off the sauce quicker than you realized!
Chicken is a great choice when you are trying to eat properly but are not ready to go the vegetarian route. Everything about it is very good for you.