Shedding excess pounds doesn’t have to mean depriving yourself of your favorite foods, including red meat. A study from the University of Colorado Anschutz Health and Wellness Center shows that healthy, higher-protein diets including lean beef can be beneficial to not only weight loss, but also maintaining muscle mass and heart health.
The study is in line with ongoing research on the importance of lean protein for weight loss. To kick your healthy eating plan into high gear, try these tips:
Enjoy protein at every meal One of the benefits of having protein in your meal is feeling more satisfied, which helps reduce mindless eating or snacking in between meals. Additionally, meals with high-quality protein help build muscle and reduce body fat.
Choose lean protein options Picking lean protein options can be easier than you think. You can still enjoy a beef burger and save calories by choosing lean or extra-lean ground beef. Also make sure to choose colorful vegetables and fruits to round out your meal, like in this recipe for Grilled Southwestern Steak and Colorful Vegetables.
Grilled Southwestern Steak and Colorful Vegetables
1 beef top round steak, cut 1-inch thick (about 1 1/2 pounds)
salt, to taste
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1/4 cup prepared mild salsa
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium green or red bell pepper, cut into 1/4-inch strips
8 ounces button mushrooms, sliced 1/4-inch thick
2 cups zucchini, sliced 1/4-inch thick
3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
1 cup finely chopped tomatoes
1/4 cup chopped green onions
In small bowl, combine marinade ingredients. Place beef steak and marinade in food-safe plastic bag; turn steak to coat. Close bag securely and marinate in refrigerator 6 hours, or as long as overnight, turning occasionally.
Remove steak from marinade; discard marinade. Place steak on grill over medium, ash-covered coals. For medium-rare (145 F) doneness, grill covered, turning once, 12-14 minutes (on gas grill over medium heat, 16-19 minutes).
To prepare Colorful Vegetables: In large, nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, heat olive oil. Add bell pepper strips; cook and stir 1-2 minutes, or until crisp-tender. Add mushrooms, zucchini, cumin, salt and black pepper; cook and stir 3-4 minutes, or until crisp-tender. Add tomatoes and green onions; cook and stir 1 minute.
Carve steak into thin slices; season with salt, to taste. Serve with Colorful Vegetables.