We’ve always heard that turkey is healthier than pork and beef because it is made from lean meat. And while we do know that regular bacon, which is made from poke is unhealthy. What about turkey bacon?
Is turkey bacon good for you?
More importantly, is turkey bacon healthy such that you can eat it as an alternative to pork bacon?
In this article, we take a closer look at the “other kind of bacon”, turkey bacon. It’s not as popular as the ones made from pork, mainly because it doesn’t have as much flavor.
But for anyone who’s trying to stay away from fat content but still wants a taste of bacon, will its turkey alternative be okay?
Is Turkey Bacon Healthy?
Before getting into the meat of the issue, which is, is turkey bacon good for you, we’ll go through how this food is actually made.
This way, we have a better understanding of what the ingredients are as well as what kind of processing takes place to get the final product that’s served on your dining table.
How is Turkey Bacon Processed?
In a traditional sense, turkey bacon does not qualify as bacon.
In its preparation and use, however, turkey bacon serves as an adequate substitute for its less healthy cousin, pork bacon.
When being prepared for bacon, dark and white turkey meat is ground up and formed into strips. Because turkeys do not have stomachs large enough to cut into bacon strips, meat from the whole turkey is used instead.
To this end, turkey bacon, as far as fat content is concerned, is healthier compared to pork bacon. The reason being that meat from turkey, is generally leaner than that found in pork.
Also, depending on the company who produces it, turkey bacon may have added smoke flavors. It may be artificially flavored to taste more like pork bacon as well.
Because of this, you’ll want to be careful when choosing turkey bacon when shopping. Some brand will include extra additives and artificial flavoring. And while they may make the meat taste better, you’re sabotaging your health goals in the process.
The Source of the Meat Matters
Much like other forms of meat, the original source of the product is extremely important.
A quality turkey bacon product will contain no trace amounts of antibiotics or steroids. Animals that are not raised with care and proper oversight are often sick. And, a sick animal is stressed.
This is something you want to avoid. That’s because the quality of the meat will always be lowered through the animal’s production of stress hormones. In short, the more stressed the animal, the lower quality the meat product.
Turkey bacon that is sourced from a quality farm and produced with healthy animals, provides a welcome alternative to the traditionally fatty pork bacon sold in most modern supermarkets.
Positive Health Attributes
Substituting “turkey bacon” for the pork variety reduces fat content. It also simultaneously reduces the number of calories per serving, which is usually around two strips. So, this is good news, especially if you’re looking to cut on body fat and lose some weight.
The reduction in fat and calories however, does come with a tradeoff. This comes in the form of a reduced portion of protein. But, the reduction in fat more than offsets this drawback.
With no carbohydrates, turkey bacon can help with weight management as well as weight loss. At the same time, it can provide you with a source of essential macro-nutrients free of sugar.
Because turkey bacon is made of turkey meat, the overall nutritional profile closely resembles that of other turkey preparations. This is generally healthier than most other meats including pork and beef.
Turkey Bacon Contains Phosphorous
Another benefit you can get from turkey bacon is that it provides a good source of phosphorous.
This essential nutrient has been extensively researched and found to benefit the body in numerous ways. Phosphorous aids in digestion, helps promote healthy bone development, allows for healthy brain development and also works to help the body rid itself of unusable waste.
It Helps Keep Our Blood Healthy
In addition, turkey bacon also provides a rich source of Vitamin B6. Pyridoxine, or Vitamin B6, is essential to many parts of the human body. And, it is needed to maintain good health.
In particular, vitamin B6 has a profound influence on the health of our blood. This essential vitamin aids in the production of hemoglobin, which is vital to the blood oxygen delivery system in our bodies.
Also, vitamin B6 helps to regulate the sugar levels in our blood. This makes turkey bacon a good choice for those suffering from diabetes and other blood sugar abnormalities.
A Good Source of Niacin
Niacin, or Vitamin B3 is also found in turkey bacon.
Niacin is extremely important to the breakdown of protein, carbohydrates and fat. It is essential for our bodies to properly breakdown large nutrient molecules efficiently.
Otherwise, without it or a deficiency in this B vitamin can lead to serious nutritional deficiencies.
Not only does Niacin help to breakdown molecules in our bodies, Vitamin B3 is needed by our liver to flush out the toxins.
Overall, turkey bacon is a better alternative to the more traditional pork bacon we’re all very fond of. It is lower in calories and also contains less fat because it comes from the leaner turkey meat.
And while it may not taste as flavorful as pork bacon, anyone who wants to be able to enjoy bacon and cut down on the negative effective of regular bacon can give its turkey alternative a try.