Ask a dietician - Happy healthy hearts love beef
Wait a minute ... beef is OK to eat and keep my heart healthy, too?
Yes, you read this correctly. No longer “taboo” for healthy, active lifestyles, nutrient-rich lean beef such as top sirloin steak can be enjoyed again without guilt. In fact, top sirloin meets the American Heart Association certification as a lean cut of beef and heart-healthy choice. The AHA Heart-Check certification is one of the most trusted nutrition logos and claims on a food label.
According to researchers at Penn State University, the Beef in an Optimal Diet study showed that adding a daily serving of nutrient-packed lean beef to a heart-healthy diet could lower the risk of heart disease by reducing LDL (bad) cholesterol levels.
A three-ounce serving of lean sirloin (about the size of your smartphone) has about 150 calories, plus the daily value of these nutrients:
•Protein: 38 percent (for muscle growth and repair).
•Vitamin B12: 44 percent (important for brain health).
•Selenium: 40 percent (protects cells from damage).
•Zinc: 38 percent (strengthens the immune system).
According to research published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association, beef is the No. 1 source of protein, zinc and vitamin B12. It is the No. 2 source for selenium and No. 3 source for iron.
Protein in beef promotes the feeling of satiety, or fullness, longer than simple carbohydrates. This means that, for people trying to curb their calories for weight loss, Type 2 diabetes or other health reasons, eating a three-ounce serving of top sirloin in a meal not only provides important nutrients and energy, but also helps keep a person from feeling hungry for a longer period of time.
Here are some tips and reminders for preparing your delicious beef sirloin:
•It’s not necessary to bring beef to room temperature before cooking. This practice does not provide any flavor or cooking advantage. For food safety reasons, it’s best to cook meat straight from the refrigerator to keep bacteria levels at a minimum.
•When stir-frying sirloin, partially freeze the steak before preparation. It will slice easier into thin, equal-thickness strips.
•Pat steaks dry with paper towels before pan-searing to get better browning that seals in the juices. When grilling or broiling, use tongs rather than a meat fork. The fork tines will pierce the steak, causing the flavorful juices to seep out, while tongs will not cause this.
Many recipes using sirloin steak are quick and easy. The following recipes take less than 35 minutes to prepare. Enjoy the powerful health benefits of lean beef!
This information is not intended as medical advice. Please consult a medical professional for individual advice.
Beef Pepper Steak (serves 4)
All You Need
1 pound top sirloin steak or top round steak, trimmed, sliced ¾-inch thick — flank steak works well also
½ cup Hy-Vee Light Italian salad dressing, divided
Salt and black pepper, to taste
2 large bell peppers, any color, cut into 1/8-inch strips
1 medium (yellow or white) onion, cut into 1/8-inch wedges
All You Do:
1. Cut beef lengthwise in half, then crosswise into 1/8-inch thick strips. Place beef and 1/3 cup Hy-Vee Light Italian dressing in food-safe plastic bag; turn beef to coat. Close bag securely and marinate in refrigerator 30 minutes or up to 2 hours. Reserve remaining dressing for the vegetables.
2. Remove beef from marinade and discard marinade. Heat large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Add half of beef; stir-fry 1-2 minutes or just until outside surface of beef is no longer pink. (Do not overcook.) Remove meat from skillet onto plate: repeat with remaining beef strips. Season beef with salt and pepper; keep warm. Wipe skillet with paper towel if desired.
3. Heat remaining Italian dressing in same skillet until hot. Add bell peppers and onion. Stir-fry 5-6 minutes or until vegetables are crisp-tender. Return beef and juices to skillet. Cook and stir 1-2 minutes or until heated through. Serve.
Per serving: 240 calories; 10 g fat (3 g sat, 3 g mono); 69 mg cholesterol; 9 g carbohydrate; 2 g fiber; 27 g protein; 260 mg sodium. This recipe is an excellent source of protein, niacin, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, selenium, zinc and choline. It is a good source of iron.
Recipe courtesy of the Beef Checkoff
Beef and Cabbage Stir-Fry with Peanut Sauce (serves 4)
All you need
1/4 cup Hy-Vee smooth natural peanut butter
1/3 cup orange juice
3 tbsp reduced-sodium soy sauce
1 tbsp rice vinegar
2 tsp sugar
4 tsp Hy-Vee canola oil, divided
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 pound Hy-Vee sirloin steak, trimmed and thinly sliced
1 small head Savoy cabbage, thinly sliced
2 to 5 tbsp water
2 medium carrots, grated
1/4 cup chopped unsalted roasted peanuts (optional)
All you do
1. Whisk peanut butter, orange juice, soy sauce, vinegar and sugar in a medium bowl until smooth.
2. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a wok or large skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Add steak; cook, stirring, until browned and barely pink in the middle, 2 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a bowl.
3. Reduce heat to medium. Swirl in the remaining 2 teaspoons oil. Add cabbage and 2 tablespoons water; cook, stirring, until beginning to wilt, 3 to 5 minutes. Add carrots (and more water if necessary to prevent sticking); cook, stirring, until just tender, about 3 minutes more. Return the steak and any juices to the pan; add the peanut sauce and toss to combine. Serve sprinkled with peanuts (if using).
Nutrition facts per serving: 364 calories, 17 g fat, 3 g saturated fat, 42 mg cholesterol, 469 mg sodium, 23 g carbohydrate, 7 g fiber, 31 g protein. Daily values: 140 percent of vitamin A, 110 percent of vitamin C.
Source: Adapted from Eating Well Inc.