Venison is a wonderful source of meat. There are around 34 species of deer worldwide. Not only are deer an adventure to hunt, they provide many health benefits.

The advantages of deer meat begin with an ethical harvest. A proper shot will dispatch the deer and ensure the quality of the meat. Several shots ruins and wastes the meat. Wounding the deer leads to long tracking and increases the adrenaline levels found in the deer. This will ruin the quality of the meat. Dressing the deer is also critical. Take care to remove the entrails without contaminating the carcass with urine, hair, dirt, or wastes.

Once the deer has been properly dressed, it is ready for processing. Ideally, a few days to a week of cold storage or aging, will make the deer more tender. Removing any debris and dirt will also help. When you skin the critter, take care to minimize hair on the meat. If you choose a butcher, make sure that they have a clean and healthy workplace. Double wrapping or vacuum sealing is best. Consume the deer meat within 6 months for the best results.

               Deer is great Heart Food    Deer meat is low in Sodium. It also contains healthy levels of Zinc, Phosphorus, Vitamin B6, Thiamin, Riboflavin, B12, Niacin, and protein. Low cholesterol levels also are important. All of these are recommended for heart healthy diets. Low amounts of salt promote better health and reduces strokes. These qualities are also brain healthy.

               Health Benefits    Venison contains protein and high levels of iron, while having low calorie counts. Iron is great for blood, pregnant women, and energy. Iron also helps regulate body temperature and metabolism. Our body’s organs need iron to help process enzymes. Since brains use 20% of blood flow for development, Iron is essential. Muscle myoglobin, along with Iron, is important for muscle work, vascular development, and reducing clots.

               Vascular Health    Deer meat is known for its good sources of B12 and B6. These vitamins prevent Homocysteine which impacts osteoporosis. This disease often impacts women at a higher rate than men. B12 also helps to protect colon cells, cancer, liver health, and colon cancer. Homocysteine also damages blood vessels. This leads to issues related to Diabetes, heart disease, and increased risk of a stroke or heart attack.

               Lower Testosterone Levels    Eating lamb and beef reduces testosterone levels in men. These meats provide protein and fat but also add high levels of cholesterol. This fat builds up on the abdomen. Excessive fat, in this area, lowers testosterone levels. Venison is both low fat and cholesterol making a safer and healthier dietary choice.

               Saturated Fats have great benefits    Eating saturated fats within health standards. Their benefits often outweigh their cons. Bone health, increased body immune system, organ protection, are just some of the ways venison will help. Deer meat only has 4g of saturated fat per 100 grams of meat.

               Blood Health    Iron is essential for the formation of hemoglobin. This is the main carrier of oxygen throughout the body. Red Blood cells, or erythrocytes are red in color partly because of Iron. Anemia happens when we have a deficiency of iron. Overall body growth, immune systems, and development are all affected by iron and other benefits that venison contains.

Too much of anything can be harmful. If you eat just one form of food for your diet, other issues will arise. A balanced diet is very important. Meat is just one part. Make sure to consume vegetables, fruits, dairy, and grains. Mountain men, like Lewis and Clark consumed 25 lbs. of wild meat per day. Scurvy, tooth issues, acne, dysentery, and other health concerns arose. Once they began trading with local peoples, other foods were introduced into their diets. Fish, roots, vegetables, and grains helped to better balance their health and improve stamina and metabolism.

When consuming venison, there are other things to consider when planning a healthy menu. Removing deer fat and silver skin helps. Use less butter and oil when cooking the deer meat. Baking, smoking, boiling, or steaming meat uses less oil to prepare. Consider using more rubs or marinates, that include more herbs and spices, but less salts. It is also important to not overcook the venison. Wild meats get tougher as they are cooked. Medium rare is perfect.

Venison is a meat that could be a part of a healthy diet in more than one form. Plan your meals around the cuts of deer meat. Grind makes burgers, tacos, and meat balls. Steaks can be the main meal entre. Jerky can be a healthy snack food. Sausage can be a great side for breakfast. Roasts make a healthy main meal item. Add some fish and other side dishes, and deer could be a primary part of your diet. Remember that venison meals including ribs, offal, skin, and fat are less healthy. Replace regular salt with sodium substitutes. These also include other spices and flavors that also make them a better flavor and healthier choice.

Deer meat is expensive. Most wild game today is delicious and healthy but requires an investment of time, gear, and money. Once you add in how much it costs to harvest that deer, it becomes way more expensive than store bought meats. Hunting does not mean you are promised or guaranteed a bag full of steaks. There is luck and opportunity to consider. On a Game Farm, a harvest is more likely. Hunting becomes more like a shopping trip. The outcome is a healthy critter, great adventure, and a freezer filed with healthy meat.

Deer Diets are Delicious and healthy too!

Montana Grant

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