When it comes to healthy diets, it seems like everyone has a different opinion about what’s ideal. Some people insist that only fruits and vegetables should make it to your plate, while others claim that meats and dairy offer much-needed proteins and fats that shouldn’t be omitted. One thing’s for sure, humans have been eating a mixed diet consisting of all sorts of components for thousands of years, so it would seem to make sense that continuing that tradition would be in our best interest.
In Great Britain, a traditional type of meal is the meat and 2 veg, which, just as the name implies, consists of one serving of meat and two kinds of vegetables. The Orchid male cancer charity is currently running a social media campaign in conjunction with Ladbrokes encouraging people to Tweet pictures of their meat and 2 veg dishes in an effort to spread awareness about the prevalence and prevention of male cancers. Below we’ll look at why the meat and 2 veg is actually a very healthy meal type that most men find tasty and filling:
Cooking Vegetables Can Increase the Bioavailability of Nutrients
Most people are under the impression that raw vegetables are healthier than their cooked alternatives. While it is true that boiling, baking, microwaving, or exposing vegetables to high heat in any manner does, in fact, lower nutrient levels, on the positive side it also makes the remaining nutrients easier for the body to absorb and use. An article in Scientific American has pointed out that cooked vegetables are often easier to digest than their raw counterparts. Cooked veggies are also easier on our teeth and require less energy for the fibres to be broken down, which leads to greater nutrient assimilation.
Men Need Fats and Protein to Stay Big and Strong
We all know the stereotype of the skinny and frail vegetarian. There’s an old saying that goes: “you shall know a tree by its fruits.” Men who eat balanced diets high in protein are almost always more muscular and masculine than strict vegetarians who are typically protein deficient. The main caveat of meat-eating that many point out is that it can be difficult to digest. However, softened and stringy meats that are often seen in meat and 2 veg dishes are not nearly as slow in the stomach as a chewy cube steak.
Gravy and Seasonings Make it Not So Bland
A meat and 2 veg dish might sound extremely basic, but throw in some gravy and seasonings, put a buttered roll on the side and you’ve got yourself a meal worthy of a restaurant menu. Whether it’s a pot roast with carrots and spinach or pork chops with mashed potatoes and green beans, there’s really no limit to the variety of flavours you can enjoy within the realm of meat and 2 veg.
The British Got It Right
It’s been said that the British were at their healthiest during World War II, and that’s not surprising because that’s when the meat and 2 veg meals were at the height of their popularity. People were also growing a lot of their own vegetables in Britain at the time. People everywhere can learn valuable dieting lessons by going back to the wholesome meal and 2 veg meals that have been pushed aside in favour of snacks and processed foods in recent years.