Pork is an “excellent” source of nutrients important to our health such as thiamin, niacin, vitamin B-6, phosphorus and protein and a “good” source of zinc, riboflavin and potassium.
The following information is based on a 3-ounce serving of pork.
Pork Provides Key Nutrients
|Nutrient||% Daily Value||Why It’s Good For You|
|Iron||5%||Iron is a mineral we need for growth and development. Our body uses it to make hemoglobin, which is a protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen from the lungs throughout the body, and myoglobin, a protein that provides oxygen to muscles. Your body also uses iron in hormone production. Iron in food comes in two forms: heme iron and nonheme iron. Meat like pork, seafood, and poultry have both heme and nonheme iron.|
|Magnesium||6%||Important for the normal function of many enzymes (catalysts for the body’s chemical reactors), glucose and muscle action.|
|Phosphorous||20%||Strengthens bones and generates energy in cells.|
|Potassium||11%||This mineral, also known as an electrolyte, plays a major role in water balance and helps maintain normal blood pressure. This is considered a nutrient of public health concern.|
|Zinc||14%||A component of more than 70 enzymes, zinc is a key player in energy metabolism and the immune system.|
|Thiamin||54%||Without this key vitamin, metabolism of carbohydrates, protein, and fat would be significantly compromised. Animal protein is one of the best sources of this nutrient, and among the choices, pork is tops.|
|Riboflavin||19%||Next to milk, few foods have as much riboflavin per serving as pork. Riboflavin has an important role in the release of energy from foods.|
|Niacin||37%||Important for the normal function of many enzymes in the body and involved in the metabolism of sugars and fatty acids.|
|Vitamin B12||8%||Helps build red blood cells and metabolize carbohydrates and fats.|
|Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine)||37%||Important for the normal function of enzymes and co-enzymes, which are needed to metabolize protein, carbohydrates, and fats. Plus, it plays a critical role in the regulation of glycogen (stored carbohydrates) metabolism.|
- Based on 3-ounce cooked servings (roasted or broiled), visible fat and skin trimmed after cooking.
- Reference: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agriculture Research Service, 2012.
- Lean: Less than 10 grams of total fat, 4.5 grams saturated fat and 95 milligrams cholesterol per serving.
- Extra Lean: Less than 5 grams total fat, 2 grams saturated fat and 95 milligrams cholesterol per serving.