The first thing to say about artificial (vegetable) meat is that this product is not actually meat. These products fall into two categories: cellular proteins and vegetable proteins.
For example, plant-based hamburgers and sausages are made by removing protein from plant foods. Usually it is peas, wheat, mushrooms, soybeans. At the same time, many additives are used to make such products have the appearance and taste of ordinary meat.
Cellular meat is created from lab-grown animal cells.
But in reality, fake meat isn’t necessarily healthier. In general, plant-based foods contain more fiber and carbohydrates and less saturated fat and calories than meat-based foods. However, not all plant-based foods are the same in terms of the amount of nutrients they contain.
For example, veggie burgers can have 0.2-8.5 g (per 100 g of product) of saturated fat. That’s even more than beef patties.
There is also a lot of salt in plant foods. For example, plant-based ground beef may contain up to six times more sodium than animal-based ground beef. At the same time, on the contrary, in vegetable sausages, sodium is 2/3 less on average.
In a study of 36 American adults, scientists found that eating more plant-based foods reduced the risk of heart disease (by improving cholesterol levels and body weight). But overall, research in this area is just beginning, so more testing is needed to confirm this theory.
In addition, most products containing artificial meat are ultra-processed products.
At the same time, it will be better for the environment if people eat more artificial meat. Beyond Meat says it uses 99% less water, 93% less land and 90% less greenhouse gas emissions than traditional beef patties. However, the impact of plant-based meat on the environment is controversial, especially given that highly processed foods (and this includes such meats) are considered environmentally unsustainable.
News cannot be equated with a doctor’s prescription. Consult an expert before making a decision.