What is liverwurst? Is liverwurst healthy?
What is liverwurst? Liver sausage is always part of parties. The slices of liverwurst are eaten before you know it with your drink. The Dutch therefore often eat liverwurst. But to what extent is liverwurst healthy? And what is liverwurst made of?
What is liverwurst?
Liver sausage is made from pork liver and other pork. At least 30% of the sausage must consist of pork liver. The other 70% is ground residual meat from the pig and possibly other animal protein sources. Certain cities or regions in the Netherlands have their own liverwurst.
For many people, liverwurst is a popular product for sandwiches. In fact, it is the most favorite sandwich filling of the Dutch in the meat product category. The Dutch eat no less than 12 million kilos of this meat every year! But liverwurst is not only popular as a sandwich filling; it is also popular as a savory snack. Liver sausage slices are almost never missing on any birthday or party and these are often used up in no time. The first liverwurst recipes date from the 17th century, making it perhaps one of the oldest types of spreads known to the Dutch.
Is liverwurst healthy?
Liver sausage is often eaten on bread or as a snack. Because liverwurst is eaten a lot in the Netherlands, it is wise to know how healthy liverwurst actually is. In general, liverwurst consists of pork liver and pork. Liver sausage can only be called liver sausage if you consist of at least 30% pork liver. Fresh meat products and liver often contain a lot of vitamins and iron. Because liver sausage is a processed product and does not consist entirely of liver, the vitamins and iron are no longer present in the liver sausage. In addition, many herbs and spices are added to the liver sausage, including salt. Due to the high salt content and high fat content, liver sausage is not a healthy choice and it is not recommended to consume liver sausage daily. Some types of liverwurst consist mainly of saturated fats. These saturated fats raise blood cholesterol levels, which can lead to cardiovascular disease.
Liver sausage has good properties that belong in a healthy diet. For example, there is a lot of protein in liver sausage. You need proteins, because this is important for building and growing muscles, among other things. Furthermore, there is hardly any sugar in liver sausage and this makes liver sausage healthy for many people. Liver sausage is also a rich source of vitamin A. Vitamin A is good for the skin and contributes to a good immune system. In addition, vitamin A is important for the eyes.
Everything has a downside and that is also the case with liverwurst. Liver sausage is flavored with spices. These herbs contain salt and liverwurst therefore contains a relatively large amount of salt. Too much salt is not good, because it can cause high blood pressure. Too much salt is also associated with a high risk of cardiovascular disease. Reason enough to be aware of this. A second argument for assuming that liverwurst is not healthy is the amount of fat it contains. To a certain extent, fats are healthy, but liverwurst contains mainly saturated fats. Saturated fats are partly responsible for weight gain and can also contribute to high cholesterol.
Some liver sausages contain flavor enhancers. For example, monosodium glutamate (E621) can be in your favorite liver sausage. This flavoring is called MSG for short. MSG stimulates the taste buds to eat more. This appetite-enhancing effect ensures that you prefer to eat the entire liver sausage. In addition to prompting you to eat more, there are also side effects to MSG. It can cause headaches, dizziness, insomnia and hyperactivity.
It should not be used in products intended for children. Children under 6 months of age are sensitive to the fact that nitrite hinders oxygen transport in the body. In addition, nitrite causes the blood vessels to widen. This can cause low blood pressure, headaches and hyperventilation.
The Health Council also advises against it for pregnant women, as it is not clear whether the substance contributes to childhood leukemia. This suspicion arose because nitrite is converted into nitrosamines. The conversion of nitrite to nitrosamines is carcinogenic in animals. It is more difficult to demonstrate this in humans. This is because nitrosamines also enter the body through cigarette smoke and cosmetics.
As you have read, liverwurst has good and bad properties. It is up to you whether you find it suitable for your current diet.
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