Is Deer Meat Safe To Eat

Is Deer Meat Safe to Eat? Does It Benefit You?

Deer are routinely hunted, and this is indisputable. It makes perfect sense to consume the flesh of a wild animal once it has been killed. Venison, often known as deer meat, may be beneficial to your health.

Generally speaking, eating deer meat is seen as a healthy meal choice. One of the leanest and most nutrient-dense meats is venison. Iron, zinc, and vitamin B are all present in the flesh, which is abundant in protein and low in fat. Due to the possibility of hazardous germs and parasites, the meat should be carefully cooked.

Before eating venison, hunters should be knowledgeable of its risks. Most significantly, it’s necessary to consider the dangers of consuming ill or wounded animals. Another issue that has to be addressed, which is detailed in the overview below, is how deer meat should be handled. One of the less popular forms of meat on the market is venison. There’s a strong possibility you haven’t ever had deer meat before unless you’ve been around hunting your whole life or have ordered something unfamiliar at a fine dining establishment.

Having said that, there are several reasons you may want to think about including venison in your regular weekly meal rotation or at the very least give it a go if you haven’t before.

Benefits of eating deer meat

Deer meat is not only delicious, but it is also rich in nutrients, leaner than conventional beef, and full of health advantages. A sustainable protein source that may help you lose weight and maintain the health of your muscles, brain, and the immune system is deer meat.

  1. Encourages Weight Loss

If you’re trying to lose some weight, deer meat is a terrific addition to your diet since it’s high in protein and low in calories. Consuming protein may assist in lowering ghrelin levels, the hormone that stimulates appetite. A high-protein diet has also been shown in certain studies to increase metabolism and decrease hunger and consumption.

  1. Helps Prevent Anemia.

When the number of healthy red blood cells in your body is insufficient, anemia develops. Symptoms of anemia might include anything from tiredness and lightheadedness to pale skin or a rapid pulse.

Although there are numerous possible causes of anemia, deficiencies in vital vitamins and minerals are among the most frequent ones. Anemia may be brought on by low vitamin B12 levels, iron deficiency, and other factors that affect red blood cell synthesis.

Both of these minerals are abundant in venison, which provides 16 percent of your daily iron requirements and 33 percent of your vitamin B12 needs in each three-ounce meal. You may satisfy your weekly micronutrient requirements to avoid anemia by including a few servings of deer meat into a balanced diet.

  1. Enhances the Immune System

One three-ounce portion of deer meat provides 29% of your daily requirement for zinc. Deer meat is high in zinc. Especially when it comes to your immune system, zinc is a crucial element that is important for many areas of health.

Zinc is essential for the healthy growth and development of immune cells and also aids in preventing oxidative stress brought on by inflammation. It could also provide security in certain circumstances. A sufficient intake of zinc may lessen symptoms and cut the length of respiratory infections like the common cold, according to research that was published in the Annals of Nutrition & Metabolism. Additionally, it could help in the treatment of illnesses like malaria, pneumonia, and diarrhoea. 

  1. Encourages Muscle Growth and Regeneration

The body needs protein for tissue growth and repair, which is why venison has a high protein content. Because protein is regarded as a building block for bones, skin, cartilage, and muscles, eating a diet high in protein is particularly important if you want to grow muscle mass.

Deer meat is rich in protein, but it also provides an amino acid called L-glutamine that has been demonstrated to help muscles recover more quickly. L-glutamine supplementation was shown in one research to hasten recovery and lessen muscular pain after exercise in 16 individuals. The study was conducted at Dalhousie University in Canada’s School of Health and Human Performance, Division of Kinesiology. 

  1. A Protein Source That Is Sustainable

One of the greatest sources of protein for your diet to include is deer meat. In fact, the protein composition of venison and beef is practically comparable at roughly 23 grams per three-ounce portion, making it a fantastic supplement to a diet strong in protein that promotes healing.

The building blocks of your hair, skin, and nails are proteins, which are also necessary for the production of several hormones and enzymes. Lack of protein may have major negative effects on your body, including sluggish metabolism, poor energy, and bad mood.

In addition to having a high protein content, venison from your neighborhood is also thought of as a more sustainable source of protein. An important issue that may harm crops and landscapes is deer overpopulation. Deer hunting helps to keep deer numbers in check and reduces any possible environmental damage.

  1. Encourages Brain Health

It is obvious that your diet may have a significant impact on the condition of your brain. Venison is one of the greatest brain foods available since it may assist give several vitamins and minerals that have been proven to promote memory, improve cognitive function, and sharpen attention.

It has been shown, for instance, that vitamin B12 enhances memory and learning. Research demonstrates that niacin may help guard against cognitive loss and the emergence of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease. A significant amount of vitamin B6 is also present in deer meat, which may aid elevate mood and enhance mental wellness.

Eating deer meat has risks

Wild animal consumption carries some danger. A number of illnesses that pose a danger to human health are known to be carried by deer. Learn about safe handling procedures and possible hazards before skinning wildlife for food. Hunters with experience may choose the best deer for food. The deer should be healthy, exhibit typical behavior, and not have any obvious wounds, at the very least (e.g. bucks can puncture each other with their antlers). However, even healthy people might have illnesses.

Venison might get infected by poor selection and/or processing. The following are the primary threats to be on the lookout for:

  • Chronic Wasting Illness (CWD) is a prion disease that affects the behavior of many different deer species. It is the Mad Cow Disease of deer. 
  • CWD may infect humans, however, there haven’t been any deaths reported yet. Infected deer that exhibit unusual behavior should be avoided regardless.
  • Deer are infected with parasites on the inside and outside. The parasite Trichinella, which is prevalent in deer meat, may infect people and cause vomiting, cramping, and diarrhea.
  • Bacterial contamination: Deer meat is likely to include E. Coli, Salmonella, and a number of other bacterial species. Prepare the meat by cooking it completely after a thorough cleaning.
  • Covid-19 is one of the viruses that deer are susceptible to contracting. The illness might be transmitted to people if sick deer are handled improperly. 
  • There is no scientific proof that this kind of transmission occurs, therefore routine disinfection with soap and water should prevent any issues. 

What to Do?

Call your neighborhood conservation officer or game warden as soon as possible if you harvest an animal that exhibits advanced indications of infection or deer warts, has a suspected disease like CWD or HD, or has symptoms of either disease. Make the call even if you’ve already tagged the animal and don’t realize there’s an issue until your home processing the meat. These occurrences are not unusual, and in the majority of them, the conservation officer or game warden will give you a new tag so you may go deer hunting.

Although infections in whitetail deer are and should be a concern for hunters, consuming such animals seldom poses a health risk due to those diseases. Always properly check the meat before preparing it, and it’s completely OK to err on the side of caution. Always contact your local conservation officer or game warden to confirm the deer is okay to eat if it exhibits suspicious signs or you fear it may have been afflicted with a disease.

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