The dietary values

The dietary value of Italian deli meats

Italian deli meats can be easily integrated into everyone’s diet with great pleasure. Thanks to their unmistakable taste and practicality, they can be eaten as they are or used as a delicious ingredient that can give that “extra touch” to any recipe. The proteins with high biological value and fats (in increasingly reduced quantities) that supply useful energy to the organism along with precious mineral salts and vitamins, make Italian deli meats ideal for the entire population. It is due to their distinctive nutritional profile that it is possible to formulate comprehensive nutritional advice referring to different times of consumption, in line with dietary recommendations issued by the scientific community and with modern lifestyles, inevitably aimed at frenzied pace but, at the same time (almost paradoxically), at sedentariness.
Today Italian deli meats are lighter and in line
with the nutritional requests of the modern consumer.

It is important to remember that all nutrients are necessary to the organism for a correct diet. The recommended intake of proteins, carbohydrates, lipids, vitamins and minerals contributes to the proper composition of a balanced diet. Looking at it from this point, all foodstuffs can supply their quota of nutrients to the total composition of the diet, but also consider that no unique product exists that contains all nutrients and substances in the correct quantities, and which can therefore satisfy the organism’s nutritional requirements alone.

Being meat derivatives, deli meats can supply the organism with different substances necessary for functioning, often in ideal proportions or higher quality with respect to other foodstuffs. It must also be highlighted that as a direct consequence of the lipid reduction considered, a slight parallel increase in proteins was obtained, as well as a general reduction of the calorie supply through the years. The proteins contained in deli meats, as those in the raw material, have a high biological quality: in fact, they contain an appropriate quantity of all essential amino acids. This means that the organism’s protein requirements can be satisfied by eating a minimum amount. The deli meats proteins are also characterised by quick digestibility. This is due to the fact that during maturing processes the enzymes and the characterising microbial flora have already performed a sort of pre-digestion, breaking the long protein chains. Thanks to the progress in breeding and production techniques throughout the last years and precise genetic selection of the pig, the reduction of the fat content in its meat is flanked by a parallel increase in proteins. Given that proteins supply fewer calories than fats (4 against 9 kcal per gram), there is also a consequent reduction of the energy value, in particular for those deli meats that have undergone large reductions in their fat content, therefore resulting ‘leaner’.

A portion of deli meats (50 g) provides between 54 and 265 kcal (tab. 19): along with the improvement of the micro and macronutrients composition, this allows them to be versatile and available for all nutritional requirements and times of consumption. The large variety of Italian deli meats available on the market today (also characterised by different protein: fat ratios) offers the population of all age groups and with different life styles, a wide choice and the faculty to identify the ideal products for personal dietary requirements and taste.