How much offal is too much offal to eat? (For the average person, I know n=1 everyone is different, etc.)
I am fortunate to live in a plentiful land (that goes by the name Argentina) where there is lots of meat and offal of every type in every butcher, with about one butcher shop per block. It is the meat-lovers' paradise. So it is easy to be paleo here; and I know that offal is particularly paleo, and particularly healthy, plus the flavors are different and good--so I eat lots.
Specifically in my case, I tend to eat: sweatbreads for dinner one night per week; kidney one night per week; tripe one night per week; brains or liver every other week; and just veggies or nothing the 3 nights per week. Portions are usually generous, too.
Is this too much offal? Can I over-nutrient-ize my body?
(Given that I also eat no other meat other than what I listed) other than this possibly being too much offal, could it be too little meat by paleo standards? Is there an advantage to having more normal (non-offal) meat - does it have benefits that offal doesn't?
Thanks! Hola desde Buenos Aires!!!!
asked byMorgan (1670)
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on May 16, 2010
at 01:05 AM
"Can I over-nutrient-ize my body?"
Some people who consume lots of carrots have orange hands. They are overconsuming and should stop.
It is probably possible to overconsume liver, but I doubt it is possible for the other offal. Liver is the one food that has extremely high nutritional values. With water soluble vitamins, if you get too much, you piss it out. For fat soluble vitamins, if you get too much, you store it. The concern with liver would be vitamin A and maybe some of the minerals it contains. Getting too much of one mineral might interfere with the absorption of another mineral.
I don't know what an upper bound for liver would be, but if I had to guess, I would say 1 kilogram of liver per week.
Some of the organ meat (heart, liver, kidney, brains, sweetbreads) has higher ratios of polyunsaturated fat:saturated fat than other fat deposits in the animal. I don't know if this is really a concern.
I am surprised that you don't eat tongue or marrow. I recommend it.
on May 16, 2010
at 03:39 AM
The soft fat in roasted marrow bones is heavenly and there's no issue of overdoing it nor with cost as raw bones are very cheap.
Otherwise I can't really deal with offal. I've made anticuchos with beef heart but it was so tough and chewy I thought I was gnawing my way through a cow. Liver? Um, no. I tried it once. But the anticucho marinade is great on cheap chuck or short ribs. I'm sure there is a disconnect between USA and Argentina for the names of beef cuts so... lo siento!
on May 15, 2010
at 08:33 PM
I have the same "problem". I'm poor so offal is where it's at. But I don't feel bad...and it seems that neither do you. I make sure to have a good steak or something like that at least once a week and plenty of fish because I believe in eating nose to tail and land to sea :)
on May 16, 2010
at 12:33 AM
The only risk I've seen mentioned is with liver, and only because of the high vitamin A content. I eat about 2 lbs of liver one week and notice my skin felt a bit sore and started peeling, which is supposed to be an indication of over-doing the vit A. I eat mainly offal too, I'm a poor bugger :P Though I find myself getting marrow bones more than anything because they're free, whereas liver and heart from grassfed are priced the same as ground meat from bison or beef from my butcher. What is sweetbread? Pancreas? Does the name have anything to do with the taste? :P