What Are the Health Benefits of Rib Eye Steaks?

Rib eye steaks provide beneficial protein and zinc.
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With rich marbling that provides a tender texture and enhances taste, rib eye steaks are among the most flavorful cuts of beef. They offer a number of health benefits by providing you with essential minerals and vitamins. However, they also contain saturated fat, a type of fat linked to chronic disease. Trim your rib eye steaks of any visible fat before cooking, and limit your total red meat consumption to just 8 ounces weekly to avoid harming your health, advises Harvard Medical School.

Nutrition Basics

A 4-ounce portion of rib eye steak that has been trimmed of all visible fat contains 204 calories, and provides 10 percent of the daily energy intake in a standard 2,000-calorie diet. Most of the meat's calories come from its protein and fat content. Its 22 grams of protein account for another 44 percent. Because it serves as a rich source of protein, rib eye steak aids in tissue maintenance and hormone production and keeps your immune system healthy. Each 4-ounce portion of rib eye steak also contains 12 grams of fat, which accounts for slightly more than half of its calorie content. Of these, 4.6 grams come from harmful saturated fat.

Zinc and Iron

Incorporating rib eye steak into your diet boosts your mineral intake, helping you consume more iron and zinc. Each 4-ounce portion of rib eye steak provides 3 milligrams of iron -- 17 percent of the recommended daily intake for women and 38 percent for men. Its 8.9 milligrams of zinc provide the entire recommended daily zinc intake for women and 81 percent for men, according to the Institute of Medicine. Zinc and iron both benefit your immune system and help to ensure that you can fend off infection and disease. Zinc also contributes to healthy cell membranes, while iron aids in red blood cell function.

Phosphorus and Selenium

Rib eye steaks also help you consume more phosphorus and selenium, two essential minerals. Phosphorus allows you to make proteins, DNA and cell membranes essential for good health, and also contributes to a healthy skeleton, while selenium activates enzymes needed for healthy metabolism and for thyroid gland function. Consuming 4 ounces of rib eye steak boosts your selenium intake by 29 micrograms, and provides 53 percent of the recommended daily intake, set by the Institute of Medicine. Each serving of steak also contains 238 milligrams of phosphorus, or 34 percent of your daily intake recommendation.

Vitamin B-12 and Niacin

Eat rib eye steak as a source of B-complex vitamins, especially vitamin B-12 and niacin, also called vitamin B-3. Both nutrients work together to benefit your nervous system. They aid in the production of neurotransmitters -- compounds that send signals between nerve cells -- and vitamin B-12 also helps you produce myelin, a substance that keeps your nerves healthy and functional. Niacin also promotes healthy cell growth and supports your metabolism, while vitamin B-12 contributes to proper circulation.

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