Bioactive compounds in meat and their importance in human nutrition
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Uniwersytet Przyrodniczy w Lublinie, Polska
Piotr Domaradzki   

Uniwersytet Przyrodniczy w Lublinie, Akademicka, 20-258, Lublin, Polska
Med Og Nauk Zdr. 2019;25(3):170–180
Introduction and objective:
Meat and offal from slaughter animals are the most valuable products in terms of nutritional value, because they provide many nutrients, building and regulating substances. Although meat is commonly perceived as a source of protein, vitamins and minerals, recent studies indicate that it is also an important source of bioactive substances contributing to the proper functioning of the human body. The aim of the study is to present the most important biologically active compounds found in meat and to discuss their pro-health functions in the human body.

Description of the state of knowledge:
The main bioactive compounds present in meat include: L-carnitine, creatine, carnosine, anserine, taurine, conjugated linoleic acid, α-lipoic acid, coenzyme Q10, γ-aminobutyric acid, glutathione and bioactive peptides. They have a positive impact on the heart, brain, muscle health and their regeneration. They also have a significant effect on the metabolism regulation. It is also worth noting that the bioavailability of many of these nutrients found in meat is greater, compared to plants-based food products.

According to anthropologists, the consumption of a high-value product such as meat contributed to acceleration of human evolution. Today, it is also an important component of the diet not only because of the nutritional requirements of the body, and the presence of many biologically active substances. It should be emphasized that an appropriate supply of bioactive compounds ensures the optimal growth and development of the human body, and may also have a preventive effect in many civilization diseases.

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