Can you eat pork medium rare?

In this brief guide, we’ll address the query: “Can you eat pork medium rare?” Also, we’ll explore what are the dangers of undercooking pork, what the nutritional content of pork is, and what are the health benefits of eating pork? 

Can you eat pork medium rare? 

Pork can be eaten medium-rare if the meat has reached an interior temperature of 63°C in the thickest section, and is sourced from hygienic farms that closely follow agency regulations.  

If users cannot be certain of their pork meat’s provenance, we urge them to fully cook the meat, rather than risk their health.

In times past, users were advised to thoroughly cook pork meat, due to the risk of contracting parasites such as trichinosis and cysticercosis. 

These parasites were so widespread in farmed pigs, that slaughterhouses and regulating agencies deemed it necessary to establish a threshold of cysts that could be present per pound of meat. 

In later years, agencies cracked down on the dietary practices of commercially farmed pigs and began to discourage the practice of feeding pigs slop. As a result, infestations by these parasites dwindled and reported cases reached all-time lows. 

However, this only applies to commercially farmed, agency-regulated pork meat. Homefed, free-range pigs and game meat from wild hogs and boars fall out of this practice’s scope, and therefore, meat sourced from these animals must be thoroughly cooked. 

What are the dangers of eating undercooked pork? 

Pork meat that isn’t sourced from commercially regulated farms can be infested with parasites such as roundworms and tapeworms.

These parasites may continue their life cycles and cause severe symptoms. The symptoms may be worse in immunocompromised patients. 

Trichinosis can lead to symptoms such as fatigue, muscle aches, chills, diarrhea, nausea, fever, and others.

These roundworms will infest muscle tissue by burrowing into it and forming cysts. This is how trichinosis propagates throughout tiers in the food chain. 

In theory, a person infected with trichinosis could pass it on to an animal that preys on them.

Treatment of trichinosis consists in administering anti-parasitic medication, analgesics, and if physicians deem it necessary to treat adverse reactions, steroid medications. 

A person can contract Taeniasis by consuming undercooked meat that is infected with Taenia solium cysts. Once infected people with tapeworms can go on to contaminate their environments such as wash chambers, bedsheets, clothes, and other surfaces. 

This may trigger the spread of it from person to person sans the need for consuming contaminated meat. 

Symptoms of tapeworm infections may include loss of appetite loss of weight symptoms of indigestion such as abdominal aches the passing of Taenia eggs, pain, and organs where parts of the tapeworm may become lodged such as the appendix gallbladder pancreatic ducts.

In some patients, cysticercosis may be diagnosed with ultrasounds and other state-of-the-art imaging techniques. 

Cysticercosis consists of the formation of cysts containing Taenia solium larvae, on muscle tissue and in many locations throughout the body. 

If diagnosed, this condition is concerning because in some patients it has been shown to cause damage and impairment to muscles and optic nerves.

Treatment of Taenia solium infections will depend on the severity of the infection. Doctors may prescribe a course of anti-parasitic medication, and in cases where the tapeworm is of considerable size, surgery may be necessary to excise it from the digestive system and avoid segmenting it.  

A single tapeworm segment can give way to a new tapeworm, which is why treatment must be efficacious, to avoid reinfection. 

It bears mentioning that both of these conditions can be handily avoided by thoroughly cooking meat, as high temperatures destroy larval states and suppress any chance of infection. 

What is the nutritional content of pork? 

On average, a 3-ounce serving (85 grams) of pork meat will provide: 

  • 202 calories – of which 106 are sourced from fat
  • 22 grams of protein
  • 12 grams of fat (18% of the RDI) – of which 4.2 grams are saturated (21% of the RDI), 1.3 grams are polyunsaturated, and 5.1 grams are monounsaturated
  • 0 grams of carbohydrates
  • 48 milligrams of sodium – 2% of the recommended daily intake
  • 290 milligrams of potassium – 8% of the RDI
  • 75 milligrams of cholesterol – 25% of the RD

Additionally, the same portion will provide 0.1% of the RDI of both vitamin A and vitamin C, 1.3% of the RDI of calcium, and 5.2% of iron. 

*Recommended daily intake values are calculated based on a diet of 2000 calories a day. 

What are the health benefits of eating pork? 

Pork can provide many health benefits, despite it being frowned upon by certain religions and ethnic groups. 

Namely, pork meat is a source of protein, vitamins B6 and B12, Niacin, iron, and zinc. It may also contain selenium, thiamine, and phosphorus.

As a source of protein, its consumption may be indicated for those looking to maintain and gain muscle mass. 

However, how it is prepared matters as much as its nutritional content, as some recipes may involve increasing sodium, fat, and added sugar content. 

We advise our readers to always be mindful of their daily intake of calories, to avoid overeating and the associated noxious effects. 

Conclusion

In this brief guide, we have addressed the query: “Can you eat pork medium rare?” Also, we have explored what are the dangers of undercooking pork, what the nutritional content of pork is, and what are the health benefits of eating pork? 

References 

https://www.bonappetit.com/recipes/healthy/article/is-it-safe-to-eat-medium-rare-pork

https://www.seriouseats.com/case-for-raw-rare-pink-pork-food-safety

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/raw-pork-or-undercooked-pork

https://www.cdc.gov/parasites/cysticercosis/treatment.html

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/trichinosis/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20378587

https://www.webmd.com/diet/pork-good-for-you

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/overeating-effects#:~:text=Chronic%20overeating%20may%20promote%20obesity,disease%2C%20stroke%2C%20and%20diabetes.

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