Meat substitutes: formulations and comparative analysis. Part 2: micronutrient intakes

The nutritional quality of a food is not only assessed by its protein intake and the quality of protein intake, but also by its intake of trace elements. Animal products are the only sources of vitamin B12, apart from pharmaceutical food supplements. The amounts of other B vitamins are much greater in meat products: 4 to 6 times higher for vitamin B1, 2 to 20 times for vitamin B2, 5 to 30 times for vitamin B3, 2 to 12 times for vitamin B5, 2 to 100 times for vitamin B5, as much as 30 times for vitamin B6. Less markedly, the mineral content is also higher for cooked meat or cooked meat products compared to a ready-to-eat vegetable analogue: from 2 to 9 times more zinc in meat products than in analogues and vegetarian dish sources of protein, and up to 3 times more for iron. The quantity is not the only criterion to consider. The bioavailability of Iron and magnesium is lower in plant products. These minerals, however, are well assimilated during the consumption of meat products. The efficiency of iron absorption during the consumption of meat products is partly linked to the form of the ion (ferric or ferrous iron, or heme iron, i.e. associated with hemoglobin or myoglobin) and the absence of complexes such as phenols and phytate present in plants.