20 Foods Of Animal Origin And Their Characteristics

The foods of animal origin are represented by eggs, honeydew honey, butter, meat, fish and milk, among others. This nutritional group comes from animals, and can be consumed naturally or as processed food.

These play an important role in the diet of man. They are an excellent source of potassium, iron, iodine, calcium, and zinc. In addition, they have vitamins D, K, A and group B, which participate in the metabolism of proteins and in the maintenance of the nervous system .

Another significant contribution is the high level of protein they contain. These macronutrients are in charge of forming and repairing the different tissues, such as muscle, nervous and bone, among others. Also, they favor the good condition of the hair, skin and nails.

In addition, consuming cheese, seafood, yogurt or beef contributes with the essential amino acids that the body requires. Such is the case of lysine, which helps in the creation of antibodies and in the rapid absorption of calcium.

List of plant-based foods


This dairy food is obtained by the bacterial fermentation of milk. The peculiar taste and texture is due to the fact that lactose turns into lactic acid.

In its constitution is lactose, proteins, lipids, magnesium, phosphorus, calcium and some vitamins, such as B2, B12, D and C. Some of the benefits of yogurt are:

-Can be consumed by lactose intolerant people.

-Contributes with the treatment against diarrhea, because it helps with the reestablishment of bacterial flora.

-Reduces cholesterol levels in the blood.

-It is an important source of calcium.

Red meat

Within the group is beef, sheep, pork, goat, venison and wild boar, among others. Red meat is an important source of protein. These amino acids are responsible for repairing and building tissues. In addition, they participate in the formation of enzymes, antibodies, hormones, and some neurotransmitters.

As for vitamins, they contain types B3, B6, niacin and B12. These are closely related to the production of red blood cells. They also have vitamin D, which, together with phosphorus and calcium, help in the formation of teeth and bones.

Likewise, they have purine, which is transformed into uric acid. High concentrations of this organic compound in the body can cause gout.

One of the important minerals is zinc, which is easily absorbed in red meat. This is important for the effective functioning of the immune system.

When consuming lean red meat, a significant contribution of iron is made, which is easily absorbed and used.

Honeydew honey

Honey is an example of stickiness.

This variety of honey is produced by the bees that consume the honeydew. This is a sticky, sweet liquid that can be produced by some plants, such as cork and oak.

Likewise, it could also be secreted by phytophagous insects, such as aphids and mealybugs, which feed on the sap of these plant species.

When the animal sucks the sap, it is digested by its body. Once the digestive process is complete, it is excreted as a sugary liquid. This is collected by certain species of bees and wasps, processing it.

The honey obtained is dark, with a lower proportion of sugar than floral honey. However, it has a higher amount of polyphenol. Its antioxidant property makes it indicated as a basic food to treat neurodegenerative and cardiovascular diseases, among others.


Some species of insects are used as food or as ingredients in processed foods, such as pasta or hamburgers. Some of these animals can be beetles, ants, grasshoppers, cockroaches, Chinese weevils, crickets and termites, among others.

Insects are rich in nutrients, such as calcium and magnesium. The larvae provide calories, due to polyunsaturated fatty acids.

Crickets have dietary fiber and unsaturated fats. In addition, they have vitamins A and B12, riboflavin, and essential minerals.

The main contribution of this group of animals is protein. These are responsible for repairing and building cells, tissues and organs. In addition, they are related to the proper functioning of the immune system.

White meats

These meats, raw, have a whitish or pink color. This is due to the low proportions of myoglobin they contain. Some animals that make up this group are ducks, geese and chickens.

In terms of protein, they could concentrate the same or a greater quantity than red meat, although its quality could be somewhat lower. Likewise, they can have up to 30% fat, which, together with proteins, form the only energy nutrients they have.

These macronutrients are accompanied by vitamins and minerals, such as phosphorus, zinc, potassium and iodine. In addition, they have iron, in a lower proportion than in red meat. As for cholesterol, for every 100 grams it could have up to 80 milligrams.

They have low levels of purines, compared to red meat, so they are easy to digest, especially those species low in fat.


Within this food group, two subgroups can be distinguished. Crustaceans, where prawns and lobsters are found, and mollusks, represented by mussels, snails and squid, among others.

The nutritional contributions of shellfish are diverse. They contain proteins of high biological value and vitamins A, D and group B, the latter being the most abundant. With regard to minerals, potassium, zinc, iron, chlorine, magnesium, calcium and sodium stand out.

These species provide cholesterol to the body, with very little difference to those present in fish and meat. However, this is counteracted by the positive effect of polyunsaturated fatty acids.

Seafood is beneficial for health. Thanks to having polyunsaturated fats, they contribute to reducing the risk of blood clots. Likewise, they reduce the possibility of the appearance of diseases of the cardiovascular system.

In addition to this, they provide the body with proteins and iodine, which prevent some diseases, such as goiter.

Fish meat

Fish meat has excellent nutritional value. This is because it provides high quality and easily digestible proteins. In addition, it contributes to the daily diet various minerals and vitamins, such as phosphorus, selenium, magnesium, iodine and vitamins D and A.

Recent research reveals that fish is much more than just a protein food option. The fats that some species, such as sardines, contribute to the normal development of the brain, both in the fetus and as that of children in their early stages of childhood.


The egg is a highly nutritious food. In everyday life, those most frequently consumed are those from hens, but they could also be leg, turkey, quail or ostrich, among others.

This food is an excellent source of energy, since they contain vitamin D, B12, B6, copper, iron, zinc and selenium. In the white of the egg there is more than half of the protein it has, in addition to having vitamin B2 and a lower amount of fat than the yolk.

As for the yolk, it has more calories than the whites. In addition, they have vitamins A, E, D and K and lecithin, a compound that allows emulsification, essential for the preparation of mayonnaise.

Eggs are considered a source of protein, because the 9 essential amino acids are present in their constitution, which are not produced by the body.


This dairy product has a high concentration of nutrients, among which proteins, calcium, zinc, phosphorus and vitamins such as riboflavin, A and B12 stand out. Likewise, it has few sugars.

The sodium and fat content of this food can be an important element to consider, especially if the person is on a special diet.


This exquisite delicacy consists of the roe of the sturgeon fish, which lives in the lakes and rivers of Asia and Europe. Caviar, which can be consumed fresh or pasteurized, is an expensive food, so it is not generally part of the daily diet.

However, it is rich in nutrients, thus constituting an excellent ally in muscle development. In addition, it contains calcium, so it strengthens bones and teeth. The contribution of iron, makes these roe are used effectively in the treatment of anemia.

As for vitamins, caviar is rich in vitamin A, which strengthens the immune system, and in vitamin E. This is an excellent antioxidant and adjuvant in the treatment of diseases of the circulatory system. It also has vitamins B3, B6, B2, B12 and B5.

Regarding the mineral content, it is rich in sodium, iron, magnesium and potassium. It also has zinc, calcium and phosphorus.


Gelatin is made from the bones, cartilage and skin of animals, from which collagen is extracted. Sauces, soups and countless desserts are prepared with this food.

The health benefits of gelatin are countless. It provides the body with proteins and amino acids, such as alanine, proline, glycine, lysine, valine, and arginine. Also, it helps the maintenance of healthy skin and that the digestive function is carried out efficiently.

Floral honey

This honey is made by bees, taking the nectar of flowers as the main product. To this, the bees add some enzymes. The mixture that originates is stored in the combs. After a while, you get a slimy, sweet and very nutritious substance.

Depending on the type of hive and the flowers, this food could have numerous organic compounds. Thus, organic acids such as lactic, citric and phosphoric, sugars, and vitamins B3, B2, B5, B1 and C stand out. In addition, it has folic acid and minerals such as iron, calcium, phosphorus, iodine and zinc, among others.

Honey is an excellent energy source, being ideal for those who are anemic or convalescing from a disease. In addition, it provides energy to the heart muscles, thus improving the coronary flow of the heart.


Some specialists classify the sausage within protein foods. This provides the body with nutrients, necessary for the maintenance of all vital functions.

One sausage offers approximately 13 grams of protein. This contributes to the maintenance of muscle mass and brain function. It also contains vitamin B12, which is associated with the production of hemoglobin.

As for iron, one serving has 1.1 milligram of this mineral, which is one of the elements of myoglobin.

Despite containing nutrients, its consumption should be limited. This is because they have saturated fat, which raises the level of cholesterol in the blood. Also, it has high levels of sodium, so its excessive consumption could cause problems with blood pressure.


This food is obtained from the swimming bladders of some fish, such as barbel, sturgeon and cod. These are removed from the animal, processed and dried.

Fishtail, as it is also known, is used to add consistency to gelatin, whether it is fruit or meat. In this way it is used in desserts, such as fruit jellies and in confectionery.

It is currently used in the brewing industry to speed up the clarification of some wines and beers, especially those found in barrels.


Lard is a white fat, with a somewhat smooth texture, which is high in saturated fatty acids and lacks trans fat.

In the culinary environment, it is used for cooking or as a substitute for butter. It is an indispensable ingredient in pates and sausages, being especially popular in making cakes.

Although vegetable oils are more popular in Western cuisine, many bakers and chefs prefer them. This is due, among other things, to the fact that when heated it produces very little smoke. In addition, butter adds a special flavor to dishes.

Swallow’s nest

Swallows are birds belonging to the Apodidae family. This species builds its nests in a particular way. Instead of feathers, branches and straw, they make them from threads of their saliva, which is rubbery in texture. With exposure to sunlight, they harden.

In China, they collect these nests and with them a traditional soup is prepared. In oriental culture, this dish is attributed medicinal properties, such as strengthening the immune and respiratory systems, as well as being a powerful energizer.

At the nutritional level, they have proteins, carbohydrates, iron, potassium, calcium, phosphorus and fiber, among other organic compounds.


This is a by-product of cheese making. Once the milk is curdled and strained, a liquid remains, known as whey. It is rich in proteins, such as serum albumin, α-lacto albumin, immunoglobulin, and β-lactoglobulin.

The whey is used to produce some cheeses, such as brunost and ricotta. In addition, this is used to make whey butter and is an ingredient in some processed foods, such as crackers and breads.

Blood sausages

The blood sausage is a food based on the coagulated and cooked blood of some animals, such as pig, sheep, cow and goat, among others. This is mixed with different seasonings, meat and cereals, such as rice, forming a thick filling, with which the sausages are filled.

Blood sausage, as it is known in some countries, can be an important source of iron, potassium, magnesium and zinc. In addition, it contains fat, protein, and carbohydrates.


This is a product that is based on cow’s milk. It is basically the fat in milk, from which carbohydrates and proteins have been isolated.

The fats in butter are very complex, because it contains up to 400 different types of fatty acids. This makes it a highly caloric food. However, it has selenium, iodine and some vitamins, such as A, E, D, K2 and B12.


Ham is a meat product that is made from pork. This meat undergoes a salting process and then a curing and maturing process.

This food is a source of proteins and minerals, such as iron, potassium, zinc, phosphorus and calcium. In relation to vitamins, it has group B, especially B2, B1, B6 and niacin.

It has little fat, being more than 50% of these of the mono and polyunsaturated type. Among fats, oleic acid stands out, which contributes to the production of HDL and reduces LDL.


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