Many people think that the red liquid in meat is blood, but this is actually not true

Many people find themselves, every once in a while, ordering at the meat counter in the supermarket. As you look at some of the cuts that the butcher has put on display, it is easy to assume that the red liquid dripping from those fresh cuts is blood, but this is actually not the case. So now we are going to talk about what this liquid really is.

meat red liquid

Okay, we have established that that red substance is not blood. It just so happens that, after an animal is slaughtered, the meat doesn’t leave any significant trace of blood. Instead, that red liquid that you see is actually myoglobin. This protein has an incredibly important job, as it keeps keep muscle cells oxygenated.

Particularly during the freezing and thawing phases, the myoglobin keeps the meat fresh and safe for people to consume. This substance also happens to mix with the water stored in the muscle tissue, so eventually the mixture will start dripping out of the meat, giving the appearance of blood. It is also worth mentioning that if you pay attention to the color of chicken, pork, and fish you may now notice that these types of meat have significantly lower levels of myoglobin.

cooking steak

Cooking myoglobin

Having already established that the red liquid in meat is not blood, it is also worth noting that when cooking meat the color changes from red to a much darker shade. Eventually the liquid will evaporate, and the piece of meat shrinks in size. So you may then ask yourself whether the consumption of myoglobin is harmful. The answer is no, the substance poses no real threat to human health.

different meats

So remember, next time you are buying red meat that the liquid seeping out from the cut is in fact not blood. It is actually myoglobin that is oxygenating the muscle tissue for fresh, safe consumption.

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