Part 8: Lipids

Determining Total Meat Content (Part 8):  Lipids
By Eben van Tonder
2 Junie 2019

For part 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7, click on:

Part 1:  From the start of the Chemical Revolution to Boussingault

Part 2:  Von Liebig and Gerard Mulder’s theory of proteins

Part 3:  Understanding of Protein Metabolism Coming of Age

Part 4:  The Background of the History of Nutrition

Part 5: The Proximate Analysis, Kjeldahl and Jones (6.25)

Part 6:  The Codex

Part 7:  Connective Tissues and Gelatin


In 2018, I started on a journey to understand the determination of total meat content and the historical roots of the determination.  Tonight I begin the last installment in this short overview.  Through experimentation, the following rations were determined.

% N % Protein % Lean Meat
1 6.25 30
2 12.50 60
3 18.75 90

%N x (6.25 x 4.8) = % Lean Meat.  This means that,

%N x 30 = % Lean Meat

How was the 4.8 determined?

We know that Lean Meat (fat-free) contains 20.8% protein.

So, % Protein x 100/20.8 = % Lean Meat which is 4.8

Meat Protein contains 16% Nitrogen.  So, %N x 100/16 = % Protein

In other words, %N x 6.25 = % Prot.

When we talk about Lean Meat we exclude fat and fat is the final component in determining total meat content to consider.

I want to follow a different direction in our concluding chapter of this short series by beginning our discussion of lipids (which includes fat) with the ingredients of life and macromolecules.  The molecules that form the ingredients of life are responsible for energy generation, storage and the storing and transmission of information.  The ingredients of life are carbohydrates, lipids, proteins, and nucleic acid.

Let’s focus on the first three.  We classify them similarly to food because they are food!