Here's why pork scratchings could be a healthy snack

The ultimate pub snack loaded with fat and salt, pork scratchings were once considered the perfect accompaniment to a pint - and still are by some, if you're not health-conscious! Made from deep-fried strips of pork skin and fat, these surprisingly delicious snacks are dusted with salt, bagged and sold in supermarkets and butchers shops across the nation. Often billed as 'a heart attack in a bag', the pork scratchings of the past have come in varying shapes, sizes and degrees of quality. From the cheap, often preservative laden bags you'll find in your local supermarket to the premium scratchings on offer at butchers, pork scratchings have always been popular. In fact, 20 million bags are sold every year! But now it seems that there could be a newer, healthier type of pork scratching on the market, set to replace our favourite snack.

The history

Pork scratchings originated in Victorian times in the Black Country, when families reared pigs at home for slaughter. Because no part of the pig was wasted, pork scratchings became a popular treat, but it wasn't until the 1930s that butchers started to bag them and sell them. It's not just pub-goers and meat lovers in the UK who love pork scratchings though - they're sold across the globe; in the US they're known as 'pork rinds' and usually seasoned with Jalapeno or sour cream and chives.

The benefits (and downsides)

Whilst pork scratchings are high in protein, they're also loaded with salt and saturated fat, both of which are bad news for our hearts, if consumed in excess. Too much salt can lead to elevated blood pressure, increasing your risk of heart attack or stroke, whilst saturated fat can also increase your risk of a heart attack. Cutting back on the levels of salt and sat fat in our diets is recommended, which means for most of us, pork scratchings are a no-go, or a very occasional treat. It seems a shame that we should miss out on this tasty snack due to its high fat and salt content though, and that's why one UK company has come up with a healthier alternative!

The ultimate snack

Peckish pub goers or anyone looking to boost the protein in their diet can try new pork scratchings which have 47% less fat than their predecessors and 70% protein per bag, making them a healthier alternative to a bag of crisps with your pint. Almost 50% of the new pork rind is made up of unsaturated fat from oleic acid, the good fat you'll find in olive oil, making them a heart-healthy choice. So where can you find these wonder-snacks? Last week we brought you a 10% discount code for MuscleFood, and this week we're giving you even more reasons to head to their site and fill your basket - these new pork scratchings were developed by in respond to demand from their customers. Feedback from Olympic Taekwondo gold medallist Jade Jones and fitness model David Gandy inspired the creation of the new snack, which has been flying off the site since its launch earlier this year.

Are they really a healthy choice?

You might be thinking that pork scratchings are the last snack that healthy, fit individuals would choose after a workout or whenever hunger strikes, but the new low-fat, high protein snacks are proving really popular. Healthy snacks don't have to be boring, and ensuring you eat a variety of different snacks could stop you craving less healthy options. Eating more protein can help to build muscle and fuel your workouts, helping you to reach your fitness goals. A high-protein diet can also ensure you feel more satiated (full) after meals and is ideal if you're following the Paleo plan.

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Muscle Food's high protein pork scratchings come in original, jalapeno, hickory pulled pork and spicy BBQ flavour, and they're 100% carb free! With 182 calories and 24.4g protein per serving, these new healthier scratchings contain just 9.2g fat (2.1g sat fat) per serving. For those looking for a change from beef jerky, these mighty meaty snacks are perfect, and you can order yours today, with 10% off using our special discount. We're always on the lookout for healthier alternatives to our favourite snacks - try popcorn instead of crisps or cereal bars instead of chocolate. Healthy snacking forms part of a balanced diet and can help to stop you craving things that are bad for you, as you'll always feel full. Why not give these new scratchings a go, and let us know what you think?

READ THIS NEXT: Is jerky healthy or not?

Author By Paula Beaton
Date On 22nd Jun 2015 at 10:29

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