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Why I use lamb as a medicinal food

In Shí Liáo (Chinese diet therapy), lamb is a prized meat source that is hot in nature that can tonifies weakness, dispel cold from the body, strengthen and nourish Qi and Blood, promote appetite, and even promote appetite aid lactation. Some of the conditions it does well to help balance are kidney deficiency causing back pain, impotence/ low libido, deficiency conditions, especially those around menstruation, pregnancy and childbirth, postpartum blood loss, lack of milk, and leucorrhea.

In holistic nutrition, despite being fattier than beef, lamb tends to be grass-fed, and as such, it tends to have plenty of omega-3 fatty acids – in fact, even more than grass-fed beef does. In moderation, lamb can be a good source of stuff like B vitamins, zinc, iron, and selenium. Which maintains immune function and helps stabilize your body's metabolic rate and blood sugar levels. Lamb's content of vitamin B12, found only in meat products, is critical for blood production, helping prevent anemia and enabling nerve cells to develop properly. Niacin-rich lamb also may defend against Alzheimer's disease and age-related cognitive decline.

3 ounces of lamb nutritional value:

Calories 206

Total fat (g) 12

Saturated fat (g) 5

Monounsaturated fat (g) 5.2

Polyunsaturated fat (g) 0.9

Dietary fiber (g) 0

Protein (g) 22

Carbohydrate (g) 0

Cholesterol (mg) 78

Sodium (mg) 57

Niacin (mg) 6

Vitamin B12 (mcg) 2.2

Phosphorus (mg) 165

Zinc (mg) 3.9

I suggest to clients struggling with deficiency type conditions to make lamb meatballs for snacks that can be eaten throughout the day, around 3-5 balls (depending on size). It is important to note that anyone with a body type tends to be overheated, and excess should not eat lamb as it will cause more heat to be stored in the body.

Good to note: Lamb meat, in particular, does not keep well for a long time in the refrigerator (use it within three to five days), so I tend to make a week's worth of meatballs and store half in the freezer and take it out the night before or two nights before use.

Lamb Meatballs with Garlic and Cumin

Prep Time 20 mins

Cook Time 10 mins

Total Time 30 mins

Servings: 4 servings

  • 1 lb. ground lamb (grass-fed, local best)

  • 2 tablespoons Greek yogurt or sour cream (grass-fed, best)

  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic

  • 1 teaspoon good quality salt

  • ½ teaspoon black pepper

  • 1 teaspoon onion powder

  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin

  • ½ cup chopped cilantro

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil or ghee


  • Mix together all the ingredients except for the oil in a medium bowl.

  • Using a 1.5-tablespoon cookie scoop, scoop out even portions of the mixture into a plate. I usually end up with 16 meatballs.

  • For easier handling, shape each portion into a round meatball with wet hands.

  • Heat the olive oil or ghee in a very large (14-inch) lidded skillet over medium-high heat until the oil shimmers and becomes fragrant about 2 minutes.

  • Add the meatballs to a single layer and cook, frequently turning, until golden brown, 5 minutes. If oil becomes too hot, lower the heat to medium.

  • Add ¼ cup of water to the bottom of the skillet. Cover with the lid and cook the meatballs until cooked through (internal temperature should be 160° F), 2-3 more minutes.

  • Remove the meatballs from the skillet to a serving plate using a slotted spoon. Serve immediately or prepare for storage in your freezer for snacks.

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