How Many Calories In A Slice Of Ham?

Ham is one of the most popular meats enjoyed by millions of people around the world. It is the centerpiece of many holiday celebrations.

But if you want to enjoy ham on your toast, then how many calories are in a slice of ham? Ham isn’t the healthiest meat, with a high sodium content and a large amount of fat.

How Many Calories In A Slice Of Ham

In this quick calorie guide, we find out more about the nutritional value of ham and how many calories you can expect in a slice of this delicious meat

How Many Calories Are In A Slice Of Ham?

A medium slice of cured ham weighing 84 grams (3 ounces) contains 100 calories. 

It is important to keep in mind that the calorie content in ham varies according to the size of the slice and the type of ham.

If the ham slice is thicker and it contains more fat, then you can expect your ham slice to be beyond 150 calories.

Nutritional Value Of Ham

While ham is relatively high in sodium (1,050 mg), cured ham can be low in sugar. Ham has a small amount of protein, fiber and carbohydrates.

Here is all the nutritional information for sliced ham.


A medium slice of ham weighing 3 ounces contains only 1 gram of carbohydrates. This is mainly generated by the small amount of sugar in ham meat.

Just like salt, sugar helps to preserve the ham. You will find that sweet ham varieties, such as honey ham, also contain more carbs.


A 3-ounce slice of ham has 4 grams of fat which is made up of 1.4 grams of saturated fats and other fatty acids.


With 14 grams per 3-ounce serving, ham contains a large amount of protein with plenty of amino acids. This is the reason why ham is often the go-to protein source for a healthy diet.


Almost all types of ham contain a significant amount of sodium. 

While our body needs salt for essential functions, a normal slice of ham exceeds the daily limit of sodium intake by almost double.

Health Benefits Of Ham

Processed meats, such as ham, are traditionally high in sodium. This means you need to keep your ham consumption to a minimum.

May Prevent High Blood Pressure

Ham has antioxidant properties that keep your high blood pressure low and help you feel revitalized.

Improves Vascular Health

If you regularly eat cured ham, then you may see an improvement in your heart and blood health.

Improves Thyroid Function

Ham is packed with selenium which is a mineral that regulates the thyroid. If you regularly consume foods that are high in selenium, then this could be positive for your health.

A single slice of ham can give you up to 75% of your daily selenium amount protecting your thyroid.

Makes You Feel Full

Ham contains 14 grams of animal-based protein which can help to form and repair our cells. 

In addition to this, cured meat also makes you feel full which means you can use small amounts of hams to help you lose weight.

This being said, keep in mind that ham has a large amount of sodium and fat which can have adverse effects on your weight.

Builds And Maintains Muscle Mass

Ham is a popular protein source with bodybuilders. That is because ham can help you build muscle mass and maintain it for longer.

In fact, studies found that the protein in ham even supports your strength.

How Many Calories In A Slice Of Ham

Potential Health Risks Of Ham

Researchers discovered that processed meats, like cured ham, can have a variety of negative side effects on our health if we eat too much of it.

High In Sodium

Sodium plays an essential role in meat preservation. However, the large amount of sodium in ham often exceeds our daily sodium intake.

If we eat too much sodium, then this can affect our blood pressure, kidney function and heart health.

That is why people who suffer from high blood pressure, kidney conditions and heart disease should avoid eating sodium-rich foods, such as ham.

Can Increase Your Risk Of Cancer

Although not directly linked to ham, the smoking and curing of ham can increase the risk of carcinogens and cancer.

Carcinogens can also affect you when you reheat ham at high-cooking temperatures, such as pan-frying or grilling.

Research found that processed meats, like cured ham, can cause prostate cancer, pancreatic cancer and colorectal cancer.

Risk Of Chronic Diseases

While scientists found a clear connection between processed meat and an increased risk of cancer, there are mixed conclusions about ham leading to chronic diseases.

Although ham can protect against inflammation, people who eat more processed red meat often suffer from chronic diseases.

What Is The Healthiest Ham To Eat?

The best ham you can eat as part of a balanced diet is uncured ham. 

While you may find a great variety of hams in your grocery store, they often contain a large amount of sugar and salt.

Fresh, unprocessed ham doesn’t contain any preservatives or additives.

How Much Ham Should You Eat?

While ham has some positive health benefits, this meat is packed with salt and fat. This means that you should eat only a small amount of ham.

Plus, keep in mind that sliced ham is often processed which can increase the risk of cancer and cardiovascular disease.

That’s why many nutritionists recommend that you eat as little ham and processed meat as possible.

Choosing less processed types of ham may be one way to lower its health risks.

Is Ham Lower In Calories Than Bacon?

No, ham has slightly more calories than bacon. While both ham and bacon contain a large amount of fatty acids, ham has more potassium.

Final Thoughts

A normal slice of ham may just contain 100 calories but the exact calorie count depends on how fatty the ham is. 

Plus, a thicker slice also means you will eat more processed meat and consume more calories.

Jenna Priestly

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