The Most Compelling Reasons Why You Should Switch To Grass-Fed Beef
The health benefits of grass-fed beef cannot be ignored
I've traditionally been the kind of person who looked at food as a means for satisfying my hunger and giving me the energy to get through the day. Of course, I'm also a bargain-hunter and will tend to lean towards those foods that are on sale more often than not. Yes, I'm a part of the Wal-mart generation who looks for cheap food and I usually get what I pay for.
But ever since I started livin' la vida low-carb, I've found my frugality for food has evolved into a search for substance as it relates to nutrition. All food is not the same and the nutritional content of what I buy now compared to when I weighed 410 pounds four years ago is light years apart. Bye bye sugar! See ya starchy carbs! So long fast food and high-carb crap that used to dominate my pantry and refrigerator. Those things aren't in my cabinets anymore!
Today I make better choices about the foods I eat because I care more about my health now than I ever have. Living healthy is arguably the top priority for most of us who are livin' la vida low-carb. Sure, weight loss is a big reason, too, but I consider it merely a side effect of choosing to live healthier. And it doesn't really take willpower to decide to start living healthier right away as is often suggested by well-meaning people who haven't got a clue. You just gotta do it!
That said, there's even a subset of healthy food choices within the realm of low-carb living that you may not even know about. We all know most meats that have not been injected with sugars are acceptable on low-carb, but is it possible to get more nutritional bang for your proverbial buck when you are shopping for beef, chicken, and pork? Absolutely it is!
Up until recently, I've pretty much relied on the good old store-bought meats and the occasional cuts from the local meat market to stock up the Moore household refrigerator and freezer with healthy high-fat, low-carb meat selections. But what I didn't realize was how much extra nutrition I was missing from my diet because I failed to purchase what is known as "grass-fed" beef and other meats.
What the heck is "grass-fed" meat and what's the point, you ask? GOOD QUESTIONS!
Whether you realize it or not, most of the meat supply in the United States has been tainted with things like hormones, antibiotics, and even steroids to (pardon the pun!) "beef up" the cows so they'll weigh more and bring in more money for the cattlemen. It's BIG BUSINESS these days making meat and you and I suffer the consequences of that lack of quality with the end product. Plus, the mistreatment of animals on these factory farms is absolutely atrocious!
Why else are these cattle and other animals so unhealthy to eat? They are fed a diet heavy in processed grains which leads the meat to become LOADED with omega-6 fatty acids. This is the one the standard American diet has too much of and you want to offset it with omega-3s. The higher ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fats you have, the more inflammation that is created in the body (as nutritionist Monica Reinagel recently shared in my podcast interview with her).
So what do you do? This is where grass-fed meat comes in. It can be extremely difficult to find, but well worth the effort. Why? Although it costs a little more money than standard meat, the nutritional difference is like upgrading from tin to gold! It's more like goldmine when you see all that you're getting from grass-fed meat which is what your low-carb lifestyle could use to kick it into high gear for both weight loss and health improvements.
The most compelling reasons why you should switch to grass-fed beef have everything to do with properly managing your health which everyone who is reading this right now I think takes a personal vested interest in. If you care about your health, then you cannot overlook these important arguments in favor of consuming grass-fed beef and other meats every chance you can get!
THEY ARE LOADED WITH OMEGA-3 FATTY ACIDS
Yep, unlike their factory farm counterparts, grass-fed meats only eat grass from a pasture rather than the forced diet of grains, grains, and more grains. There's a reason the big farms feed their cattle grains--IT MAKES 'EM GET REALLY FAT! You avoid the nasty side effect of all those omega-6s and instead reward your body with omega-3s when you choose grass-fed instead.
BETTER TREATMENT FOR THE ANIMALS
Again, the big factory farms just don't care about how the animals are treated. It's a business about making meat as quickly as possible so they can make a buck. But organic, grass-fed animals are treated very humanely and not subjected to the poor treatment that is part and parcel of what happens on those other farms.
THERE ARE NO ANTIBIOTICS USED
Grass-fed animals don't need any antibiotics in them like their grain-eating counterparts do because they don't deal with the health complications that high-carb diet brings on.
YOU GET LOTS OF CONJULATED LINOLENIC ACID
Conjugated linolenic acid, or CLA, is a powerful fat that is created in the stomach of a grass-fed animal which is extremely healthy as an anti-cancer agent.
SAY BYE BYE TO E. COLI
When you select organic meats, the risk of consuming E. coli tainted meat is next to nil. E. coli generally exists inside of animals with a highly acidic environment which is typical of grain-fed cattle. The lack of acidity in grass-fed beef make it less likely that E. coli could even exist there.
NO NEED FOR STEROIDS OR GROWTH HORMONES
You want a cow to get bigger, you inject it with steroids or growth hormones. This has become so routine these days that nobody stops and thinks about the consequences of what happens when humans begin ingesting all that into their bodies. Again, it all comes down to trying to make a buck as quickly as possible instead of insuring the safety of the food supply.
NO ADDITIONAL ANIMAL BY-PRODUCTS FED TO THEM
An organic meat farmer does not risk contaminating his cattle with animal by-products which can subject the meat to things like Mad Cow Disease. Just the grass, man, just the grass.
(Special thanks to Dr. Jonny Bowden for sharing that great list of reasons for choosing grass-fed beef over store-bought beef!)
I gotta tell you about an great company I recently heard about that sells very high-quality, grass-fed meats. They are U.S. Wellness Meats and I encourage you to check them out if you want to take your low-carb lifestyle to the next level. There is a health benefits page on their web site you should check out for even more compelling reasons to choose grass-fed meats over the ones in your local grocery store. (NOTE: U.S. Wellness Meats is not a sponsor of my blog--I was just very impressed by what they have to offer consumers).
Do you have any comments to add about grass-fed beef, chicken, and pork? Have you seen the health benefits in your own life from switching to this kind of meat over conventional cuts? Share your comments below so we can hear how it has changed your life. Hopefully now everyone understands that all meat is not created equal. Make those better choices for your health starting TODAY!