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Your Health & Wellness, Iss #111 -- Grass-Fed Beef VS. Poultry
November 09, 2012
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Grass-Fed Beef VS. Poultry
"Black and white" and "cut and dry" are terms used to describe matters or situations which are clearly defined one way or the other. There are no controversies and no gray areas.
Sadly there are few, if any, matters which are cut and dry in today's society.
Vegetarianism over conventional diet and poultry over red meat were cut and dry for me decades ago. Much of the literature, media news, health and nutritional authorities, and conventional wisdom supported these choices.
Cutting edge research and newer studies have challenged the public perception and poked holes in these once hallowed and unassailable choices.
Poultry has always been viewed as being superior to grass-fed beef because it is lower in fat - specifically saturated fat - and cholesterol than beef.
Even today saturated fat is viewed by nutritional and medical authorities as contributing to high cholesterol and general heart problems. Saturated fat from grain-fed beef is problematic and should be avoided at all costs. This however doesn't apply to saturated fat from grass-fed beef.
(I am discussing grass-fed beef as opposed to grain-fed beef because grass-fed is superior to grain-fed in every way.)
Animals such as cows and bison are known as ruminant because they have stomachs which are separated into various compartments for digesting grass, hay, and other foods rich in cellulose. Fat from these animals contain a superior nutrient profile.
Poultry like chicken and turkey can eat grass, but not as much as cows or bison. The greater the amount of grass in the animal's diet, the greater the amount of omega-3 in the meat. A rich omega-3 diet is non-inflammatory.
Saturated fat from ruminants have a greater ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 fatty acids and a lot more conjugated linoleic acid (CLA.) Non grass-fed animals are instead fed grain - predominantly corn and soy - because they are subsidized by the government.
The ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids in grain can range anywhere from 25:1 to 50:1. Although omega-6 fatty acids is needed in the diet, our processed food oversupplies this nutrient. It is supplied from the vegetable oils used in almost all processed foods and meat from animals fed grain.
The ideal balance or ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 should be 2:1 to 4:1. The amount of omega-6 in the typical American diet contributes to obesity and chronic inflammation.
Inflammation is the root of chronic disease like cancer and heart disease. These diseases will continue to run rampant in American society until our food issues are addressed.
The misinformation that the public is bombarded with concerning cholesterol is astounding. This is happening because the pharmaceutical industry which all but controls the media and medical schools are profiting enormously from cholesterol-lowering drugs (also known as statins.)
And as if they are not making enough money, Big Pharma seeks to include more people who should be taking statins by lowering the total cholesterol number.
Every cell in your body needs and uses cholesterol; as a matter of fact, your body produces it (Read this article from the Weston Price Foundation.)
You can get superior nutrients from pasture-raised lamb and goat as an alternative to beef too. I have recently reintroduced pasture-raised lamb chops into my diet after decades of not eating it.
You will find grass-fed beef has a wonderful taste. I love it. And more importantly, this choice supplies your body with the essential nutrients it needs to get and remain healthy.
Another benefit of eating grass-fed meat is the absence of GMOs (present in the corn and soy fed the animals) and pesticides.
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