Take Back your Health, Vote with your Dollars, and Go Grass Fed!!!
Beef has been a staple part of the human diet for thousands of years. Traditionally, we consumed meat from cows that roamed the pastures freely, feeding off of the grasses of the land. This created a strong and healthy animal that provided high quality nutrition to the people of the land.
Nowadays, most of the beef consumed comes from animals raised on confined feedlot operations. These animals endure harsh living conditions, have no space to move, and often sit in the mud of their own feces. Cows living in these environments are fed genetically modified grains, dead animal parts, sewage, excrement, and even sawdust. This is done to fatten them up quickly. A pasture-raised cow will take 4–5 years to naturally reach its full weight. These feedlots manipulate this process through the food and growth hormones to get the animal ready in 14–16 months.
Unfortunately, these animals get very sick, often too sick to even stand up. They are constantly pumped with antibiotics and growth hormones to keep them alive and growing. These corn-based diets also cause the animal to produce large amounts of gas and many acquire acidosis. This is a massive decrease in pH of the stomach.
Traditionally, our stomachs have a much lower pH than cows and had the ability to protect us from most bacteria strains that we are exposed to through our food supply. Due to the feedlot diets, cow’s stomachs are now changing and new bacterial strains are becoming resistant to the human stomach, causing the rise in infections such as E. Coli. In addition, with the massive increase in antibiotic use, much of the residues are being exposed in our food supply. This has contributed to the epidemic of antibiotic resistance.
The growth hormones injected into the animals are also exposed in our food supply. Hormone residues are accumulated, most of which are estrogenic compounds. Ironically, we have an epidemic of girls developing prematurely and men with retarded development, sperm counts, and sexual capacity. Finally, much of the waste from these operations runs off into our waterways, contaminating our own water supplies.
So what are the results of this? Today, we have an epidemic of antibiotic resistance, infertility, heart disease, and a society afraid of red meat. It wasn’t too long ago that red meat was considered a cancer-causing carcinogen. That is not surprising given then operations described above and the fact that the USDA has allowed tumors to be cut out of tissues that are still approved for meat sale.
On the other hand, grass fed cows are raised without any antibiotics, growth hormones, genetically modified feeds, or other harmful chemicals, pesticides, etc. They naturally graze the land, feed off the grass pastures, and even aid in the natural fertilization of the soil. They are strong, healthy animals that provide human with meat packed with nutrition. Here are the results:
1. Grass fed meat contains up to six times the omega 3 fatty acids compared to grain fed beef. Grass fed beef’s omega 3:6 ratio is around 3:1. Beef from feedlot operations are on average 20:1. This imbalance is highly inflammatory and at the root of many chronic diseases.
2. Grass fed meat has 4 times the Vitamin E content and 10 times the Vitamin A content.
3. Pasture raised cows acquire high levels of beta-carotene from the grasses they feed off of. Feedlot cows have no exposure to this nutrient in their genetically modified feeds. This is evident and visible in the butter we purchase. Observe the whitish coloring of a conventionally raised butter and then check out the butter from grass fed cows. The dark yellowish color is beautiful and a direct result of the beta-carotene content.
4. Grass fed meat has high levels of conjugate linoleic acid (CLA). This is a trans fatty acid that is a potent cancer fighter. It is non-existent in grain fed beef.
5. Pasture raised meat is loaded with fat-soluble vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. It is also much leaner. Meat from feedlot operations is much fattier for many reasons. They have the cows eat grains to intentionally fatten them up. Meat is sold by the pound so the fatter the cow the more profits made. Although I believe dietary fat is important, the source is even more important. Animals and humans accumulate fat as a way of storing toxins. This is done to protect the nervous system and organs. Conventionally raised cows accumulate more fat to store the toxic residues they accumulate to protect their systems of survival.
My question for you to consider is as follows. Do you think it is the red meat that is bad for our health or the source it is coming from? If red meat were so unhealthy, would we still be here? As humans, we were nomadic in nature. This often meant we followed the meat.
Another question to consider. Are you an animal lover like me? Do you believe in the torture of these animals for better profit margins and faster turnover? After all, this is an industry and financial incentives will keep these operations open for as long as we, the consumers, fund them.
Finally, remember that you are what you eat. Eating should be a spiritual practice. You are taking the flesh of an animal, consuming it, and turning it into human flesh. Therefore, if you want a healthy mind and body, it is important to find a healthy source. After all, can you really make chicken salad out of chicken shit?
My hope after reading this is that we all become more mindful of our purchases and consumption. Support the local farmers who are raising these animals with love and compassion. Consume mindfully and give thanks to the farmers and animals that are supporting your experience here in body. And finally, vote with your dollars. Our political system is highly influenced by financial incentives. Much of this is exposed in our food system. The most powerful thing we can do is cast our vote by how we spend our money. By supporting authentically and ethically raised animals raised on open pastures, you are voting for love, compassion, and health. And remember, love is a boomerang.