Benefit of Grass Fed, Organic Meat? Part 2

Benefit of Grass Fed, Organic Meat? Part 2

posted in: Diet, Wellness Wednesday | 2

This post is a follow up to this previous post Benefit of Grass Fed, Organic Meat? Part 1

So Why Does All Of That Matter?

Many researchers now are verifying that a lot of diseases are caused by ‘leaky gut’. Leaky gut is a syndrome where damage to your intestinal wall creates gaps in the lining, allowing food particles and toxins to escape into your blood system. Unsprouted grains, sugar, GMO’s and conventional dairy products are at the top of the list for food items which can cause damage and inflammation the lining of your intestines.

 The problem with unsprouted grains is they contain large amounts of nutrient blockers called phytates and lectins. Lectins are sugar-binding proteins that act as a natural defense system for plants that protect them from outside invaders like mold and parasites. This is good news for plants but bad news for your body. Your digestive lining is covered with sugar containing cells that help break down your food.  Lectins gravitate toward this area and when they attach to your digestive lining it damages your gut, causing inflammation. Lectins are found in many foods, not just grains, and consumed in smaller amounts your body will do just fine with them. But foods that have large amounts of lectins like wheat, rice, spelt and soy are more problematic. Sprouting and fermenting grains reduces phytates and lectins, and makes these foods easier to digest. GMO and hybridized foods tend to be the highest in lectins since they have been modified to fight off bugs. Source: 4 Steps to Heal Leaky Gut Syndrome And Autoimmune, Dr. Axe. 

When looking for food products to eat it is advisable to steer clear of anything that has these ingredients in them AND to steer clear of animals whom ingested them. Unfortunately, our society is all screwed up when it comes to food.

 Today, the American diet is not balanced. It’s heavily weighted with grain, grain-based food products (foods and drinks laced with high fructose corn syrup and other grain-type additives), and grain-fed livestock products. Back in the late-1970s scientists started discovering that grain, grain-based foods, and grain-fed livestock products are the root cause for most if not all of today’s major chronic diseases (body failings):Cancer, depression, obesity, allergies, autoimmune diseases such as lupus and arthritis, diabetes, asthma, and the list seems endless. Amazingly, the worst grain is corn! And wouldn’t you know it, corn is the most abundant grain produced in America! Not only does it have the worst fatty acid profile (Omega-6 to Omega-3 ratio) of nearly all grains (which skews the fat balance in the membranes of all animal body cells negatively impacting cell function),but it is also a fungal host to 22 different fungi including Aspergillus. Some of these fungi put out body debilitating mycotoxins that can literally kill animals and people. This is why the US Government tests corn for aflatoxin, one of the most deadly and highly carcinogenic toxins on the planet. Many condemned corn supplies end up in animal feeds (not only for livestock in feedlots, but family pets too.) Source: Texas Grass Fed Beef, Grass Fed Meat Education, Ted Slanker 2000 

It’s no surprise that there are many issues with the food system in the USA, but the good news is that we have a CHOICE. And by the impact of our choices we have the ability to change the future of our food system. Because the standard American diet includes so many foods which induce inflammation, we can choose to eat foods that can help arm our immune systems with the right fatty acids to help go to combat!

 The good news is that changing your diet can drastically help prevent and reverse the inflammatory process. The foods we eat are the most effective means of preventing inflammation, and the easiest to control. The body can actually manufacture its own anti-inflammatory substances if we eat the right foods and eliminate those things that contribute to inflammation. U.S. Wellness Meats has demonstrated omega 6:3 ratios of better than 1:1 in favor of omega 3 in Iowa State University lab tests of grass-fed beef steaks and ground beef products, such as the tri-tip steaks or the NY strip steaks. The source of omega 3 is the green leaves of plants. When cattle eat their natural diet, beef becomes a great source of Omega 3. The omega 6:3 ratio in grass fed beef is actually 2:1, as opposed to 20:1 in the standard, conventionally raised beef cattle. This makes grass-fed beef one of the healthiest choices for the anti-inflammatory diet, along with wild-caught fatty fishes. Try the wild caught Alaskan salmon jerky. Source: You Can Stop Inflammation with a Grass-fed Meat Diet 

Omega What?

I wrote an article a few months back about GMOs, Omega 3s and Omega 6s. (Catch Up Here) In my previous post I talked about how we consume too many Omega 6’s and not enough Omega 3’s. Grain-fed meats are extremely high in omega 6’s and even organic foods contain vegetable and seed oils which also are high in omega 6’s.

Annnnnnd that matters why?

It matters because when you look at the Omega 3 and Omega 6 content in 100% grass fed beef, it’s almost comparable to consuming fish! Also, the grass fed animal’s organs (like liver and bone marrow, for instance) are Omega 3 nutrient packed as well!

CLA, Huh?

Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) is also found abundantly in grass fed beef. What does CLA do? Let’s seeeeeee . . .

It’s been seen to:

~ decrease body fat

~ help you feel fuller

~ lower LDL (bad) cholesterol (but it does seem to have the same effect on HDL (good) cholesterol as well)

~ has been shown to have cancer fighting properties!

Raising cattle on grass boosts the beef’s level of a conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), a group of polyunsaturated fatty acids found in beef, lamb and dairy products. Over the past two decades, numerous health benefits have been attributed to CLA in animals, including a reduction in cancer, heart disease, onset of diabetes and accumulation of body fat. A 3.5-ounce serving of grass-fed beef provides 1.23 grams of CLA, 25 percent of the daily requirement. The same amount of conventional beef provides less than 10 percent of the daily requirement. Thunderbasinbeef.com

 

Other Nutritional Benefits 

Factory farms which produce conventional meats often have horrible living conditions for their animals. You may think giving antibiotics to the animals would help prevent the spread of diseases, like E.coli, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Just like in humans, antibiotics kill off the good and bad bacteria in the animal’s intestines. Because it’s not getting the proper nutrients to replenish, the animals end up having an unhealthy digestion track (think leaky gut!!) and the animals aren’t able to fight off infections or viruses as well, cannot absorb nutrients and end up with many other complications. It’s been shown that grass fed meats have an extremely low contamination rate when compared to the grain fed meats aka conventional meats aka factory farmed animals.

Another benefit of grass fed meat is that is it lower in calories.

Fat has 9 calories per gram, compared with only 4 calories for protein and carbohydrates.  The greater the fat content, the greater the number of calories. A 6-ounce steak from a grass-finished steer has almost 100 fewer calories than a 6-ounce steak from a grainfed steer. 

If you eat a typical amount of beef (66.5 pounds a year), switching to grassfed beef will save you 17,733 calories a year—without requiring any willpower or change in eating habits.  If everything else in your diet remains constant, you’ll lose about six pounds a year.  If all Americans switched to grassfed meat, our national epidemic of obesity would begin to diminish.AmericanGrassFedBeef.com

 

According to Natural News.com, “The fat profiles from 100% grass-fed animals are similar to that of salmon. Pastured meats have the following health benefits:

  • Higher in beta-carotene
  • Higher vitamin E levels
  • Improved ratio of omega 6 to omega 3 ratio
  • Higher in total omega 3
  • Higher in B vitamins thiamin (B1) and riboflavin (B2)
  • Increased amounts of minerals, calcium, magnesium and potassium
  • Higher amounts of conjugated linoleic acid
  • Increased levels of vaccenic acid” 

(Learn more here)

I could keep going on . . .

Vitamin E is an antioxidant, which is able to protect the body against free radicals which in turn helps your body cut own on the degeneration of tissues and inflammation.

Grass fed meats also contain L-carnitine and carnosine.

Like vitamin E, carnosine has antioxidant value. It also is an amino acid. It turns out that carnosine inhibits proteins from cross-linking up to sugars. This cross-linking action actually accelerates the aging process, both within and without! For example, this can show up in the skin as wrinkles or in the veins as brittle vasculature. For this reason, carnosine is particularly popular among those interested in anti-aging therapies. Because carnosine is concentrated in brain and muscle tissue, the best place to find it is in meat. Carnosine is especially abundant in grass-fed meat. 
L-carnitine is another amino acid that even as an isolated dietary supplement is popular for its ability to keep the body youthful. L-carnitine encourages the body to breakdown fat as an energy source. This means that it can have a slimming effect if used correctly in whole food form. Like carnosine, L-carnitine has a significant antioxidant effect in the body. Rather than protecting proteins, however, L-carnitine protects fats from oxidation. Body Ecology Diet
 
Ok, and one more testimonial about the worth of grass fed meats:

 

Red meat is typically recommended due to its high (complete) protein content, as well as being a good source of iron, zinc and many of the B Vitamins (including being a particularly valuable source of Vitamin B12).  This is, of course, still true for grass-fed meat. Grass-fed beef is an excellent source of Vitamin A (10 times more than grain fed), Vitamin E (3 times more than grain fed) and is also higher in B vitamins, calcium, magnesium and potassium.  In fact, all of the health arguments against eating red meat do not apply to grass-fed meat. The Paleo Mom

 

So the bottom line is,

The food that is fed to the animals in which we eat, combined with their living conditions, have HUGE impacts on what we end up consuming.

Like everything, meat must be consumed in moderation, but there are EXTREMELY HIGH benefits to shelling out the extra money for the grass fed, organic beef than the conventional beef.

Just remember the facts next time you’re standing at the meat counter at the grocery store!

Wishing You A Pain Free Day!

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Want to learn more????? 

If you’re in the Pittsburgh Area you should sign up to attend a Health & Wellness 101 class series that I will be teaching with 2 other health coaches starting in January!!

GMOs are going to be the very first topic we cover!

Learn more about the class here!
Carrots

  • Jan Bowlin

    I’ve just saw a video the other day by Dr. Axe…so tonight I have had my first Organic Grass Fed Steak so I have high hopes that tonight I will not be in pain and cursing your name…I will let you know in the morning if I survived. BTW it was so delicious.

  • Jan Bowlin

    It is morning and there is no pain. So glad I read this article and so glad I can eat red meat again.