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Health Benefits of Grass-Fed Beef
Most of us have become complacent with regard to the food we consume. That complacency also includes the supermarket beef we are all so familiar with. As consumers, we are barraged on a continuum with advertising that embraces the virtues of grain fed meats. Labels in supermarkets and advertising at restaurants hope to court the customer by boasting loudly "tender juicy grain fed meats".
While technology has experienced dramatic change in the last century, the human body has remained the same through the least 50,000 years or so. The bottom line is we have only been an agricultural species for 10,000 years. For some cultures this holds true for only 4,000 years. Modern science has paved the way for man to enjoy a plentiful food supply (grain farming). However, it is this very same food supply that plays a role in the dramatic levels of obesity and chronic disease we see in modern cultures. This is also the same food supply that makes grain fed meats a health hazard. The issues are the unnaturally high calorie contents and the disproportionate amount of bad fats contained in grain fed meats.
Before discussing the perils of the skewed fatty acid ratio found in grain fed meats, it may prove wise to examine a few issues regarding modern farming and feeding practices of our livestock. Until just a few years ago, it was common practice to feed cows ground up pieces and parts of other dead cows. Not to mention, ground up dead cats and dogs. This, in an effort to provide a cheap form of protein and feed for livestock. Sadly, this practice has led to the propagation of mad cow disease. Keep in mind, we still feed chicken manure, waste products from processed food factories, and GRAIN based feed. Not what a cow, a ruminant animal was designed to live on. The FACT remains, no species has evolved or developed over millions of years consuming any type of whole grain whatsoever.
Grain fed meats carry a disproportionate ratio of the fats labeled Omega 6 and Omega 3. Keep in mind that fats (the right fats in the right proportions are ESSENTIAL to human life). The brain is made of approximately 60% FAT. We need fats ( the right fats in the right ratios) to absorb certain nutrients, build cell membranes and help clot blood, just to name a few of the roles that the correct fats play in human health and wellness. Omega 3 fats are absolutely required for optimal brain and nervous system function. The ideal ratio of Omega 6 to Omega 3 fats is 1:1. Sadly, due to the fact that Omega 3 fats are hardly found in the American diet, the ratio is skewed by a landslide with ratios of 15:1 on upwards to 50:1. It is not that Omega 6 fatty acids are bad guys; it is the skewed ratio as a result of our processed food environment that is undesirable. When one sports an appropriate ratio of Omega 6 to Omega 3 fatty acids, you can also enjoy the accompanying benefits such as reduced risk of dementia, reduced risk of heart disease, cancers and strokes. ALL which have been proven beyond a reasonable doubt by current nutritional science.
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