Why You Should Buy Grassfed Beef
Written by John Franklin

Meat is a main staple of the paleo diet, because eating meat is essential for optimal health. Unfortunately, not all meat is created equal; we must consider quality, especially when buying beef.

Americans eat more cow than any other animal. The average American eats close to 70 lbs of cow every year, yet only a fraction of a percent of all meat consumed is organic and grass fed. Why does this matter? Cows were designed to eat grass. Commercially raised cows are fed grains – primarily wheat and corn – that fatten them up quicker than grass. A cow raised on a wheat and corn diet provides lower quality fats and less protein per pound. Many commercially raised cows require antibiotics to ward off infection and death, and the deadly bacteria E. Coli is more prevalent in grain fed cows. I recommend reading Michael Pollan’s New York Times article, “Power Steer”  if you want a closer look into commercial farming methods.

Certified organic meat, by law, must have “no antibiotics, no growth hormones, and the animals have to be fed 100% organic feed.” Unfortunately, this means that farmers can feed their cows organic corn and wheat and still label the meat as organic. Remember, just because it’s organic, doesn’t mean it’s grass fed. This is especially important for my gluten sensitive homies. People with celiacs can become ill after consuming grain fed meats.

Other benefits of grassfed include less bad fat. A sirloin steak from a grain feed lot has double the fat of its grassfed counterpart.  Grassfed beef contains 3-6 times more omega-3 fatty acids than grainfed beef. Most Americans need to consume more omega-3s to balance out the high amount of omega-6 fatty acids in out diets. Read  this article by Dr. Weil to learn more about the important differences between omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. In addition to the boost in omega-3s from grassfed beef, you’ll also get 4 times more vitamin E and higher levels of CLA, a nutrient that wards off cancer.

The biggest drawback to grassfed organic beef is the cost, which I don’t see as a huge problem. Many Americans, myself included, eat way too much meat. If we slightly decrease our portion sizes to offset the costs, we will be doing ourselves a double positive by increasing our nutrient intake and decreasing our overall meat intake. Fill up the new real estate on your plate with more veggies, and you’ll be well on your way to looking slim for the chimney.

Sources:
Paul Chek’s “How to Eat Move and Be Healthy”
http://www.johnrobbins.info/blog/grass-fed-beef/
http://www.nytimes.com/2002/03/31/magazine/power-steer.html?pagewanted=all&src=pm
http://www.drweil.com/drw/u/QAA400149/balancing-omega-3-and-omega-6.html

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Audrey
Audrey
July 6, 2014 8:14 pm

Hello. Thank you for your article. After all of the research I’ve been doing on meat I still didn’t realize that organic meat’s could still be corn fed. I assumed it was grass fed. I’m hoping you could answer a question for me. Is grass fed meat more filling than store bought meat? I have recently started purchasing grass fed meats from a farm and usually my daughter can eat about 3 baby back ribs and I usually eat 2 but could eat more. lol. We both could only eat one each and they weren’t any bigger. We were stuffed.… Read more »

David Bokman
David Bokman
December 6, 2012 4:12 pm

This is one of my first time reading CF Invictus Blog post and really enjoyed reading this post on eating grass fed beef. Its a great read! Keep it up!