GRASS FED VS GRAIN FED
I have been researching this topic over the last week and came across some amazing facts; “In a 2009 study which was a joint effort between the USDA and researchers at Clemson University in South Carolina grass-fed beef was compared with grain-finished beef and researchers found that grass-fed beef is: higher in moisture content, 42.5% lower total lipid content, 54% lower in total fatty acids, 54% higher in beta-carotene, 288% higher in vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol), higher in the B-vitamins thiamin and riboflavin, higher in the minerals calcium, magnesium, and potassium, 193% higher in total omega-3s, 117% higher in CLA (cis-9 trans-11) 90% higher in vaccenic acid (which can be transformed into CLA), lower in the saturated fats linked with heart disease, and has a healthier ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids (1.65 vs 4.84). Protein and cholesterol content were equal.” Now does this make you want to make the swap for grass fed and it’s not just the meat but the dairy we’re consuming too. The reason why the omega-3s are so much higher is because they are formed in green leaves and algae, hence the animal consumes it when it is feeding on grass (cold water fish consume algae making them high in omega-3s also). CLA is also a fatty acid and is a fantastic nutrient to consume. It’s know for it’s cancer fighting properties and also helps with decreasing body fat whilst increasing lean muscle mass. Studies have shown that a dose of 3.2g/day of CLA produced a significant 90g of fat loss per week and an increase of 1% lean muscle mass per week. Both of these results will contribute to raising the bodies metabolic rate and thus burning more calories, obviously with a healthy lifestyle of exercise and eating well also contributes.
Eggs produced by hens fed a diet of greens and insects contain higher levels omega-3s than those produced by chickens fed corn or soybeans. A test done by ‘Mother Earth News’ revealed that eggs laid by hens out on pasture have; 1/3 less cholesterol, 1/4 less saturated fat, 2/3 more vitamin A, 2 times more omega-3s, 3 times more vitamin E and 7 times more beta carotene. And how much more nutritious do you think the meat is? A lot, and the same goes for pastured pigs.
Not only are grass fed and pastured animals more nourishing, it is also more humane for them. They are able to roam freely and live a much more pleasant life.
So enjoy a glass of milk, a toasted cheese sandwich, some butter on a fresh piece of sour dough bread and if you’re feeling adventurous, some homemade ice cream, but make a swap for grass fed and pastured animals and make sure you stick to whole milk, to receive all of those great nutrients. Go and visit your local butcher and ask him whether his products are grass fed or grain fed and seek all the benefits it has to offer!