Riddle for you:
What’s red, full of antioxidants, has CLA to help fight off cancer, protein to build strength and muscle, and has been totally vilified by the anti-meat campaigners?
If you guessed red meat, good job. Have a cookie… I mean a steak! But as always, the answer isn’t so simple. Let’s find out!
Poor Red Meat
Have you ever been blamed for something that you honestly didn’t do? And no matter how you tried to explain the situation to your accuser, they believed that you were the guilty one? Well that’s what happened with red meat. It has been vilified over and over again for things like diabetes, heart attacks, and cancer, yet doesn’t completely live up to the accusations.
A study done by Harvard showed that as meat consumption increased, health markers decreased. Namely, heart health. Other studies have shown that as people decrease their consumption of meat, health markers improved.
What happened? Well these researchers were pointing at the moon, but looking at their finger.
You see the issue with these studies is that they were done on processed meats and grain fed animal meats. These types of red meat are made in farms with horrible living conditions for the animals. They are fattened with a diet of grains and antibiotics. You are what you eat, and the same applies to farm animals. As they eat this diet, they become fat, sick, and unhealthy, as does their produce. Meat and dairy from animals raised like this actually does indeed cause health issues. So in that sense, these studies raise a good point! We should avoid processed and poorly raised meat products!
The Bigger Picture
As always, there’s a bigger picture. Animals that are fed their correct diet, such as grass fed meat, and are not given antibiotics and that live outside produce healthier meat and healthier dairy products. One simply has to compare the nutritional profile between the two. Grain fed meat is full of omega-6 fatty acids which promotes more inflammation especially because the standard diet many people have is already inflammatory. Grass fed meat actually is higher in omega-3s, which is anti inflammatory in the body and helps reverse the issues of inflammation in the body!
What About Cholesterol And My Heart?!
Grain fed meat is typically filled with saturated fats that have a negative effect on the heart compared to grass fed/wild meats which have a much more benign effect on cholesterol. So the myth that red meat is bad for your heart should be changed to “processed and grain fed red meat is bad for your heart”.
Don’t Forget Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA)!
Organic and Wild meat also comes with CLA as well! CLA is a fatty acid that helps fight cancer. So if that’s the case, why do misinformed experts believe that red meat causes cancer? Because of two mistakes. One, they don’t understand the difference between grain fed and organic, grass fed meats, and two, they didn’t account for vegetable intake. Vegetables are important for preventing colon cancer in any diet. Make sure as you increase your meat intake, your vegetable intake goes up as well.
Well What About The Studies
What about the studies that show that the exclusion of meat increases health? Well for one, grain fed meat does damage health and should be avoided. But the other thing you have to consider is that people who go vegetarian also can tend to be more health conscious. Did they get healthier due to excluding meat? Or was it due to excluding doughnuts, cupcakes, and soda. There are all variables that must be taken into account during these debates.
Go Enjoy A Steak Now
So go enjoy a steak! Just make sure it’s grass fed. What else can you do?
•Buy organic meat from your local farmers. Support them and buy in bulk and often, you can save money long term on organic food by cutting out the expensive middle man (grocery stores)
•Understand that grass fed is different and much healthier than grain fed meat.
•Always eat vegetables with your meat or on any diet. They are important for all around health and a perfect complement for the vitamins that come in meat. They also taste great next to steak.
So there you have it. The vegetarians didn’t have it completely wrong. Just halfway. I believe a vegetarian diet is great when it focuses on vegetables. The most important supplement for it, however, is some organic, grass fed, or wild caught meat.
It’s not about red meat. It’s about what the red meat eats.
DON’T FORGET TO COMMENT BELOW WITH YOUR THOUGHTS! AND SHARE WITH YOUR FRIENDS!
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