By David Blyweiss, M.D., Advanced Natural Wellness
November 16, 2018
Patients often ask me if eating grass-fed beef is worth the effort. After all, the conventional meat they buy at the grocery store tastes just fine. And the mouth-watering prime rib or filet mignon at their favorite restaurant isn’t grass-fed either.
“So what’s the big deal, Doc?” they ask. “Give me one good reason to switch.”
When this happens I shake my head and sigh. I know I’m going to have to do something I don’t like doing…
…I’m going to have to get graphic to get my point across.
And when I finish? My happy, beef-eating patient is going to look a little green around the gills.
Unfortunately, this is something that has to be done every now and then.
The Graphic Truth about Today’s Red Meat
Most people don’t know this, but feeding cattle corn-grain was practically unheard of before World War II. Back then, grass-fed beef was pretty much the only type of beef you could buy.
Then, in the 1950’s, scientists found that feeding steers an all-corn grain diet was great for fattening them up. The animals gained up to three pounds a day when fed only corn grain and cobs.
This was great news for ranchers. They could bring animals to slaughter much more quickly. Corn growers were happy, too. So were American meat-eaters, since it helped bring down the price of beef at the grocery store.
But it brought about a huge change.
Today cattle raised for commercial meat no longer grow up grazing in wide-open fields and meadows. Instead, they’re locked up in feedlots where they are fed an unnatural diet of corn grains to fatten them up and get them to slaughter faster.
This may sound great in theory, but cattle are not meant to eat corn. It makes them sick, damages their digestive system and causes liver abscesses. A lot of these animals actually go to the slaughterhouse with infected livers and other organs.
The butchers trim these diseased areas away. But seriously, who wants to eat meat from a sick animal?
Jamming up to a thousand steer into a single feed lot makes matters even worse. I’ve only seen a few of these operations, but they’re absolutely disgusting. You can smell one long before you see it.
Then, when you arrive, the animals are standing around and sleeping in a wasteland of their own manure. They do this day after day for most of their lives. (And by the way… that manure is still caked on them when they are sent to the slaughterhouse.)
The only way to prevent death and illness for these meat-producing animals is to regularly dose them with antibiotics.
So in a nutshell, every time you eat commercial beef you are eating meat from a sick, dirty, obese animal that has been pumped full of drugs that lead to antibiotic resistance.
Grass-Fed Beef is worth the Effort
I don’t eat a lot of red meat. But when I do, I want to eat meat from a healthy, lively, active and disease-free animal.
I don’t want a big dose of antibiotics with any of my meals… ones that could fatten me up and expose me to antibiotic resistance or antibiotic resistant bacteria.
And I certainly don’t want to experience the devastating hormonal effects of consuming the genetically modified and poisonous glyphosate-riddled corn that is used for animal feed, even if it is second-hand.
I would much rather enjoy a naturally nutritious cut of beef that floods my body with life-giving nutrients.
Naturally raised grass-fed beef provides you with…
- Higher levels of conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), a nutrient that has antitumor activity and protects against cancer.
- More heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids that slash inflammation and keep your brain in top-notch condition.
- Greater concentrations of vitamin E tocopherols, which are known to support the immune system, fight off bacteria and reduce blood clotting.
- No fattening GMO grains or weight-gaining drugs that could put you at risk for obesity, antibiotic resistance or hormonal issues.
- Reduced risk of ingesting life-threatening contaminated meats that may be infected with deadly disease or bacteria.
So yes! Switching to grass-fed beef is worth it. And I’ve given you a lot more than one reason to make the change today.
Geurin HB, et al. Cob portion of ground ear corn as sole roughage for fattening cattle. J. Anim. Sci. 1954;13(Suppl):984. Ralston Purina Company.
McCoy EJ, et al. Liver Abscess Severity at Slaughter Does Not Affect Meat Tenderness and Sensory Attributes in Commercially Finished Beef Cattle Fed Without Tylosin Phosphate. Kansas Agricultural Experiment Station Research Reports: Vol. 3: Iss. 1. (2017)
Lee KW, et al. Role of the conjugated linoleic acid in the prevention of cancer. Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 2005;45(2):135-44.
Daley CA, et al. A review of fatty acid profiles and antioxidant content in grass-fed and grain-fed beef. Nutr J. 2010; 9: 10.