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Grass-fed overrated? Grass-fed vs grain-fed

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  • Grass-fed overrated? Grass-fed vs grain-fed



    I know that organic grass-fed is vastly superior to factory farmed grain-fed meat. However, I found a local farmer who sells clean organic pork raised on barley and clover that he grows. I did some research, and the difference between grass-fed and grain-fed isn't very significant.


    Grass-fed ground beef: http://www.nutritiondata.com/facts/b...oducts/10526/2

    Grain-fed ground beef: http://www.nutritiondata.com/facts/beef-products/10526/2


    Omega ratios: sure, grass-fed meat has a better 6:3 ratio, but if you look at the absolute amounts, they're so tiny as to be insignificant. Who cares if the 6:3 ratio is 8.5—there's not even half a gram in a 4 oz serving of meat!! So there's hardly any difference here.


    Vitamins: same situation—grass-fed may be higher, but the absolute amounts are tiny, usually under 5% of RDA. So this is another fake benefit.


    CLA (conjugated linoleic acid): this seems to be the only worthwhile benefit to grass-fed meat. I'm not too sure how important it is... would it really justify the higher price of grass-fed meat?


    All in all, I think grass-fed is overrated and that organic is much more important. Grass-fed is the most primal, so it evidently wins, but grain-fed organic is a good compromise. Am I missing anything, or is grass-fed really overhyped?


  • #2
    1



    I think one of the key things missing in grain fed beef is the lack of vitamin k. Check out the same subject on the Weston A Price Foundation website. They go into quite some detail regarding it.

    Start weight: 250 - 06/2009
    Current weight: 199
    Goal: 145

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    • #3
      1



      I thought the meain source of Vit K is leafy, green vegetables?

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      • #4
        1



        Yes, it is. But the benefits of grass fed beef is that it is passed along with the animal meat, as well. Of course, it could just be the milk... but I think the meat, too.

        Start weight: 250 - 06/2009
        Current weight: 199
        Goal: 145

        Comment


        • #5
          1



          Here's one of the links from the Weston Price Foundation:


          http://www.westonaprice.org/farming/splendor.html

          Start weight: 250 - 06/2009
          Current weight: 199
          Goal: 145

          Comment


          • #6
            1



            We can get K1 from greens, but it doesn't amount to much in our bodies. K2 is what we want, and we can get that from grass-fed organ meat, butter, and fermented cheeses.


            Plus, another big advantage to eating grass-fed is that you're supporting good farming practices.

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            • #7
              1



              Vit K1 comes from leafy veg, K2 comes from microbial action in the gut of ruminants from K1 (and in microbial action in aged cheese). So it is important for the cows to get K1 from the grass. Humans make it in only small amounts because we don't have the long gut needed to get the job done. The theory is that we evolved to eat ruminants so we didn't need to produce it ourselves. My personal theory is that part of the health crisis we are facing today is caused by the omega balance and lack of vit K2 all caused by the switch from animal fat to veg oil combined with the saturated fat scare pushing everyone to chicken consumption. The lack of ruminants in our diets has messed things up.


              Based on the various things I have seen, I think that fatty grass fed is best followed by lean cuts of grain-fed beef and any beef is better than no beef. I think lean is better in grain-fed because the Omega issue is even less then. And with lean cuts, butter makes it better.

              It's grandma, but you can call me sir.

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              • #8
                1



                From the Weston Price site: http://www.westonaprice.org/farming/splendor.html


                "One of the claims made for grass-fed beef is that the fat from grass-fed animals is much richer in omega-3 fatty acids.... But this is one claim that should NOT be made for pasture-fed beef."


                Looks like the grass-fed ranchers pulled the wool over our eyes! The omega benefits are phony!


                Re: Vitamin K, it's also insignificant. You have to get it elsewhere.

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                • #9
                  1



                  Thanks, Eric, Grandma! This is what I had read and couldn't quite remember.

                  Start weight: 250 - 06/2009
                  Current weight: 199
                  Goal: 145

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    1



                    Hm, when I checked in Nutritiondata.com, comparing 1 oz ground grass-fed to one ounce of 75% lean conventional ground beef, there was a significant difference in omega 6:3 ratios.


                    The grassfed ratio was 5, whereas the conventional was 9.6. That seems like a pretty significant difference to me.


                    Also I've found that the nutrient levels for pastured eggs are so much higher, I would assume the same for grassfed beef (perhaps their data isn't fully accurate? I noticed some of their listings aren't complete.) Also it tastes really good. I notice the difference more so in eggs.


                    I wonder, what is more natural for cattle to eat? Would they normally eat grains? If they do, I'm sure it's nowhere near the processed form that they are fed on a ranch (which from what I understand is a lot of corn industry products).

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                    • #11
                      1



                      The benefits listed by the Weston Price Foundation regarding grass fed animals are too numerous to count.

                      Start weight: 250 - 06/2009
                      Current weight: 199
                      Goal: 145

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        1



                        I just found this, it is interesting:


                        http://www.celiac.com/gluten-free/in...9&#entry323639

                        "Cows aren't really designed to eat any grain, it is too acidic for them. However, cows are strictly grain fed. It makes them fatten up fast (does that to humans too). To counteract all the terrible things that happen to grain fed cow's rumen (stomachs) they give them loads of antibiotics to keep them alive. This highly acidic environment in their rumen has lead to the evolution of a new type of E. Coli bacteria that is able to endure the high acid environment of a normally ph neutral cow stomach (and the human intestinal tract). And that's the form of E. Coli that is causing problems for us now. "


                        "Cows are ruminants, they ferment the food. It doesnt "heat up their insides" , they pig out, they bloat and can die.

                        Yes, if they over eat any grain - wheat or barley - it is "hot" (high energy) and creates rumen acidosis - commonly known as grain overload.

                        Feedlots feed a lot of grain and on the verge of acidosis all the time the way they are fed . They are fed this way to fatten them for slaughter."

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                        • #13
                          1



                          @marika: Yes, the grass-fed ratio is around 4-5 and grain-fed is 8-9. But my point is that the absolute amount of omega 3 is tiny (less than 0.1 g per 100g serving). So it's not going to have any significant impact on your total 6:3 ratio.

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                          • #14
                            1



                            Oh, I see what you mean. Well, actually though, I guess it depends on how many total grams you have daily of omega 6's and 3's. It actually may help if your total intake is rather low in both.

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                            • #15
                              1



                              If you watch King Corn, you will see a comment from a rancher that corn makes the cows sick. Cows can't handle an all grain diet. In the video she says that they have to slaughter the cows when they do because they can't live much longer. Not right.


                              Marika, I did the same thing, you will see that the 90% ratio is better. Perhaps lean is better for grain-fed.

                              It's grandma, but you can call me sir.

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