Bummed About My Meat Choices
Newly primal and have been working really hard at making it work for me, and am spending all my willpower staying away from sugar, wheat and processed carbs.
I'm having one huge problem though. I'm pretty young, don't have much disposable cash, and live in the middle of nowhere in a really small town (I can't wait to move to the city in about a month - I figure I'll have more access to farmers markets etc).
But my issue now is meat. I really would like to try grass-fed beef, free-range chicken, etc, but I just don't know where I'm going to find it. I did find one farm nearby that has a website, but it was really intimidating, and you have to buy like TONS of meat and do alot of the cutting yourself.
I'm a real newbie in the kitchen, and like I said, the prospect of all that is just really intimidating for me. So I'm just looking for advice. Has anyone been in a similar position where they haven't been able to find the "pure" meats that they would like to? Are there online resources that you would trust to order from (I'm in Maryland)? And how much am I cheating myself by eating more conventional cuts of beef?
Conventional CAFO meat is fine, you've already been eating it most of your life and a lot worse than that in your processed foods.
While I'm all for it if you can afford it, I think this forum gets a little too hung up on "boutique meats" at times.
You can also do a decent job of plugging the fairly narrow gap between grass fed/free range and CAFO nutritional profiles with the proper (usually inexpensive) supplements.
Speaking of supplements - I just picked up and starting taking fish oil capsules. Since you mentioned it, any particular supplements you recommend?
The O3 in fish oil is a good start as it plugs the perhaps the biggest nutritional gap between CAFO and grass fed/free range, the skewed O3/O6 ratios. D3 and K2 are usually also a good idea, just because people living modern mostly indoor lifestyles are generally deficient in D3 and K2.
Other than that, you can and should get most of what you need from a variety of real foods.
The best fish oil supplement in the world is a can of sardines. Cheap and good for you.
Don't stress too much, just take your time and keep your eyes peeled for any little gems available in your area. Pastured eggs and wild canned seafood are pretty affordable. Hunt for cheap/free bones too--I love my meat but when I'm on a budget I find 1 cup of soup + 1/4 lb. meat equally satisfying as 1/2 lb. meat. Shoulders or rumps in a crock pot are pretty economical too.
D3 is the only supplement I use. Omega-3 and K2 are cool, but the foods that contain them contain so much other good stuff that I eat them all the time.
I would buy lean cafo meats and supplement with butter from pasture fed cows and a good fish oil supplement.