The consumption of beef, poultry and salmon in moderation can be very healthy for you; BUT you need to be discerning in your purchases.
Let’s discuss beef first: It is important to spend the extra money and choose grass-fed beef, bison or beefalo. Most beef in today’s food supply is grain-fed, and specifically the main grain is corn. Corn is used in these animals because it is comparitably inexpensive and it makes the animals gain lots of weight very quickly.
However, this extreme weight gain leads to an animal that also has a high saturated fat content – which in turn promotes heart disease and other inflammatory conditions. Grain is also extremely hard on the animals’ digestive tracts and often requires antibiotic treatment.
On the other hand, grass is naturally what the animals have evolved to eat. Grass-fed beef in moderation can be extremely beneficial because of the low saturated fat content and higher levels of omega-3 fatty acids. And grass-fed beef doesn’t disturb the animals’ digestive tracts so antibiotics are not necessary.
Poultry is exactly the same as beef. Most chickens need to roam in grass, eat insects, breath clean air and have room to run. This promotes a much leaner and healthier chicken, which when consumed in moderation has more health benefits then detriments. Again, a free-range chicken’s diet is not primarily corn, which is pro-inflammatory.
A surprise that most people may or may not know is that salmon, which is praised to be rich in omega-3 fatty acids, promote many anti-inflammatory actions and be protective of heart disease, can actually promote the inflammatory disease process. How can this be? Well, farmed salmon is also fed corn. Surprise! This, as you now know, promotes a very inflammatory food. In fact, farmed fish promotes more inflammatory actions than grain-fed beef.
It is believed other cultures that consume a diet rich in flesh do not have the large amounts of heart disease as Americans because they are getting a much more nutrient-rich, omega-3 fatty acid promoting diet, without the excessive saturated fat seen in our meat supplies.
So next time you go shopping, remember to purchase nutrient-rich, health-promoting meats by choosing grass-fed beef, free-range poultry and wild salmon.