Many of us have been taught at some point that meat is unhealthy and bad for the environment. However, it’s simply not true when you’re consuming pasture raised meat. This common misconception is misleading and harmful. The reality is, eating grass fed meat has so much to offer us in so many ways.
1. Fight Back Against Factory Farming
You won’t find wild or essentially wild meat offered by major corporations, since their profit-based strategies simply don’t align with it. Factory farming was developed for the sole purpose of increasing profits, making the top priority making money above all else. Whenever you buy wild or pasture raised meat, you support small businesses. When we vote with our dollar and buy ethically raised meat, factory farming becomes a tiny bit less pervasive with each purchase. It’s with small steps like these that great moves are made in history. Aside from the more well known horrors of factory farming, here’s another hidden secret most people don’t know about – the treatment of their workers.
Sadly, the factory farm industry preys heavily on the vulnerability of immigrant and low-income families. About three-quarters of workers were born outside of the United States, and approximately half are illegally employed. Because of this, many are grateful to find the seemingly easy employment opportunities offered by these massive slaughterhouses. The jobs are easy to obtain, and people are often desperate to find a way to provide income for their families. However, factory farm workers are at-will employees, meaning they can be fired at any time and for any reason. This makes it effectively impossible for workplace hazards and morally unacceptable practices to be reported.
2. Nurture And Protect Healthy Soil
By choosing to support ethical and sustainable farming practices, we actively help protect our planet. Grass fed animals actually nurture the soil. The cyclical relationship between grazing animals and soil health is so perfect, it could only have been created by nature. We’d like to return America to her glory days of clean waters, mineral-rich soils and delicious, nutritious grass fed meat. There once were sixty million bison roaming this land and nourishing the soil. We hope to one day witness the return of those massive herds. Grazing animals like bison provide biodiverse fertilizer in the form of poop, creating a protective layer on top of the soil that traps carbon underneath – which brings us to our next point.
3. Keep Carbon In The Ground Where It Belongs
There’s a staggering amount of carbon stored in the soil. In fact, it’s more than is contained in the atmosphere and all of the plant-life on earth, combined. The more carbon we keep in the soil, the better. If the carbon stays in the ground, it’s not being released into the atmosphere where we don’t want it. In-ground carbon gives us richer soil, abundant and nutritious crops, cleaner water, and prevents soil erosion. Grazing animals provide biodiverse fertilizer in the form of poop, creating a protective layer on top of the soil that traps carbon underneath. That’s right, pasture raised is actively beneficial for the environment.
4. Provide Fuel For Optimal Brain Function
Grass fed meat is plentiful in vitamin B12, which is essential for preventing mental issues like fatigue, brain fog, nerve damage and a decrease in brain volume for older people. Vegans are deficient in vitamin B12 unless they regularly take a supplement. The brain is a fatty organ, comprised of about 60% fat. Omega-3 fatty acids are one of only nutrients that is specifically found in brain tissue. They are an essential structural and functional component of the brain.
These healthy fats boost blood flow to the brain and directly enhance mental performance. A plentiful amount of omega-3 supports the prevention of cognitive impairments like dementia as the brain ages. Grass-fed meat contains less total fat than conventionally raised meat, while providing much higher levels of omega-3’s. Antioxidants in grass-fed meat protect our brains against damage from free radicals.
5. Make Sure You Consume Enough Bioavailable Iron
Red meat gets its color from its rich iron content. Grass-fed meat in particular contains high levels of bioavailable iron that is easily absorbed into the bloodstream. Iron is an essential mineral found in every cell of the body. It’s important for all humans to have enough iron in their diet, helping to maintain energy levels, produce red blood cells, support cognitive and immune function and more. People who consume red meat typically do not experience iron deficiency.
Furthermore, meat actually allows the digestive tract to absorb iron from plant-based foods that would not otherwise be absorbable. Plant-based iron is usually “locked” making it impossible for us to absorb into the blood. Even small amounts of meat can assist in unlocking these iron sources and allowing them to move into the bloodstream. Grass fed meat contains higher amounts of iron, along with other essential vitamins and minerals, because they graze on living vegetation rather than corn-based feed products.