Vitamin and mineral content is greater in grass fed beef vs conventional beef
Lifestyle and diet matter when it comes to raising animals. This not only has to do with the welfare of the animals, but also the nutritional content of the food produced. Let's take a look at the differences between conventional beef commonly sold in supermarkets and grass fed and finished beef.
Conventional Beef Cattle are often raised in confined animals feeding operations (CAFOs). This means that the animals live indoors or outdoors, but definitely not on green pasture. They usually don't have lots of room to roam.
Pastured Grass Fed Beef Cattle are raised outdoors on pasture. In the warmer months, the pasture is green. In the colder months... well, it's not green. Pastured cows have plenty of room to roam and have ample access to fresh air and sunshine.
Conventional Beef Cattle are fed GMO corn and soy. It's the least expensive food and leads to fast growth. Because of their living conditions, conventional beef cattle are often given routine antibiotics. And, they are typically given hormones and steroids to make them grow faster.
Pastured Grass Fed Beef Cattle eat what God intended. They are ruminants, which means that a cow's digestive system is designed to digest green plants (not the grain produced by them). The term "grass fed" can be deceiving, because cows aren't eating the type of grass that grows on front lawns. They are actually pasture, which is a diverse mix of different grasses and native plants.
Compared to Conventional Beef, Grass Fed Beef Contains:
5x MORE Quality Saturated Fats
Quality saturated fats are imperative for brain function, because they're one of the main components of brain cells. They also provide energy, support the growth of cells, produce and regulate hormones, absorb nutrients and transfer fat soluble vitamins in the bloodstream, and cushion organs. Studies have found that saturated fats from grass fed beef can improve skin health, reduce the risk of dementia or Alzheimer's, protect against liver disease, and promote cardiovascular health.
4x MORE Long Chain Omega-3s
Omega-3s support the health of your brain. Studies show that having the right amount of Omega-3s can reduce the risk of dementia, protect against inflammation, treat depression, and protect against brain aging.
2x MORE Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA)
CLA is a fatty acid found in grazing ruminant animals. New research suggests that CLA may prevent and treat cancer and promote healthy weight.
6x MORE Vitamin E
Vitamin E is an antioxidant that protects cells from damage caused by free radicals. Studies show that it may enhance immune function, widen blood vessels to prevent blood clots, improve reproductive health, and fight against eye disease.
7x MORE Beta-Carotene (Vitamin A)
Beta-Carotene converts into Vitamin A in our bodies, depending on our individual needs. Vitamin A protects our bodies from free radical damage, supports, vision health, promotes healthy skin and mucous membranes, and helps heal wounds and illnesses. Beta-carotene adds color to the meat, which is why truly grass-fed beef will have yellow fat.
Taste & Texture Differences
Some people have a hard time transitioning to grass fed and finished beef. Here's what to expect.
Conventional Beef Cattle are fed corn and soy, a mostly flavorless food. And, that comes out in grain-fed beef. It will be smooth and mild. Conventional cattle are mostly sedentary. This means that their muscles don't get as strong, and that makes their meat more tender.
Pastured Grass Fed Beef Cattle eat a diverse blend of plants, which imparts stronger flavors into the beef. It is earthy and complex, and some people even describe it as "gamey" at first. Pastured cows move around a lot and have strong muscles. This makes the meat tougher than conventional beef.
- The Nutritional & Action-Oriented Guide to Pasture-Raised Meat
- Grass-Fed vs Corn-Fed Beef: What’s the Difference?