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Old 11-03-2013, 09:33 AM   #1
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Regular SuperMarket Meat Better Than Not Low Carbing At All?

Reading about Grain Brain recently and it seems that the doctor advocates eating grass fed meat, butter, and eggs only since regular supermarket meat (grain fed) is way too high Omega 6 (thus inflammatory).

I have a family member who is willing to go low carb but certainly can't afford grass-fed everything. She's wondering if regular meats are too inflammatory thus making her worse off inflammation wise eating low carb.

I know there are a lot of people here who eat grass-fed exclusively, others that eat less expensive (grain fed) cuts, and some that eat a combination.

What say you LCF? Is inflammation still lowered eating grain fed meat? Can you balance it out a bit by taking Omega 3 oils?
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Old 11-03-2013, 09:47 AM   #2
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I started lowcarb and gluten free before grass-fed was a "thing" (when I was a kid we used to raise steers for home consumption and if they were grass-fed it meant you couldn't afford grain).

My inflammation went down so much I lost a shoe size before I had dropped 10 lbs.

Absolutely worth it even if you can't afford the fancy stuff. It is getting more common and less expensive though.
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Old 11-03-2013, 09:52 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by GME View Post
I started lowcarb and gluten free before grass-fed was a "thing" (when I was a kid we used to raise steers for home consumption and if they were grass-fed it meant you couldn't afford grain).

My inflammation went down so much I lost a shoe size before I had dropped 10 lbs.

Absolutely worth it even if you can't afford the fancy stuff. It is getting more common and less expensive though.
I know that today's grain is genetically modified thus different than the grain fed beef of 30 years ago. Still, I agree...I notice a lot less inflammation when I am strictly low carb no matter what kind of meat quality I'm consuming.
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Old 11-03-2013, 09:59 AM   #4
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Of course it is! I buy various meats, some organic, some grass-fed, some pastured, some antibiotic-free/cage-free, and plenty conventional. Eating LC certainly is better for inflammation than eating high carb. Avoiding "bad" oils and fats is also important, though I still use mayo with soybean oil on occasion, even though I know I shouldn't. Due to an unrelated health issues I have all sorts of blood tests done lately and my inflammation levels are extremely low/undetectable.

Last edited by Mistizoom; 11-03-2013 at 10:01 AM..
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Old 11-03-2013, 10:07 AM   #5
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Of course it is! I buy various meats, some organic, some grass-fed, some pastured, some antibiotic-free/cage-free, and plenty conventional. Eating LC certainly is better for inflammation than eating high carb. Avoiding "bad" oils and fats is also important, though I still use mayo with soybean oil on occasion, even though I know I shouldn't. Due to an unrelated health issues I have all sorts of blood tests done lately and my inflammation levels are extremely low/undetectable.
That's excellent re: your inflammation levels!

I love making my own mayo (paleo style). I still wish it tasted more like Hellman's though.

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Old 11-03-2013, 10:25 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by FitMommyNow View Post

I love making my own mayo (paleo style). I still wish it tasted more like Hellman's though.
We call it Best Foods out west, but that is one bad oil I have not let go of. I make my own mayo too, and it is good for a lot of things (like ranch dressing) but I still use Best Foods if I am eating it straight.
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Old 11-03-2013, 11:15 AM   #7
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I think eating grass fed, pastured raised etc. Is an ideal to strive for. You certainly don't have to start there. When I started, it wasn't all perfect. But, as time has gone by and the more I learned the more I started adding in those things.

Eating the SAD is much worse, IMHO...
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Old 11-03-2013, 01:57 PM   #8
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I agree with snowangel9. Eating the SAD diet is much worse. I can't afford any grass fed or organic meats and I am doing just fine. Weight down, no more aches and pains, etc. In fact today I bought some advil for my daughter and I was thinking, wow, I haven't taken an advil in ages!
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Old 11-03-2013, 02:10 PM   #9
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I have not had a chance to buy any grass fed meats and have noticed a HUGE difference. I think you are safer eating low carb with bad meats than high carb with bad meats.
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Old 11-03-2013, 02:12 PM   #10
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What say you LCF? Is inflammation still lowered eating grain fed meat?
I would say definitely! My hat's off to anyone who eats all grass-fed beef, though.
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Old 11-03-2013, 02:27 PM   #11
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We buy supermarket meats... what ever is on sale. Wife is a great shopper but I'm not convinced that all the hype is anything but BS. My family is in the dairy business & there are all kinds of hype out there which is misleading...
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Old 11-03-2013, 02:48 PM   #12
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My family is in the dairy business & there are all kinds of hype out there which is misleading...
I was in a restaurant the other day and overheard someone say she wouldn't eat butter anymore because the cows were kept in a cage hooked up to a milk machine all the time and never got to walk around.

If you don't have any dairies near you, this is not true. Unhappy cows don't milk and even if the farmer doesn't care a whit for his animals (which I have never seen), he will care about the money. I had a coworker that was also a dairy farmer and he would fire any worker that mistreated the cows.

They are smelly places and not like the pastures you see in the Happy Cows Come From California commercials, but if there isn't a certain level of cleanliness the cows get infections. Sick cows don't milk and need medicine, so again, even if the farmer doesn't care about the cow he will care about the money.
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Old 11-03-2013, 02:52 PM   #13
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I copied this post years ago, and I'm sorry I didn't note who wrote it. But I think the information is good, and I've never worried that I can't afford organic, grass-fed anything.

The Truth About Beef Revisited
Last year, my post The Truth about Beef examined the claim that grass fed/grass finished beef was superior to common grain fed beef because of higher Omega-3 to Omega-6 ratios. At the time, the most reliable information I could cite showed about a 10mg difference in the amount of Omega-3. This is a nutritionally insignificant amount, and should never be cited as a reason to say grass fed beef is healthier or better for you than common supermarket beef. Yet, bloggers continue to claim grass fed beef has “67% MORE Omega-3!”.

Pete B, the author of Grass Based Health, examines the issue in more detail. With links to research, he reveals more detail on the levels of both Omega-6 and Omega-3 found in grass fed and grain fed beef, with charts, graphs and enough details to provide a definitive resource. Pete has a background as a “forage extension specialist” for Oregon State University, and is an advocate for ” local, sustainable animal production systems,” meaning he’s a friend to small farmers. Facts are stubborn things, and the Omega-6 / Omega-3 ratios in beef are essentially meaningless. I like the way Pete sums up the post:

Examining the data in these papers demonstrates the fact that beef, no matter how it’s produced, is not a rich source of n-3 fatty acids. And beef, not matter how it’s produced, is not a rich source of n- 6 fatty acids, either.
I want to emphasize that I’m focusing solely on the nutritional aspect of the beef, not on the issues of confined animal feeding operations, grain production, animal health, etc. I’m aware of these matters and I am NOT minimizing them.
Why Eat Grass Fed Beef?
There may be many reasons you choose to buy grass fed beef. You may believe that animals pastured until they are butchered are treated more humanely, and it becomes a personal, ethical choice. You may be concerned about the presence of hormones in beef, and want to avoid them (although, cattle are given hormones while they are pasturing, so this is no guarantee). You may prefer the taste of grass fed beef, or want to support the local farmer. Those are all valid reasons. The Omega-6 / Omega-3 ratio in beef is not.

What’s the Harm?
Many paleo or low carb dieters start out very simple by just cutting carbohydrates to 30 to 50 grams per day. They lose weight, note improvements in some chronic complaints like GERD, start sleeping better, have lower blood pressure, etc. As they fine tune their diet, they start adding rules and restrictions: coconut oil is better than canola, grass fed is better than grain fed, almonds are better than peanuts. Then they go further, nuts should be eaten in their raw state rather than roasted, organ meats should be added to the diet, and you should wear funny bare foot shoes that look like those 1970′s toe-socks. They become “purists” about the diet.

When they recommend going low carb, they toss in all of their other restrictions. The person asking them about their diet realizes, right about at the point that talk turns to “your leaky gut and legumes” that this diet is way too complicated, and way too expensive. And, just a bit nutty sounding.

But it is none of those things. You can vastly improve your health by reducing carbs and eating more animal protein and vegetables from the local supermarket. The switch isn’t expensive … our food bill went down when we went low carb … and it isn’t hard to do. Going organic, eating grass fed beef, and snacking on heart, liver and brains can come later if you like. But those things aren’t sacraments, and they aren’t essential.
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Old 11-03-2013, 04:34 PM   #14
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Yes! Eating regular beef and chicken, with conventional veggies, is much less inflammatory than eating processed white flour, high fructose corn syrup, and soybean or canola oil!

Dr Atkins original books did not have any special emphasis on organic, grass fed, etc.

You can always take a supplement of fish oil to increase omega-3 intake and use olive oil, etc.

Dont let "perfection" be the enemy of "good"
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Old 11-03-2013, 04:40 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Strawberry View Post
Yes! Eating regular beef and chicken, with conventional veggies, is much less inflammatory than eating processed white flour, high fructose corn syrup, and soybean or canola oil!

Dr Atkins original books did not have any special emphasis on organic, grass fed, etc.

You can always take a supplement of fish oil to increase omega-3 intake and use olive oil, etc.

Dont let "perfection" be the enemy of "good"
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Old 11-03-2013, 04:59 PM   #16
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Great answers!

I personally buy organic/grass-fed when I can but I can't afford it all the time and refuse to stress about it. I take a good quality Omega 3 and watch for sales.

Glad to see so many people rocking it and seeing great improvements on "regular" meat.
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Old 11-03-2013, 06:15 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GME View Post
I started lowcarb and gluten free before grass-fed was a "thing" (when I was a kid we used to raise steers for home consumption and if they were grass-fed it meant you couldn't afford grain).

My inflammation went down so much I lost a shoe size before I had dropped 10 lbs.

Absolutely worth it even if you can't afford the fancy stuff. It is getting more common and less expensive though.
Absolutely. Try to stay away from the sensationalized stuff, which I have found the anti-grain/Paleo crowd to often be. While inflammation and omega 3/6 ratios are important they overstate their case given the evidence, as far as I can tell.

Normal low carb with conventional foodstuffs is worlds better than the standard American diet. I don't do anything in particular organic and have seen notable differences in inflammation and bloating as well.

Don't let the best be the enemy of the good - dietary 'perfection', food purity, and the marketing that goes along with those things is all well and good, but the benefits are not equivalent to the cost difference for families like mine. Thus, we work with 'good enough' and refuse any measure of guilt on that matter. We only have the resources God blessed us with, and those don't allow for organic produce or meat - so we nourish ourselves the best we can within our means. That has reaped plenty of rewards in both health AND weight loss.
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Old 11-03-2013, 06:16 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by flagman1776 View Post
We buy supermarket meats... what ever is on sale. Wife is a great shopper but I'm not convinced that all the hype is anything but BS. My family is in the dairy business & there are all kinds of hype out there which is misleading...
Yes indeed!
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Old 11-03-2013, 06:46 PM   #19
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I would love to be able to afford meat that isn't factory-farmed, but that's not going to happen anytime soon. I'm a type two diabetic, and I can promise you that I'm doing far better eating low carb with regular meat than I would be if I were eating the diet that the American Diabetes Association recommends. I feel better overall and have lost about twenty pounds so far.
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Old 11-04-2013, 06:35 AM   #20
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I only eat grass fed beef now because I have a friend who raises a couple cows each year and I always buy half (or quarter depending on what's left from the previous year).

However, prior to that, I just bought whatever the supermarket carried. I see no difference in my inflammation (and it is noticeable with grains) with supermarket vs. grass fed. I just feel better that the cows were raised more humanely.
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Old 11-04-2013, 07:42 AM   #21
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I have not made the switch to grass fed or organic products exclusively. It is a direction I would like to move towards eventually, but am not there yet.

I see fantastic differences in my overall health and well being by eating a LC lifestyle even though I am eating vegetables and proteins that are far from ‘perfect’.

Start where you are, utilizing all available resources. That’s the best any of us can do on any given day.
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Old 11-04-2013, 07:56 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by Strawberry View Post
Yes! Eating regular beef and chicken, with conventional veggies, is much less inflammatory than eating processed white flour, high fructose corn syrup, and soybean or canola oil!

Dr Atkins original books did not have any special emphasis on organic, grass fed, etc.

You can always take a supplement of fish oil to increase omega-3 intake and use olive oil, etc.

Dont let "perfection" be the enemy of "good"


There are a lot of good reasons to eat grass fed, range free, organic but some of them are nothing to do with the quality of the product but rather the quality of life for the animal and the farm practices that should be supported for environmental and economic reasons.

Last edited by clackley; 11-04-2013 at 07:57 AM..
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Old 11-04-2013, 09:44 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Strawberry View Post
Yes! Eating regular beef and chicken, with conventional veggies, is much less inflammatory than eating processed white flour, high fructose corn syrup, and soybean or canola oil!

Dr Atkins original books did not have any special emphasis on organic, grass fed, etc.

You can always take a supplement of fish oil to increase omega-3 intake and use olive oil, etc.

Dont let "perfection" be the enemy of "good"

I love this! Baby steps, baby steps! :yep:
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Old 11-04-2013, 10:52 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by theredhead View Post
I copied this post years ago, and I'm sorry I didn't note who wrote it. But I think the information is good, and I've never worried that I can't afford organic, grass-fed anything.

The Truth About Beef Revisited
Last year, my post The Truth about Beef examined the claim that grass fed/grass finished beef was superior to common grain fed beef because of higher Omega-3 to Omega-6 ratios. At the time, the most reliable information I could cite showed about a 10mg difference in the amount of Omega-3. This is a nutritionally insignificant amount, and should never be cited as a reason to say grass fed beef is healthier or better for you than common supermarket beef. Yet, bloggers continue to claim grass fed beef has “67% MORE Omega-3!”.

Pete B, the author of Grass Based Health, examines the issue in more detail. With links to research, he reveals more detail on the levels of both Omega-6 and Omega-3 found in grass fed and grain fed beef, with charts, graphs and enough details to provide a definitive resource. Pete has a background as a “forage extension specialist” for Oregon State University, and is an advocate for ” local, sustainable animal production systems,” meaning he’s a friend to small farmers. Facts are stubborn things, and the Omega-6 / Omega-3 ratios in beef are essentially meaningless. I like the way Pete sums up the post:

Examining the data in these papers demonstrates the fact that beef, no matter how it’s produced, is not a rich source of n-3 fatty acids. And beef, not matter how it’s produced, is not a rich source of n- 6 fatty acids, either.
I want to emphasize that I’m focusing solely on the nutritional aspect of the beef, not on the issues of confined animal feeding operations, grain production, animal health, etc. I’m aware of these matters and I am NOT minimizing them.
Why Eat Grass Fed Beef?
There may be many reasons you choose to buy grass fed beef. You may believe that animals pastured until they are butchered are treated more humanely, and it becomes a personal, ethical choice. You may be concerned about the presence of hormones in beef, and want to avoid them (although, cattle are given hormones while they are pasturing, so this is no guarantee). You may prefer the taste of grass fed beef, or want to support the local farmer. Those are all valid reasons. The Omega-6 / Omega-3 ratio in beef is not.

What’s the Harm?
Many paleo or low carb dieters start out very simple by just cutting carbohydrates to 30 to 50 grams per day. They lose weight, note improvements in some chronic complaints like GERD, start sleeping better, have lower blood pressure, etc. As they fine tune their diet, they start adding rules and restrictions: coconut oil is better than canola, grass fed is better than grain fed, almonds are better than peanuts. Then they go further, nuts should be eaten in their raw state rather than roasted, organ meats should be added to the diet, and you should wear funny bare foot shoes that look like those 1970′s toe-socks. They become “purists” about the diet.

When they recommend going low carb, they toss in all of their other restrictions. The person asking them about their diet realizes, right about at the point that talk turns to “your leaky gut and legumes” that this diet is way too complicated, and way too expensive. And, just a bit nutty sounding.

But it is none of those things. You can vastly improve your health by reducing carbs and eating more animal protein and vegetables from the local supermarket. The switch isn’t expensive … our food bill went down when we went low carb … and it isn’t hard to do. Going organic, eating grass fed beef, and snacking on heart, liver and brains can come later if you like. But those things aren’t sacraments, and they aren’t essential.
VERY !!! Eating LC in any form is better for us and I agree that eating it "as we can afford" it is just better than not eating this way at all!
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Old 11-04-2013, 11:26 AM   #25
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I have heard this mistake about Omega 3 being the reason to buy grass-fed. It is supposed to be higher in nutrients, but by how much I don't know and I wonder if it varies. Then, I started finding snotty comments about how grass fed cattle still get grain. Then what do you do, and what are you paying for, and how much better is it???

Eh, I will do best efforts. I read imported beef from New Zealand is going to be pretty reliable since grassfed it what they do there. I pick some up from Trader Joes since it is very reasonably priced. I'll pick up wild-caught salmon if it is reasonably priced or on half-price sales (such as right before expiration).

Have you noticed how lean grass-fed meats tend to be? I wonder how much benefit there would be anyway. I am not going to go over the edge about all this. I have often thought, well, at least I buy the imported grass-fed butter from Kerrygold for the CLA.

Certainly eating wholesome, lowcarb foods is going to be better.
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Old 11-07-2013, 08:39 AM   #26
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For me, buying all this grass fed, organic mumbo jumbo is not in the cards financially. Have you seen the prices? I don't have any problems losing weight with the regular run of the mill meat in the grocery store case.
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Old 11-07-2013, 09:46 AM   #27
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I buy what is on sale.
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Old 11-08-2013, 12:31 AM   #28
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Has to be better for her than the typical American junk food diet. Maybe she can get the better quality here and there as she can afford it, but I'd encourage her to try it anyway for now. She might be surprised at how far her grocery budget stretches by not buying as many prepared foods. We were.
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Old 11-08-2013, 01:46 AM   #29
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I try to buy organic and/or grassfed because I like to support local industry and I like the taste. I'm much more worried about chicken than I am about beef. But we buy and eat what we can get, be it organic, grassfed or not. I guess only on chicken I am not willing to make too many compromises, and we only buy antibiotic free pastured chicken. I have seen, read and heard to much horrible stuff for me to go back to 'regular' chicken.

As I live in Europe, I don't worry too much about GMO stuff, but I keep my eyes and ears open. I wouldn't want to eat any GMO stuff, we don't know enough about what happens long term and so I just try and stay away from it as much as possible.

I also think it is about what you can and want to afford, and think LC in general is healthy, be it organic blabla (and I am one of those who like the organic blabla, LOL) or not!
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Old 11-10-2013, 10:39 AM   #30
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Location: Southern Maine
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WOE: LC; Intermittent Fasting; Wheat Free
Start Date: January 2011
Quote:
Originally Posted by theredhead View Post
I copied this post years ago, and I'm sorry I didn't note who wrote it. But I think the information is good, and I've never worried that I can't afford organic, grass-fed anything.

The Truth About Beef Revisited
Last year, my post The Truth about Beef examined the claim that grass fed/grass finished beef was superior to common grain fed beef because of higher Omega-3 to Omega-6 ratios. At the time, the most reliable information I could cite showed about a 10mg difference in the amount of Omega-3. This is a nutritionally insignificant amount, and should never be cited as a reason to say grass fed beef is healthier or better for you than common supermarket beef. Yet, bloggers continue to claim grass fed beef has “67% MORE Omega-3!”.

Pete B, the author of Grass Based Health, examines the issue in more detail. With links to research, he reveals more detail on the levels of both Omega-6 and Omega-3 found in grass fed and grain fed beef, with charts, graphs and enough details to provide a definitive resource. Pete has a background as a “forage extension specialist” for Oregon State University, and is an advocate for ” local, sustainable animal production systems,” meaning he’s a friend to small farmers. Facts are stubborn things, and the Omega-6 / Omega-3 ratios in beef are essentially meaningless. I like the way Pete sums up the post:

Examining the data in these papers demonstrates the fact that beef, no matter how it’s produced, is not a rich source of n-3 fatty acids. And beef, not matter how it’s produced, is not a rich source of n- 6 fatty acids, either.
I want to emphasize that I’m focusing solely on the nutritional aspect of the beef, not on the issues of confined animal feeding operations, grain production, animal health, etc. I’m aware of these matters and I am NOT minimizing them.
Why Eat Grass Fed Beef?
There may be many reasons you choose to buy grass fed beef. You may believe that animals pastured until they are butchered are treated more humanely, and it becomes a personal, ethical choice. You may be concerned about the presence of hormones in beef, and want to avoid them (although, cattle are given hormones while they are pasturing, so this is no guarantee). You may prefer the taste of grass fed beef, or want to support the local farmer. Those are all valid reasons. The Omega-6 / Omega-3 ratio in beef is not.

What’s the Harm?
Many paleo or low carb dieters start out very simple by just cutting carbohydrates to 30 to 50 grams per day. They lose weight, note improvements in some chronic complaints like GERD, start sleeping better, have lower blood pressure, etc. As they fine tune their diet, they start adding rules and restrictions: coconut oil is better than canola, grass fed is better than grain fed, almonds are better than peanuts. Then they go further, nuts should be eaten in their raw state rather than roasted, organ meats should be added to the diet, and you should wear funny bare foot shoes that look like those 1970′s toe-socks. They become “purists” about the diet.

When they recommend going low carb, they toss in all of their other restrictions. The person asking them about their diet realizes, right about at the point that talk turns to “your leaky gut and legumes” that this diet is way too complicated, and way too expensive. And, just a bit nutty sounding.

But it is none of those things. You can vastly improve your health by reducing carbs and eating more animal protein and vegetables from the local supermarket. The switch isn’t expensive … our food bill went down when we went low carb … and it isn’t hard to do. Going organic, eating grass fed beef, and snacking on heart, liver and brains can come later if you like. But those things aren’t sacraments, and they aren’t essential.
Laurie - THANK YOU for posting this! I think lately low carb has been getting a bad rep for being too complicated - grass fed meat, ratios of nutrients, etc. - when in its essence, it is one of the simplest ways to eat! Carbs below 20 to start, lots of LC veggies, protein, fat. I believe anyone following those very simplest rules will reap enormous health benefits, and usually wt loss, too.
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