What is the difference between Grain fed Beef and 100% Grass Fed Beef in Minnesota?
Cows are ruminants, which means they have a four-chambered stomach designed for breaking down cellulose rich grasses. When cattle are fed a diet high in corn or other starchy grains, the level of acid in their stomach rises often causing acidosis. Acidosis not only weakens an animals immune system, but also causes ulcers, diarrhea, and liver disease. These symptoms are some of the reasons that many grain fed cattle are regularly fed antibiotics. Most commercially produced grain fed cattle are also fed or implanted with growth hormones to speed up their rate of gain and shorten the finishing time. This is cost effective for producers but is not natural or healthy for the cattle.
8 Benefits of Grass-Fed Beef
1. Conjugated Linoleic Acid ( CLA ) – CLA has been shown to reduce body fat and delay the onset of diabetes. Several studies have concluded that CLA can lower the risk of cancer and arteriosclerosis ( clogged arteries ). 100% grass fed beef contains 2 to 4 times more CLA than grain fed beef.
2. Omega 3 Fatty Acids – Omega 3 is a healthy fat commonly found in salmon. Omega 3s are important for human growth and development. 100% Grass-fed beef contains 60% more Omega 3 than grain fed beef.
3. Vitamin A – Vitamin A is needed for healthy vision and bone growth. Vitamin A is also an antioxidant which strengthens your ability to fight infections and diseases. 100% grass fed beef contains significantly higher amounts of Vitamin A than grain fed beef.
4. Vitamin E – Studies have shown that Vitamin E lowers your risk of heart disease and cancer. 100% Grass-fed beef contains up to 4 times more Vitamin E than grain fed beef.
5. Carotenoids – Carotenoids are a group of fat soluble nutrients that boost your immune system and your heart. Carotenoids are the reason grass fed beef fat has a yellow color. This coloring is a sign of a nutrient dense food.
6. Glutathione – Glutathione is a powerful antioxidant. It neutralizes free radicals, strengthens the immune system, and detoxifies the liver.
7. Superoxide Dismutase (SOD ) – SOD is an antioxidant and an anti-inflammatory. It neutralizes free radicals that can cause cell change.
8. Calories – A six ounce steak from a 100% Grass-fed steer has about 92 fewer calories than an six ounce steak from a grain fed steer. If you eat the average American diet of beef (66.5 pounds per person per year ) you would cut 16,642 calories per year out of your diet simply by switching to 100% grass fed beef. 16,642 calories is about the equivalent of 5.5 pounds of body fat.