Is the quality of a nursing mother’s milk affected at all by what she eats? Are the quality of a couple’s egg and sperm affected by the food they consume and the chemicals they are exposed to? Are the muscle and fat on your body in better/healthier quantities when you eat healthy food?
If you answered yes to these questions, then I want you to think about something else.
Is the cow’s milk you consume affected by what the cow ate? Is the quality of the eggs you eat affected by the chicken’s diet who laid them? Is the muscle and fat of the meat you consume affected by the animal’s diet?
Of course they are! What we put into our bodies affects the overall health of our bodies. That seems so basic, yet we often times don’t transfer that knowledge over to the animals and animal products we are consuming.
So what is a healthy diet for animals?
Cows are grazers. They eat grass primarily. But, the average cow that is raised for human consumption in America does not consume grass; it consumes refined grains and carbohydrates. Essentially, you are taking an animal that wants vegetables and feeding it white bread. How healthy would you be if you ate white bread as your only source of food? What if you threw in a multi-vitamin, would that solve the problem?
We do the same thing to chickens, pigs, and fish. We feed them cheap diets of refined grains fortified with some vitamins as well as antibiotics and growth hormones.
This is why many people began wanting to eat organic meat. This is certainly a step in the right direction since it eliminated the antibiotics, growth hormones, and genetically modified, pesticide laden food from the animal’s diet. But, animals fed an organic diet are still being fed what amounts to organic junk food. Refined grains, soybean feed, etc. – just the organic version. Not to mention that organic store bought milk is still pasteurized and often times homogenized.
So while it is better than the conventional version, it’s doesn’t get to the real heart of the issue.
What kind of meat and animal products should you eat then? The key is to look for animals that were allowed to eat the type of food they were designed to eat.
Cows that lived and grazed on pasture. Chicken that got to roam free eating seeds and bugs. Fish that wasn’t raised on a farm, but rather lived free and was able to eat a diet of its choosing.
The flavor of this meat, eggs, and milk is different. The nutritional composition is far superior. Consumption of this kind of product supports local family farms as opposed to giant feed lots.
The best place to find this type of meat, eggs, and dairy is to talk to farmers at your local farmer’s market. You can buy meat by the cut there or to save a significant amount of money, buy a ½ cow to split with a friend or join a CSA that provides a certain number of chickens or gallons of milk a month. If you are just starting out and can’t find a famer directly, Fresh Connect will do the work for you and deliver it to your door!