When given access to what they are meant to eat - Grasses, Legumes and other plants - cattle thrive and their food is converted into extremely nutritional beef! When these animals are also free of antibiotics, steroids, hormones and pesticides, their beef may be safer than beef from industrialized farming. According to a study published in the Journal of Animal Science in 2002, grass-fed beef may offer the following benefits:
- Lower in fat and calories: Meat from grass-fed cattle is lower in total fat. Lean meats may have only 1/3 the amount of fat in a similar cut from a grain/corn-fed animal. Consuming lean beef can help lower LDL (the "bad" cholesterol) levels. Because it is lower in fat, grass-fed beef is also lower in calories.
- More Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Grass-fed animals can contain as much as 2 to 4 times more omega-3 fatty acids than grain/corn fed animals. These are fats that are essential to our health (they are "good" fates). One reason grass-fed animals are full of these fats is because omega-3s are formed in the chloroplasts of the green leaves in pasture mix. Sixty percent of the fatty acids in grass are omega-3s.
- More Vitamins: Studies have shown that grass-fed beef can have as much as four times more Vitamin E than grain/corn-fed beef.
- Good source of Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA): Products from grass-fed animals are among the richest sources of CLA, which is another type of good fat. CLA is stored in fat cells and has shown to reduce cancer risks in humans. Grass-fed animals contain as much as 3 to 5 times more CLA than grain-fed animals.
- Grass-Finished Beef: When considering the definition of grass-fed beef, most animas have probably eaten grass at some point in their lives, but the important thing is that they are "finished" on grass, rathter than grain/corn for the last few months prior to processing