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Like a kid in a candy store

Ryan and I feel like kids in a candy store when we go to Whole Foods.

Yep that's exactly how I look when I find something new!

We are always super excited to visit the meat counter and try any new grass-fed, free range meat that they have. We’ve gotten Oxtail, organ meet, pork butt, pork belly and so many other delicious grass-fed, naturally raised meats!

After hitting the meat counter, we sauntered down every aisle scanning for any new grass-fed, full fat, non-processed products that we could add to our diet.

We’ve found grass-fed butters, coconut butter (YUM!), full-fat kefir, pasture-raised organic heavy cream, pasture-raised eggs AND NOW…100% grass-fed whole milk yogurt!

The 100% grass-fed milk that we got is a product of Traders Point Creamery and it is absolutely delicious (not to mention like a bazillion times better for us than 99.9% of the milk that you find at the grocery store)!

Why is it soooooo much better you may ask?

BECAUSE it is 100% grass-fed, which means that it has 5 times…I repeat 5 times….more CLA than grain-fed milk.

And what is CLA?

CLA (conjugated linoleic acid) is a healthy fat that lowers cholesterol and lessens your risk for heart disease. It may also have anti-cancer properties and be helpful for weight management.

And where is CLA mainly found?

In meat and dairy products!!! And as Americangrassfedbeef.com states:

The CLA Bonus   The meat and milk from grass-fed ruminants are the richest known source of another type of good fat called “conjugated linoleic acid” or CLA.  When ruminants are raised on fresh pasture alone, their milk and meat contain as much as five times more CLA than products from animals fed conventional diets.12

CLA may be one of our most potent defenses against cancer.
In laboratory animals, a very small percentage of CLA — a mere 0.1 percent of total calories —greatly reduced tumor growth.13  Researcher Tilak Dhiman from Utah State University estimates that you may be able to lower your risk of cancer simply by eating the following grass-fed products each day: one glass of whole milk, one ounce of cheese, and one serving of meat. You would have to eat five times that amount of grain-fed meat and dairy products to get the same level of protection.

There is new evidence suggesting that CLA does reduce cancer risk in humans.
In a Finnish study, women who had the highest levels of CLA in their diet, had a 60 percent lower risk of breast cancer than those with the lowest levels of CLA. Switching from grain-fed to grass-fed meat and dairy products places women in this lowest risk category.14

(Here are the studies the site cited.

12.  Dhiman,  T. R., G. R. Anand, et al. (1999). “Conjugated linoleic acid content of milk from cows fed different diets.” J Dairy Sci   82(10): 2146-56.   Interestingly, when the pasture was machine-harvested  and then fed to the animals as hay, the cows produced far less CLA than when they were grazing on that pasture, even though the hay was made from the very same grass.  The fat that the animals use to produce CLA is oxidized during the wilting, drying process.  For maximum CLA, animals need to be grazing living pasture.

13.  Ip, C, J.A. Scimeca, et al. (1994)  “Conjugated linoleic acid.  A powerful anti-carcinogen from animal fat sources.” p. 1053.  Cancer 74(3 suppl):1050-4.

14. Aro, A., S. Mannisto, I. Salminen, M. L. Ovaskainen, V. Kataja, and M. Uusitupa. “Inverse Association between Dietary and Serum Conjugated Linoleic Acid and Risk of Breast Cancer in Postmenopausal Women.” Nutr Cancer 38, no. 2 (2000): 151-7. )

If you want to find out more about CLA and how wonderful it is for you, check out this list of studies!

Uhm so yea…I guess I was a bit excited about our Whole Foods shop yesterday!

Conventional Wisdom is wrong – The Skinny on Fat

So last night Ryan made pork belly…which was juicy and fatty and ABSOLUTELY delicious.

Soooo good! And perfectly healthy!?!

Today when I came into work and talked about eating the super fatty piece of pork (which is what bacon is made out of), I was told that it sounded like an artery clogging meal.

I, of course, disputed the statement because I believe that fatty meats are good for you ESPECIALLY when the animal is raised in a NATURAL way.

Which our pork belly was. At Whole Foods, they have a rating system, which goes 1-5 (5 being raised PERFECTLY naturally). Our pork belly was a 4, which means that our pork was pastured pork. The pig was allowed to roam and grub and socialize as it would naturally. Because the animal lived naturally, the meat is actually better for you!

As an article I found on The Benefits of Pastured Pork states, “Pastured pork is more nutritious. Pastured pork has higher levels of vitamin E, healthy Omega-3 fatty acids,and many other nutrients than conventionally raised pork.”

All naturally raised animal meats also have more conjugated linoleic acid (CLA). CLA may “help reduce body fat mass, reduce risk for certain types of cancer — including stomach and colon cancers — and protect against arthrosclerosis, according to a 2003 study published in “Lipids in Health and Disease.” It also has purported benefits for high cholesterol and alleviating inflammatory bowel disease.”

AND GUESS WHAT!?!

Conjugated linoleic acid is a FAT!

So the fatty, naturally raised meat that I’m eating isn’t going to clog my arteries, but may actually help with my high cholesterol!!! This FAT may also help me stay SKINNY.

Still don’t agree that fatty meat is good for you? Still think that what I’m saying is all well and good, but that the saturated fat in the fatty meats isn’t good for me?

Well you are wrong. Here is a study that shows that saturated fat may not in fact be connected to an increased risk of coronary heart disease or cardiovascular disease.

Don’t let conventional wisdom fool you into thinking that fat is bad for you! Do your own research. Here are a few other articles with the real facts about fat!

The Definitive Guide to Saturated Fat – Mark’s Daily Apple

Robb Wolf also has some good info about fats and the Paleo diet in general. Click here.

Is eating well expensive?

Nope.

Don’t make up excuses as to why you have to buy chips and soda instead of fruits and vegetables. Eating healthily isn’t expensive.

Of course, companies would like you to think that their processed crap is the only thing you can afford – they would love to make you believe that buying whole, healthy foods will break the bank.

BUT IT WON’T!!! For $75 Ryan and I bought over a week’s worth of food at Trader Joe’s AND NONE OF IT WAS PROCESSED! We even splurged on all ORGANIC vegetables and grass-fed beef!

AND we are two people that eat A LOT! We can easily each eat over a pound of meat for dinner. We got somewhere around 10lbs of meat (grass-fed ground beef, steaks, pork, nitrate free bacon, an organic whole chicken…), organic vegetables to last throughout the week (lettuce, spinach, bell peppers, onions, mushrooms, diced tomatoes..), kefir, some diet soda (not perfectly healthy but hey a small cheat!), organic salsas, nuts and a couple of other things I can’t remember right now…

So you can easily afford to eat healthily! Don’t be fooled by articles like the one written by Sheila Steffen that question whether or not you can live on $30 a week. You can and you can eat well while you are doing it!

Don’t believe me? Try it! Next time you shop for the week only buy whole foods and see how far your dollar goes!

 

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