Thursday, December 17, 2009

The meat you eat

First, a little wave hello to all the newcomers to PreventionRD. I loved reading your feedback on Greek yogurt...and for correcting my spelling! Hate misspelled words!! I appreciate all who read and contribute to my blogging experience with your whit and wisdom -- you make my day! Sap, sap, sap!

I made a most delectable breakfast which I must share
(I'm always envious of all you fancy oats people!)...

Flaxseed Waffle
Flax Matters sent me this mix and let me tell you, it is PHENOMENAL!! I'll be honest in saying I'm not a huge fan of whole wheat when it comes to waffles, but these just tasted hearty and earthy...almost nutty. Mmmm! This was a huge treat, I will DEFINITELY be buying more of this mix! AND, it's reasonably priced!!!
Each waffle worked out to be ~300 calories, 5 grams of fat, 7 grams of protein, and 6 grams of fiber!

Ohhhhhhhhh yeaaaaa, yummy! And showing off the best Kitchen Aid waffle maker ever! If you're drawing a blank on what you want from Santa...waffle maker! Just sayin, you won't regret it...

The flaxseed bars Flax Matters sent are also WONDERFUL! They make a great high-protein, high-fiber snack that keeps you full for hours. I love'em!

A lucky winner may win some if they enter into the Prevention Cookbook!!!!

The emails of recipes are rolling in -- I am so excited!
All the details are here!
Don't delay, enter before January 1st to receive your cookbook and chances to win!

Annnnnnnnnnyways....THE MEAT YOU EAT!!!!

Reading Food, Inc. has really lit a fire in me! I've dealt with the back-handed comments from my husband and father for years regarding free-range this and grass-fed that. Just call me a little hippie child from the big city, okay?! And I'm not gunna lie, "clean" dairy, meat, eggs, and produce come with a hefty price tag and limited availability. And until recently (yesterday, in all honesty), my lack of knowledge surrounding the US food supply has enabled me to easily turn my head and "work with what we've got" -- the standard hormone-pumped, mass produced, grain-fattened meat and animal products comprising the vast majority of our food supply. Would you like that steak rare, medium, or well-done, right? Bleck.

I spent my lunch break looking up local farmers who sell eggs, beef, chicken, pork, etc. I’ve always “known” that free-range and grass-fed animals were “better,” but I feel like I’m learning why. If you don't know why, keep reading.

As I’ve ventured through the first few chapters of Food, Inc., I’d like to share with you quotes and summaries of points which I not only find interesting, but valuable knowledge for ALL. What is being revealed through solid research is that our food supply is dangerous, monopolized, and harmful to our health and economy.

Quotes from Food, Inc.:

“According to a study by the Union of Concerned Scientists, beef and milk produced from cattle raised entirely on pasture (where they ate only grass) have higher levels of beneficial fats, including omega-3 fatty acids, which may prevent heart disease and strengthen the immune system. This study also found that meat from grass-fed cattle was lower in total fat than meat from feedlot-raised cattle.”

rBGH stands for recombinant bovine growth hormone. This hormone is injected into dairy cattle to increase milk production by8-17%. Canada, Australia, Japan, and the European Union have all prohibited the use of rBGH in their food supply!!!

“So we’ve created a perverse system in which the food is cheap at fast food restaurants because they employ cheap labor, sell products that are heavily subsidized by the government, and sell them to consumers whose wages have been kept low. We’re walking about a race to the bottom.”

“An estimated two-thirds of all U.S. cattle raised for slaughter are injected with growth hormones” – half of these hormones are synthetic and half are natural.

“Meat packing used to be one of the best-paid jobs in the country…they had well-paid union jobs. They earned good wages, before the fast food companies came along.”

Question: “How much resistance did you encounter in researching and reporting the book?” Answer: “A lot. None of the major meat packing companies allowed me to visit their facilities. McDonald’s was not helpful at all.”

“The Center for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that one-third of all American children born in the year 2000 will develop diabetes as a result of poor diet and lack of exercise.”

“Factory farm operators typically manage what animals eat in order to promote their growth and keep overall costs of production low. However, what animals are fed directly affects the quality and safety of the meat and dairy we consume.”

“Scientists believe that ‘mad cow disease,’ or bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), is spread when cattle eat nervous system tissues, such as the brain and spinal cord, of other infected animals.”

“A researcher from Cornell University found that cattle fed hay for the five days before slaughter had dramatically lower levels of acid-resistant E. coli bacteria in their feces that escape during the slaughter can lead to the bacteria contaminating the meat.”

More to come as I plow through this book (husband and puppy are beating me to the holidays and taking off for the north tomorrow - *daaaaaance*), stay tuned.

What can YOU do?

Lots! There are so many resources out there to help you access safe, healthy, sustainably-grown food!

To access information and contact information on FARMS, STORE, or RESTAURANTS offering sustainably raised meat and dairy products, check out this site.

To find a local farmer's market near you, go here.

Do you buy free-range, hormone-free meat? If no, is cost a major barrier?
Are you a vegetarian or vegan? If so, what is your motivation behind your decision?

While I'm 100% omnivore and intend to remain that way, I am making a commitment to consume safer, healthier, more sustainable meat and meat products.

I am a "single" woman as of tomorrow at 5pm -- expect me to be blogolicious tomorrow night and for the weeks to come, getting back to ALL the blogs I wish to read. Hello, vacation! 


  1. I am not a vegan or vegetarian...I have to say that I do love meat. I have taken my consumtion down to be WAY less than I have eaten in the past, but I do eat turkey, chicken, steak (on occasion) just no pork or anything frmo a pig, lamb, (for religious reasons) I try to purchase free range and it also helps that when in my house we keep kosher, so my mom buys kosher meat-much cleaner way of preperation!

  2. Cost is definitely a barrier for me, but I'll tell you what, since I saw that movie I have been buying organic meat. If it's not organic, it's natural/free range. I am willing to throw down the extra bucks, and make up for it somewhere else (less food out, less stupid extra purchases).

    Those waffles look fantastic. Great idea using a mix with flax. I don't eat waffles often but I want to get a waffle maker when I have a bigger kitchen.

  3. I've been a vegetarian for years since I never liked meat as a kid. the only thing about food inc and the quotes that scares me is how skewed it is to one side without the other side being given any consideration at all. Not saying I agree with it, but it sets of a red flag for me when it is constantly bad bad bad. Too me it means they were looking for an extreme, they were looking for the reader to to buy into it since you can get so passionate about it. When I am researching something I like to be presented with the facts, from both sides. Otherwise it just seems like a fad or gimmick to me. It's far to one side. As a vegetarian I do not agree at all with the practices, but it is not all the fault of big business. I don't have to worry here since everything is free range, including the chickens next door that have such free range they occassionally wind up in my yard. I agree that this is the way animals should be treated, especially those that will be slaughtered. I just don't think it is as cut and dry as the movie/book makes it out to be. Just my opinion.

    Oh, and awesome looking waffles. The waffle maker is a great tool to have. Try pumpkin waffles!

  4. i love meat..especially organic ostrich like i discussed :) hehe

    those waffes look AWESOME! everytime i try to make them, they never turn out pretty

  5. Your waffles look absolutely perfect ... I'm impressed! :)

  6. oh wow! that waffle looks soooo good and healthy!

  7. I don't have a waffle iron but now I want!

    I have not seen Food Inc yet but it is on my list of vacation videos. Thanks for some great points.

  8. We eat a lot less meat than we used to (and I eat even less meat than hubby and the teenager). I do buy organic meat and chicken. I find that having cheaper meals (lentil soup, roasted veggies, etc.) several times a week allows me to buy organic produce and meat without really spending much more. We also hardly eat out and save a lot of money that way.

    I really reading your thoughts on the book!

    Happy Vacation! :)

  9. I just got a almost brand-new waffle maker from a thrift store for about 3 bucks!! It works like a charm :-) These waffles sound really good!! Do you add flax to a lot of your food? I have been contemplating adding it to cereal, eggs, etc.

  10. Cost is definitely a barrier for me. I know that it's healthier for me, but how do I afford it?

  11. I do eat meat, but not often. I could do without it. I recently went to a seminar regarding this information and it really opened my eyes. I try to buy more organic and I have cut back on my meat consumption.

    The waffles look yummy!

  12. I am a vegetarian! It originally started with reading Skinny B* book, but since I never took the time to educate myself it didn't last long. February of 09 I decided that I am going to make it happen and started reading more about becoming a vegetarian and how to get all the nutrients that I need. I have now been a Lacto-Vegetarian for 9 months and I feel like it was the best decision of me.

    My husband still eats meat so I buy him, organic, vegetarian fed, air chilled, farm raise meat. If I am buying fish I buy wild in season fish, as I don't much care for meat that has previously been frozen. I rather pay the extra $ now then double it in a couple years with medical bills.

  13. I am leaving your website craving warm toasty waffles lol...THANKS! =)

    Off topic: How is your doggy????

  14. Love Food Inc. I didn't know there was a book, but the movie was great. I'm a pescetarian, so whenever I buy fish, I make sure it's wild, not farm raised. The extra money spent is sooo worth it for our health, our environment and the beings that inhabit it. If I were to eat meat, I'd definitely get organic. Whenver I buy eggs, they have to be free-range, cage-free. I can't stand picturing all of the chickens huddles less than inches from each other with no breathing room.

  15. That book is sure making a splash down there in the US. I wish someone would write an expose like that here in Canada. I'm not convinced our practices are much better than yours.