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Six Reasons Why I Eat Meat Every Day -- Mondays, Too

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Prevention magazine urges readers to go meatless on Mondays.

I have to hand it to vegetarian and vegan activists, they know how to create a movement to rally around. Only a small segment of the U.S. population actually follows a vegetarian or vegan lifestyle, but these folks have been able to take their ideas mainstream. Universities across the country have adopted the Meatless Monday trend, and it seems like every time I pick up a consumer publication, there’s an article promoting meatless meals like tofu and bean burgers.

ISix Reasons To Eat Meat Every Day of The Weekn the October 2012 issue of Prevention magazine, Mandy Oaklander writes, “If you’re a Prevention reader – and if you’re reading this, well, then, you are – you know we’ve always been fans of vegetarian eating. Now we’re taking the commitment to healthy eating one step further by making every Monday a meatless one. Check out our reasons for nixing the meat, and see how easy we’re making it for you to join us. Bring on the veggies! It’s easy. With no meat thermometers to check – and no scary feeling you’re about to poison your family with underdone chicken – vegetarian cooking is perfect for worrywarts.”

The article, entitled “Six Reasons To Do Meatless Mondays,” says going sans meat is easy, eco-friendly, life-saving, affordable, kind and makes you feel sexy.

Sorry, Prevention, but you’ve got it all wrong. Here are my six reasons to include meat in your diet:

  1. It’s healthy. There are 29 lean cuts of beef, according to USDA standards. Beef provides nutrients like zinc, iron, protein and B vitamins, and half of the fat found in beef is monounsaturated, the same heart-healthy fats found in olive oil.
  2. It’s easy. Using recipes from beefitswhatsfordinner.com, beef is an easy addition to a well-balanced meal. Simply fire up the grill or turn on the slow cooker, and you’ve got a healthy, simple meal that stars meat.
  3. It’s environmentally friendly. Cattle graze on land that is too steep, hilly or rocky for farming. Cattle aerate the soil and eat brush, which is good for wildfire management. Check out our Earth Day page to find more reasons why beef production is good for the planet.
  4. It’s affordable. Calorie-for-calorie, beef is more nutrient dense than vegetarian protein options like peanut butter, tofu or beans. You get more nutritional bang for your buck by choosing healthy, lean animal proteins. 
  5. It’s kind. Cattlemen care about their livestock; it makes good business sense and it’s the right thing to do. Respectfully harvesting these animals to nourish people is a part of the circle of life, and something that ranchers take very seriously.
  6. It will make you feel sexy. Without protein as the center of my diet, I feel depleted of energy. Sure, vegetables and fruits are great, but without protein power, I’m not strong. And, being strong is sexy! Be inspired by all the Team Beef members who are out leading busy, active lifestyles, competing in triathalons, marathons and more! 

What are the reasons you eat meat? Let’s make Meat-In Monday the new trend!

Discuss this Blog Entry 97

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 20, 2012

Will you live longer if you eat meat?

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 22, 2012

heck NO! you will make your doctors/surgeons/ambulance drivers very happy with a higher risk of heart disease, stroke, high cholesterol, diabetes you name it.....let's not forget the extra cost of viagra, cuz when your blood is clogged with cholesterol from animal fats, you will need extra aid to get mr. love up and running...

on Oct 22, 2012

Anonymous, Actually all the maladies you list are the result of excessive sugar and processed grains in the diet. There has never been any evidence that dietary cholesterol has anything to do with plugged arteries. Virtually all actual research ever done in the past 70 years has found plaque development in arteries to be the product of insulin dysfunction due to overconsumption of sugar and starch.

allie (not verified)
on Feb 14, 2013

You'e exactly correct. Also, people who eat 3 ounces of meat a day have a 35-45 percent higher risk of colon cancer and have a higher risk of developing heart problems.

Sunshine (not verified)
on Jun 22, 2014

People are different. Some are protein types and others are carbohydrate types. On a scale of 1-10 some fall somewhere inbetween as many of us are a combination of both. For example, I do best with 30% good carbs and 70% protein. I feel really good with beef as long as I do not eat meats with added hormones, etc. I think that meats that are not natural or organic and have added hormones and additives for growth purposes,etc are causing the diseases. It is also helpful to cook beef medium to rare and not eat beef well done as it digests a lot better with at least some pink in the center. I was raised on a cattle ranch and we ate a lot of beef, We were always healthy and active. It is a source of my best energy!

Anonymous (not verified)
on Feb 12, 2014

More concerned about living right. I'll eat my beef and take my chances, Every body wants to go to heaven but nobody wants to die. Raised on beef. Dad passed @98,Mom @ 92 . Siblings 60's 70's 80's. Had to eat what we raised.

Anonymous223 (not verified)
on May 27, 2014

Jusy because you lived long doesn't mean you lived a healthy one. You can be 90 or old in general while taking multiple prescriptions/meds.

SamH (not verified)
on Oct 20, 2012

Your claim for "healthy" says nothing. Plants have all the same vitamins, minerals, and macronutrients, without cholesterol. Red meat is supremely _unhealthy_ as documented time and time again in scientific literature.

Beef is by definition not kind as an animal has to be killed, only affordable in current standards (due to government subsidies), and not environmentally friendly on a large scale. These claims don't hold up and are purely written with the goal of propagandizing for more beef consumption, to benefit the producer.

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 21, 2012

You're 100% correct!

veggiealldaway (not verified)
on Nov 2, 2012

youre 100% heartless and un educated!! ;)

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 22, 2012

Can I ask to which government subsidies you are referring to?

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 22, 2012

Those would be the subsidies for corn & soybeans, which is a majority of feed fed to cattle thanks to the grain-fed shift, as cows raised on grass simply take longer to reach slaughter weight than cows raised on corn & soy. Also there is emergency haying and grazing provision as well as the livestock relief provisions in the Agriculture relief bill. Don't leave out the Department of Defense buys 94 million pounds a year and looking at buying more to help stabilize prices. So you see not all are "direct" subsides but there are many that subsidize the beef producers.

Ed (not verified)
on Oct 22, 2012

Does spinach scream when you cut it from the stalks

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 22, 2012

Wow, you're clearly an original thinker!

Anonymous (not verified)
on Mar 2, 2013

no, but ive never exactly heard an animal scream either. when i hunt, all i hear is the loud BANG! and the animal drops dead.

D. A. (not verified)
on Oct 22, 2012

Sam, you obviously have done some selective reading about diet and health. Omnivores like human beings require balanced nutrients from a wide variety of foods. Good soil is the basis of good health. Livestock animals are essential to healthy soil. Read Albert Howard's The Soil and Health. Many modern health problems come from an oversimplified diet of over-processed food from artificially fertilized soil. Read about conjugated linoleic acid, which is found mainly in products such as meat and milk from ruminant livestock like cattle, sheep and goats. Science discovered this vital nutrient less than three decades ago; most people still do not know about it. Cholesterol is a kind of fat in your blood that is naturally formed in your body. It is normal, and essential to certain cell functions. The problems come when there is an imbalance of too much LDL cholesterol allowing plaque to build up in our arteries. Our bodies actually need good HDL cholesterol, a protective fat that our bodies can manufacture when we consume meat from grassfed ruminants. Go to Eatwild.com/health benefits for more information. Our cattle are domesticated livestock; we care for them and are kind to them, walk among them each day regardless of weather, allotting fresh new grass or taking hay to them whenever no green grass is available. We are kind to our cattle; many of our cows and breeding bulls live to a ripe old age in our pastures. They renew the quality of the soil and the grass as they graze and move. Half to two-thirds of our male calves become beef, plus the small portion of the females that prove not to be functional as cows, with the remainder becoming breeding stock or staying here to replenish our herd. We get no government subsidies for our cattle.

on Oct 22, 2012

In a general sense, plants do contain almost all the same nutrients, minerals, vitamins, etc as animals, but not necessarily in the order or magnitude we need them. Cholesterol is an essential nutrient for life. The only cholesterol measurement that actually has anything to do with health is a high level of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) has been repeatedly shown to be essential to good health. There is actually no scientific basis to the claim high total cholesterol has anything to do with health and well being. Even though the popular literature is filled with such claims, there is no such supporting research in the scientific literature.

There is, however, ample research evidence that cholesterol deficiency is a major culprit in the current cancer epidemic. Cholesterol deficiency results in dysfunctional cell membranes which inhibit the removal of toxins from body cells.

There is also no bonafide scientific research showing red meat (or any meat) to be unhealthy. Once again, there are associative surveys that have been repeatedly misinterpreted to suggest red meat is associated with poor health. These so-called studies have been debunked time and time again within the scientific (non-meat) community.

iEATBEEF (not verified)
on Nov 14, 2012

If the cattle do not get harvested they will reproduce and make more cows! Therefore there will be more cattle than you or I will know what to do with. Plus there are people that make a living off of raising beef for people to eat, that would be me the cattle producer. By people not buying or consuming beef I would be broke living off of welfare. How do you like that? Someone living off of your hard earned salary.

NoBlindThinker (not verified)
on Oct 21, 2012

Re: #5 - it's kind

Two words: Factory farming

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 22, 2012

98% of all farms are family owned and operated.

Anonymous (not verified)
on Dec 17, 2012

Family owned refers to a company farm owned by a family and serves as no definition to how these "families" raise their livestock. 99% of all farms in the United States are factory farms and the vast majority of those are "family owned". Factory farming makes a 40% greater contribution to global warming than to all transportation in the world combined and meat produced from factory farming standards (especially in the US) has shown extensive contamination from dangerous bacteria and viruses. Also, considering the fact that 16.7 billion lbs of antibiotics are nontherapeutically (before illness arises) fed to the animals we eat virtually every single dangerous bacterial mutagen (including the Spanish influenza and the more recent H1N1) has been genetically traced to have arisen from factory farms (in the United States and China). These statistics show that factory farmed meat is the most environmentally damaging industry in the entire world.

BeefFarmer (not verified)
on Mar 13, 2013

You are totally wrong about "factory farming"...I live on a family owned large farm. Being larger in size gives an advantage into the amount we can spend to research what is best for the animals. Seeing that we can raise a healthier animal that on a small farm I believe larger farms are better for the health of the animal. I also eat a lot of beef, and am very healthy. Maybe do some research before you try to hurt the agricultural field.

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 22, 2012

one word: definition

Me Vegan (not verified)
on Oct 21, 2012

It's corporate interests that promote meat eating. My doctor says my diet is great. My cholesterol and lipids are dramatically lower since becoming vegan 8+ years ago. I'm eating low on the food chain and about 17 times less exposed to the bad stuff that accumulates in animals from the environment, their feed and the substances used to promote their growth. Yuk! Oh, and the bacteria on meat products that the livestock industry wants to eliminate with irradiation--if meat is so safe, why is their such a strong industry lobby promoting irradiation? And sexy? My girlfriends have confirmed that I smell better and taste better than any meat eater. That's sexy.

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 21, 2012

There is no meat that is proven to be healthy. Actually it has been proven that meat consumption causes cancer and heart disease. And the animals are pumped full of hormones and antibiotics. People consume that when eating animal flesh.
Kind? You've got to be kidding. Cattleman care about their bottom line. Period. The cows and calfs are merely objects meant to derive a profit. There have been numerous videos documenting the abuse of these beautiful sentient creatures. The majority of cows raised for food are confined. You're conveying a false idyllic picture of cows grazing when that's rarely the case.
Additionally all the grain and water going to raise them could feed more people than the resulting meat from those tortured cows. Raising cattle, and other animals for food, causes drought, land degradation, greenhouse gases, not to mention the bacterial vegetable crop damage caused by overflow and illegal dumping of animal excrement.
Sexy? Hardly. Check out the very sexy vegan athletes such as Brendan Brazier and Robert Cheeke. Not to mention several Olympians.

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 22, 2012

Please compare the level of hormones in cabbage and soybean oil to that of implanted beef; you may be surprised. And just asking- have you ever talked to a farmer or rancher? Yes we care about our bottom line- we have to- but we get the best results by taking the best possible care of our livestock and ensuring them a comfortable life.

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 22, 2012

peas are also pretty high in hormones.

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 22, 2012

Natural hormones not artificially injected hormones

D. A. (not verified)
on Oct 22, 2012

Please don’t lump all beef producers together. On our farm, our cattle are locally grassfed from conception to consumer. True, grassfed beef producers are in the minority right now, but more cattle producers join our ranks each day. Our all-natural beeves receive no hormones, antibiotics or steroids. They get no grain at all, other than a little that remains among crop residues that they are allowed to graze after harvest. Grassfed meat is healthful. Well-managed grazing livestock are good for the environment, improving the soil. Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), a fatty acid, is found naturally in ruminant products, such as grassfed beef and milk. It is not found, to any great extent, in other animal products or in plant products. At dietary levels of 1 percent, CLA caused substantial (30 percent) regression of established atherosclerosis. This is the first example of substantial regression of atherosclerosis being caused by diet alone. In laboratory and experimental animal studies, CLA has been shown to be a powerful anti-carcinogen at relatively low levels. In addition to being anti-atherogenic, CLA is anti-diabetic, providing enhanced immune function and improved body composition when combined with exercise. Let these truths be known, and more cattle will graze. By the way, there is very little that is idyllic in our work as we must cope with catastrophic industrial damage to weather and climate that govern pasture quality. Every year since the turn of the millennium, some record-setting disaster has struck here. As for our bottom line, join us in raising a twin or orphaned baby calf on a bottle and you'll understand that the time spent has very little to do with profit. We love these animals. A steer's purpose in life is to nourish human beings. They do that well, after living a good life.

on Oct 22, 2012

Anonymous, Actually there is 0 (ZERO) proof that any unprocessed meat is unhealthy in any sense of the word. Due to some additives, some processed meats are unhealthy. Misinterpretation of associative surveys is the only basis for the claims of meat being unhealthy.

A steadily increasing percentage of beef being produced today has no added hormones or non-therapeutical antibiotics. Yes, I am a biased beef producer. I have been in the business for over 30 years and no animal I have ever produced has received hormonal implant or antibiotic other than when an animal was sick and our sick precentage is generally leass than 2%. More and more producers are producing beef this way in response to consumer preference and seeing it as being a more holistic way to produce beef.

Since grain is the second greatest hazard in our diet after sugar, I have no interest in seeing any more acres devoted to grain production. As far as water goes, did you learn about the water cycle in elementary school? All of the water used in beef production untimately returns to the environment through the water cycle.

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 22, 2012

I was just wondering where you live and where you get all your information?

on Oct 22, 2012

I live in idaho as the name implies. I get a lot of information from reading original research publications rather than the interpretive summaries. As an assessment of the last 100 years of nutritional research, 'Good Calories, Bad Calories' by Gary Taubes is an excellent summary. All the food consumption trends are easily found on either USDA or NIH websites. I also spend a whole lot of time watching the world around me. Most of what is put forth as nutritional dogma by the medical-pharmaceutical-government complex simply doesn't make biological sense when you look at the real world.

Katita (not verified)
on Oct 25, 2012

Have you ever actually done any research into how food animals are actually raised? When I say that you can't rely on the animal rights "information" they claim to be true. The only way to actually find out how they're raised is to ask a farmer or rancher. I really recommend you to do a search on farmer's blogs where they're open and transparent about the practices they use and welcome civil discussions.

And confined? Of course they're confined, you wouldn't want cattle to be able to roam the country and get hit on the roads and kill thousands of cattle, not to mention humans. Usually they're confined to a ranch or a feedlot where they have plenty of food, water, and room to move around in.

Also you may also want to do some research on meteorology too since I've never heard of cattle causing a drought...

Anonymous (not verified)
on Mar 13, 2013

Cattleman??? I hope these people are joking, the meat you buy at wal-mart arent free grazing cattle raised by cowbows, they're raised in factory farms owned by giant corporations...

on May 1, 2014

All the videos of abuse I have seen have be debunked because PETA sent them in to get jobs on farms for the very reason of making the videos and they were the ones carring out the abuse and was fired when the farmer caught them.

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 21, 2012

If half the fats in meat are "the healthy ones," what are the other half? Wouldn't I be better off eating foods that have all healthy fats?

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 22, 2012

Most of the saturated fat in beef is stearic acid and that does not cause increase in cholesterol.

Confused (not verified)
on Oct 21, 2012

Ummmmmmmmmmmmm beef = healthy? Beef sits and rots inside you for far longer than it does in an true carnivore or omnivore... Which is why it's known to cause so many health problems. Our bodies were not designed to digest it properly. This whole article is so silly that it made me laugh. "it'll make you feel sexy". yeah... Back when I was a die-hard meat-lover, I can honestly tell you that beef, as delicious at it tasted, was the one thing that made me feel bloated and gross. Oh and... kind? Seriously? So... keeping animals who would other wise be roaming for miles and miles, into one space for 'easy access', then killing them only to 'nourish humans' and to gain profitis KIND? I've never read anything so ridiculous. If you're gonna eat animals... just do it. It's nothing to brag about. Lmfao.

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 21, 2012

I don't buy into your pro-meat propoganda. Half the fat in beef is monunsaturated? How about the fact that it is full of saturated, lipid-raising fats? That is one reason why Americans are having so much cardiovascular problems. It seems to be related to huge belt-sizes and diabetes, according to research I've seen. Oh well, what do you expect from a publication called Beef.

on Oct 22, 2012

Anonymous, If red meat consumption has anything to do with poor health, why is it that the current cancer, heart disease, obesity, diabetes, Alzheimers, etc etc epidemics have all occurred while there has been a steady decline in per capita red meat consumption? If you look at all per capita food consumption trends over the last 50 years, there are three that stand out as increasing in synch with our declining health: added sweetners (almost entirely high fructose corn syrup), grains (especially processed wheat and oats), and hydrogenated vegetable oils.

If you choose to believe our health crisis may be related to things we no longer eat, then the top three downward trending food groups over the same 50 year period are red meat, animal fat, and raw dairy products.

For myself, I eat very little sugar or grain products and an abundance of red meat, animals fats, raw dairy, and vegetables.

An Ecology Student (not verified)
on Oct 21, 2012

Your reasons are clearly biased. Yes, there is good stuff in meat like proteins etc, but nothing you cannot find somewhere else without all the drawbacks. The unhealthy part of the meat obviously covers the cancer, diabetes and other unhealthy things that you "forgot" to mention. Not even speaking about the animals health. Easy ? certainly not more that a fruit or a veggie, especially considering all the preparation before it even ends up in your kitchen.
Environmentaly friendly ? Are you kidding me ? How many water to make a burger ? What about the terrain used for the food for them ? You think that the amazon is being destroyed for paper ? What about water and soil pollution ? C'mon, be serious.
Affordable ? you use more land, water, proteins and vitamins to raise the animals that what you obtain from eating them.
Kind ? Yeah you care about the animals so much that you kill them... Do you care about your family and friends the same way ?
Sexy ? Carl Lewis is sexy. You know one of the numerous guys that won those shiny golden medals at the olympics. Don't think that him and others such as brendan brazier lack of energy. But in terms of sexy i prefer the educated sexy, like einstein, newton, tesla, darwin, tolstoy, victor hugo, leonardo da vinci, sweitzer... They are seriously sexy ! And they gave their reasons for not eating meat, i recommend to check it out.

I Don't mind if you want to give your reasons for eating meat, but please make some research before.

Athonwy (not verified)
on Oct 21, 2012

How's it feel to be a corporate tool Amanda?

http://www.publiclandsranching.org/book.htm

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 21, 2012

You're wrong about health, and luckily, I'll outlive you to prove you wrong. And you're very, very wrong about sustainability. Farming cows that are not grass-raised causes as much greebhouse gases as our vehicles do. Enjoy your future heart attack and have a nice day.

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 21, 2012

This has to be a joke. Energy from protein, that's a laugh. To use protein the body has to break it down into aminoacid chains, thus consuming huge amounts of the body's energy supply. That's why meat eaters after lunch are all droggy and wasted. They blame work for it, but it's really the meats and dairy they had for lunch. The true source of energy in complex carbs. These are processed slower which give you lots of energy and endurance. Protein is necessary to build muscle and other tissues, but daily requirements, even by USDA standards are well below the rabid consumption of most people. All those nutrients you claim come from the animals you eat, really come from the veggies those animals ate to sustain themselves. Sure true carnivores like lions eat other animals, but then again true carnivores like lions, don't suffer from high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart attacks or other cardio vascular deseases.

Chemical Engineer (not verified)
on Oct 23, 2012

The calorie is a unit of energy.

Fat: 1 gram = 9 calories
Protein: 1 gram = 4 calories
Carbohydrates: 1 gram = 4 calories
Alcohol: 1 gram = 7 calories

Do the math and stop reading magazine articles written by sociology majors.

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 22, 2012

“The beef industry has contributed to more American deaths than all the wars of this century, all natural disasters, and all automobile accidents combined. If beef is your idea of "real food for real people" you'd better live real close to a real good hospital.” ― Neal D. Barnard, MD

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 22, 2012

This is obviously a propaganda for the meat industry. They're hurting and it shows. Meat consumption has gone down and they need pull they're numbers up. http://tinyurl.com/876ghnh

But there's a big difference between vegan diets and fad diets of the past. Veganism works, not just reducing your waste line, but making people full of life again, more energized, healthier and this is something eating meat can never equate. Sure people who eat meat and dairy feel this same feelings when they gorge on carcasses, but it only lasts for a short while. Afterwards it's back to your sad self. This produces a cycle that we all know very well. It's that cycle that makes people make up ocasions to celebrate just as an excuse to gorge some more and feel good for a while.

Eating meat and dairy is a vice, and addiction and if you want proof, cut meat (all types, red, paultry, fish, pork, etc), dairy (milk, cheeses, butter, etc, etc) and eggs from your diet for a week. I bet you can't. Only an addict will fail to accomplish this. But if you do this don't pretend to eat meat and dairy by consuming faux meats made of soy and tofu or faux dairy products, thats like taking a heroin addict and putting him on a methadone treatment.

By the way I had people take me up on the challenge and none ot those meat eaters have lasted one day vegan. They start strong for breakfast, but soon break down and quit at lunch time or soon after. It's actually sad for them to fail and recognize their addiction.

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 22, 2012

Beef is healthy? That's why this country is in tip-top shape eh?

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 22, 2012

The majority of people in this country that are overweight and unhealthy because they eat processed foods and are too sedentary.
Everyone needs a balance in their food and activity.
People are omnivores and are able to eat plants and animals.

Anonymous (not verified)
on Oct 22, 2012

it's not affordable unless you get beef that is not pure (mixed in with soy, etc like at taco bell). pure grade a, good quality beef is pretty expensive. that's why most americans who are suffering in this economy have been eating more vegetarian

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A fifth-generation rancher from Mitchell, SD, Amanda grew up on a purebred Limousin cattle operation in which she and husband Tyler are active. She graduated with a degree in agriculture journalism...

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