So now you know what paleo is and what kind of food you should be eating. Let’s drill down a little farther.
Grass Fed VS Corn Fed
You’ve probably seen those meat delivery companies talking about corn fed beef and seen grass fed beef at the grocery store, You;ve also probably noticed that grass fed beef is more expensive. This is why. Grass fed cattle means you need a heck of a lot more land to feed the cattle. But why is it healthier? Well, why are we eating paleo? We’re eating the foods that our body is designed to eat. The same goes for cows. Their bodies are meant to eat and digest grass. When they get corn or other inexpensive feed they get sick. There’s a reason we don’t see cattle cruising through corn fields munching the crop. Their digestive systems just can’t handle it. As they get sick, ranchers have to pump them full of antibiotics and hormones to keep them upright long enough to send to market. On the other hand, a cow that gets to eat its grass all day is a happy healthy cow, the same way we are when we eat a healthy diet. That’s really it. Yes it costs a little more but spend the money you were going to spend on that donut or that loaf of bread and it’s a total wash!
One other tip for the expense of grass fed beef is to buy in bulk or order it. There is an online health food store called thrive market that sells paleo friendly foods at less than retail. I’ll write a full review of their site soon. (they also sell keto friendly, and vegetarian and vegan food). I’m a big fan of thrive.
Free Range is Good Right?
Not so fast! Remember in a previous article I said that if you had to choose one thing to spend extra money on it should be eggs? I fully believe that, but don’t believe the free-range hype. The only requirement that a free-range farm has is that the hens have access to outdoors. What they don’t tell you is that this doesn’t specify the amount of space they need. I have the solution though! Pasture raised eggs! A pasture raised hen means that a farm has to have at least 108 square feet of land per hen. This doesn’t mean that she is confined to a 108 square feet of course, it means if they have 10,800 square feet of viable pasture land suitable for chickens, they can have 100 hens on that land. These chickens, again, are living the way they’re supposed to, running around, scratching up the soil and eating those bugs that they’re capable of digesting. I’m sure you’ve seen the videos and pictures of caged hens getting fed a bunch of grains that they can’t digest, getting insanely obese and not being to hold themselves up. Chickens are meant to run around and eat bugs. It’s their thing, and when they get to do their thing they make healthier eggs. Here’s some stats on just how much healthier pasture raised eggs are.
– 3 times more Vitamin E
– Double, yes I said DOUBLE the omega-3 fatty acids
– 25% less saturated fat
– 60% more Vitamin A
– 30% less cholesterol
– 7 times more Beta Carotene
Are you convinced? Great. There’s a few brands out there and most groceries have at least one. This is the brand I see most and buy for my family.
Wild Caught Fish
Wild caught or farm raised? Well I usually opt for wild caught just because of the whole, fish eating what they’re supposed to eat and all of those things we discussed above. Farm raised is definitely a more sustainable model so I’m torn on this. Wild caught salmon for instance, definitely have more omega 3’s and have natural color, while farm raised salmon have color added and they do feed them antibiotics. There is a third option with salmon, but it;s very rare to find commercially. That is called a terminal hatchery. They hatch the salmon in a dead end pool, with a stream to the ocean, the fish swim out, mature and return to the pool where they’re collected. It’s sustainable and the fish get to live a regular fish life, which we know makes them healthier to consume. Unlike grass fed beef and pasture raised eggs, I say go with your gut. Pick that piece of fish that looks the freshest and smells like it should. You’ll end up figuring out which option is better for you. I can’t responsibly recommend wild caught over farm raised because of the environmental impact, but I prefer the wild caught. I am lucky enough to be able to catch a lot of my own fish though. This is one I’ll leave up to you.
Healthy Animals for a Healthy Diet
The whole point of this diet is to eat the way our bodies are designed to eat. It makes us into physically and mentally healthier animals. It only makes sense that our food should be healthy before we consume it as well. I don’t know anyone that would eat a rotting, mushy strawberry, so Why do so many people eat animals that were essentially wasting away? Let’s try to stick to healthy animal proteins, it;s better for them before they go into the food chain, and better for us in the long run.