I hope everyone was fortunate enough to have a weekend as wonderful as mine! I got to travel home and catch up on everything a farm girl needs: family time, home cooked food and checking out the latest baby calves! Since the last time I was home, we’ve had four new heifer calves, bringing our total to seven heifers and three bulls. But, I am not going to spend my entire blog rambling about my weekend. Instead, I’d like to start a three part blog on an issue I am very passionate about, Meatless Mondays!
As I was preparing for the National Beef Ambassador competition I spent a lot of time researching issues relevant to the BEEF industry, but the idea of Meatless Mondays stood out to me. Naturally, choosing one day a week not to enjoy meat, and BEEF in particular, sounded like a horrible idea to me! Frustrated and confused, I decided that my best option was to rationally look at the issue and explore the possibility that maybe I was wrong and Meatless Mondays is the solution our country needs. I am happy to say that after hours of research I firmly believe that every day of the week is a great day to eat BEEF, and I would like to share with you why!
My research on Meatless Mondays brought out two main reasons to transition to a diet that excludes all forms of meat on Mondays: Health and Environment. In an effort to save you all from an excessively long post, I will limit myself to the misconceptions related to the “Health Benefits” possible from removing Meat on Mondays. If you are interested in the reasons that BEEF production is great for the environment, then make sure you check back next Monday!
According to Meatless Monday’s website, avoiding meat one day a week is a great opportunity to “reduce heart disease”, “curb obesity” and “improve your diet”. For everyone who is reading these claims and fearing that they may have to give up their delicious BEEF to maintain a healthy lifestyle, fear not! There have been many scientific studies that help prove the point I so firmly believe, including lean BEEF in a well balanced diet is a wonderful way to ensure lifelong health!
As to the issue of heart disease, I would like to refer you all to a recent study done by researchers at The Pennsylvania State University. The study is known as the Beef in an Optimal Lean Diet (BOLD) study, and the complete report can be found here: If you are like me, and prefer a short summary, you are in luck! The bottom line to the study is that including lean beef as a part of your daily diet was shown to reduce LDL “bad” cholesterol by 10%! I don’t know about you, but after years of being told that red meat causes heart disease, it sure is reassuring to hear that the science shows a true benefit to including lean BEEF in our diets!
The second issues raised about health is the idea that meat causes obesity. Actually, lean beef is a great way to avoid obesity! Did you know there are 29 cuts of lean BEEF, each with less than 5 grams of total fat in 3.5 oz. serving? On average, these cuts only have about 150 calories! In these 150 calories you are getting lots of Zinc, Iron, Protein and other wonderful nutrients! I don’t know about you, but I think a food that can give you more than 10% of your daily value for 10 different nutrients while contributing to less than 10% of your daily calorie intake sounds like a pretty good way to improve, not hurt, your diet! If you need more information, check out this wonderful website:
As much as The Meatless Monday’s Campaign would like us to believe that cutting BEEF, and all meat, out of our diet will help improve our overall health, I disagree! I hope that this blog gave you some tools to form your own opinion about whether or not you want to keep meat in your diet seven days a week.
Until Next Time,