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Beef-The Healthy and Tasty Protein

21 Nov
Buzz Tatom November 21, 2016 0

Healthy Beef, Fact or Fiction

Updated 4/19/18
The health of beef (Bos Taurus) or red meat, has become such a hot topic that you would think that if you see someone eating a hamburger, you’re going to be attending their funeral next week. I find it to be like many other hot topics in American society these days that the argument from the other side gets isolated in its own vacuum. Other variables are not considered and are ridiculed if brought up. They are so hell-bent on destroying what they are arguing about that their argument reaches a questionable level of integrity. We don’t handle that very well here in Montana.

Why is There Such an Attack on Beef?

I was reading a blog post by Amanda Radke in Beef Magazine about healthy beef and started reading some of the comments at the end of the article. Wow, people are mean these days! They are committed to making sure that everyone knows that beef is poison and raised by large corporations! Most ranches are family businesses! That is overwhelmingly true with Montana ranchers. I always have a lack of trust for someone that is that all in to destroy something that has been feeding mankind since Biblical times. Remember the whole kill the fattened calf thing in Luke 15?

Not only that but why are they on a beef industry site if they are so against eating beef? They are nothing but trolls that disagree on the health of beef so they are going to criminalize the industry. It becomes about control for these people. Not only do they not want to eat beef but they want to say you can’t eat beef. It is like they think cattle are just going to disappear if they force us to stop eating them! Not sure about anywhere else but reproduction continues on Montana ranches.

Healthy Benefits of Beef

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Beef is one of the greatest sources of protein, minerals, amino acids and vitamins that is available to humans. It also tastes good! The USDA tells us there are 29 lean cuts of beef. Beef is the most nutrient dense source of protein of any food. It helps build muscles and if you think about it, it should, considering how close it resembles a human muscle. Twelve cuts of beef are leaner than skinless chicken thighs. Beef contains an equal amount of monounsaturated and saturated fats. Monounsaturated is the same fat that is contained in olive oil that we hear such great health things about. The fat is where the energy content comes from. If you want the leanest cuts here are a few:

  • Shoulder Pot Roast
  • Top Round
  • T Bone Steak
  • TriTip Roast

The leanest cuts of meat have the word loin or round in the name of the cut. If you want the beef even leaner trim the excess fat. Beef contains zinc, iron, protein, a great source of B vitamins, niacin, phosphorous and selenium. It also contains eight amino acids with one being CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid) which is believed may play a role in cancer prevention. It also contains more Iron than chicken or fish which is one reason anemic people are encouraged to eat more beef.

A 3 oz serving of beef supplies over 50% of the daily protein recommended in a daily diet. This is also why it is very helpful to eat beef after surgery or for recovering athletes to eat beef. The protein and amino acids help regenerate muscles quicker and provide a faster recovery. With a protein content of 26-27%, beef provides all eight essential amino acids that healthy bodies need.

Is Beef Bad?

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So why is beef being so villainized? It goes back to putting it in a vacuum. The American public has become more sedentary and less active. If you have a lifestyle that you see just how much you can put on your plate and are not active either through exercise or just in general, any food is not going to be healthy. When you look at people back in previous generations they were much more active. I drive around Montana ranches and I will say that Montana ranchers are lean, fit people that can outwork me. Loading hay, tending pastures and irrigation, rounding up and branding cattle, mending fences are all sun-up to sun-down jobs and all of them eat beef every day. In today’s society, we always want to point fingers at someone or something else but I believe reasonable serving sizes and an active lifestyles make beef a normal part of a normal healthy diet. There is a reason that people have been eating beef for a couple thousand years and just because someone is pointing their fingers at it now doesn’t mean we get to isolate beef as a villain. It has been the biggest source of protein that has allowed the civilized world to grow and prosper and we can thank Montana ranchers and ranches everywhere for that.

This change in society and their view on beef may be one of the attributes of the low beef prices. Beef prices have seen a 60% reduction in price. In 2014, the price per pound was $2.90. In November of 2016, the price per pound was down to $1.18. Not many other industries can take this drastic of a hit. One way to help the beef market rebound to its former glory is by disproving the misconception that beef is not healthy. As previously stated, beef is one of the best sources for protein and several vital minerals needed for a healthy life.


Beef Magazine Author Amanda Radke


Livestrong: The Health Benefits of Eating Red Meat

Authority Nation: Foods Beef

If any of these articles were helpful on learning about cattle ranching you might like Cattle Ranches for Sale in Montana-Buy vs Sell Side or 8 Critical Elements in Ranch Profitability. You can also read about our observations from attending a few cattle auctions last March.

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About the Author


Montana Ranch Real Estate

Buzz Tatom

Partner at Venture West Ranches

Buzz Tatom, a partner at Venture West Ranches, is a ranch owner and has built, run and sold numerous businesses in his career. This gives him a unique background in helping Montana farmers and ranchers navigate the life decisions that we all have to face. Whether it is passing a ranch on to the next generation or planning for eventual sale, his talents and contacts help save clients money and navigate complicated transactions.



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