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Newsweek has embarrassed itself this week, publishing an article by an author with a sophomoric take on food and a distasteful sense of humor. Here’s what she thinks.
I wrote a letter to the editor. Most likely it won’t be published, so here’s what I think:
“Jennie Yabroff’s ‘No More Sacred Cows’ dramatically understates the nutritional differences between grass-finished meats and their grain-fed counterparts. Simply put, they are two different foods. I can attest to this as both the owner of a restaurant and a battler with Crohn’s disease. The moral argument is much trickier, but if it is not wrong to eat ‘the cheap, mass-processed, hormone-stuffed burgers and steaks that constitute 80 percent of the meat sold in the U.S.,’ it is still risky.
The vast majority of nutritional arguments against eating meat disappear when livestock is allowed to consume its natural diet and grow in a comfortable environment. Some of the most compelling evidence for this is the radically different Omega-6 to Omega-3 Essential Fatty Acid ratios found in pasture-raised meat and meat from Commercial Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs). All foods may not be equally healthful, but whether vegetable or animal, the sourcing matters far more than the substance. It’s a shame more people don’t realize this. It’s tragic that some of the most destructive foods we can eat are also the most accessible.
Additionally, to make the claim that the life of a pasture-raised steer is likely not ‘ultimately better for the cow’ demonstrates a shocking lack of research by the author. For omnivores and vegetarians alike, it can be an uncomfortable realization that to sustain your own life something else must die. Above all, hunt, forage, farm, and eat with respect and gratitude. Smugness has no place in the food chain or at the table.”