Thursday, March 26, 2009

red meat? yes please!

If you're a little worried about all the negative press red meat consumption has been getting, stop by Mark's Daily Apple and check out his piece, appropriately titled The Red Scare.


caitlin said...

I ain't skeered a no red meat! I do love it, but the one concern I have is that since I have a problem with cow's milk I'm wondering if perhaps there could also be a problem with eating the beef. I think I have a sensitivity to both, but I don't want to go without!

The SCD girl said...

A lot of people do have sensitivities to red meat. There are a couple of reasons for that.

1. Fat. Some people on SCD just don't do well with too much fat from meat. The fat from traditionally raised beef is the worst, so if you must eat it, make sure to choose very lean cuts or remove as much of the fat as possible when cooking.

2. Arachidonic acid. This omega-6 fatty acid is found in beef and dairy, which can increase inflammation if you consume too much of it. Since these substances are found in the fat, leaner cuts (which includes game meat and grass-fed meats) will have less of it.

As you can see, both of the problems seem to stem from the fat. But there's one more possibility --

3. An extreme sensitivity to soy or corn. This is a feedlot beef issue, since soy and corn are what those animals are fed. So if you can eat grass finished meats without a problem, but conventional grocery store meats do you in, this could be a possibility.

As you can see, there are many reasons why somebody might not tolerate red meat very well. I hope this helps you navigate the mine field! :)


caitlin said...

Oh, wow! I never thought of the grain fed aspect of it. I react to every grain, but I'll try some grass fed meat. But now that i think about it, isn't wheat a 'grass?'

The SCD girl said...

Hi Caitlin,

Yes, wheat is a grass... but it's not a grass that cattle would graze on. At least, that's my understanding.

If a cow was fed whole wheat plants and only that (including the stalk and leaves), that might cause a problem, but I don't think grass fed animals are fed that way.

Commercial animals are fed a concentrated mixture of corn and soy. The chief reason is so they can get fat. REALLY fat. And the fat that is produced by that feed is very bad for us.

Caitlin said...

But that fat is the best part!!!
Sadly though, I'm thinking the fat is the problem. And I don't like meat without some good fat on it. I would be perfectly happy as a vegan, like 'Gluten-Free Vegan', but since I can't have any grains, as well as the Nightshades, I'm 'bleeped.' I really need to go for allergy testing, huh?

The SCD girl said...

Hi Caitlin,

Actually, allergy testing isn't all that helpful when it comes to intolerances. Think about it this way -- if you have celiac disease, you will test negative to wheat allergy, even though the wheat will be tearing your gut to shreds.

Slow and steady is the way to go with SCD. I've been on it for a year and now I can finally tolerate small amounts of raw fruits and veggies. For some people, it just takes a looooong time.

I do think you should try the grass fed/finished route for meats. I would if I could afford it! Instead I just cook the heck out of my meats and drain the fat.

Susan :)

Dana Seilhan said...

I've heard you can balance out arachidonic acid consumption, though, by taking some kind of omega-3 supplement with that meal. I guess it helps you process the stuff without reacting to it so much? No idea. Would need to read about it some more. Anyway, some people react to arachidonic and some don't.

...Hi. :)

The SCD girl said...

Hi Dana!

I take fish oil but I suspect it's not enough to really counter the rampant inflammation that is going on with me. ;)

I do need to limit my consumption of meat and increase my consumption of veggies. But I think everybody probably needs to increase their veggies, so I don't feel toooo bad. :)