Are You Eating Healthy Meats Or
Factory-Farmed Meat? – The Disturbing Facts: Part One
Human beings eat meat. Most feel we are designed to do it and our body needs it. This article is not a debate about
vegetarianism, it to highlight some of the issues that exist in the production of meat in this country.
Unless you are specifically buying natural beef or organic meat you are buying factory-farmed meat. Not only are
you buying unhealthy and lower quality meat, you are supporting the inhumane treatment of animals that are raised
in the interest of money rather than supplying healthy meat to the consumer. Not only should you be concerned about
eating healthy meats, you should be concerned about the way the animals are treated before they become meats.
Remember the ads promoting corn fed beef. How it produces the healthiest and juiciest steaks? This is not actually
the case. Feeding cattle grain and corn is not feeding them their natural diet and it produces fatty beef.
Grass fed cattle is fitter and healthier and produces a much higher quality beef. Grazing on grass is better for
the cattle and it is better for us too. Our ancestors ate meat that was raised in natural conditions, it is what
works best for our bodies and once you find out about how factory-farms operate you will find that it is better for
your conscience as well.
There is a growing amount of scientific research that shows that sustainable (rotating pasture grazing) pasture-raised
meats and vegetables have significant health benefits.
Sustainable pasturing allows the animals to move and graze as they are intended to do. Their bodies are designed
to work this way, resulting in the production of better quality and healthier meats. Naturally raised cattle are
raised without the use of growth hormones, antibiotics, chemical fertilizers and pesticides resulting in a much higher
nutritional value in the food.
The meat that you buy from the supermarket or the local butchers, unless otherwise specified comes from factory
farms. The animals are fed on grains and corns as well as growth hormones, antibiotics and a range of other chemicals
that this type of factory requires. Not only are the animals fed this way, but by eating the meat you are also being
fed this, too.
Growth hormones are used to make the animals gain weight and size as quickly as possible. This results in a high
fat content and a range of chemical contaminants that is not present in the leaner, more nutritional meats that results
from grass fed cattle.
Naturally fed animals provide a range of health benefits. As reported by Jo Robinson, a New York Times best selling
author, meat from pasture raised animals in lower in “bad” omega-6 fats and calories and is higher in “good” omega-3
(the essential fatty acids that you can only get from food and is required by the body for good health) and CLA fats
that helps to fight disease. Eggs from sustainably raised chickens have 10% less fat and contains 40% more Vitamin
A and a staggering 400% higher omega-3 content and the meat has 21% less total fat, 30% less saturated fat and 28%
When an animal moves around, the energy for this comes from glycogen which is stored in the muscles. Once used,
this glycogen becomes lactic acid which creates more tender and tastier meat. It also provides a good color to the
meat. When an animal is cooped up in a pen and is not able to use the glycogen, as is the case for factory-farmed
animals, the result is a lack of lactic acid and a lower quality of meat. The glycogen of factory animals is used
mostly during the slaughter process which is very stressful and therefore does not a chance to become lactic acid.
The stresses on a factory animal adds to lowering the quality of meat as the animal is never relaxed and therefore
the meat fibers are tense and tight when slaughtered. Substainably-raised cattle on the other hand are relaxed, even
throughout the slaughter process, resulting in better meat and much better treatment of the animal through its entire
If you knew how pigs and calves were treated prior to becoming the bacon and ham that you eat without ever giving
it a thought you may just think twice the next time before you buy these products.
A huge enclosed shed where a pig never sees the light of day and suffers treatment that is never ending and merciless
in a confinement that is nothing less than cruelty is just the beginning. Seven feet long and 22 inches wide is the
entire space that is afforded to a 400-500 pound creature. There is not even room for them to turn around. Broken
limbs, bleeding, pus pockets, tumors are very common, not to mention being covered in their own urine and excrement.
How is that ham looking now?
Voters in Florida have made a stand against this practice by passing an initiative that prohibits the confining
of calves and pigs in crates so small that they cannot extend their limbs and turn around. People in Arizona will
have the same initiative on their ballets in November; let’s hope that it also passes there. It is interesting to
note that if you treated you pet dog or cat in the same manner you would be jailed for cruelty to animals, however
there is no such law for animals that are raised as food.
This is not a pleasant subject, no-one likes to think about huge numbers of creatures that are raised and kept in
tiny cages and then slaughtered for the use of food. The information provided here should at least give you reason
enough to sign a petition to stop this barbaric treatment and ban factory-farming.
Insiders call factory-farming “intensive confinement” or “mass confinement” and to them it is
a standard practice in order to produce the goods, to make money. They are fighting against the initiative in Arizona
and the pork producers have the PR machine in motion and do not believe that it is fair to criticize a standard practice.
Low doses of antibiotics are added to the feed of animals that are raised in these factory farms. Rather than do
something about unsanitary conditions that arise from stressed, confined and crowded animals, they give them antibiotics
to fight the infections and diseases, it also has an added bonus of artificially increasing the animal’s growth.
This results in massive quantities of antibiotics being fed to animals on factory farms. The Union of Concerned
Scientists believes that 70% of antibiotics used in the U.S. are given to animals in farm factories. Then we eat
these animals, so we are bombarded by these antibiotics and other chemicals.
The big downfall of regularly feeding antibiotics to animals is that the bacteria become resistant to it. Bacteria
that survives the low doses then reproduces in a form that is resistant to the antibiotics; frightening when you
consider that bacteria can reproduce in as little as 20 minutes.
The antibiotic resistant bacteria then passes into the manure and fields and then it gets into the rivers and waterways
where it becomes even more widely spread; not to mention in the meat that we consume. So even if you are not the
eating the meat from these places you are still going to be subjected to the bacteria that are outgrowing the antibiotics
that we have available to us.
The effect of the antibiotic-resistant bacteria is massive. Although it is difficult to put a price tag on human
health, the numbers give a good indication of the scale of the problem. Antibiotic-resistant bacteria are estimated
to cost the U.S. government an extra $4 million per year.
Although there exists naturally a certain amount of bacteria in meat and meat products, there are a much larger
number of pathogens that are getting into our food. The unsanitary conditions in factory farms and processing plants
are creating this problem.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, food-borne disease causes 76 million illnesses, 325,000 hospitalizations,
and 5,000 deaths in the U.S. every year. That is one quarter of all Americans that are suffering because of this
Efficiently is the name of the game for pork producers. Provided they can justify things by counting the savings
and profits they can reason out creating a sunless nightmare for the animals. They can put then into crates, over
a slatted floor, dig out huge manure pits beneath them, all in the name of efficiency and making money; and Veal
producers are no better.
Imagine a newborn calf, dragged away from its mother in the first hours of life. Anemic, sick and purposely malnourished
and you have an image that is Veal. Non-essential meat created by incredible cruelty in pursuit of money.
It seems that the morals of the factory farms decrease in parallel with the cost. Factory farming may pretend that
it is a science-based industry, but in reality it is a cover for evading basic humanity in the never ending chase
for more money and lower costs and is certainly not a moral-based industry.
Conservative commentator Fred Barnes stated in the Wall Street Journal “On the old family farms, pigs and cattle
and chickens were raised for food, but they were free for a time; they mated, raised piglets, calves and chicks and
were protected by the farmers…. They had a life. On industrial farms, they don’t.”
Federal subsides and billions paid by government keep this industry alive by repairing the damage created by this
horror in the same way the animals are kept alive by growth hormones and antibiotics from the factory owners.
The illusion that factory farmed meat is cheaper is simply that, an illusion. You may not pay for it at the counter,
but the costs of subsides and the healthcare created by this industry also comes directly out of your pockets. As
long as you buy the cheap meat, don’t concern yourself about the animals and don’t ask too many questions this sort
of insanity is going to continue. Not only are you costing yourself more money in the long run, you are harming your
health. This simply does not to seem to make a lot of sense.
You may think that we are protected, but you can’t even put natural beef and NSDA in the same sentence.
Buy your pork products direct from a farmer who treats his animals the ‘right’ way, or don’t buy them at all. Every
time you buy meat products over the counter, unless it is clearly organic you are perpetuating this ridiculous situation.
We cannot defeat this on a national level as the Washington lobby is simply too strong, so the next best thing is
to boycott pork products. If you don’t buy it, they can’t sell it and the industry will suffer. Supply and demand
is what keeps this alive. Remove the demand and the supply will have to respond.
There is not a creature on the earth that deserves the sort of treatment that the factory farm animals are subjected
to, it is inhumane and cruel. Perhaps you should consider that your money is going to the very people that actually
create this misery, without even thinking about it.
Continue to Part Two
More information on this can be found in our free online health magazine.