Tender Grassfed Meat

Jump to content.

Search

CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE

Tender Grassfed Barbecue: Traditional, Primal and Paleo by Stanley A. Fishman
By Stanley A. Fishman
Link to Tender Grassfed Meat at Amazon
By Stanley A. Fishman

Archives

DISCLOSURE AND DISCLAIMER

I am an attorney and an author, not a doctor. This website is intended to provide information about grassfed meat, what it is, its benefits, and how to cook it. I will also describe my own experiences from time to time. The information on this website is being provided for educational purposes. Any statements about the possible health benefits provided by any foods or diet have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

I do receive some compensation each time a copy of my book is purchased. I receive a very small amount of compensation each time somebody purchases a book from Amazon through the links on this site, as I am a member of the Amazon affiliate program.

—Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat

Follow

Putting the Marrow in the Bone Broth

By Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat and Tender Grassfed Barbecue

Bone broth equipment.

Bone broth equipment.

Bone marrow, the soft white substance inside bones, has been one of the most prized and valued traditional foods, not only for humans, but for animal predators.

Lions and other predators use their powerful jaws to crack open the bones of their prey, to get at the bone marrow. Most ancient cave dwelling sites have a pile of old bones, which have been split open to get at the bone marrow. Most cultures have traditional recipes for bone marrow, often adding cut bones to broth.

Modern research has shown that bone marrow contains many substances and nutrients that are very valuable, and can rebuild and revitalize various areas of the body, such as the bones and the blood.

Many of us who seek to follow the nutritional wisdom of our ancestors make bone broth, very often with marrow bones included. The bones are usually cut, so the marrow is exposed. I have made numerous bone broths, often with marrow bones. While all the broths felt good and revitalizing to me, I did not notice any real difference in broths that contained marrow bones, and broths that did not.

Until I changed the way I made it.

I have made bone marrow broth the new way exactly once, but the results have been amazing. I feel a great burst of energy and renewal as I drink it, a much stronger reaction than I usually get from drinking homemade broth. The taste is also different, more intense, and quite pleasant.

I used to make bone marrow broth by putting the cut bones in a pot, often with other bones and meat, and simmering it for a very long time, with added salt. But I have noticed that most of the marrow seems to stay within the bone itself, though in a cooked form.

Wild animals and the cave people were the inspiration for the change I made. They removed the marrow from the bones. What if I did the same?

So, using a small spoon, I carefully removed most of the marrow from the marrow bones, and placed it in the stock pot. Since the bones I purchase are already cut, this was not that hard, though I took some time, being careful not to break off tiny pieces of bone. The marrow resembled tubes of a soft white substance, which floated on the water once I added it to the broth.

I cooked the broth in the usual way, and all the marrow dissolved into the broth. As always, I carefully strained the broth through a fine sieve before consumption or storage to ensure that no little bone bits are in the strained broth.

The broth did taste different, more intense, but not unpleasant. But I did not mind the new taste, because the broth felt better, and was the most energizing and best feeling thing I have ever drunk.

I now understand why our ancestors prized the bone marrow so much, and I happily look forward to drinking it, every day. And I crave the wonderful new taste of the dissolved bone marrow, because my body has learned to love it!

The Magic of a Traditional Stew

By Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat and Tender Grassfed Barbecue

A rich traditional grass-fed stew is good eating, loaded with nutrition.

A rich traditional stew is good eating, loaded with nutrition.

Most traditional stews throughout the world have one thing in common. They were cooked until most of the vegetables were very soft, often disintegrating into the stew. The meat was also cooked right along with the vegetables, until it was very soft, and easy to chew. However, in more modern stews, the vegetables are usually cooked separately, so they remain in distinct pieces, and the vegetables are added to the meat only a few minutes before serving. This is considered to look better, and to preserve more of the nutrients in the vegetables. But our ancestors cooked everything together, and were fine with the vegetables disintegrating into the stew.

I made a couple of traditional stews this winter, and really enjoyed them on the cold, rainy days we have been having. They tasted wonderful, and warmed and renewed me, in a way that no modern stew ever did. I felt better while I ate them, and after I ate them.

 

Why the difference?

After some thought, I realized that the traditional stew, with its long-cooked ingredients melting into each other, is much easier to eat, and to digest. Since it is easier to eat and digest, that means that the nutrients in the stew are more easily absorbed and processed by our bodies. The long, slow cooking breaks down the components of the vegetables and meat, making them softer, often causing some of the vegetables to disintegrate into the gravy, with their precious nutrients. When the stew is eaten, the nutrients are right in the gravy, all broken down into a much more easily absorbed form.

It is true that cooking may reduce the amount of vitamin content in some vegetables, but vegetables are hard to digest and many people have trouble absorbing the nutrients. Cooking them in a traditional stew makes the remaining nutrients very easy to absorb, so you end up getting more nutrition.

This idea is supported by the tradition, in many lands, and throughout Europe, of feeding stews and broths to people who were recovering from sickness or physical injury. These kinds of foods were considered vital for recovery, because our ancestors knew, through knowledge passed down for thousands of years, that stews and broths helped people recover.

I usually add cabbage and onions to my stews, and they almost totally disintegrate into the stew by the time the cooking is over. The flavor they add is beyond wonderful. The other vegetables are very soft, partially disintegrated into the stew, and taste so good, flavored by all the ingredients.

I am sticking to traditional stews, every time.

What Does “Grassfed” Really Mean?

By Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat and Tender Grassfed Barbecue

Cattle eating their natural feed: green living grass.

Cattle eating their natural feed: green living grass.

When I began eating grassfed meat, the market was just starting to develop, and almost all the producers were small farmers, or groups of small farmers. These folks knew the art of raising tender grassfed meat, full of nutrition and flavor, on grass alone (with hay in the winter), and how to finish their cattle on rich grass.

Back then, if a farmer was selling meat labeled “grassfed,” you could be almost certain that the animals were raised on grass, and finished on green living grass, the perfect natural food for them.

Ten years later, things have changed. Grassfed meat is much more popular now, and the demand has greatly increased, largely due to the paleo and primal movements. And more and more people are aware of the health and nutritional benefits of grassfed meats, raised on the foods of nature, eating what they were meant to eat.

However, the increased demand has brought other entities into the supply chain, and the very meaning of the word “grassfed” has changed.

 

What Grassfed Means Today

Most people, when they think of grassfed meat, think of meat from animals who have been fed only grass, with hay and silage during seasons where grass is not available, and finished on green living grass.

That is what I think of.

But a number of suppliers and retailors do not necessarily agree. They have adopted the idea that feeding, covers only the time before an animal is fattened for processing, and fattening an animal for processing is called finishing.

I have run into a number of retailors, butchers, and suppliers, who state that all their meat is grassfed. And it is true that nearly all beef cattle in the U.S. are fed grass before they go to the feedlot.

But most of these cattle are finished on grains, soy, and many other things which are not the natural food of cattle. But since this occurs in the finishing period, it is considered to be different.

In other words, these suppliers feel that they are being perfectly honest in saying that their meat is grassfed, even if it is finished the conventional way in a feedlot, with grains, soy, etc.

So it is not enough to just ask if meat is grassfed. The second question must be if it is also grass-finished. Most of the time, the answer I get is, “No, they are finished on feed that includes corn, but it is all vegetarian feed.”

 

What Does Grass-Finished Mean?

Grass-finished used to always mean that the cattle were finished on green living grass, the best possible food for them. Many producers would only harvest their beef at a particular time of year, when their cattle had been grazing for months on the greenest, richest, most nutritious grass of the year. This magnificent feed, created by nature, is what gives grassfed cattle its many nutritional benefits and wonderful taste and tenderness. Fat put on by cattle during this period is very flavorful and incredibly nutritious.

However, companies have entered the market that are not made up of farmers, though they often include the word “farm” or “farms” in their name. These companies do not raise any cattle, but buy cattle from farmers and ranchers. Since they are all about profit, they have developed new technologies to finish grassfed meat. One such technology is the grass pellet. Grass pellets include hay, and other ingredients. According to articles published by the industry, the hay is combined with materials described as “concentrate,” which can include corn, barley, oats, sorghum, and other such grains. “Concentrate” can be as much as 40% of the grass pellet. Vitamins and minerals are often added to the mixture which is industrially processed and turned into a dried pellet.

These pellets are simply not the same as green living grass.

So now a third question is necessary, which is to ask if the cattle have been finished on green living grass in the pasture.

 

My Definition of Grassfed Meat

My definition of grassfed meat is based on the traditional way that humans have raised and finished meat animals for most of our history. The animals must be raised on grass, in pasture, except for the winter when grazing is not possible, when they were traditionally fed hay, which is dried grass. The animals should be finished on green living grass eaten right in the pasture.

This is the old way, the traditional way, and is what I think of when I use the words grassfed meat.

 

Disclaimer: Information found on the Tender Grassfed Meat site, including this article, is meant for educational and informational purposes only. Any statements or claims about the possible health benefits conferred by any foods or anything else have not been evaluated by the Food & Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. None of the content on the Tender Grassfed Meat site should be relied upon for any purpose, and nothing here is a substitute for a medical diagnosis or medical treatment.

Photo credit.

Food Can Cure

By Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat and Tender Grassfed Barbecue

Mashing sauerkraut: traditional sauerkraut is a good source of Vitamin C.

Traditional sauerkraut is a good source of Vitamin C.

What do scurvy, rickets, pellagra, and beriberi have in common?

  • They are all deadly illnesses that once ravaged humanity.
  • They have been eradicated in most of the world.
  • They can be easily cured.
  • They are not cured with drugs. They are not cured with surgery. They are not cured with radiation.

They are cured with food. Or, in some cases, with substances found in food that can be artificially made.

 

How Food Cures Work

The process for how food cures these illnesses is basically the same. A nutritional deficiency is corrected, and the body uses the needed nutrients to heal itself.

Scurvy is a perfect example of how the process works. It was identified in ancient times, and caused its victims to become lethargic, fatigued, and unable to function. As the disease advanced, teeth fell out, and the victim could actually die.

This illness was most common for sailors undertaking long voyages, where they spent much of the voyage eating only salted meat and biscuits. It could also be common in winter, when there was no fresh food in some areas.

It was discovered in 1932 that the illness was caused by a lack of Vitamin C. Our ancestors could not identify vitamins, but they learned to provide sailors with the juice of citrus fruits like lemons and limes during voyages, which prevented the problem. Many of our ancestors solved the problem of no fresh food in winter by regularly eating fermented vegetables, like sauerkraut, which contain ample Vitamin C.

In fact, the famous explorer Captain Cook, who undertook the longest known voyages in the era of sail, exploring much of the vast Pacific, carried barrels of sauerkraut on all of his ships, which prevented scurvy, and lasted for years, even in the tropics.

There are many such diseases, where a nutritional deficiency is the cause, and correcting the deficiency through food is the cure.

Since the information we have about nutrition and illness is incomplete, I wonder how many current diseases could be successfully treated by this age old method of correcting nutritional deficiencies.

Yet I have heard many reports of individuals who have healed themselves of all kinds of illnesses, including many that have been called incurable, by the use of food.

I think humanity would be much better off, if qualified scientists were to actually research whether many of the diseases that modern medicine cannot cure are in fact caused by a nutritional deficiency, and how that deficiency could be corrected.

The healthy peoples studied by Dr. Weston A. Price, who were so healthy that they had no disease of any kind, kept themselves healthy by following the traditional diet of their ancestors. They had no medical care, or drugs, or surgery. Yet they were healthy, much healthier than the American people. We have much to learn from this, and I hope that science will put far more resources into researching this matter.

Disclaimer: Information found on the Tender Grassfed Meat site, including this article, is meant for educational and informational purposes only. Any statements or claims about the possible health benefits conferred by any foods or anything else have not been evaluated by the Food & Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. None of the content on the Tender Grassfed Meat site should be relied upon for any purpose, and nothing here is a substitute for a medical diagnosis or medical treatment.

This post is part of Fat Tuesday blog carnival.

 

When It Comes to Nutrition, We Are All Individuals

By Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat and Tender Grassfed Barbecue

This delicious potato dish will be enjoyed by most, but not by people who are allergic to nightshades.

This delicious potato dish will be enjoyed by most, but not by people who are allergic to nightshades.

When it comes to nutritional advice, we are treated as if we are all the same person, with the exact same nutritional needs. Doctors and nutritionists give the same recommendations for what everyone should eat at a certain age.

Individual nutritional needs of the person are ignored, and never considered. The standard is the same for everyone of a certain age group.

Yet the truth of the matter is that each of us is a unique individual, of different sizes, body composition, body chemistry, genes, and many other factors that make each of us unique.

The “one size fits all” approach taken by the medical profession and conventional nutritionists does not really fit anyone.

 

The Wisdom of Hippocrates

Hippocrates of Kos, the most famous doctor of ancient times, lived well over two thousand years ago. Yet his approach to treating his patients was totally different from the one-size-fits-all approach, and makes a lot more sense.

Hippocrates treated each of his patients as a unique individual, getting to know them. His treatment of choice was diet, which mainly consisted of finding out what foods the patient needed, and providing them. He paid careful attention to how the individual patient responded to the foods he prescribed, and if the desired results were not obtained, he tried something else, either other foods, or rest, or a particular exercise, or any combination of the above. Drugs and surgery were used only as a last resort. Hippocrates was famous for healing most of his patients, and even stopped a plague that was devastating Athens.

The same principle applies to nutrition and natural remedies. What works for one person may not work for another, or may even harm them. In fact, since our nutritional needs often change, what worked at one time may not help another time. The very same food or herbal remedy that heals one person may be useless for another person. This is because our nutritional needs, while very similar to those of other people, are never identical, and often change.

For example, some people are allergic to members of the nightshade family of plants, such as potatoes, and other people thrive on them.

 

So How Do We Know What to Eat?

Nature has given us the senses we need to determine this. Our senses of taste, smell, sight, and our intuition can tell us what is good for us to eat at a particular time. The healthy peoples studied by Dr. Weston A. Price understood this principle, and had developed a traditional cuisine over the centuries that kept them so healthy that they had no disease, and no need for medical care. Being of a similar heritage and ancestry, the foods that their ancestors ate helped them thrive. Yet even among these so-called primitives, individuals would vary their diet depending on the needs of the moment. They might stop eating a particular food that did not appeal to them at the time, or seek out a particular food that they craved. These patterns were noticed and remembered by these peoples, who would make special foods available to individuals at a certain time, such as recovering from a physical injury, or being pregnant, or wanting to conceive, or many other circumstances.

This is much harder to do in modern society, where food has been industrialized and changed by chemical processing and the use of flavor enhancers. Our senses often cannot tell what industrial foods are good or bad for us, or how much to eat, or how to get particular nutrients.

The solution I have found for myself, is simple.

Just eat real food, as said by Sean Croxton. Our bodies know how to sense and deal with the foods of nature.

Pay attention to how a food smells, tastes, and to your cravings for a particular real food. I find that following my senses and cravings is the best way I have found to know what to eat, and how much.

This only works with real food. The better a particular real food tastes, the better I feel it is for me to eat it at that particular time. And if a food does not appeal to me, or tastes bad, I stop eating it. Often a food that tasted wonderful at the beginning of a meal will not taste as good after I have eaten some of it. This is my body telling me that I have had enough. Our bodies know what we need and how to get it from real food.

Disclaimer: Information found on the Tender Grassfed Meat site, including this article, is meant for educational and informational purposes only. Any statements or claims about the possible health benefits conferred by any foods or anything else have not been evaluated by the Food & Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. None of the content on the Tender Grassfed Meat site should be relied upon for any purpose, and nothing here is a substitute for a medical diagnosis or medical treatment.

 

Why Traditional Food?

By Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat and Tender Grassfed Barbecue

Traditional pot roast with grassfed meat. Delicious!

Traditional pot roast with grassfed meat. Delicious!

We live in an age of technology. In many ways, technology has made life easier and better. So why not use all the technological advances in food and cooking?

The answer lies in the fact that not all technology is beneficial. The human body is far more complex than any tech we can develop, and while much is known about how it works, many of the workings of our bodies are unknown. Knowing part of the answer is often deceptive. Something that seems beneficial or harmless, based on the little we know about nutrition, could be something else entirely, due to the part we do not know. And, when it comes to nutrition and how it effects our bodies, there is so much we just do not know.

So how can we possibly decide what is good to eat, and what is not?

Scientific studies are one avenue, but the knowledge is incomplete, and most of the research is financed or controlled by business interests that have a direct financial interest in the outcome.

But there is another way of gathering knowledge, the way our ancestors used. Experience. The experience of countless human beings, gathered over thousands of years, passed down from father to son, from mother to daughter, from teacher to student, from friend to friend. Nothing was as important to our ancestors as much as food, on which their very survival depended. So they carefully preserved what they learned about food. What to eat, what not to eat, which spice to use, which foods to eat in combination, and how to cook them. Vital knowledge.

Much of this vital knowledge is fading away. Most people do not even know how to cook, let alone cook traditionally. And so many people have abandoned traditional eating based on the marketing of the food industry, which often claims that traditional foods are bad and factory foods are better.

My own reintroduction to traditional eating came as a result of a serious illness. When science and the medical profession failed me, I realized I needed to look elsewhere if I was going to get better. I tried many different things, but the practice that brought my health back was traditional eating and traditional cooking. For our ancestors ate for health, as well as fuel, and many of their traditions reflect that knowledge.

Finally, traditional foods just taste much better. Every meal can literally be a time of joy. And I never feel stuffed or uncomfortable after eating quality traditional food, cooked properly. I feel happy and satiated.

 

Forbidden Breakfast, Delicious and Energizing Steak and Eggs

By Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat and Tender Grassfed Barbecue

Delicious grass fed steak and pastured eggs.

Delicious grassfed steak and pastured eggs.

After a long night, I woke up to start my daily duties at six am, feeling tired and listless. As usual, my solution was based on food. It occurred to me that the original purpose of breakfast was to provide the nutrition needed to start the day.

But what would give me the energy I needed? I focused on it, and four different foods came into my mind. All these foods are forbidden by conventional food beliefs, as they are all high in animal fat. Yet this was exactly what I wanted, and I trust my body more than profit-based nutrition standards.

The Forbidden Foods

Grassfed Beef

Red meat, maybe the most demonized of all foods. Yet grassfed beef has always given me strength, and our ancestors used meat for this purpose. I had some rare leftover roast beef.

 

Whole Pastured Eggs

We are not supposed to eat egg yolks, but I always do. The yolks contain many nutrients, some of which are hard to get elsewhere, in a very delicious and digestible form. I got hungry just thinking of how good they would go with the meat.

 

Butter

Another forbidden food, real pastured butter is a nutritional powerhouse. The real sacred food of Europe, and I love it. I decided to heat the beef and eggs in butter, and put additional butter on the meat when served.

 

Full-Fat Cheese

We are told to eat low-fat cheese, but our ancestors never did, and neither do I. Cheese is fermented, which adds additional nutrients, and the Gouda cheese I decided to eat is very rich in Vitamin K.

 

The Meal

In no more than five minutes, I quickly fried the meat and eggs in butter, cooking the eggs just until the yolks set. I added more butter at the table, sliced some Gouda cheese, and happily ate this delicious, satisfying meal. I had so much energy that I got right to work, and was very productive. And I wrote this blog.

This forbidden breakfast was just what I needed.

This post is part of Fat Tuesday blog carnival.

Traditional Cheese, the Best Protein Bar

By Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat and Tender Grassfed Barbecue

Traditional Gouda cheese is a good source of Vitamin K.

Traditional Gouda cheese is a good source of Vitamin K.

I have often been puzzled by the popularity of various protein bars. Usually they contain one the cheapest, most processed, and least desirable of proteins—soy protein. They also include a variety of nuts, various sweeteners, perhaps some dried fruit, a variety of chemicals, and are usually low-fat or no fat. There are some more natural varieties, but even these do not come close to the ultimate protein bar—a slice of traditional cheese.

Traditional cheese, made from good, truly natural milk, with all of its natural fat, is fermented, which creates additional nutrients. Dry cheeses can be carried around in a wrapping, providing wonderful nutrition when opened and eaten. Such cheeses are rich in easily digestible protein, and have the natural fat that should always be eaten with protein. In addition to this, these cheeses are rich in many minerals such as calcium, and have a rich vitamin content, some varieties being especially rich in Vitamin K, a nutrient that is hard to get in our modern world.

Traditional cheese is often extremely tasty and satisfying, while providing a full range of vital nutrients. There are a huge variety of these traditional cheeses, so it is impossible to be bored, and some are so good that it is impossible for me to tire of their taste.

Many armies, from the ancient Greeks and Romans, up to the French Foreign Legion in the early twentieth century, would provide hard, dry traditional cheeses to their soldiers as part of their field rations. Shepherds and travelers in ancient, medieval, and even early modern times would often carry cheese with them so they would have something really good to eat while watching the sheep, or on their journey. Using cheese as a protein bar is a very old tradition.

If I am going somewhere and need instant nutrition available, I always pack some hard, dry cheese, never a protein bar.

This post is part of Fat Tuesday and Real Food Wednesday blog carnivals.

 

What We Can Learn from a Traditional Dish that No One Will Make

By Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat and Tender Grassfed Barbecue

Free Sheep Grazing for Wool in New Zealand

photo:

I have spent a lot of time reading old descriptions of traditional food. Some of these recipes are so different from how we cook today that they may never be made again. Yet we can learn from them.

One such recipe was a Mongol dish that was described by Medieval Chinese food writers, who called it “Grab Your Own Lamb.”

 

How to Cook Grab Your Own Lamb

The ingredients could not be simpler. A single young lamb, gutted, with the head, wool, hooves, everything, left on.

Some large rocks that would not crack from heat were heated in a hot fire. That is, the rocks were placed in the fire, and kept there until they were literally red hot, glowing with their own heat.

Then the rocks were removed from the fire with tongs, and placed in the cavity of the gutted lamb. The cavity was sewn closed with sturdy twine, and the cooks and guests waited for it to be done.

First, the wool would burn off. I think the smell of burning wool might have been very bad. When all the wool had burned off, from the interior heat, the skin would start to crisp. At some point after this, the lamb would be considered ready.

The meat was so tender that the diners would serve themselves by literally pulling the lamb apart with their hands, and grabbing the pieces they wanted. The Chinese food writers wrote that this lamb was one of the most delicious things you could possibly eat.

 

A Warning

I would never try this myself. Heating rocks until they are red hot could be very dangerous, leading to serious injury or worse, or fires if something goes wrong. Even heating the wrong rock could result in an explosion that would send red hot pieces of rock flying in all directions. The Mongol cooks were experts in using this method. I believe those skills have long been lost.

 

Why Was It So Good?

At the time of the writing, Chinese food was heavily seasoned and spiced, meat was eaten in small quantities, and was often cut into small pieces and stir-fried, lamb was almost never eaten, and the center of most meals was the featured grain, either rice or wheat. The prevailing attitude in China was that only Chinese cooking was worth eating, and all other cuisines were inferior. In other words, “Grab Your Own Lamb” was as un-Chinese a dish as you could possibly find.

So why did the Chinese writers love it so much?

I think it was the bones and the fat, cooked right into the meat.

I am just guessing here, but it is based on my experience in cooking much smaller pieces of meat on the bone, with the fat.

Cooking the lamb whole, with all its bones and fat, meant that substances from the bones and fat would cook right into the meat, helping it become more tender, adding incredible flavor, and greatly increasing the nutritional value of the meat. This provided so much flavor that no spices were needed.

 

What We Can Learn

I recently made a small roast from a very fatty piece of grassfed meat, which I was able to get with all the fat left on. I barbecued it with no seasoning other than the smoke of the fire. Unbelievably tender and delicious, and we felt so good after eating it. I have had even better results when I could get the fat and the bone.

Cooking meat on the bone, with the fat, provides incredible flavor, tenderness, and nutrition.

This post is part of Fat Tuesday blog carnival.

Photo credit epSos .de

The Healing Qualities of Organ Meats

By Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat and Tender Grassfed Barbecue

This delicious meatloaf contains grassfed beef, heart, kidney, and liver. (Recipe on page 181 Tender Grassfed Meat.)

This delicious meatloaf contains grassfed beef, heart, kidney, and liver. (Recipe on page 181 Tender Grassfed Meat.)

Our ancestors used food to prevent and heal disease, and to maintain their natural functions. They did not have the benefits of scientific studies, but they did have the benefits of experience, knowledge that was passed down from father to son, mother to daughter, master to apprentice.

Organs As Medicine

Cultures as diverse as the ancient Chinese, ancient Greeks, many African tribes, and Native Americans connected the eating of a certain animal, and body part of a certain animal, to heal and benefit various organs and parts of the body and mind. This practice continued into the twentieth century, with some medical doctors using some of these traditions to help their patients.

There is a logic to this practice, as the nutrients the animals needed to maintain and nourish their organs were likely to be found in that particular organ. Scientific research has confirmed that organ meats are very rich in vital nutrients. I do not know of research that has supported the idea that eating the particular organ of an animal would prevent or heal disease in the same organ of the person who ate it. Of course, modern medicine does not use these methods, relying mainly on drugs, surgery, and radiation.

Some examples are as follows:

  • Eating the heart of a strong, healthy animal was believed to help maintain the health and strength of the human heart. The Native Americans placed special value on the heart of a young stag, for this purpose. In the early twentieth century, some doctors in the U.S., used to advise patients with heart problems to eat beef heart as a way to strengthen their own heart.
  • Many peoples believed it was beneficial to eat the brains of an animal, and that this would make them more intelligent and sharpen their minds.
  • The liver was particularly prized, all over the world. Hunters would often eat the raw liver of their kill on the spot, as it was felt to be the most beneficial at that time. The hunters would divide the raw liver among themselves, so all could get the benefits. It has even been documented that the first part of the prey eaten by a predator, such as a lion, is the liver. Eating the liver was believed to make the liver of the eater stronger, and to purify and cleanse the body. Science has confirmed that cleansing and detoxifying the body is the function of the liver. In fact, the custom of eating liver regularly, at least once a week, was common in Europe and the United States up to the middle of the twentieth century.
  • Many peoples believed that eating the eyes of an animal, particularly an animal known to have keen vision, would help their own eyesight.

There are many other examples, but the general idea was that eating a particular organ of a healthy animal would help the same organ in the human who ate it. Every traditional society who did this was careful to only eat healthy organs, from healthy animals. If the organ appeared diseased, or even discolored, no one would eat it.

My Experience

I make it a point to regularly eat liver, kidney, and heart from grassfed cows. I should mention that all of these organs seem to be functioning perfectly, and give me no discomfort or trouble. You can do this without much work, if you get the magnificent liverwurst from US Wellness Meats, which contains high-quality liver, heart, and kidney from grassfed cattle, in the form of a sausage that is very easy to eat.

This post is part of Fat Tuesday and Real Food Wednesday blog carnivals.

 

Disclaimer: Information found on the Tender Grassfed Meat site, including this article, is meant for educational and informational purposes only. Any statements or claims about the possible health benefits conferred by any foods or anything else have not been evaluated by the Food & Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. None of the content on the Tender Grassfed Meat site should be relied upon for any purpose, and nothing here is a substitute for a medical diagnosis or medical treatment.

 

Next Page »