Friday, March 19, 2010

Thank you Governor Granholm

As our nation celebrated National Ag Week and Ag Day last week some interesting developments took place, particularly in the state of Michigan. If you missed it, Governor Jennifer Granholm signed a proclamation declaring National Ag Day as “Michigan Meat-out Day.” I fail to understand why so many of the elitists of this country want to apologize for the abundant food system we have created. Meat of all types contributes to a healthy lifestyle and the American consumer has access to meat items in the store at the most reasonable prices of any consumer worldwide.

At a time when so many people want to be “green” and efficient, we should be celebrating that we have a nutrient dense food substance such as meat. In fact, if you eat a 3 oz. serving of beef you get the most nutrient dense profile of any food substance. Calorie for calorie, nothing offers a greater balance and nutrient punch than meat. Vitamin B12, vitamin B6, zinc, iron and, of course, protein but I don’t want to forget the other nutrient that many Americans are short of today - healthy fats.

Americans are lacking most all of these ingredients, including good fats, in their diet. In fact, many in the scientific field are learning that every single one of those key nutrients mentioned above are also important for proper mental health. While often not discussed, depression continues to be a growing problem in the United States. Depression tends to occur even more often in more affluent families. Why?

I believe that affluent people are most often the individuals that reduce or eliminate meats and natural fats from their diet because they think that they are making a healthier choice while they fail to recognize the key nutrients that meat provides to human health.

A growing body of scientific evidence has shown that kids who do not eat meat often enough suffer in cognitive development and IQ scores. I point to the recent study from the University of North Carolina that suggests that all pregnant women should consume bacon and eggs every morning in order to improve the IQ of their unborn babies.

On one of my recent trips to California I learned that many farmers with grape vineyards are actually taking out acres of grapes and putting in olive trees. Olive oil is the new rage in health circles because it is the “heart healthy” fat thanks to the Omega 3 benefits. While I think olive oil is great and use it from time to time myself, the intramuscular fat from beef and the fat from bacon both contain the same exact monounsaturated fats found in olive oil. So if you really wanted to improve both your health and your intelligence you would fry your eggs in olive oil right next to the bacon every morning.

This should be a time in our culture that we truly celebrate the many benefits and opportunities for choice that we have as American consumers. No other country in the world has access to all of the nutritious foods that we do and we offer them so inexpensively. The fact that year after year we spend less that 10% of our disposable income on food is the primary reason that we take this bountiful food supply for granted. Not only is it inexpensive but the shelves are always full. Think about how panicked consumers are when they are stockpiling for an impending storm and they go the grocery store only to find that their neighbors have beat them to the punch. What if this were an every day occurrence and not just something that you might experience once in your lifetime? Most of us are so spoiled that we are disappointed if we go to the store and they don’t have our favorite style of bread or the milk we like best. So indeed, National Ag Day, a day set aside to bring a greater awareness to the importance of the efforts of farmers and ranchers toward human health, should come to the forefront. If it takes the ignorance of the Governor of Michigan to get it done and help it make a bigger splash in the media, perhaps that is even better. It seems that bacon and eggs may have been missing in the cognitive development of someone in the Great Lakes State!

5 comments:

KHeisler said...

Ask and ye shall receive! Thank you so much, Trent, for your continued support of our wonderful Agricultural Industry! Michigan needs your wisdom and wit...move here please, temporarily (not unlike Granholm), and grace us with your services!!!

Amanda said...

Psh, she's from Canada ;) The Great Lakes State is all about their bacon and eggs!

jplovescotton said...

I agree with you Trent. I'm not sure whether folks know that soybean growers in the Midwest are already growing soybeans that produce healthier oils. And that we are developing more technologies that will let us produce omega 3s in soybean plants. Or that the properties of olive oils health profile will be available in soybeans as well. American farmers and the people that work alongside them in agriculture are incredible and their efforts provide me a safe, abundant food supply!

Anonymous said...

My family and I are giving you a standing ovation. We will share this information.
Thank you,
Terry and Jill Hauser

Anonymous said...

Very well articulated! I'm glad you include a discussion about fats. If I may add, trans-fats from ruminant products are also health-beneficial (e.g., anti-carcinogenic) unlike trans-fats from artificial sources (e.g., from magarine). Thus far, all trans-fat have been thrown in the same health-category. In addition, fats increase the feeling of satiety and prolong a feeling of hunger, thus reducing overall food consumption and counter-balancing the increased calorie-density.

Thanks for publishing this great article!
Marcus Hollmann