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September 27, 2012 / amberwoodterracechiro

What Most People Miss When They Eat Paleo….

Butter Comparison

I recently completed a nutrition class held by the director of the Weston Price Foundation, and I’ll tell you what: I am always learning.  This photo was in the same night as the egg comparison that I showed in an earlier post.  There is nothing more telling than what you can see with your own eyes.  The picture above is a picture of butter.  I hate to even call the left specimen butter, but for lack of alternate terminology, we will call it butter-like.  No, this is not margarine; this is butter…. OK, I think I got the point across.  The one on the right is also butter.  How could the two be even close to being called the same product?!  The butter on the right is made from a grassfed source and the one of the left is made from a grain-fed source.   First of all, what does the yellow color represent?  Second of all, why would that matter?

Question #1: What does the yellow represent?

Carotenoids present in grass show up as yellow coloring in butter and egg yolks.  These products that naturally have yellow color are super high in fat soluble vitamins, like vitamin A.  Carotenoids are also the component of carrots that make them orange! The concept of butter being yellow goes back to the day and age when we did not have huge CAFOs with thousands of animals and no grass in sight.  When we started making the transition to feeding our cows grains, the yellow started to disappear from the butter.  People could easily look at the white butter and they knew something was wrong.  In order to keep the confusion down, they started putting yellow coloring into the butter so it would “look” like butter.  Today, I’m not sure many people even know that beige butter is worthless.  I don’t know, maybe they do and don’t care.  Who knows. I care though.  Fat soluble vitamins are vital for health, and butter is an awesome source.

Question #2: Why does it even matter?

I see this all the time in the Paleo community, and to be honest, I was in the same boat when I first started to make my paleo transition.  I felt overwhelmed with where to find quality animal products.  Let’s be real, where is a city girl supposed to find grassfed beef and pastured chickens?!  I shop at Martin’s people!  Well, that was a long time ago now, but I completely understand for those that are in that phase.  This concept of quality meat products completely changes the game in terms of eating paleo.  Many people will make the paleo transition and when I look over their food log, I think to myself “They are doing pretty darn good!  Their menu is full of produce and meat!”  Then I start to ask myself, “Then why are they still having symptoms of deficiencies?”  The answer usually lies in the amount of fat they are getting.  Protein is always paired with fat in nature, and this gets confusing for people because we all hear the cries to eat lean meat.  This is true…kinda.  If you are getting meat from an animal that is sick, you do not want to eat the fat.  That means no skin, trim the fat, and definitely no organ meat.  Toxins are stored in fat (another reason to shed a few pounds).  Please do not eat toxin heavy animal fat!  However, if you are eating meat sources from a healthy animal, please do not pass up the fat!  Fat is where it’s at!  You NEED those fat soluble vitamins present.  That’s the first thing paleo eaters miss; they have all this protein, but no fat.  This drives the need for more protein because they are not assimilating it all and it is keeping them from feeling satisfied.  Pair meat with some bone broth and fat, bam, whole new ball game.  The other thing is let’s say they are eating fat, but the fat is not from a good source.  They are consuming toxins and getting very little nutritionally speaking.  If your fat source looks like the one of the left, you are NOT in the same ball game as someone getting it from the right.  I want to clear up the confusion about animal fat.  ANIMAL FAT IS HEALTHY…..if it’s from a grassfed/pastured animal.  Eat leaner cuts if the meat is from a standard cattle farm where the cow eats grains and is likely full of toxins.  If the only source of meat you eat is the latter version, then you MUST be supplementing those fat soluble vitamins from somewhere or you are likely going to feel fatigued, hit burnout in your workouts, and feel hungry all the time.  FAT IS WHERE IT”S AT!  Pay the extra dollar for the whole food, grassfed meat as opposed to the pill you will have to buy later in order to make up for the lack of it!



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