MAY IS NATIONAL BEEF MONTH
[caption id="attachment_3455" align="aligncenter" width="399"] Via Iowa Beef Industry Council[/caption]
Beef. It's what's for dinner, as they say. If you're reading this, it's highly likely that you can agree with that statement, or know someone that does. Actors Sam Elliott and Matthew McConaughey have famously lent their voices to the iconic campaigns that tout beef's importance.
Beef and its by-products have an immense impact on our society. It's found in the hamburger you cook on your grill, the gelatin that composes your favorite warm weather food items (such as ice cream and marshmallows), the gum that you chew, the medicines you take, the soap with which you wash your hands, and countless other products. The uses of it in our everyday lives are immeasurable.
It's also a primary source of numerous vitamins and minerals that are essential for a healthy lifestyle. This list includes protein, Vitamin B12, zinc, iron, phosphorus, selenium, and many more! In fact, a 3 oz. serving of lean beef accounts for less than 10% of a 2,000 calorie diet, yet supplies more than 10% of the Daily Value of those vitamins and minerals.
This month, we celebrate beef's importance. The beef industry is constantly under attack from animal rights activists and faulty science that claims it is bad for our health. That couldn't be further from the truth. Many claim that the saturated fat from beef increases the risk of heart disease, but studies have shown that this saturated fat can actually lower LDL (bad) cholesterol and maintain a healthy level of HDL (good) cholesterol.
Each American, on average, eats 1.7 ounces of beef per day. This falls well within the USDA's recommendations for a healthy lifestyle, proving that any healthy food should be consumed in a moderate manner. Overindulgence on any one food group can cause issues, yet you won't find critics pointing that out.
While small segments of the U.S. population continue to make noise about living vegan lifestyles, such as those who push Meatless Mondays at schools and those who demonize beef consumption, the fact of the matter is that beef is an affordable, delicious, and (most importantly) healthy addition to a well-rounded diet.
The point is, there is plenty to celebrate when it comes to beef. It continues to gain strong support from those who accept its scientifically-proven benefits, and will remain a key component of the American diet for future generations.