When you think of a chicken, what comes to mind? Is it Old MacDonald’s farm? He had quite a few animals on that farm, didn’t he? Chickens roaming the yard? Horses, cows and sheep in the field? Odds are it’s not a commercial farm that pops into your head; one with hundreds of animals literally on top of each other, cramped for space, never seeing the outdoors, simply there to eat. The image of the barn and green pastures is how animals were designed to be raised. Designed to eat the bounty that Mother Nature provides. A chicken in an omnivore. That means it eats both plant and animal food. Yes, that means bugs. Why do we feel then we should change the original diet of the animals that we consume? There is a price to be paid for doing that.
Let’s look at how our own body was designed. What price has our society paid by changing the diet our body was originally designed to eat? A staggering increase in Type 2 Diabetes, obesity, cancer, and heart disease to name a few. If this can happen to us, imagine what can happen to the animals who are forced to change their diet to grow faster so we can consume more? The chicken is one of those such animals.
Chicken is a popular protein choice because of its perceived health benefits and cost. Plus, it has a less damaging effect on the environment because they don’t produce methane gas like a cow does. However, knowing the different options available in the meat department will help you make more informed decisions at the grocery store. And, give your body more of the good stuff it was designed to eat.
Pasture-raised chickens are the way to go. They have a much healthier omega-3 to omega-6 fatty acid ratio, 1:5 versus conventionally raised chickens which is 1:15. Pasture-raised chickens are also significantly higher in Vitamin D3 and have simply a better flavor. Here’s a bit more to consider:
- Stick with labels that say “pasture-raised” or “pastured” because it indicates the chicken was able to forage for grass, bugs and seeds.
- Beware of “free-range” as the term has no legal definition and does not mean that the chicken was ever outside.
- Beware of “all-vegetarian diet” because the chicken is an omnivore.
- “Hormone-free” means nothing because hormone use is not permitted in any poultry production.
Give your body what it recognizes and needs. Never settle for anything less. Your body will thank you.