Don’t have a cow.
I mean literally.
It was reported this week that the Swedish meatballs being served at Ikea possibly contained horse meat.
Now, this was only the European stores, but still people are pretty up in arms about it.
But here’s the thing, is this really any worse than the Grade D processed meat that goes into most of our fast food or grocery store hamburger in tube?
I don’t necessarily think so. If you dare, you can look it up and find out the things that are really going into those processed meats that we so enjoy.
So, what can you do about it?
Here are a few of my ideas for knowing what you really getting…
Stop Eating Fast Food:
It’s bad for you anyway, and is the cheapness really worth the cost? The fact is that most of these places use the least expensive, most processed meat possible. It may not have horse in it (although you never know), but we do know that cheap hamburger meat is not made from the prime cuts of beef, rather it is lots of scraps all blended up together. So are hotdogs, and bologna, and most other processed meats.
If the idea of eating unknown bits freaks you out, then you should avoid most of these. And if you are eating meatballs in a furniture store (which I have) then don’t be horrified that they aren’t made of prime rib.
Make Meat A Treat:
I realize that cage free eggs or free-range meat is a little bit pricier than other options. I also think that sometimes it’s worth it. There are plenty of options for better choices at grocery stores these days; you do not just have to buy frozen mystery meat patties. Consider choosing options that are hormone and antibiotics free, and, if you can, look for free-range or ethically raised.
Also consider looking in local farms and farmers markets. I was amazed to find that you can source beef and other meat from local farmers. Good for you, and good for them.
Eat Your Veggies:
I am not a vegetarian, but I am a proponent of eating vegetarian meals more frequently (and I do this myself). There are many benefits to eating this way: it can lower your risk for obesity, heart disease, diabetes, and high blood pressure. And vegetarians tend to live longer.
To follow my earlier point, try making meat a special treat that you enjoy a few times each week, rather than with each meal. There are thousands of mouthwatering recipes online for anything you could imagine, and often you can make a lot of your favorite foods without meat (lasagna, chili, soup, etc). The only limit is your imagination.