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Plant Based Meat

August 11, 2019

Plant Based Meat

Plant Based Meat-

We have all heard about it. I see the movements of people’s ever changing dietary habits toward plant based diets. These diets are much like what my cows eat making it plant based meat. 

This article may not be what you are thinking. I am a strong believer that I don’t reserve the right to judge others eating habits and what they feel is beneficial to the body. However, I wanted to share my thoughts about plant based meats and the very critical role plant based beef cattle are to converting millions of acres of grass into a usable product to feed our nation. 

All cattle have plant based diets. They eat an abundance of forage, grain, and plant based ingredients. Cattle are a lot different than humans because they have a “ruminant” digestion system. They have four compartments in their stomach, which enables them to digest things that humans cannot digest. One of the main things we are taught about as Animal Science Majors are the digestive systems of ruminant animals. They can digest cellulose, a main ingredient and nutrient of all plants. Humans cannot digest this, which means humans get a very low amount of nutrients from cellulose, unlike the cattle. The cattle turn something indigestible to humans into something that provides a lot of energy and nutrients to humans.

Cattle are incredibly unique for this aspect, without this, as the graph below shows, close to 25% of the United States’ land would be without an economically sound use. Rangeland without management and at risk of wildfires makes up close to 25% of the United States’ land. This land would otherwise be useless, and cattle act as great “property managers.” Not only do they graze the land, but they also fertilize it as they go. This results in a huge benefit for the land. Cattle will not overgraze the land if properly managed, which makes the land more plentiful in following years. 

Plant Based Beef
Cattle are the true plant based beef. They use resources, such as land not suitable for other industries, to create a product that is nutritious for humans. Beef provides essential nutrients that fuels are bodies. The below graphic shows the Big 10 that plant based beef provides for humans:

Beef Healthy
Here are a few nutrition facts about beef, specifically beef’s role in child development.

  • Beef is a complete source of protein-a complete source of protein contains all essential amino acids that are crucial and necessary for the mind and body to function. 

  • Beef builds strong muscles and supports bone development- an article titled, “How to Build Muscle for Kids” from AZ Central states that protein sources like beef are the building blocks of muscles and is needed for your child’s muscular growth and development. When children build strong muscles, their strength and endurance increase which helps them in their daily activities and sports 

  • Beef is a great source of Iron, Zinc, and Vitamin B12- according to an article written by Beef It’s What’s for Dinner titled, “Beef for All Ages-Eat to Thrive”, these nutrients have been identified as critically important in supporting proper growth and development. This can provide long-lasting benefits for the child which includes a healthy immune system, improving recall skills and reasoning, and promoting growth and learning milestones. In an article titled “You’re Better on Beef-Iron, Zinc, & Vitamin B12 in Beef” by Harvey Beef they went through the specific needs of each nutrient for your child and how it’s all found in beef:

  • Iron- this nutrient is needed for your child to have energy and it carries oxygen through your child's blood to their internal organs
    Zinc- this nutrient is vital for the normal growth and development of the reproductive organs and brain and plays a role in the normal functioning of the immune system and many other processes in the body
    Vitamin B12- this nutrient is essential for your child's neurological development and cell growth


    • Beef provides energy that is longer-lasting- this helps a child’s blood sugar stabilize which can help prevent them from having sugar or starchy cravings. Protein like beef makes you feel fuller longer, so this is important for a child to feel satiated after their meals.

    Ultimately, plant based beef is a great source of fuel for our bodies and plays a critical role in development. We hope this was educational on why cattle are the best plant based beef.

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