People often joke about eating beef instead of salad, but I say eat it with your salad! Locally raised, grass fed beef is a healthy, nutritious, protein staple for your diet. As we have discussed in previous articles, cattle are raised outdoors, turning plant cellulose (that humans cannot digest) into protein and micronutrients that we can digest. Beef ranchers are committed to producing beef in ways that prioritize animal welfare, care of the land and improved habitat for wildlife.
In a study from the University of Auckland, in May of 2022 (Plasma Amino Acid Appearance and Status of Appetite Following a Single Meal of Red Meat or a Plant-Based Meat Analog), researchers found that real red meat had greater bioavailability of amino acids than plant-based “meats”. Amino acids are the building blocks of protein. Nutritional labels tell us how much “protein” is in a particulate food, but not necessarily how much of the protein can, or will be, actually absorbed and used by the body. The point here is our bodies actually absorb more of the amino acids from beef than from plant sources. So you would have to consume more of the plant based protein source, which also means you are consuming more calories.
Another study, Ultra-Processed Diets Cause Excess Calorie Intake and Weight Gain, found that subjects consumed more calories and gained weight when consuming the ultra-processed foods. Ultra-processed foods are described as made mostly from substances extracted from foods, such as fats, starches, added sugars, and hydrogenated fats. They may also contain additives like artificial colors and flavors or stabilizers. Think of convenience foods, TV dinners, packaged side dish mixes, snack foods, chips, cookies and fast food. Whole foods are just that, the whole, unadulterated version of an apple, potato, ground beef or beef steak, lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes…you get the idea!
So, take that luscious romaine lettuce, add some mushrooms, cucumbers, tomatoes, and almonds, throw a handful of sliced, grilled beef strips on top, drizzle everything with balsamic vinegar and enjoy! Know you are eating clean, whole foods that will supply you with bioavailable nutrients and not furnish you with excess calories!
Grilled Steak Salad Recipe
Grass fed beef fajita strips (or skirt, flank or sirloin steak)
Salt & pepper
Your favorite seasonings
Any other veggies you wish
Arrange the beef strips in a glass pan, pour balsamic vinegar over the top, sprinkle on garlic powder, salt, pepper, any other seasonings you like. Cover with plastic wrap, marinate in refrigerator 6-24 hours.
Bring meat to room temperature while you prepare the salad.
Chop lettuce and other vegetables and toss together in a large bowl.
Heat the coconut oil in a large skillet
Add the beef strips, toss as they cook
Place beef strips on top of the salad, drizzle with balsamic vinegar and enjoy!
(My favorite dressing is Elderberry Balsamic)