Sunday, February 12, 2012

A Happy Health Food

I'm not much on the idea of eating bugs and twigs. And a lot of so-called healthy diets sound pretty twiggy to me.

Seems like efforts to make the right health moves should lead to a reward, as in delicious.

So today I'm writing about butter. Not just any butter, but KerryGold Irish Butter. It makes my taste buds happy! Better yet, it does great things for my health, too!

I know, I know, we're told saturated fats are evil. Truth is, our bodies need for us to eat saturated fats. Big time. But not your everyday, I-got-it-at-the-grocery-store saturated fat.

So let's talk about saturated fats first, then about Irish butter-and cheese. (I'm drooling already.) Rather than write a book, I'll just hit the highlights.

Factory farms, the source of grocery store dairy products (meats, too), dope the animals up with hormones to make them produce more milk than bovinely possible by natural methods and add antibiotics because, for one thing, the hormones give those poor cows mastitis.

So with your milk you get bogus estrogen to throw your body into a tizzy, as well as the opportunity to become antibiotic-resistant without ever taking an antibiotic.

And you get a little prize that goes unmentioned: pus. Does that sound yummy or what? Hormones produce mastitis, which produces pus, which ends up in the milk. Our government in action protects us by setting a limit on the allowable amount of pus, but somehow I don't find that reassuring.

But perhaps you get organic milk, butter and cheese. Now that's a real step in the right direction. No hormones to mess with your health. No antibiotics to do you in. And probably no pus.

But there's another problem with both factory-farm and organic dairy. It comes from grain-fed cows. Cows were never intended to eat grains, and grains throw their digestive system into chaos.

And it changes the nature of the meat and dairy they produce. The grain diet severely reduces the percentage of Omega 3 fats that are such a blessing to us while greatly increasing the dastardly Omega 6 fats-a source of inflammation and disease. You don't want this kind of saturated fat. In fact, you don't want any Omega 6-as in vegetable oils-fats.

Enter the hero, 100% grass-fed beef. No grains, no hormones, no antibiotics, but plenty of Omega 3 fats.

KerryGold Irish butter comes from 100% grass-fed beef, and it shows. Literally. It's more yellow than standard-issue butter.

Butter gives us butyrate, in greater amounts than any other dietary source. Butyrate supports the adrenal glands, reduces feelings of anxiety, raises metabolism levels, improves digestion, increases insulin sensitivity and kills cancer cells. Butter from grass-fed beef has more butyrate than regular butter.

Butter also provides a great form of Vitamin A that our bodies really slurp up. Great for bone health and thyroid function, among other terrific benefits. Butter from grass-fed beef has at least 33% more-up to nearly twice as much-vitamin A than regular butter. Irish butter is at the high end.

And good butter offers a lot of vitamin K2-which helps the heart, reduces the death rate, and on, and on.

And you also get trans-palmitoleic acid which helps prevent diabetes.

The news just gets better and better.

So KerryGold Pure Irish Butter is my big find. It tastes wonderful, and it gives my health a boost as I chomp and salivate. That's what foods are supposed to do.

Irish Butter is a little pricey, as you should expect. Some Costcos sell it, which helps.

And butter isn't the end of the story. I bought some of KerryGold's BallyShannon sharp cheddar cheese at Sal's Club ($5.78 a pound). Talk about fabulous! I quit eating sharp cheddar a few years back because it tasted 'off' to me, but happy days are here again!

I have no connection to KerryGold; I just appreciate their products.

Good stuff!
About this Author

Bette Dowdell has studied how the body works-or doesn't-for years to dig herself out of the ditch of endocrine problems when doctors didn't help so much. Now she offers an e-zine to share her knowledge with you-what's good, what's bad and what's the difference. Subscribe to her free weekly e-zine at You'll get a list of the endocrine symptoms she talks about and start discovering how to get your energy and enthusiasm back.

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