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Grass-Fed Butter vs Regular Butter: What's the Difference?
The first thing that people ask when they hear about the Paleo lifestyle is, "Is grass-fed butter better than regular butter?" Is it worth making the switch or having a personal preference?
The short answer is: YES! Grass-fed butter has all sorts of nutritional benefits that come with its use, such as much lower levels of saturated fats and higher levels of vitamin A. It also contains natural anti-inflammatory compounds like omega 3's, which can help you ward off feelings of pain and stiffness. Those are just a few examples of the many more nutrients grass-fed butter provides.
Another question people often ask is, "Are there any drawbacks when using grass-fed butter?" These are the questions that many people ponder before they make an informed decision. Some people keep it simple and stick with regular butter, while others are eager to switch to grass-fed butter.
Let's discuss some of the pros and cons of both types of butter so you can decide if it would benefit you. As with all food choices, each type has pros and cons.
Regular Butter: The Basics
When was the last time you consumed a stick of regular butter? It wasn't that long ago. Regular butter is the type of butter that most people buy in the store and consume regularly. It doesn't necessarily mean that it's bad, but if you want to enjoy the nutritional benefits that grass-fed butter provides, regular old butter won't cut it.
Like all other food products, there are regulations on how companies make and sell their products. Butter isn't any different. There are rules on what constitutes regular butter and what doesn't. Regular butter is made when the cream is churned through high-speed mechanical devices or by agitating it with steam in a boiler until it clots into a semisolid mass known as butterfat.
The butterfat that remains after the watery components are removed is what we call butter. Churning the cream doesn't just make it clump together but also adds air to the mixture, which expands in volume by 80 to 90 per cent.
When you eat regular butter, you eat tons of fat and calories with minimal nutrients. The FDA requires that all regular butter contain eighty per cent fat, about sixteen grams for every tablespoon. Its high saturated fat content is known as "bad" fat since it contributes to increased cholesterol levels. The saturated fat in butter comes from the milk of cows fed corn. The dairy industry ensures the cows are fed a diet that increases the milk they produce. To increase milk production, the cattle must be fed large amounts of GMO corn to bulk up their diet and ultimately make them fatter, which leads to more milk being produced.
Grass-Fed Butter vs. Regular Butter
Appearance looks more appealing.
Appearance looks less appealing.
Has more nutrition.
Has less nutrition
Helps in lowering the risks of heart disease.
Does not help in lowering the risks of heart disease.
Is a good source of Vitamin A.
Is a good source of vitamin E.
Other things to know about Regular butter:
It contains no cholesterol. All the nutrients (except for trace amounts of vitamin A and riboflavin) are added back into the butter after it has been pasteurized. These nutrients include −
Vitamin A – helps maintain the lining of your skin, aids in immune function, and improves vision by supporting eye health.
Vitamin D – is vital for bone development and helps absorb calcium and phosphorus properly. Vitamin D deficiency is associated with osteoporosis and other skeletal disorders. In addition, vitamin D plays an essential role in the health of nerve fibres, allowing you to sense pain, pressure, temperature, and texture.
Iodine is vital for normal growth and development and helps produce thyroid hormones that regulate metabolism.
What is it that makes Grass-Fed Butter better?
Grass-fed butter comes from cows that can roam free on pastures and eat grass, their natural diet. It is a step in the right direction regarding butter consumption and a much healthier choice than regular butter. Many people look at the nutritional label on regular butter and see nothing but fat and calories. On the other hand, grass-fed butter may seem like pure fat with its ninety-nine per cent fat content, but what you don't see on the label are all the vitamins, minerals, and nutrients that come along with it.
When you consume grass-fed butter, you get a wide array of vitamins and minerals, but the types and amounts of nutrients differ. Research has shown that butter contains almost three times the amount of vitamin A as regular butter. You can see how it's crucial to consume a lot of nutrients since it's essential for good eye health, and vegans (vegetarians who do not eat dairy products) are at risk for deficiency in this vital vitamin.
What about cholesterol? Grass-fed butter has less than half the amount found in regular butter. Cholesterol is necessary to build strong cell membranes and prevent damage caused by free radicals. Cholesterol is necessary for making the bile acids essential for digestion, absorption of vitamins, and eliminating toxins from your body. The cholesterol found in butter comes from the animals raised on a diet high in UV-radiated grass and sunlight.
Even though grass-fed butter contains more vitamins and minerals than regular butter, it's still important to watch how much of it you eat. Just like regular butter, grass-fed butter is still very high in fat. Hence, you should only consume a small amount daily. Grass-fed butter can be a healthy source of fat to enhance your overall health when eaten in moderation. It is essential to pay attention to both the ingredients that are in your butter and the process that was used to make it.
How Can I Tell If Butter Is Grass-Fed?
When buying grass-fed butter, always look for a label that says "grass-fed" or "pasture-raised." There are two types of grass-fed butter: those produced on a large scale and usually sold in grocery stores and those made by small family farms that produce butter as an artisanal product. Both types of butter come from cows that are allowed to graze on pastures rich in lush green grasses.
It's important to remember that not all butter is created equal. Regular butter is unhealthy for you because it has a higher saturated fat content and contains no nutrients. Grass-fed butter is a better choice, but it still shouldn't be consumed in excess.
Before choosing which type of butter to buy, consult your doctor or dietitian to see which would work best for you. The choice is yours; only you know your body better than anyone else.
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