Attack Of The Pink Slime

We here at Lipstick and Politics have always promoted clean eating and healthful, conscious dietary choices for our readers and their families and friends. As a society, we are inundated with popular and trendy advice for eating that may help us lose weight or stay healthy, but ultimately it is eating clean and consciously that seems so simple yet can profoundly change our health and lifestyle. I am always looking for new ways to incorporate these two ideals into my own life. Like many of you, I find that it’s not always the easiest or most cost effective route for me to eat more natural, organic foods and be aware of all ingredients, however, I try to make small, constant changes towards an overall improvement in my life.

Photo courtesy of Danielle Scott

With all of that being said, you can imagine my shock and the shock of so many others at this recent investigation by ABC News on a substance called ‘pink slime’, which can apparently be found in nearly all ground beef products, such as burgers, packaged ground beef, meat sauces, etc. Anything except USDA Certified Organic Ground Beef (which is guaranteed to have no fillers) can potentially have pink slime in it. But read the article and you’ll see just how disgusting this ‘beef’ product is. It's made up mostly of connective tissue and, like gelatin, it is nutritionally incomplete. It’s also treated with ammonia gas to kill germs. For our Canadian readers, apparently this type of filler is not allowed by Health Canada in Canadian grown beef or imported beef, due to the restrictions on ammonia use in meat production.

Unfortunately, we are a society that has become increasingly indifferent towards the use of abhorrent chemicals and processes in the production, preservation and preparation of our food. Another great blog article I found on a fitness website demonstrates how the author is also incredibly frustrated with the sheer amount of sugar, chemicals and, on the whole, nutrition-less products that are being consumed in mass quantities nationwide.

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So yes, organic meat products are more expensive and less readily available than their conventionally farmed and produced counterparts, but it is beginning to seem worth the extra cost to avoid consuming unsafe products and chemicals. When I read articles such as these and become more aware of ingredient lists on the whole, I become more convinced that, to the extent I can afford it, organic is the way to go. The long-term financial savings associated with avoiding the cost of treating illnesses that can result from an unhealthy diet can potentially far outweigh the cost of purchasing organic meat today.

Fellow blogger Jenn Boyer has also made some very compelling arguments for eating vegan or vegetarian in her blogs, for even a few days out of the week. As an ex-vegetarian myself, I know I struggled with eating enough protein for a long time and meat protein can now be a valuable asset to my health and fitness. However, it seems that, due to the cost of producing high-quality meat, the use of chemicals and unnatural and unnerving fillers is more abundant in the meat industry than in any other. Therefore, we need to increase awareness so that, as consumers, we can make informed decisions regarding the food we put on our tables. Clean and conscious eating means eating natural and local foods. Eat what you know, and be 100% accountable to your body. I hope this blog will encourage you as it encourages me to continue to pursue more education, awareness and action in your daily decisions.