Exercise, water, leafy greens and BEEF.
These things all have one thing in common. We’ll give you a hint: They’re all part of a balanced, healthy diet! Don’t believe us? Thanks to Dr. Steve Merry, a practicing cardiologist and owner of MGM Polled Herefords in Wisconsin, we’re sharing the long-term nutritional benefits of adding red meat into your well-balanced diet.
With a veterinarian and a nurse as his parents, it was a natural choice for Dr. Merry to pursue a career in the medical field. After his cardiology fellowship was completed, he navigated back to the Hereford cattle business where he began with his parents, Marion and Gordon Merry.
Dr. Merry has practiced cardiology for more than 40 years and has personally seen misinformation within the nutrition industry leave red meat with a bad reputation that it didn’t deserve. “I remember as a medical student, back in the 70s, there was a lot of emphasis on LDLs [low-density lipoproteins],” Merry said. LDLs are commonly known as the “bad cholesterol” as high levels of LDLs can lead to a build-up of cholesterol within the arteries. Merry went on to explain that “because meat is high in saturated fats, doctors and dietitians tended to recommend avoiding red meat in order to lower your bad cholesterol.”
“What was not done then is research related to outcomes.” Merry explained that more recent studies are mostly neutral and do not conclude that eating red meat has any positive or negative effects on the human body.
Those studies1 compared people who do eat red meat to those who do not and determined there was no increase in heart disease, stroke or diabetes. There was also no difference in how long each person would live that had any correlation to their meat intake. “But now the studies2 are actually revealing that if you eat more unprocessed red meat, you live longer and have less risk of stroke,” according to Merry.
One of the easiest ways to include lean beef as part of your balanced diet is to add 90% lean Certified Hereford Beef® ground round to your grocery list. Ground round is one of the leanest, most versatile, and economical cuts of beef and can be transformed into burgers, tacos, chili and more!
PRO TIP: Certified Hereford Beef® Ranch Burgers make an easy weekend meal packed with 38g of protein per serving and only take 30 minutes to make. Swap the bun for a lettuce wrap for even lower carbs and if you’re seeking a lower-fat option you can omit the ranch dressing completely! See the recipe below:
- 1 pound Certified Hereford Beef ground round
- 4 whole hamburger buns, split
- 4 teaspoons Ranch Rub (see below)
- ¼ cup prepared reduced-fat creamy ranch dressing
- Romaine lettuce
- Tomato Slices
- Onion Slices
- Prepare the Ranch Rub by mixing: 2 teaspoons sweet paprika, 2 teaspoons dried thyme leaves, 1-1/2 teaspoons salt, 1 teaspoon garlic powder, 1 teaspoon onion powder, 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper, 1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper, and 1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper.
- Lightly shape ground beef into four ½-inch thick patties. Press ranch rub onto patties.
- Place patties on grill over medium, ash-covered coals. Grill, covered, 8 to 10 minutes (over medium heat on preheated gas grill, 7 to 9 minutes) until instant-read thermometer inserted horizontally into center registers 160 degrees Fahrenheit, flipping once halfway through.
- Serve in buns with dressing, onion, lettuce, and tomato.
1 Red and Processed Meat Consumption and Risk of Incident Coronary Heart Disease, Stroke, and Diabetes Mellitus; Circulation 2010; 121: 2271-2283.
2 Association of fats and carbohydrate intake with cardiovascular disease and mortality in 18 countries from five continents (PURE): A prospective cohort study; Lancet 2017; 390:2050-2062.