For the longest times humans enjoyed eating the whole animals, organs included. Organ meat is a dying tradition, though, and kids nowadays have probably never even tried it. For thousands of thousands of years our ancestors dined on the nutrient-dense insides and bones of their prey. I find that we are sadly missing out on the offal front, and today we will look at some individual items and see why.
- Liver: this is definitely the heavy hitter among organ meat and the one that I’ve been incorporating the most. It is one of the most concentrated sources of vitamin A (remember those oh so important fat-soluble vitamins that we covered last month). It works in accordance with the Activator X found in the butter and dairy of grass-fed cattle, to promote bone and arterial health. Therefore, if you connect the dots, cooking liver in grass-fed butter is going to help absorb the vitamin A better, like we needed another reason to slab on the butter! Of course like most other organ meat it is a wonderful source of B vitamins, especially the 12 that we discussed yesterday. It is also one of the best and most usable sources of iron. Interestingly, it has an anti-fatigue factor. This may be linked to it improving oxygen-carrying capacity blood cells, therefore aiding with endurance and strength, making it essential for athletes (therefore, if you’re coaching a team a little added liver to their routine wouldn’t be such a bad idea, no?). The nitrogen-compounds present in liver are the building blocks for both DNA and RNA, making it helpful for dementia and Alzheimer’s). When prepping make sure never to cook beyond medium rare. If you’re not a fan of the taste, try soaking in some fresh lemon juice first to cut the taste.
- Heart: animal hearts are concentrated with CoQ10. This is important not only for cell function, but for heart rhythm. The heart is plentiful with selenium, phosphorus, zinc and essential amino acids (making it a quality source of protein). It has twice the recommended doses of collagen and elastin. From a vanity standpoint this makes it exceptional for anti-aging and wrinkling, basically it means that its good for your skin and connective tissue. Heart can be a bit tougher, so try marinating it in a slightly acidic marinate to make it more tender.
- Bone Broths and Stocks: Great source for calcium, magnesium, trace minerals, cartilage and glucosomime (great for joint health). The broth will help you to absorb these nutrients, as well as keep your digestive health flowing. A splash of raw apple cider vinegar helps to draw the minerals out even more.
- Brains: high in cholesterol (which we know is important not only for repair work on the body, but for cell stability and structure). Excellent source of B12.
- Kidneys: high in protein. Large quantities of B12, riboflavin, iron, and usable amounts B6, folate, and niacin.
- Tongue: great source of B vitamins, especially 12.
- Tripe: quality source of protein and fair amount of potassium.
Again, as with dairy and butter and this weeks theme, make sure that it is grass-fed and that you obtain it from a reliable source. If you want to sneak it in, have it ground into some of your meat, or wrap it in bacon (everything tastes better after its been wrapped in bacon, right?). What are you waiting for! Pick up some offal (its cheaper too) and give it a try. For more on our fat-burner organ eating weight loss programs check out our website at bodychange.net.