Sunday, August 16, 2009
Leaving Kansas and the images of cattle feed lots
After the long Friday drive across Kansas, following first the route of the Santa Fe Trail and the Santa Fe Railroad, I joined the valley the Arkansas River in mid state. One of the images and experiences I noticed more and more, are the giant feed lots of cattle with an amazing stench! Here is an image from Garden City in western Kansas. I flash on Michael Pollan and his expose' of "inflammatory beef" in The Omnivores Dilemma and how beef cattle without free grass ranging are often force feed corn. Corn products that are so abundant in the American diet today, create an imbalance in the Omega-3 to Omega - 6 fatty acids ratio for humans. And I wonder how the cattle feel, penned up in these confines. Anyway, about the inflammatory fatty acid ratio. Best around 1:2-3...with all the corn for Americans who are unconscious of the role of corn added too much Omega - 6 1: 17-23. (Pollan, Michael, The Omnivores Dilemma, Penguin Books, 2006, p. 18). So educagion and awarenes beyond hype are important. I see the "Eat Beef Keep Slim" sign as well, not very deep. With all the corn feeding, I was hoping there was more grass fed awareness here. Sigh! And the cowboys I saw were not as slim and I was hoping to see :-) Obesity is alive and well on the southern great plains!