Why You Shouldn’t Eat Chicken
We have quite the dilemma when choosing chicken for our families. Factory farmed chicken is raised with or without antibiotics. Which is the better choice? By now we are all well aware of the detrimental effects of the overconsumption of antibiotics. These drugs destroy our gut microbiomes and ultimately negatively effect our health. This is most concerning for our children. An unhealthy microbiome leads to disease and has been linked to everything from immune dysfunction to behavioral disorders in children.
The industry is well aware of the publics concern about antibiotics in factory farmed meat. Companies are now reducing or eliminating antibiotic use in their chicken houses and labeling their packaging with a “raised without antibiotics” stamp. This is a marketing ploy, and apparently a pretty good one. Consumers now look for that stamp.
Here is the dilemma. Factory farm chicken houses are jam packed with sick chickens. If no antibiotics are used, infection and disease run rampart in these conditions. Diseased chickens are slaughtered before disease becomes apparent. The meat then goes to market with the “raised without antibiotics” stamp.
Factory farmed meat should not be consumed and this practice should not be supported. But……everyone loves chicken. So, what is a consumer to do? Buy free range chicken that is raised on organic pasture. Chickens should be allowed to roam free out in pasture and consume their natural diet of grasses and bugs. This makes for a clean and healthy environment for the chicken and a clean, nutritious meal for us. The problem, it seems, is the cost. Most people complain that free range chicken is just too expensive. How much more does a pastured chicken actually cost? I decided to do a bit of investigation on the matter. A trip to Costco was in order.
Costco sells both conventional chicken raised in factory farm houses and free range chicken. Both were labeled as antibiotic free. The whole chickens come two in a package so I compared price per pound. The free range chicken is $1.00 more per pound, which averages about $5.00 more per chicken. That’s it! $5.00 more per chicken. I see people from all walks of life spending more than that each day at Starbucks drive through. They are willing to spend five dollars for a toxic latte and skimp on the quality of the meat they consume. This is unfortunate. I have been criticized in the past for not being understanding of those on a limited buget. It has been brought to my attention that many people can not afford quality food. Believe me, I do not make these statements without regard in this matter. I often shop at Giant and Weis supermarkets and witness food stamp allotments being used to purchase packaged, junk food. Surely, switching out a bag or two of Doritos for a better chicken is not a hardship. This simple switch can help to improve the health of our children and send a message to the industry that factory farming will no longer be tolerated or supported.