I decided that after a few days of eating some of the more common healthy foods that it was time to go out on a limb and try something a little more adventurous. Buffalo, also known as bison, falls within the “wild game” category of good for you meats. Buffalo provides more protein and nutrients with fewer calories and fat (see the comparison chart below).
I made bison burgers for the entire family for dinner and did not mention the word “buffalo” until after they cleaned their plate. My kids LOVED the bison burgers and thanked me at dinner for letting them have hamburgers for dinner (not a typical dinner for us). I casually said after dinner, “So, did you like the burger made from buffalo?” I expected complete pandemonium and sounds of disgust, but instead my seven-year old son just said, “Oh, that was buffalo? It was good.” A complete non-reaction! The taste was mild and slightly sweet. I am not an adventurous eater, so I was a little trepidatious in taking my first bite, but I really like it. I think we may add the bison burger into our rotation of family dinners. The kids sure seemed to enjoy it.
Buffalo are grass-fed and are not fed antibiotics or growth hormones. But, what is all of the hype about “grass-fed” wild game? The bottom line is that cows, buffalo and other animals are not meant to eat grain. According to Dr. Bowden, it is like making lions eat Cheerios. The meat (and milk) that comes from grain-fed animals contains more fat and less nutrients than the same animal that is grass-fed. Grain-fed animals have less vitamin E, beta-carotene and omega-3 fatty acids. There is also a common belief that we should be eating foods that our Paleolithic ancestors ate, like wild game, and freshly grown fruits and vegetables. Our bodies are designed to work best on these basic food sources – like wild game, berries, nuts, vegetables and fruits, rather than the modern supermarket food that consists of packaged snacks and TV dinners filled with artificial colors, sugar and trans fat.
If you want to learn more about the health benefits of bison, check out The National Bison Associate web site. Substitute bison in one of your favorite meals using ground beef, like chili, meatloaf or burgers, and let me know what you think!