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Top 3 reasons to eat lard

Wednesday, 21 January 2015  |  Sue Ambrose

TOP 3 Reasons why YOU should be eating LARD:

 

1. It’s HEALTHY! — When compared with Olive oil, Lard is a close second in the monounsaturated fat department! Olive oil has about 77% monounsaturated fat, with Lard at 48% monounsaturated fat. Butter ranks third with 30% monounsaturated fat and Coconut oil is last at 6%. The main fat in lard, oleic acid, is a fatty acid associated with decreased risk of depression. A Study in Thailand in 2005 also reported that oleic acid has high anti-cancer benefits and can decrease your risk of breast cancer. Those same monounsaturated fats, are responsible for lowering LDL levels while leaving HDL (“good”) cholesterol levels alone. Shocking, right? Lard also contains high amounts of Vitamin D, a necessary fat-soluble vitamin. It is estimated that 1 tablespoon of lard contains 1000 IU of Vitamin D! As a society, we are extremely deficient in Vitamin D. As a powerful immunity booster, the intake of Vitamin D can prevent those frequent colds & flus in your home each year.  If you think you can get Vitamin D from plants, you are right, you can. But they don’t come close to lard! Mushrooms are the ONLY plant source of Vitamin D, with about 21 IU per mushroom. Personally I’d rather cook with a tablespoon of lard rather than eat 50 mushrooms every day, but that’s just me. If you think you can get Vitamin D from the sun, you are right, you can. But, the problem is, humans aren’t too efficient at assimilating Vitamin D from the sun. At the recommended 20-30 minutes of sun exposure per day you will only receive 100-200 IU. Pigs, on the other hand, are superheros at absorbing Vitamin D. This is why so much is stored in the fat under the their skin. Vitamin D aids in the absorption of calcium, which is why osteoporosis is reduced and oral health is improved. Vitamin D will also aid in the removal of harmful toxic metals such as cadmium, aluminum, strontium. Probably one of the most important tasks of Vitamin D as well as cholesterol (which is amazingly both in LARD!) is hormone production & regulation. When you remember that many, many processes in the body are performed by hormones, you can see why it’s so important to include lard into your diet.

2. It TASTES DELICIOUS! — Use lard to make crispy fried chicken, make deliciously flaky pies, &cooking a simple food like eggs or hash browns. It’s not smelly, it’s divine! Food was meant to be enjoyed! And trust me, lard makes EVERYTHING taste a little better.

3. It’s NATURAL & SUSTAINABLE – If you were to raise a pig in your backyard, and butcher it when it’s about 250 pounds, you’d most likely get about 15-20 lbs. of lard. It would take about 6-9 months to raise a pig to market weight, so if your family ate about 1 pig a year, you can guess that eating 15-20 lbs. of lard per year would be a natural and sustainable amount.

Sourcing Good Lard:

One of the most important things you’ll need to find is a pork producer that raises pigs who are pastured or foraged. This means they were able to be outside and soak up the sun –hence the reason why lard is so high in Vitamin D. It is also a general rule that animals are cleaner & healthier when they are allowed to be in their natural environment.

So why not give it a try and pick up a pack this weekend at the Farmer's Market.