A little over 10 years ago while traveling in Europe I came across a study that found that women who consumed 100% grass fed animal products could lower their chance of developing breast cancer by 74%.Why do 100% grass fed animal products protect women from breast cancer? Grass fed meat, milk and eggs contain a much higher concentration of Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA) than do products from grain fed animals. Studies show that CLA offers many health benefits, including reducing the risk of breast cancer and tumor reduction. You can read more about the benefits of CLA from Eat Wild, The Townsend Letter, and The California Breast Cancer Research Project.Reading the European study a decade ago changed the way I farmed and made me a purist when it comes to grass versus grain for my animals. For me, this means no grain fed to ruminants at all: not to get them to love me, not to get them to come into the barn or to stand still while milking or any of the other excuses I have heard for feeding grain. None of these reasons seem very important when I weigh them against the faces of friends who suffer with cancer, or women I know who have predispositions toward breast cancer. How can I imagine feeding grain if there is even the slightest possibility that my food could help them to avoid this horrible disease? Even the slightest chance is worth not having a little more milk to sell or an animal that goes to the butcher a few months sooner. The possibility is just too great to cut any corners here.

So please, if you purchase meat or milk from a farmer that you can actually speak with, ask them to stop feeding grain and let them know that you are willing to pay more to help them with the extra expenses. And if you don’t buy milk or meat from someone you can persuade to go grass fed – you should.