Beef liver: nature's original multivitamin supplement
Although it had lost its glare for quite sometime until recently, liver was highly prized among early hunter-gatherers who preferred it over muscle meat. They regarded liver as a source of strength and believed that it possessed superior healing powers.
Similarly, predatory animals such as the lion instinctively know the benefits of offal (organ meats) and tend to eat the chest-area organs first (liver, lungs and heart).
Gram for gram, liver is nature's most nutrient-dense food. It's nature's multivitamin, multi-mineral and much more. It provides:
- An excellent source of high-quality protein
- Three times the amount of choline in one egg
- Nature’s most concentrated source of preformed vitamin A (retinol)
- All the B vitamins in abundance, particularly vitamin B12
- One of our best sources of folate.
- A highly usable form of iron
- Trace elements such as copper, zinc and chromium; liver is our best source of copper
- Abundant in CoQ10
- A good source of purines
- Excellent source of vitamin E
Though much less popular, liver boasts much more nutrients than regular steak. It contains 710 times more Vitamin A and 50 times more Vitamin B12 and folate than steak (1) (2).
Liver contains pre-formed vitamin A (retinol), which is the most bioavailable form. On the contrary, vitamin A that is found in plants, such as carrots and sweet potatoes, comes in the form of beta-carotene which needs to be converted inside your body into pre-formed vitamin A (retinol) before it can be used. The conversion process is quite difficult for many people, especially if they're suffering from digestive problems.
In case you're wondering about the health benefits of some of the aforementioned vitamins and minerals, here's a glimpse:
Vitamin A. Vital for the conversion of cholesterol into sex hormones such as estrogen, testosterone, progesterone, DHEA and many others, as well as optimal thyroid function, good digestion, good vision and healthy bones. Vitamin A is also a strong antioxidant that helps quench internal inflammation.
Choline. Essential for brain, heart and liver function, as well as the integrity of the cell membrane
Copper. Increases iron absorption in the gut. Copper deficiency can cause anemia, and beef liver is a rare dietary source of copper. Copper is also helps against premature hair graying
Vitamin B12 and folate. Helps with energy production, detoxification, methylation, brain health, fetal development, as well as the digestion, absorption & assimilation of other nutrients
Vitamin E. Helps increase circulation, aid in tissue repair, deactivate free radicals and has anti-aging properties.
Purines. Are nitrogen containing compounds that serve as precursors to DNA & RNA, allowing for cellular repair & regeneration, creating a potent anti-aging effect.
CoQ10. A nutrient that is especially important for cardio-vascular function
Chromium. Helps regulate blood sugar levels, reduce risk of heart disease, treat depression and boost immunity
Liver's mysterious anti-fatigue factor
After learning about its unidentified anti-fatigue factor that was described by Dr. Benjamin K. Ershoff, many athletes and bodybuilders began adding beef liver to their diet.
Here's what The Weston Price Foundation wrote about the experiment that was published, July 1951, in the Proceedings of the Society for Experimental Biology and Medicine.
Ershoff divided laboratory rats into three groups. The first ate a basic diet, fortified with 11 vitamins. The second ate the same diet, along with an additional supply of vitamin B complex. The third ate the original diet, but instead of vitamin B complex received 10 percent of rations as powdered liver.
A 1975 article published in Prevention magazine described the experiment as follows: “After several weeks, the animals were placed one by one into a drum of cold water from which they could not climb out. They literally were forced to sink or swim. Rats in the first group swam for an average 13.3 minutes before giving up. The second group, which had the added fortifications of B vitamins, swam for an average of 13.4 minutes. Of the last group of rats, the ones receiving liver, three swam for 63, 83 and 87 minutes. The other nine rats in this group were still swimming vigorously at the end of two hours when the test was terminated. Something in the liver had prevented them from becoming exhausted. To this day scientists have not been able to pin a label on this anti-fatigue factor.”
A cure for pernicious anemia
Until 1926, the only treatment for the debilitating disease, which is caused by vitamin B12 deficiency, was blood transfusions. Shortly thereafter, Drs. Whipple, Murphy and Minot received the Nobel Prize for finding a cure for the disease. They fed patients liver!
They found that if a patient was fed half a pound (226.8 gram) of liver per day, it would take about five days to show an increase in red blood count.
Is it safe to eat liver?
The short answer is yes. Many people, including me, had the misconception that liver filters toxins and thus stores them.
While the liver does neutralize various toxins, such as pesticides and other chemicals, it is more accurate to think of the liver as a chemical processing plant. The liver neutralizes toxins through two phases where it transforms fat soluble toxins into a water-soluble form in phase I. Then takes the products from phase I and binds them with certain substances to render them less harmful and more water soluble for easier excretion in phase II, but DOES NOT store them. Toxins that the body cannot eliminate accumulate in the adipose (fat) tissue. (3)
In fact, laboratory analysis has shown that concentrations of toxins in the liver are no higher than the rest of the body.
A total of 256 liver and kidney samples were collected from Canadian slaughter animals to analyze their lead content and "There was no significant difference between liver and kidney levels." In fact, liver contained less lead than the kidneys in some incidents. (4)
In other words, if your liver contains large amounts of toxins so does the rest of your body and the same applies to the animals you consume.
Sourcing your liver supplements
Rule of thumb, sourcing your beef liver, and meat in general, from grass-fed and grass-finished cows is indispensable.
Why grass-fed and not grain-fed? Because that is the appropriate diet for a cow. They are ruminants, a type of animals with multiple stomachs, that are built to eat GRASS and process the nutrition offered in that GRASS. Research shows that grass-fed grass-finished beef is more nutritious than grain-fed beef.
The greater the percentage of the cattle’s diet that comes from grass, the more optimal the ratio of Omega-6 and Omega-3 fatty acids in the beef. Organic grass-fed beef grass-finished generally has a ratio of 2:1, in contrast to primarily grain-fed beef, which can be as high as 20:1 (Omega-6 is pro-inflammatory, while Omega-3 is anti-inflammatory). Moreover, feeding animals what they were created to eat will make them less prone to disease.
Where to get the best beef liver capsules ever
If you decide that you want to take advantage of all the goodness in beef liver, but can't stomach the idea of eating it, we've made the task much easier for you.
Ticking all the boxes when trying to source the best beef liver capsules for you wasn't an easy task, but we finally NAILED IT. Here's why...
Our freeze-dried beef liver capsules are sourced from the Channel Country of Outback Australia where cattle roam freely and graze on over two hundred and fifty species of native herbs and grasses and herbaceous plants. The stocking rate is around one cattle per square kilometer. Additionally, it is ...
- Grass-fed & grass-finished
- From a Certified Organic source (which is very rare to find)
- Halal Certified
- Hormone, pesticide, antibiotic & GMO free
- Absolutely no fillers (or) flow agents
- 100% freeze dried, not heat processed. That means that you get more of the heat sensitive vitamins, minerals and co-factors that make organ meats so incredibly nourishing
- Non-defatted, left in its natural state