The 80/20 Principle Part I: Think Twice Before You Reach for That Hamburger!

Our Complete Spotlight on Body Ecology Series!

“The farming “industry” – where animals are kept in crowded quarters and fattened up with hormones and antibiotics – is unfortunately the norm in the U.S. You can do something about this serious public health threat by choosing your animal products wisely!

This is the fourth installment in our highly acclaimed Spotlight on Body Ecology Series. Click here for the previous article in our compelling series!

Thus far, we have discussed the importance of applying the Body Ecology Diet to your life in a step-by-step fashion through making small changes one at a time to better your health and increase your energy.

In this article, we want to begin highlighting the 80/20 Principle in a step-by-step approach by pointing out the important choices you need to make to nourish your body with the right foods!

The first rule of the 80/20 principle is that 80% of what you eat should be from the land, the ocean, and fermented vegetables, while the other 20% should come from animal proteins OR grain-like seeds (not both in one meal).

The Standard American Diet (S.A.D.) does not adhere to this principle. In fact, most Americans consume far too many animal proteins (which are acidic) combined with unhealthy starches, leaving little room for delicious, alkaline-forming vegetables.

Animal proteins are necessary in your diet and a little goes a long way because they:

  • Contain the essential amino acids your body needs to function
  • Are rich in important vitamins and minerals
  • Boost immunity
  • Help build and protect muscle and many other cells in your body
  • Increase satiety to aid in weight loss
  • Help the brain stay grounded and focused

While we advocate the inclusion of animal proteins in your diet for the above reasons, it is also important to point out that many people are not properly digesting the protein in their diets. For further information on this problem and why the Body Ecology Diet provides the best road map to conquer it, you can read: “The Surprising Reason You May Be Aging Prematurely: Improper Protein Digestion”.

Unfortunately, the meats that are most easily available today are no longer as nutritious as Mother Nature intended. In fact, they are hazardous to your health.

Not All Meats Are Created Equal!

And we don’t just mean beef vs. chicken. Unfortunately, these days not all beef is created equal, nor are all chicken products.

In 1980, the beef production per cow in the U.S. was 449 pounds. In 2009, it was 639 pounds per cow1, and the retail value of consumed beefdoubled.

Please read those numbers again: Cows today have over 40% more quality mass, i.e., “beef”, than cows of 30 years ago.

You could say that it’s not nature but nurture that is responsible for these changes in our cows.

All across the nation, industrial-size farms are fattening up their cows with synthetic growth and sex hormones in the interest of getting more bang for their buck, and your health is the least of their concerns.

The safety of synthetic hormones being used in beef production became a highly political issue starting in 1989 when the European Community (now EU) banned the sale of hormone treated U.S. meat in their markets.

And what was the United States’ response? They have been fighting the EU ban ever since, and the FDA and USDA are still making false assurances – in spite of statements by scientific and medical experts that explicit evidence exists of these hormones causing serious risk to consumers.

In fact, these experts charge that the ban on hormones in our meat is at least three decades overdue2.

But hormones aren’t the only issue

It may come as no surprise to you that the primary concern of the meat and poultry industries is profit. For this reason, as many animals as possible are packed into tight quarters, creating unsanitary conditions and disease in the animals.

In an attempt to prevent and control the spread of disease that would cause loss of livestock, farmers have been allowed to give all animals antibiotics – which also helps the animals gain weight.

Antibiotics given to animals at low doses over long periods of time have created the perfect conditions for new, antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria to develop and become a serious public health threat.

What’s worse is that the industry experts know better – but when it comes to big industry, money rules.

Leading microbiologists on the advisory board of the FDA were warning over 30 years ago that the use of antibiotics on animals in this way was linked to the evolution of antibacterial resistance in bacteria that infects humans3.

Thankfully, there is a rise in consumer awareness of these issues, and hormone-free, antibiotic-free meat and poultry products are now more widely available.

Hopefully, the U.S. will follow in the footsteps of other nations and ban the use of these dangerous additives in our food, but it takes sending the message that only meat from naturally raised animals is safe for your table.

You should choose ONLY:

If you have trouble finding organic and free-range meats in your area, nothing beats U.S. Wellness Meats. They are an online source of the healthiest meat and poultry products that are flash-frozen and conveniently shipped to your door.

Fish: The Ultimate Disease Fighter

Fish are not only a great source of protein, but they contain omega 3 essential fatty acids (EFA) that have been shown to help fight cardiac disease, lower cholesterol, fight cancer, boost brain health, and improve mood and overall wellbeing.

Many people are concerned (rightfully so) about the level of mercury found in most fish today. It’s generally agreed, however, that the benefits of consuming moderate amounts of fish to get the omega 3 essential fatty acids found in them far outweighs the risks.

Because the excellent fermented foods and liquids eaten with a Body Ecology meal contain beneficial microflora and good yeast, we feel that eating certain fish is quite safe. Microflora are by their very nature powerful scavengers of heavy metals and other toxins. Obviously, avoid fish that contain mercury (tuna, swordfish, and barramundi), and eat small fish (sardines, anchovies), white fish (tilapia, flounder, sole, trout), and salmon instead. Of course, on The Diet, only 20% of your meal should be fish, while 80% of your meal should be vegetables from the land, ocean, and cultured.

What may be an even bigger concern to some of you, depending on what part of the country you are in, is the recent Gulf Coast oil spill where seafood is the main industry.

According to two doctors in the September issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, the Gulf Coast oil spill poses a threat to human health and to the safety of seafood.4 ,5

No matter what industry experts want you to believe, it’s safest to avoid any fish that may have been affected by the Gulf Coast oil spill.

If you want more detailed information on how to safely get your omega 3 essential fatty acids and consume seafood, read our article “The Fish You Can Eat, The Fish You Should Definitely Avoid”.

Stay tuned for Part 2 of this article on animal proteins, where we will discuss a controversial American favorite: MILK!


Renu Gandhi, Ph.D., and Suzanne M. Snedeker, Ph.D., “Consumer Concerns About Hormones in Food”, June 2000
Staff, Mayo Clinic, “Omega-3 in Fish: How Eating Fish Helps Your Heart”

  1. National Cattleman’s Beef Association Industry Statistics, Cattle Numbers and Beef Production, August, 2010 http://www.beefusa.org/uDocs/annualcattlenumbersandbeefproduction774.pdf
  2. A Ban on Hormonal Meat is Three Decades Overdue , WorldWire Press Release February 2, 2010
  3. Donald Kennedy, “Cows on Drugs”, New York Times, April 17th, 2010 http://www.nytimes.com/2010/04/18/opinion/18kennedy.html
  4. Solomon, Gina M., M.D., MPH & Jannsen, Sarah, M.D., Ph.D., MPH “Health Effects of the Gulf Oil Spill”, Journal of The American Medical Association, September, 2010
  5. Tasker, Fred, “Doctors fear Gulf Oil Spill Still A Threat to Seafood Safety”,  Miami Herald, August 17th, 2010
Free Shipping On Orders Over $99
Family Owned
30+ Years of Experience in the Field
Subscribe and Save