To the Editor:
May is beef month.
But what many Iowans do not know is that the beef industry provides approximately 40,000 jobs and contributes $5.1 billion annually to our economy. Roughly 16,892,894 people can be fed with the beef produced in Iowa every year. Our beef herd also consumes 148 million bushels of corn and 78 million bushels of soybeans. Now that's some good news when it comes to stimulating our economy.
But there is more good news about the beef industry. In an August 2007 edition of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition a study found that consuming four ounces of lean beef can stimulate muscle protein development by 50 percent. Since approximately 20 percent of older adults do not meet the USDA's recommended dietary allowance of protein, the most practical dietary strategy to stimulate muscle growth is to include high-quality protein like beef during each meal.
So the next time you visit the grocery store or dine at your favorite restaurant be sure to order up a fine serving of beef and thank the Iowa beef farmer for producing it.