The BEST & WORST Proteins
The Environmental Working Group (EWG.org) offers a "Meat Eaters Guide" that looks at the environmental impacts* of 20 conventionaly (factory-farmed) protein sources ~ beans, dairy, produce, meat & poultry.
*The carbon footprint of the food's 'full life cycle' ~ includes water & fertilization, transportation and even considers the amount of the food that is wasted.
The great lesson revealed is: Eat Less Meat and Don't Waste It!
Here is the list of the Best (1) & Worst (20) Proteins:
2. Tomatoes ~ eat often (not much protein but lots of fiber & micro-nutrients)
3. Milk~ must choose organic or grass-fed cows, 1% or low-fat, and rBGH-free (no growth hormones)
5. Tofu~ USDA Certified Organic or NonGMO ~ otherwise there is a very good chance the soybeans used were genetically modified organisms....WHY Risk eating these???
6. Broccoli~ only 2 gms of protein per cup but extremely nutritious!
7. Yogurt ~ like milk: organic & low-fat or non-fat yogurt
8. Nuts~ high in protein & healthy monosaturated fats
9. Peanut Butter ~ eat often. Look for Natural to avoid extra sugar & partially hydrogenated oils.
11. Potatoes~ choose organic otherwise potatoes have high amounts of pesticides. They are on the EWG's 'Dirty Dozen' list of most contaminated.
12. Eggs ~ eat occasionally & choose Certified Humane, Organic or Pasture Raised.
13. Tuna ~ eat occasionally & choose light tuna to reduce mercury exposure.
15. Turkey ~ eat occasionally & choose organic, pasture-raised or antibiotic-free.
16. Salmon ~ eat occasionally & choose WILD not farmed. Richer in heart-healthy omega 3's
17. Pork ~ eat this less and when you do, choose certified humane, pasture-raised & SKIP processed pork like bacon!
18. Cheese ~ eat this less and use sharp flavored giving maximum impact for less. Go for organic & low-fat. Cheese is listed as 3rd worst protein choice because people tend to over eat it. A single serving is 1.5oz but people eat more like 4 oz at a time!
Worst Protein Choice: LAMB. Choose grass-fed, humanely raised ~ for MANY good reasons.