1

votes

For biochemists: Difference between regular butter and grassfed?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created April 13, 2013 at 11:32 AM

I buy imported butter from France where cows graze (however,not butter made from raw milk).

I'm happy with that choice but a sceptical friend asked the following question:

If you analyzed regular butter made from milk from factory cows and compared it to butter produced with milk from grassfed cows, what difference would you see?

Both are about 82% fat.

I said I'd rather eat a dairy product produced from a healthy animal than a sick one, but she said (playing a bit of devil's advocate) maybe the milk produced my the unhealthy cow is the same? Yes, she's fed antibiotics, but does that pass to the milk (and therefore the butter)?

Thoughts?

Medium avatar

(3029)

on April 13, 2013
at 07:57 PM

Honestly, I don't taste a difference. When I started buying the better butter, I took a bit of one and a bit of the other and compared them. The both tasted great.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on April 13, 2013
at 06:10 PM

Retinol or beta carotene? I think it's beta carotene (darn).

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on April 13, 2013
at 06:09 PM

I'd wager they hardly have effect on bacteria let alone people. But I'm sure there's folks who disagree.

72cf727474b8bf815fdc505e58cadfea

on April 13, 2013
at 05:40 PM

So the next question would be, do legally allowable antibiotic residues have any effect on people, or are they truly negligible?

72cf727474b8bf815fdc505e58cadfea

on April 13, 2013
at 05:38 PM

The poster wisely asked "what difference would you see, " not "is there any difference at all?" People here make extremely strong (and expensive) recommendations about grassfed dairy, so I think it's reasonable to ask what the exact differences are.

3491e51730101b18724dc57c86601173

(8395)

on April 13, 2013
at 05:28 PM

That was my understanding, that grassfed butter has higher levels of K2 (which is otherwise hard to get enough of in the western diet) and Vitamin A, lower levels of PUFA's, and it tastes better!

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4 Answers

2
Ca2c940a1947e6200883908592956680

(8574)

on April 13, 2013
at 11:41 AM

Mark Sisson. Is All Butter Created Equal? http://www.marksdailyapple.com/grass-fed-butter/

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on April 13, 2013
at 06:10 PM

Retinol or beta carotene? I think it's beta carotene (darn).

3491e51730101b18724dc57c86601173

(8395)

on April 13, 2013
at 05:28 PM

That was my understanding, that grassfed butter has higher levels of K2 (which is otherwise hard to get enough of in the western diet) and Vitamin A, lower levels of PUFA's, and it tastes better!

1
32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on April 13, 2013
at 12:40 PM

In terms of antibiotics in dairy use, milk is screen for antibiotic residues. If you milk a cow being treated with antibiotics, pool that milk with the other cows from the dairy, it's very likely that shipment of milk will be dumped for testing positive for antibiotic residues. There's no incentive for a dairy farmer to include a few more gallons of questionable milk that could ruin 1000s of gallons of good milk.

That's not to say even following all proper withdrawal times for antibiotics (which are NOT used prophylacticly in dairies) will insure non-zero antibiotic levels in milk, it's simply to meet the regulated maximums.

72cf727474b8bf815fdc505e58cadfea

on April 13, 2013
at 05:40 PM

So the next question would be, do legally allowable antibiotic residues have any effect on people, or are they truly negligible?

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on April 13, 2013
at 06:09 PM

I'd wager they hardly have effect on bacteria let alone people. But I'm sure there's folks who disagree.

0
A0c49f398499246c623e6527e9dd5ca2

(548)

on April 13, 2013
at 05:29 PM

The difference in taste and colour aside, grass-fed butter is much smoother. The relates to the higher UFA content of the butter. Hence with eating gf-butter you don't consume as many blood lipids elevating SFAs.

-1
Ebb10603524dd22621c1155dd7ddf106

(19150)

on April 13, 2013
at 11:48 AM

Why did this have to go down to the molecule level? Didn't you immediately notice a difference in taste? (Granted, different flavor signifies different chemistry, too.)

72cf727474b8bf815fdc505e58cadfea

on April 13, 2013
at 05:38 PM

The poster wisely asked "what difference would you see, " not "is there any difference at all?" People here make extremely strong (and expensive) recommendations about grassfed dairy, so I think it's reasonable to ask what the exact differences are.

Medium avatar

(3029)

on April 13, 2013
at 07:57 PM

Honestly, I don't taste a difference. When I started buying the better butter, I took a bit of one and a bit of the other and compared them. The both tasted great.

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