There is some really cool work being done on the science of nutrient density. I want to help spread this work because there are still far too many people who believe a carrot, is a carrot, is a carrot. When the reality is there is a huge variation of nutrient density among foods based on the soil it was grown in among other factors.
The video below is a presentation by Dr. Stephan van Vliet, a researcher at Utah State University, discussing the preliminary findings of a study on nutrient density in beef.
The study, conducted in partnership with the Bionutrient Institute, aimed to determine nutrient density in meat from over 250 farms, profiling both grass-fed and grain-fed systems.
The preliminary data showed that grass-fed beef contained twice as many phytochemicals (plant-derived chemicals with potential health benefits) as grain-fed beef. However, there was significant variation among samples, with some grass-fed samples having up to nine times more phytochemicals than others.
The study also found differences in the types of saturated fatty acids and omega-3 fatty acids in the beef, depending on the diet of the cows. The findings suggest that the diet and management of cows can significantly impact the nutrient density of the beef they produce.
It also illustrates how the current nutrition facts panels don't tell the whole story. While the macronutrients (carbs, fats, and proteins) may be very similar across the same kinds of food, a deeper look at a wider range of nutrients shows some serious differences.