Eating Meat The Unhealthy Truth
Should humans eat meat?
This is a touchy subject to write about, and not something I take at all lightly. I feel it is important that people understand the truth about meat eating and just how seriously it can affect our health.
Recently former USA President, Bill Clinton was advised to adopt a vegan diet by his doctors. If Bill Clinton the former President of the United States, has been put on a vegan diet by his physicians to save his life, then maybe we too need to understand the detrimental effects meat eating can have on our health.
What Can Be Found In Meat Products.
If you knew that every time you bit into a hamburger, or fed your kids some chicken nuggets and drumsticks, or indulged in a hearty breakfast of sausage, bacon and eggs, that you were in-fact ingesting fecal matter, diseased flesh, highly stressed meat with an unhealthy build up of lactic acid, urine, blood, pus, various pathogens, artificial growth hormones, and an interesting assortment of antibiotics (of which have not been tested for safety on humans), along with chlorine bleach and who knows what else, would you still be so willing to eat meat?
Unhealthy Facts about Meat Eating and Production
99% of meat eaten in the USA comes from Factory Farms and do does a big majority of the rest of the Western Worlds meat and dairy supplies. Meat is produced in factory farms and industrial slaughterhouses, or as they are also referred to – CAFOs (Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations), or IFAP (Industrial Farm Animal Production)it is estimated that around 450 billion land animals are farmed each year. http://www.farmforward.com/farming-forward/factory-farming
Meat Eating Causing Human Illnesses
– The following human illnesses are the result of contamination from direct contact with farmed animals and from eating contaminated meat & dairy products; Swine Flu, H5N1 Avian Influenza, E-coli, Food Poisoning, Mad Cow Disease, Salmonella, Campylobacteriosis, listeriosis, Staphlyococcal Intoxication, Clostridium Perfringens Food-Borne Illness, E-coli Hemorrhagic Colitis.
Here is more information about description of illnesses and diseases contracted from farmed animals and their by-products. Eating red meat may also ncrease the risk of certain types of cancers. According to scientific studies you have a third more risk of developing bowel cancer. http://www.cancerproject.org/survival/cancer_facts/meat.php
Poor Meat Inspection on Factory Farms
-So knowing the health risks surely all governments would protect us by closely monitoring the conditions on these farms and the state of the meat and other animal products before we consume them. Yes they do, to some degree, but it is not effective enough. Generally there are health inspectors on site, supposedly monitoring these mass production lines. But how on earth is an inspector meant to check thoroughly, the state of each living animal, especially as in the case of poultry farms, when there are tens of thousands of birds cramped into each barn.
No one person, or not even ten people, could inspect each animal sufficiently. It is also impossible to inspect the cuts of meat for disease and abnormal irregularities, when thousands of pieces of meat are speeding past these officers, on automated conveyor belts.Profit is everything, our health, the ecological impact and the animals health, stand for very little. Companies would rather pay fines and lawsuits, rather than alter their practices, as these are but a drop in the ocean of the billions of dollars they generate from sales.
Animal Agriculture and Environment Disaster
– Natural forest habitat is bulldozed away, destroying the native flora and wildlife, so grain, seed and legume crops can be grown to feed livestock. . About 85% of the worlds soy crops get processed into soy bean oil and soy meal which is used for feeding livestock. Clearing forests and growing huge soy crops to feed livestock, which will only feed a small portion of the worlds human population is mad, when you could grow smaller seed, grain and legume crops that would be enough to directly feed all the starving nations of the world and less forest clearing would be needed? Another frightening statistic is that the amount of methane produced by livestock produces more green house gas emissions than transportation does!
Waste from Factory Farms causing Human Diseases
-According to Jonathan Safran Foer, author of the controversial and widely acclaimed book Eating Meat. In the USA the working conditions on factory farms are so hazardous to ones health,(the turn over rate of staff typically exceeds 100%) that the only people they can get to work on them are illegal aliens and poor immigrants.
Factory Farms one of the Biggest Polluters on the Planet
The huge amount of animal waste (feces, urine, dead animals, blood, vomit, animal parts, pathogens and dangerous bacteria etc) that accumulates on these farms, can not possibly, all be contained into the massive lagoons they build for just such a purpose, as there is just too much! So instead they are released onto nearby agricultural fields as supposed fertilizer and poured into the waterways. This extremely hazardous by-product of factory farming, affects us all at the end of the day.
People who live close to factory farms are in extreme danger, as the fecal runoffs from these farms generate dangerously high levels of various heavy metals like Nitrate which can cause Baby Blue Syndrome in humans infants, which can result in death.One gas released by the lagoons, hydrogen sulfide, is dangerous even at low levels. Its effects — which are irreversible — range from sore throat to seizures, comas and even death’. Pollution From Giant Livestock Farm Threatens Public Health.
World Watch, the Sierra Club, the Pew Commission, Greenpeace, and other major environmental watchdogs have singled out factory farms as among the biggest polluters on the planet. There is now a scientific consensus that animal agriculture is the single largest contributor to global warming—outstripping even the transportation industry in its production of greenhouse gases. Read full report on Factory Farming Polluting Our Plant.
The idea behind factory farming is to produce animals for our consumption as fast, cheaply and efficiently as possible. The Western World in eating more animal flesh than it ever has, MUCH MORE THAN EVEN the meat industry recommends is a so-called healthy portion.
Consumers wanting to eat more meat = incredible cruelty and inhumanity = Factory Farming
Factory farming means, meat producers are cramming thousands of animals into crates stacked one on top of the other to get more animals into a smaller space. They are squishing them together tightly into closed barns, so the living are forced to stand all over the injured, sick and dead.
Animals are being genetically engineered into grotesque forms of their natural state, so that they grow to slaughter size as fast as possible and produce as much meat as possible in as short a time as possible. These animals are often extremely sick, stressed and covered in sores, urine ammonia burns, feces, vomit, blood and are carrying all sorts of diseases. A large percentage die before they even reach the slaughterhouse.
I am not going to go into the details of the horrors found inside slaughterhouses, as this article is about how eating meat impacts human health.
While one could argue but we have eaten meat for centuries, 100 years ago, meat eating meant having small farms, where animals where given fresh air, natural healthy food, clean water and treated and slaughtered humane. The animals that gave us food where cared for and respected. Nowadays you have a huge multi-billion dollar industry with an incredible amount of money spent of advertising animal product e.g think McDonald’s and KFC.
Why Going Vegan Or Organic Vegetarian Is The Healthiest Option
Yes I believe a vegetarian diet is a healthier option, not just for human health, but for the health and ultimately the survival of our fragile planet and plus there is the inarguable humane side of saving from unimaginable suffering,the billions of factory farmed animals that suffer and die in the thousands on a daily basis.
I have found some good and sound evidence to back this argument up, read this in-depth article about the pros of vegetarianism.
This link here gives some great facts from some of the worlds leading organizations such as World Health Organization (WHO), Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) & the American Dietetic Association (ADA).
People will argue that we need to eat meat for the protein and iron. This is actually complete rubbish, a balanced vegetarian diet will more than adequately provide all your protein, iron, calcium and essential fatty acids, including omega 3’s. Balance is of the utmost importance in any diet whether you are eat animal flesh or you are vegan. If you don’t eat healthy and where possible organic, unprocessed natural foods and you eat a diet high is sugars, refined carbohydrates and bad fats, then you will not have a healthy body no matter whether you are vegetarian or eating a high protein meat diet.
I highly advise adding Quinoa, Chia Seeds and Hemp to your vegetarian diet as they all are sources of complete protein, plus both Chia Seeds and Hemp have a good amount of Omega 3’s and 6’s. See my articles Chia Seed Health Benefits and Hemp Seed Health Benefits & Hemp Milk Recipe and Quinoa Health Benefits -Complete Protein.
Your can safely raise your children on a well-balanced vegetarian diet from the moment they start eating solid food as young babies.
The following links break down a vegetarian diet and the benefits:
If you want some inspiration to start you on your vegetarian journey, well here is a huge list of celebrities and sports people that are vegetarians.
If You Still Want To Eat Meat, Eat Less, Eat Organic
If you still choose to eat meat after reading all the information above, please do so mindfully by following the points outlined below.
Eat meat only once or twice a week to protect your own health and the planets. Less meat demand from consumers less animals farmed, more forest and natural habitat.Eat only bio-dynamic or organic, free-range and sustainably farmed, meat. Yes it is more expensive, but as you can read above, it is well worth the extra dollars to know what you are not ingesting.Only eat what you feel you need for health requirements and not because it taste good and is readily available. See How Much Red Meat Should We Eat.
But remember you can get all your nutrients met on a vegetarian diet. We need to be aware of what we put in our mouths and not just eat something because it tastes good. See http://www.farmforward.com/farming-forward/food-choices
The inspiration behind this article is a powerful book by Jonathan Safran Foer titled EATING ANIMALS. I was inspired to buy his book after seeing him interviewed on the Ellen DeGeneres Show see his interview. Jonathan has taken a very brave stance and written about the meat industry in the USA ( which is unfortunately is a role model for the rest of the world). His book unearths some shocking statistic and facts about the modern meat and poultry industry. It something we all should read.
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