Why It’s Vital for Humanity to Consume Far Less Meat and Dairy
Meat hunger and nutritional deficiency have been issues for human beings since before the Agricultural Revolution, when people started to consume much higher quantities of cereal crops such as wheat and rice. However, soon after this milestone human health and life expectancy began to decline more significantly. Yet, it’s important to note that these health issues likely had much more to do with a lack of nutritional variety as opposed to a lack of adequate meat consumption.
Even though vegans have been widely criticized for refusing to eat meat, eggs, and fish, science suggests that by making other wise food choices it is entirely possible to maintain high levels of personal health and well-being while adhering to these types of diets. For instance, lack of calcium can be countered by consuming collard greens or tofu, and lack of vitamin B12 can be remedied with supplements; vegans can even experience lower rates of heart disease as a result of these alternatives.
Despite this scientific evidence, average American citizens still consume approximately 200 pounds of meat every year, and this puts them at higher risk of cancer, heart disease, and obesity, among numerous other ailments. A major part of the reason so many people refuse to turn away from meat is the fact that the USDA Food Guide Pyramid advises 2 to 3 servings of milk, yogurt, or cheese per day, in addition to 2 to 3 servings of meat, poultry, fish, dry beans, eggs, or nuts per day. Walter Willett of the Department of Nutrition at Harvard University disagrees with these recommendations wholeheartedly: “Individuals can be very healthy with no dairy consumption at all.” Countless studies agree.
According to Rosane Oliveira, DVM, PhD, “If you eat a relatively low-calcium diet, your body will adjust. Studies show that when fed a relatively low-calcium diet (415 mg/day), our intestines become more efficient at absorbing calcium, and our kidneys conserve it better. Equally, when overfed with calcium (1,740 mg/day) our bodies adjust as well: our intestines block the calcium absorption, while our kidneys eliminate more. This is an example of how our bodies protect us: if not eliminated, the excess calcium would get deposited in our soft tissues (heart, kidneys, muscles, and skin), making us vulnerable to illness and even death . . . a true testament to how smart our bodies really are”
A similar story exists regarding the relationships between the United States government and the meat industry, which also benefits from a large portion of $38 billion in annual subsidies. This is even more important to know now that meat is mass produced through the use of countless hormones and antibiotics, and because animals often end up consuming their own fecal matter and myriad GMOs. Shockingly, there is evidence that many Americans have never once eaten what would be commonly defined as “real” chicken; factory farmed versions simply don’t qualify.
Harvard University has published research in JAMA Internal Medicine which found that swapping processed red meat for plant protein reduces the risk of premature death by 34%, and swapping plant protein for eggs resulted in a 19% reduction of premature death. Separate Harvard research revealed that eating small amounts of red meat on a continual basis is connected to increased risks of heart disease, stroke, and cardiovascular disease. What’s more, opting for plant protein over meat protein could very well reverse issues that have been caused due to meat consumption.
A famous China Study by Professor Dr. T. Colin Campbell has proven that animal protein is extremely acidic, which causes the human body to remove calcium and phosphorus from bones to neutralize this: “What I did during the early part of my career was nothing more than what traditional science would suggest. I made the observation that diets presumably higher in animal protein were associated with liver cancer in the Philippines. When coupled with the extraordinary report from India showing that casein fed to experimental rats at the usual levels of intake dramatically promoted liver cancer, it prompted my 27-year-long study The China Project, of how this effect worked. We did dozens of experiments to see if this was true and, further, how it worked.”
As per Chief Financial and Operations Officer at Impossible Foods David Lee, “The Heme is natural and identical, down to the molecular level, to what is consumed from a cow. A cow uses plants and turns them into meat. We use plants and turn them into meat.”
A Canadian study reveals a 189% increase in products which claim to be vegan, and American research shows similar trends. It has long been thought that meat consumption is connected to masculinity, power, and wealth; a recent study by Meat and Livestock Australia indicated that vegetarians are still viewed as being cowardly and weak in the eyes of many human beings. We can only hope that awareness continues to be spread and that significant progress is made toward replacing red meat and dairy products with plant protein.