There are Lots of Reasons for Not Eating Meat, but Why Become Vegan?
Healthy and Vegan from Birth
Why Become Vegan?
Why only vegetables and fruits? Why vegan? Why not include an occasional egg or a little milk, cheese, and butter? What's the harm?
1. The harm to your body is the saturated fat and cholesterol you are consuming. Both of these are causes for heart attacks and strokes. No vegetables contain cholesterol which collects in the veins and arteries to reduce circulation. Heat attacks are the number one killer in the United States. And, the more fat and less fiber we eat, the more likely we are going to die from colon cancer.
2. We are hearing more and more today that our health begins in our digestive systems. Approximately 70% of all antibiotics used in the U.S. are regularly added to the feed of livestock and poultry that are not sick. This overuse of antibiotics creates resistant strains of bacteria, and our antibiotics stop working for us--then we need stronger medicine. (Union of Concerned Scientists) You are ingesting these drugs and resistant bacteria when you eat foods from animals.
Waste of Food
3. 70% of the grains grown in the U.S. are for animal consumption, making the protein we get from milk and eggs very expensive compared to protein directly from grains. Air pollution results from concentrations of animals for factory egg and milk production. 18% of greenhouse gas emissions comes from factory farms. http://www.fao.org/ag/magazine/0612sp1.htm
We Are What We Eat
4. Animals are living beings. They were not born to spend their lives in cramped environments on factory farms--animal concentration camps. These animals experience pain and suffering as much or more than humans do. On factory farms animals are treated like machines. Their lives only have value to the extent that someone can make money off them. Cows are artificially inseminated so that they can produce babies that are taken from them, so they can produce milk for humans. Chickens never see the light of day, never get to peck and scratch. The nesting and free roam hens have barely better living environments--slightly better concentration camps. Why vegan? Do it for the animals.
5. We eat food to stay alive. Healthy food keeps us alive. Milk is pasteurized so that all bacteria and vitamins are killed. It's sanitized for us to consume with vitamins added back in. Is it really food? If everything living has to be killed from a food to make it safe for us to eat, how does that "food" benefit us? Couldn't we just eat a sanitized block of wood and take a vitamin? The wood might be healthier because it didn't come from a diseased animal.
A woman once told me she would never consume any dairy products because she was raised on a dairy farm. She saw workers spit in the milk, throw their cigarette butts in there, and more. But, don't worry; they clean it up. YUM!
Calcium and Protein and B-12
"Calcium deficiency caused by insufficient amounts of calcium in the diet is not known to occur in humans..." (John McDougall, M.D., The McDougall Plan, p.52) Most people of the world consume no dairy products. Our bodies only allow us to continue to drink milk after infancy because we never stop doing it. Milk is for infants. In fact, cow's milk is for baby cows, and human milk is for baby humans. The greatest incidences of osteoporosis (porous bones) occur in countries where the most milk is consumed, not the opposite. Although cow's milk may contain a lot of calcium, if our bodies are not capable of absorbing most of it, there is no benefit.
Have you ever heard of anyone having a protein deficiency? We get protein in most of the healthy foods we eat. Eat lots of salads with a variety of raw vegetables, and you will get plenty of protein. Have you ever heard of anyone having obesity? We should be far more concerned about the fats in eggs and dairy than worrying about not getting enough protein on a vegan diet. So, why vegan? You decide. If vegan diets create protein deficiencies, I'd be dead by now.
Vegan humans do make Vitamin B-12 in their intestines (Geitner's book on Physiology), but there is a worry that it does not absorb. Of course, everything that is know about nourishing the human body is not known. We get bits and pieces of information about certain things and run with them because we are anxious to know what really keeps us healthy. Bottom line, healthy food keeps us healthy. If your only concern about being vegetarian is one vitamin deficiency, take a vitamin pill.
- Could You Become Vegetarian? We eat what we are used to eating--habits that developed over years. How hard would it be to change?
- People Affected by Animal Rights Activists Do you know child protection laws, food quality, and saving a town are some of the things animal activists have done for us.
- Vegetarianism. What is it and what exactly does it mean.
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