The following arguments are the same as i explain in my food talk. They concern what i call the psychological evidence that humans are not meat eaters. There is so much physiological evidence that meat is not good for our bodies or minds, but this is more interesting than that! This is deeper evidence that we were not equipped to eat dead animals by G-d. If we were, we would go about it the same way all the others do. I think this stuff is common sense and obvious... what do you think?
in the Garden of Eden...
The main reason for becoming vegetarian is self preservation. The consumption of animal products causes the pH of the body to become acidic, leading to cellular degeneration and the onslaught of disease. This has been confirmed in hundreds of scientific studies. An acidic pH in the body is the primary precurser to all disease. When you choose a vegetarian lifestyle, you not only help yourself, but you help the planet as well.
"As we sow, so shall we reap." "Thou shalt not kill." "For every action there is a reaction." "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you." "Whatever we do to the creatures of the earth, we do to ourselves." In many ways and in many cultures, the same message has been delivered. We must gently live with others if we want gentle reactions. Inflicting pain and death brings the reaction of premature pain and death. Witness our healthcare system.
No Human is a Carnivore
If you've ever watched a carnivore eat. You know instantly that humans are not carnivores. Carnivores stalk their prey. They attack, usually biting through the neck and ripping the throat to shreds. After killing, they rip open the belly with their sharp teeth and devour the entrails. They lap up the blood. Finally, they chew the bones, crushing them in their powerful jaws. No human could eat like a carnivore eats, except perhaps, the totally insane. We are not carnivores.
The only way humans can eat animals is to disguise what they are really doing... get someone else to kill the animal, then drain and dispose of its blood, slice the muscles into pieces that are unrecognizable, grind the internal organs to make "sausages", cook it, smother it with sauces and seasonings... all in an effort to keep from experiencing the reality of what a carnivore does and is. We are not carnivores.
If you have ever had a pet, you know that animals have feelings, that they are intuitive, sensitive creatures. The production of animals for the consumption of their muscle and organ tissues is less than human. If we are going to create a Heaven on Earth, these atrocities must end. Interspersed throughout the text below are positive options and useful statistics.
Over 7 billion farm animals die or are slaughtered in the U.S. every year for the production of flesh, mostly in highly mechanized factory-like systems using unprecedented, largely unregulated methods of brutality, danger, and cruelty.
Over a billion cattle populate the earth, with a combined weight greater than the entire human population. They are sustained unnaturally in these numbers to satisfy demand for their flesh. They are a primary cause for the destruction of the environment. Beef cattle return only 1 pound of meat for every 16 pounds of grain and soybeans they are fed, causing huge inefficiencies in food utilization, while millions of people go hungry.
Animal-based diets are high in saturated fat, excessive protein and cholesterol, leading to heart disease and stroke, nearly 50% of all deaths in the U.S.
It takes about 2,500 gallons of water to produce a single pound of meat. According to Newsweek, "The water that goes into a 1,000 pound steer could float a destroyer." In contrast, it takes only 25 gallons of water to produce a pound of wheat.
The world's cattle alone (not including other livestock) consume food enough for 8.7 billion people. Over a hundred million of tons of grain go to animals while only 5 million tons of grain could adequately feed the 15 million children throughout the world who starve to death every year. By feeding grain to livestock, we lose 90% of the protein, 96% of the calories, 99% of its carbohydrates, and 100% of the fiber.
A meat-eating American needs 3-1/4 acres of cultivated farm land per year; vegetarians only require 1/6 acre per year.
There are virtually no laws against cruelty to animals raised for food in the U.S.
Meat contains no essential nutrients that cannot be obtained in higher quality directly from plant sources.
Grotesque methods of reproduction are employed on animal farms. One method of animal procreation employs so called "teaserbulls" (cattle) or "sidewinders" (boars) to identify females in heat. Their penises are surgically re-routed to come out of the sides of their bodies so that they cannot reproduce directly. These mutilated, frustrated studs exist only to identify fertile females. The cows or sows are artificially inseminated.
Meat would cost over $35/lb. if the water used by the meat industry were not subsidized by the U.S. government. Livestock production accounts for twice the pollution of industrial sources in the U.S.
Dr. T. Colin Campbell, a key researcher involved with The China Study, says "In the next 10 to 15 years, one of the things you're bound to hear is that animal protein ... is one of the most toxic nutrients of all that can be considered." Risk for disease increases dramatically when even a little animal protein is added to the diet.
The planet's entire petroleum reserves would be exhausted in a just over a decade if the whole world adopted the technology used in the U.S. to produce the standard American meat-centered diet.
Trees are being cut at an alarming rate to clear land for meat production. If tomorrow people in the U.S. switched to vegetarian,, 200 million acres could be returned to forest.
"Redskins" are chickens on the conveyer belt to death which missed not both the brine-filled electrified stunning trough but also the knife that was to cut their throats and bleed their bodies. Their deaths occurred in the scald tank where feathers are loosened before plucking. Piles of them are thrown aside every day.
Chicken feed is routinely laced with hormones and antibiotics to allow agribusiness the efficiency of massive flocks under intensive confinement. Only with massive drugs, a practice begun in the fifties, can such cruel and brutal conditions be maintained. These hormones and antibiotics make their way into those who eat their flesh causing hormonal imbalances and antibiotic resistance.
Meat-centered diets are linked to many kinds of cancer, such as cancer of the colon, breast, cervix, uterus, ovary, prostate, and lung.
U.S. livestock produces 20 times the excrement of the human population.Their waste no longer serves to fertilize pastures a little at a time, since they spend much or all of their lives in factory sheds or feedlots. Wastes are often simply flushed away dangerously raising ammonia and nitrate levels in our drinking water. Going vegetarian helps to clean up our nation's water more than any other single action.
The human digestive system is not designed for meat. A natural carnivore's bowel is relatively short (2-3 times the length of its torso) and smooth inside, a human's bowel is 12 times the length of the torso and deeply twisted and puckered. The carnivore has much stronger digestive acids. In the long convoluted human digestive tract, meat putrifies and becomes toxic to the body.
John Robbins, author of Diet for a New America, says that a dairy cow living in today's modern milk factory "is bred, fed, medicated, inseminated and manipulated to a single purpose -- maximum milk production at minimum cost. She lives with an unnaturally swelled up and sensitive udder, is kept inside a stall her entire life, is milked up to 3 times a day, and is kept pregnant nearly all of the time with her young taken from her almost immediately after birth. "Contented" is the characteristic most often attributed to the cow. However, cows in factories are fed tranquilizers to calm their frazzled nerves."
On a calorie basis, spinach has 14 times the iron of sirloin steak. Animal products are deficient in vitamin C which is needed for iron absorption, .
Male cattle in the beef industry are castrated to make them more docile and to promotes a fattier (more profitable) animal. Anesthetics are seldom used.
The typical egg factory may hold 80,000 hens per warehouse with 4 or 5 layer hens squeezed into a 12" x 18" cage. Poultry producers de-beak their chicks with hot-knife machines to prevent the crazed birds from killing each other in response to their intense confinement.
The National Cancer Research Institute found that women who eat meat daily are almost 4 times more likely to get breast cancer than those who eat little or no meat
At the expense of their own hungry populations, exporters in poor countries produce luxury foods such as meat to sell to rich countries. Meat is much more profitable than subsistence crops of rice, beans and vegetables.
Cattle are responsible for 12% of the methane emissions. Methane contributes to global warming by trapping 25 times more solar heat than carbon dioxide.
Pigs in today's factory farms are often stacked two and three decks high in space just big enough to fit in. They stand on metal or concrete slats which painfully cripple the legs of half of them before slaughter. Their entire lives are lived this way. Pigs have a similarly high intelligence and sensitivity as the family pet dog.
Mother's milk from a nursing woman who eats a diet rich in animal sources is so toxic that if it were to be sold across state lines, it would be subject to confiscation and destruction by the FDA.
Two hundred years ago, American topsoil averaged 21 inches. Today, it's only about 6 inches. Each year an area the size of Connecticut is lost to topsoil erosion. Livestock production is responsible for about 85% of this erosion.
Fish concentrate toxic chemicals. Consumer Reports (Feb., '92) notes that the incidence of unacceptable levels of PCB's and mercury were found in certain species of fish. Ingesting PCB's is considered a primary cause for the sperm count in American men to be 70% of what it was 30 years ago. Half the world's fish catch is fed to cattle, which concentrates the poisons.
Drugged animals in factory sheds are supposed to have their drugs stopped at a certain time before slaughter. Withdrawal schedules are often lax. Troughs of old, drug-laden feed are not removed when withdrawal should begin. Since animals are often fed animal waste and flesh, drug and pesticide residues accumulate.
The common cold, as well as allergies to dust, cats and pollen, are likely to go away when milk is removed from the diet. No other mammal in nature drinks milk after weaning, or drinks the milk of other species. Cows will not even drink cows milk after weaning.
USDA meat inspection today is virtually non-existent with sometimes as few as 3 out of 1,000 carcasses checked. Federal inspectors are not allowed to stop the assembly line if a problem is sighted, they may only complain. Many cancerous carcasses pass inspection.
Cattle grazing destroyed most of the lush ecosystems in North America. Grazing is the primary cause for the loss or endangerment of plant species in the U.S.
The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition and the Food and Nutrition Board recommend eating only 2.5% to 6% of one's calories as protein to satisfy requirements. It's nearly impossible to get below 9% with a vegetarian diet. Typical Americans eat 28% of their calories as animal protein and an additional 12% as non-animal protein. High protein intake is the primary cause of osteoporosis.
About 98% of all milk in the U.S. is produced with factory methods. Today's factory cow is fed dangerous levels of hormones to produce two to three times more milk than normal. After about four years, when the hormones no longer work, the spent cow becomes hamburger. Slaughter ends the agony of mostly solitary, intense confinement, in which our friend has never seen a blade of grass. A cow naturally lives 20 years.
Cattle grazing is subsidized on public lands in the U.S. The market rate is about $6.40 to $9.50 per month per cow, many government permit holders pay less than $2. According to U.S. Congressman Dick Armey of Texas, our nation's "farm cartel" government policy is simply "Welfare to the rich."
Factory-farmed animals have as much as 30 TIMES more saturated fat than yesterday's free-range, pasture-raised animals.
Nearly half then fish tested by Consumers Union were found to be contaminated by bacteria from human or animal feces. The suspected cause is poor sanitation practices.
In the barnyard of the past, a sow gave birth to 6 piglets a year. Today's factory farms are working towards 45! Frankenstein methods include hormone injection for greater fertility, artificial insemination, "embryo transfers" where embryos are surgically removed, and implanted into other sows -- all in the name of greater meat production at reduced cost. Similar methods are employed in the beef industry.
Cow's milk is meant for calves, not humans. An infant's natural protein needs are actually quite low. Human milk contains only 5% of its calories as protein which enables an infant to double in size in 180 days. In contrast, cow's milk is 15% protein by calorie. Newborn calves double in size in only 47 days.
At most stockyards so called "downers" may lie suffering for days until they are dragged by chain to their slaughter. The tragedy is that an animal can legally be kept in agony, sick or with broken bones simply because alive it will fetch a higher price for a rancher.
More antibiotics are used in animal production than for humans. Animal drug sales are in the billions.
Meat industry apologists claim that livestock do not compete for edible food with humans because they live on forage humans cannot eat. In truth, 70% of all the grain produced in the U.S. is fed to livestock.
Today's animals are packed indoors and kept alive with drugs and vitamin injections. The battle against infection and death in the factory farm shed is a constant concern. Misting animals with insecticides has become routine. In the chicken factories, birds are fed chemicals to control flies which are so potent, they stay active even in their droppings, still able to kill larvae.
The great Ogallala Aquifer, which supplies the nation's bread basket with water, is being pumped dry, mostly for growing grain to feed livestock. It spans over 8 midwestern states with an area three times the size of New York State. This natural reservoir from the last Ice Age may be gone in 30 years.
Meat contains about 14 times more pesticides than plant foods; dairy products more than 5-1/2 times.
There are 20 - 30 thousand animal drugs currently in use. Roughly 90% have NOT been approved by the FDA.
The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, a group of 3,000 physicians, introduced the New Four Food Groups: fruit, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes. Meat, poultry, fish, nuts, seeds, and oils are termed "optional" foods, not considered necessary for health.
All natural instincts are restricted in today's pig factories. Driven insane, bored, and frustrated, these naturally intelligent, playful creatures are driven to gnawing and biting on other pig tails and hind ends. A mauled pig may die from an attack and then be eaten by his attackers. Mauled pigs cannot be sold, a definite problem to the producer. In answer? Pigtails are amputated and animals are kept in total darkness except for feeding.
The Bureau of Labor lists poultry processing as one of the most hazardous occupations. Workers often contract diseases from sick animals. The meat packing industry suffers injuries10 times the national average, primarily nerve and tendon damage from repetative motion (up to 8,000 times an hour).
Egg factories all over the country weed out male chicks and dispose of them en masse in plastic bags and barrels where they are crushed and suffocated. A half a million chicks a day are disposed of. They may also be ground up WHILE STILL ALIVE for use as animal feed.
Animals at the top of the food chain absorb many of the toxic chemicals in their diet. Pesticides, insecticides, petrochemicals, hormone injections, antibiotics as well as toxic wastes such as PCB's and mercury in our oceans. Today, more than ever, it is wise to eat low on the food chain. Plant foods are the safest.
A diet vegetarian diet helps prevent diabetes, often relieves the symptoms, and can even eliminate the need insulin treatments.
Detection of salmonella is not required by the USDA. Not a single plant in the country inspects for it. CBS's "60 Minutes" found half of the chickens they randomly purchased to be contaminated.
The male calf born to a dairy cow is taken immediately after birth to a veal factory and locked up, immobile, for his entire life. He is fed a diet without iron or roughage to produce tender milky white meat. He is injected with growth hormones and antibiotics to keep him alive. He is kept in darkness except for feeding. Veal fetches a premium price.
Agricultural engineers discovered that the energy costs of producing poultry, pork and other meats was over10 times that of any plant food.
Nearly all toxic chemical residues in the American diet (95% to 99%) come from animal sources.
To help end the controversy over whether humans are carnivores, consider that it is not common for a person to stalk a wild animal, catch it by sinking claws into its body, bite its neck, and feel comfort in the taste of fresh warm blood and uncooked flesh.
To crank up pork production, piglets may be taken away from their mother soon after birth. They are then provided with a mechanical teat, without which they would die from the emotional loss. The forced weaning allows the sow to end her lactating period, so she can become pregnant again.
The high incidence of constipation hemorrhoids, hiatal hernias, diverticulosis, spastic colon and appendicitis parallels today's widespread high fat, low fiber, meat-centered diets.
Our dwindling water supply is directly tied to meat consumption. Over half of the water in the U.S. irrigates land for livestock feed and fodder.
Considering factory housing, irrigation, trucking, refrigeration, and petrochemical fertilizer, vast amounts of energy, about a gallon of gasoline, is required for every pound of grain-fed beef.
The Allied naval blockade during World War I forced Denmark dramatically into nationwide vegetarianism. The death rate from disease during the period dropped by 34%.
Chicken feathers, guts, and waste water, which normally would be discarded, are routinely "recycled"back to the hen houses as feed. Industry experts believe this unclean slaughtering, processing, and forced cannibalism, leads to the rampant salmonella epidemics in poultry plants. Ignoring true causes, the U.S. government recommends food irradiation to "sanitize" contaminated birds. Food irradiation causes potentially carcinigenic changes to proteins.
Even, though organic farming and natural insect controls are proven, agribusiness continues with pesticides. Pesticides may take hundreds of years to decompose.
In a March, 1984 Time magazine reported on cholesterol and heart disease... "in regions where ... meat is scarce, cardiovascular disease is unknown."
An acre cultivated in spinach yields 26 times more protein than it does for beef.
Human beings have no sharp needle-like teeth to puncture flesh as do carnivores; humans have flat back teeth to grind (plant) food unlike carnivores.
The USDA does not inspect for trichinosis in pork, which must be thoroughly cooked before eating. About 4% of Americans have trichinella worms in their muscles.
Vegetarians live on average about six years longer and are healthier than meat eaters.
Desertification, now affecting 29% of the earth's landmass, is largely due to the demands of livestock production around the world. Meat-eating countries, such as the U.S., drive continued increases due to conversion of land which has been sustainably farmed for centuries being coverted to beef production for export.
European countries have banned nearly all imports of American beef because of the routine feeding of antibiotics to livestock.
Demand for ocean fish contributes to over 200,000 deaths of marine mammals and birds caught in fishing nets every year.
Doctors learn to treat diseases with drugs and surgery. Today's physician has virtually no education on nutrition.
USDA poultry inspectors are expected to inspect about 90 birds per minute on a fast moving conveyor. An impossibility. They are forced to allow unsafe poultry to get the USDA's stamp of approval.
To produce foie gras, duck and geese are force-fed huge quantities of grain three times a day through a feeder tube. This painful process lasts 28 days before slaughter, often causing stomachs sometimes to burst. Diseased livers, which swell to several times normal size by this process, are considered a delicacy which sells for about $12 an ounce. About 8,000 tons are produced worldwide each year.
A vegetarian diet is often a quick cure for ulcerative colitis.
Each pound of feedlot beef can be equated with 35 pounds of eroded topsoil, at an estimated cost of $44 billion a year.
Antibiotics for medical use are becoming ineffective because excessive use of antibiotics, especially in the meat industry, creates super bugs that are resistant to all known antibiotics. It is predicted that we are about to embark upon an era in which antibiotics are useless.
It's easy to become a vegetarian.
Simply do not buy meat or eggs when you go to the grocer or to a restaurant. If you do not buy it, you will not consume it. You will learn how to cook and serve nutritious and delightful vegetarian fare. There are many cookbooks available at your favorite natural food store or bookstore.