Animal Liberation Page
Why Vegetarian

For Your Health

Vegetarianism is gaining widespread popularity for health reasons. Many nutritionists argue that there is no need to eat meat at all. Statistics show that vegetarians are thinner, healthier and live longer than flesh-eating people.Vegetarians are 40% less likely to die from cancer and coronary heart disease than meat eaters and the incidence of breast cancer is reduced by 80%.

Human anatomy is distinctly different from that of carnivores and very close to that of of our cousins, the basically-vegetarian apes, including gorillas. Carnivores have very short bowels for rapid expulsion of putrefactive bacteria associated with decaying flesh. Whereas herbivores (and humans) have long bowels for the digestion of plant foods. As a result, the unnaturally long time that de-composing flesh travels through the human intestine causes irritating toxins to be formed and can eventually lead to cancer and add significantly to the total body-load of toxins.

As meat is high on the food chain, it is also high in pollutants (eg.mercury in tuna). From the very beginning, intensively-raised animals are pumped with a hazardous range of medications including growth hormones, stimulants and antibiotics, traces of which can be found in the meat consumed daily by humans.

A vast amount of research has confirmed that adequate protein can be obtained from plant foods which are essentially made up of proteins, carbohydrates and unsaturated fats, whilst flesh foods are essentially proteins and saturated fats. The unsaturated fats found in some plant foods (avocadoes and olives, for example) actually help to lower cholesterol, whereas saturated fats increase it.

In the past it has been thought that no one plant food contains complete protein as meat does. However, nutritionists have found that some soy proteins are indeed complete. Also, combinations of different foods i.e. grains and beans, nuts and pulses,etc, eaten over the course of the day give us more than enough complete protein. In addition, these whole- foods are excellent sources of minerals and vitamins and are all rich in fibre, which is completely absent from flesh foods.

Another common concern regarding the vegetarian diet is whether or not it provides sufficient quantities of iron. However, studies have compared the nutrient intake of vegetarians with that of omnivores and concluded that the iron intake of vegetarians is similar to that or higher than that in omnivores. The study also found that, generally, vegetarians have an iron intake which is near to or exceeds the recommended intake.

The whole-grain cereals, pulses and legumes in a vegetarian diet provide a substantial amount of iron(1/2 a cup of cooked lentils provides 3.5 mg of iron which is more than 25% of the R.D.I. of iron). There is approximately two to three times the amount iron in wholemeal products than in refined-grain products.

It has also been suggested that calcium and phosphate, both found in dairy foods, combine together to inhibit iron absorbtion. however, it has been found that the effects of dietary inhibitors can be overcome by promoters of iron absorbtion one of which is vitamin C.

Clearly, the traditional concerns over what is lacking in the vegetarian diet have been overthrown by many studies which prove that a plant-based wholefood vegetarian diet can not only sustain and nourish, but be more beneficial and health-giving than a meat-based one.

by Irene

Cameron Green
Last Updated - Fri, 30 Jan 2015 07:04:32 -0600