The Dangers of Eating Meat

“You need meat!”
Quite recently, after informing one of my lecturers that I don’t eat meat (animal flesh), he kindly encouraged me to include even small portions of animal protein into my diet for good health. He went on to support his advice with an exceptional story about a man who nearly died from a blood disorder (the description resembled haemophilia) because of his vegetarian diet. Another person recently told me of another man who would faint frequently because of his refusal to consume anything that wasn’t green. These and similar stories are usually conveyed in an attempt to dissuade the listener from eliminating meat from their diet. Although my lecturer probably doesn’t know what protein is good for, nor how much of it he needs to maintain his health, he is convinced that he must get his daily supply of protein from an animal. This is belief is held and perpetuated, in spite of the larger number of vegetarians living in Jamaica – think Rastafari and Adventists.

“No, I don’t.”
When I decided to stop eating meat, I made sure to re-educate myself. I felt that I needed to learn what my body needs and how to go about getting it. I needed to hear this information from the experts – medical doctors, nutritionists, etc. So, I did a lot of research: attended workshops, read books, articles, blogs, and watched documentaries and lectures.

“The doctor of the future will give no medicine, but will interest her or his patients in the care of the human frame, in a proper diet, and in the cause and prevention of disease.” – Thomas A. Edison

“How do you know that?”

One of the most informative lectures I came across was by “A Diet for All Reasons” by Dr. Michael Klaper. Select this link to watch Dr. Klaper’s lecture: A Diet For All Reasons. In his presentation, Dr. Klaper he outlines that a diet that includes a high consumption of animal flesh:
1. Makes you fat (overweight or obese)
2. Clogs your arteries (atherosclerosis)
3. Causes some cancers (breast cancer, prostate cancer)
4. Causes calcium loss (because of too much protein)
5. Causes colon diseases (because there is no fibre in meat)
6. Causes high blood pressure (because of too much sodium)
7. Causes PMS in women (because of prostagladin 2)
Checks with your doctor will reveal that most chronic diseases (e.g. atherosclerosis, heart disease, stroke, obesity and type 2 diabetes) are lifestyle diseases which are treated by one of the following: lifestyle changes (diet, exercise, etc), surgical procedures, or medications. The choice for me is very easy!

“How much protein do we need?”
We only need about 30g of protein daily. According to the United States Dietary Guidelines published in 2010, for a male (19-30yrs) the daily requirement is 56g and 46g for a female (19-30yrs). This would translate to weekly requirement of:
Animal protein: 8oz of seafood or 26oz of meat/poultry/eggs
Plant protein: 13oz of beans and peas or 10oz of soy products or 15oz of nuts/seeds

Human Nutritional Needs
Human beings do not have a nutritional need for animal flesh (red meat, poultry or seafood). There is no nutritional deficiency for ‘too little chicken’ or ‘not enough snapper’. But, our bodies require the following for optimum health:
1. Protein
2. Water
3. Vitamins
4. Minerals
5. Energy

“The single most effective thing anybody can do in order to make themselves personally healthier and make this ecosystem more stable and life-preserving is to reduce or eliminate the animal flesh in your diet.”

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4 thoughts on “The Dangers of Eating Meat

  1. It’s difficult to tell people anything different from what they have learnt in school. A recent client told me she studied nutrition so she is qualified to tell me I need momentous amounts of protein and particularly animal protein. All I could do was say “I disagree” and move on. Since I don’t have a nutrition degree (thank God) she’s unwilling to listen to anything I have to say. Ah well. Those who know better do better.

    • I’ve also had to deal with that type of arrogance – especially from people with next-to-zero nutritional knowledge. After one such encounter, I promised never to discuss (more like defend) my dietary convictions with anyone who isn’t lettered, licensed or certified to advise me. I’ve found that those people are usually informed enough to know the truth. Continue to keep yourself informed and healthy, my friend.

  2. Thanks for this.

    The timing is superb considering my fight with an almost irrational dislike for meat and a burgeoning waistline and the constant feeling of being weighed down by the food I am eating.

    Thank you.

    • Glad I could be of help, Camille. I hope you can visit again and continue to find useful posts to help you on your journey.

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