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Meat And Dairy Industry: Harmful Effects

Many adults in the world today, specifically in the United States, struggle with chronic health conditions including cancer, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, obesity, hypertension, Alzheimer’s, arthritis and erectile dysfunction. I believe this is due to diet and a whole food plant-based diet can solve the problem Of the 24 patients who stuck with the plant based diet, 70% improved after 4 months and 90% improved within 1 year. There is also endless amount of money that is being spent on medical research, new drugs, and innovative technology to improve our health but yet we are seeing the rate of death increasing as the years go on and more Americans are disabled and dying from chronic disease than ever before. Something does not add up and I believe it has to do with our diet, specifically the meat and dairy industry. I think there are a lot of diet-related reasons why we’re so sick and the media and information around us is responsible for feeding us the wrong information. I think we can use whole-food, plant-based nutrition to take control of our health. These days American households spend 42 percent of their food budget on grub prepared outside their homes. I think that is such a shame to hear that most people do not even cook home-cooked meals as much. Not only is the meat and dairy industry ruining our health, it is also ruining our environment. Giving up meat, dairy and processed foods do not mean giving up flavor, but it does mean giving up a number of chronic illnesses.

There are many myths about the meat and dairy industry such as needing meat for protein or that most animals raised for meat are treated humanely. Both of those statements are false.

Protein is abundant in plant-based foods, from nuts and beans to tofu and seitan. You don’t need meat for adequate protein like the world thinks we do. It’s a myth that sadly so many people believe is true. Individuals who follow a vegan diet tend to exhibit lower cholesterol levels and have decreased risk for developing certain cancers. The research is there but we just need people to open up their eyes about the situation. Also, most animals are slaughtered and treated very poorly when they are being processed for meat so there is in fact no humane way to kill the animals. People also tend to think that you need calcium for strong bones which is another myth cite a resource for this (author, year). The dairy industry spends millions of marketing dollars to convince us that we need to consume cow’s milk for calcium and strong bones. The truth is that cow’s milk is not only unhealthy, but also comes with unbelievable animal suffering and who knows what other chemicals and antibiotics they are being fed. Thankfully, you can get loads of calcium from plant-based foods like kale, almond milk, and cereals which are a great substitute.

If you consume a typical Western diet, most likely you live in a country like the United States, a country with the most expensive health care in the world and some of the least healthy people. I love the statement by Sroufe, “Just looking at the meat category alone is such a controversial issue. Society has deemed it ethically acceptable to consume animals, yet people are increasingly less tolerant of seeing the origins of their own food.” While most everyone is aware that beef comes from cows, pork from pigs, and chicken from chickens, there is a widening gap between what we see presented in supermarkets and restaurants, and the details taking place behind the scenes that most people probably couldn’t stand to watch. In the United States 286 chickens are killed every second cite this. I don’t think people really think about that nor put it into perspective. Now more than ever, people have become accustomed to seeing their meat only when it has been pristinely packaged in cellophane, while completely ignoring who it is they are actually eating and what kind of tragedy they were living in before ending up in their shopping cart. As we evolve as a society, the sight of a half butchered pig, or a string of dead birds fully feathered hanging in the shop window is leaving us unsettled and it’s about time to start questioning this. Meat, dairy products, and eggs all contain cholesterol and saturated fat and contribute to America’s top killers: heart attacks, strokes, diabetes, and various types of cancer. Additionally, according to a study published by the American Diabetes Association, people who eat high amounts of animal protein are 22 percent more likely to develop diabetes. Saturated fat has even been linked to breast cancer, as well as Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, and cognitive decline.

Along with the meat category comes the dairy category. Everyone thinks that milk is a great source for calcium and makes your bones strong. That is totally false. In fact, dairy can cause more illnesses to the human body and does not provide your body with any health benefit whatsoever cite this. Related to the strong bone myth, eating dairy products has never been shown to reduce the risk for fractures. There is also proof out there that countries with lowest rates of dairy and calcium consumption have the lowest rates of osteoporosis cite this. I do not think that is a coincidence. Calcium may raise cancer risk and there has been evidence that calcium and dairy products may increase a man’s risk of prostate cancer and other types of cancer as well cite this. Not even everyone can stomach dairy which does not add up because it is supposed to be good for your right? People that are unable to properly digest milk and other dairy products is called lactose intolerance. Dairy causes digestive problems for the 75 percent of people with lactose intolerance as well as aggravates irritable bowel syndrome. Also, calcium probably doesn’t prevent broken bones. There’s also no evidence that dairy is good for your bones or prevents osteoporosis — in fact, the animal protein it contains may help cause bone loss cite this! Dairy is full of saturated fat and is linked to heart disease. In addition, dairy may contribute to even more health problems like allergies, sinus problems, ear infections, type 1 diabetes, chronic constipation, and anemia (in children). Due to these concerns, many have begun to consider raw milk an alternative, but that isn’t really a healthy form of dairy either. Raw, whole, organic milk eliminates concerns like pesticides, hormones, and antibiotics, but, to me, these benefits don’t outweigh dairy’s potential risks. The more research that is done, the more I begin to believe that our bodies just weren’t made to digest milk on a regular basis. Instead, most scientists agree that it’s better for us to get calcium, potassium, protein, and fats from other food sources, like whole plant foods vegetables, fruits, beans, whole grains, nuts, seeds, and seaweed.

Not only is meat and dairy bad for your body, it is just as bad for the environment. I am sure that greenhouse gasses are not creating any positivity for the air at all.

I think that a global shift toward a vegan diet is necessary to help climate change. It also takes an enormous amount of water to grow crops for animals to eat, clean filthy factory farms, and give animals water to drink. By going vegan, you could save endless amounts of water! Animals that are raised for food in the U.S. produce a lot more “waste” than humans cite this. Because there are no animal sewage processing plants, the waste is most likely drained into ponds and lakes or will get sprayed over fields. Animal waste used for fertilizing fields will most likely drain into the groundwater which could end up in drinking water. While factory farms are ruining our land, they are also ruining our oceans and ocean life and destroy coral reefs. They also kill thousands of dolphins, sea turtles, sharks, and others cite this.

The meat and dairy industry is something that is really overlooked by people around the world, especially the United States. I think what we are putting into our bodies is the main reason for developing diseases and a lot of people do not give that a second thought, they just go to the doctors and get a pill to cover up the issue when in fact it is the food they are putting into their body. What we need is plants and whole food products. I think this is slowly becoming a bigger controversy but I feel like we have a long way to go for people to realize what the meat and dairy industry is doing to our country and people.

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