Sarah Free, Contributor
Editor’s Note: As was pointed out by some of our thoughtful readers, this article would have been more aptly titled. “4 Common Sense Reasons to Stop Eating Mainstream Meat,” so as to be fair to traditional and humane farming practices. The author, nor this site, have any interest in promoting Veganism or Vegetarianism, but merely to point them out as an alternative to an unhealthy mainstream meat industry. Thank you for tuning in.
The debate over the pros and cons of vegetarianism will continue forever, as different people have different needs and differing views on health and nutrition. There simply is no ‘one size fits all’ answer to the nutritional and health effects of reducing or quitting the consumption of meat and meat products, and what feels right and works for some, may not for others.
Typically, this debate is centered around the nutritional pros and cons of eating meat, but in this day and age there are several other key reasons to take a second look at eating meat and animal products. Over the past few years, the public has learned a great deal about the meat industry and the evolution of its practices in getting farm animals to your plate, while continuing to maximize profit. Quite frankly, the truth is rather unsettling, and discerning people have good reason to be alarmed about the current state of meat products.
Next time you’re at the grocery store, or in your favorite fine restaurant, you might take pause and reflect on this for a second before ordering up that tasty looking tenderloin. Ask yourself these common sense questions about what you’re putting into your body, and if the answers don’t add up, perhaps then your conscience and good common sense is encouraging you to give vegetarianism a try.
1. What kind of meat is it?
In recent months it has come to light that a significant portio7n of the ‘beef’ sold in Europe contains horse meat, and was found in many ‘beef products’ at popular eateries like Burger King and Taco Bell. Furthermore, investigators in South Africa recently discovered human tissues in meat samples from 9 provinces, indicating a widespread situation of contamination.
2. What kinds of chemicals have been added to this meat?
It’s no secret that the meat industry overuses antibiotics, vaccinations, painkillers and growth hormones to maximize profit. These chemical residues are passed on to you when you consume treated meat. Furthermore, ‘cosmetic’ ingredients like meat glue, and carbon monoxide are used to make meat more presentable. Additionally, manufacturing processes that create new products out of animal parts, like the infamous ‘pink slime‘ found in up to 70% of processed meats, use industrial chemicals like ammonia gas to make the meat smell better and look more palatable. Meat is not just meat any more, it is highly contaminated with industrial poisons.
3. Is this meat even fresh?
The time between an animal’s death and your meal can be shockingly long in some cases, as the global business of importing and exporting means food sometimes travels thousands of miles just to get to your plate. In New Zealand, for example, lamb meat travels up to 11,000 miles in up to 2 months before reaching the market. More disturbing, however, is the practice of injecting meat with things like deadly carbon monoxide gas, so that retailers can make old meat look presentable for weeks after it should have already gone bad.
4. Was this animal mistreated?
The current state of factory meat production is horrifyingly inhumane and grotesque. Animals are confined to torturous, un-natural conditions, beaten, abused and often sick. If slaughterhouses had glass walls the meat industry would collapse overnight, yet the cognitive dissonance associated with this makes it all too common to ignore the treatment of animals for our consumption. Common sense dictates that in order for food to nourish the body, it has to itself have been nourished and well-cared for, yet the gruesome holocaust against farm animals continues. This type of treatment is completely unnecessary, as any small farmer can tell you.
Vegetarianism does not work for everybody, to be sure, but given the current state of industrial meat production in the developed world, common sense should make us think at least twice before eating modern ‘meat.’ Give it some thought before you chow down at the BBQ this coming weekend.
About the Author
Sarah Free is an activist and concerned citizen. She is a contributor to WakingTimes.com
This article is offered under Creative Commons license. It’s okay to republish it anywhere as long as attribution bio is included and all links remain intact.
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