If you ask from any non-vegetarian that why don’t they stop eating animals, then all they would say is that ‘it’s “natural” for humans to consume animals.’ But then the question arises, is it truly natural or all they are doing is making an excuse to ignore the frightful ways in which animals are killed for food?
So, here we are with the complete discussion on the fact that are we supposed to eat meat or not? And, as always, the discussion starts with the fact that our human ancestors also used to eat meat. So, let’s also begin from that point only.
It is said that our ancestors used to rely on meat only, but that is not entirely true. Because we were largely vegetarian during most of our evolutionary history: Plant foods, like yams, formed up the bulk of our ancestors’ diet.
This theory is proved with the fact that only with the discovery of fire, humans started eating meat and that too moderately. Because only fire allowed us to lower the risk of being killed or sickened by the bacteria & parasites in the meat. Even this situation didn’t turn our ancestors into carnivores but helped early humans to survive in areas and during times when which plant foods were unavailable or limited.
Let’s learn about the facts one-by-one, which prove humans are not meant to eat meat:
A huge number of humans are offended by the sight of blood, intestines, and raw flesh. Not only that many people even can’t tolerate hearing the screams of animals being ripped apart. That shows how the bloody reality of killing and eating animals is innately repulsive to many people.
As a fact, Carnivores have short intestinal tracts, and that permits the meat to pass quickly through their digestive system. On the other hand, humans’ intestinal tracts are much longer, like those of plant-eaters, which allows the body more time to break down fiber and absorb the nutrients from plant-based foods.
It can be seen that we humans have short, small, soft fingernails and dull canine teeth. But all real carnivores have large canine teeth and sharp claws that are capable of tearing flesh even without the help of forks and knives.
Jaws of real carnivores’ move only up and down; this process allows them to tear chunks of flesh from their prey. However, humans can either move their jaws up and down or side to side.
Moreover, we also have flat molars (which carnivores lack), which enables us to grind up vegetables and fruits with our back teeth as every herbivore does.
A renowned anthropologist, Dr. Richard Leakey, says,
“You can’t tear flesh by hand, you can’t tear hide by hand. Our anterior teeth are not suited for tearing flesh or hide. We don’t … have large canine teeth, and we wouldn’t have been able to deal with food sources that required those large canines.”
According to reports, in the wildlife, Carnivorous animals practically NEVER catch heart disease or suffer from strokes—ailments. But we all know humans can easily result in an increased risk of developing heart disease due to their high consumption of the cholesterol and saturated fat found in meat.
And, based on the surveys and reports from the American Heart Association, heart disease is the one major reason for deaths in the US. So, this questions the fact if humans were meant to eat meat or why do meat-eaters have a 32 percent higher risk of developing heart disease in comparison to vegetarians?
Only real carnivores can swallow down the chunks of raw flesh, by considering their strong stomach acids to break it down and kill the hazardous bacteria in meat that would otherwise kill or sicken them.
On the other hand, humans have much weaker stomach acids in comparison with those which are found in animals who digest pre-chewed vegetable and fruits. Dining on animal flesh can give us food poisoning, without carnivorous stomach acids to kill the bacteria in meat.
Based on the reports and surveys from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, meat is one notable cause of foodborne illness. Reports also suggest that food poisoning sickens more than 48 million people and kills more than 3,000 every year in the U.S. alone.
Therefore it is very much essential for one to at least cook meat to make it easier to digest and to destroy bacteria. But still, make sure that there may be a link between cooking meat at high temperatures and the development of colon cancer.
There was a time when only the wealthiest people could afford to raise, feed, and slaughter the animals for meat, but with the increase of the modern middle class nowadays, consumption of meat in the US has almost doubled over the last 100 years.
Now, also because of factory farming and government subsidies, animal flesh is relatively cheap and easily available, and heart disease, cancer, strokes, and obesity are increasing worldwide.
There are several studies which have shown that meat is not ideal for the human body. Not only eating meat can make us sick but can also make us die. Even mentioned points suggest that a human body is intended to function on plant-based foods that are full of fiber, unsaturated fat, antioxidants, essential fatty acids, cholesterol-free protein, and phytochemicals, but not at all on meat.
Even if you’ve adapted, you can still go back. So, try doing the compassionate thing for both animals as well as your own body.
Vegan is not just a type of diet, but more of a lifestyle. It’s a healthier choice you make for the people, for the animals, and for a better planet.