Compiled by Ashiba Adande
Posted: January 13, 2003
Is the human body better suited to a vegetarian diet or one that includes meat?
In answering this question two areas should be considered, - the anatomical structure of the human body, and the physical effects of meat consumption.
Human teeth like those of the herbivorous creatures are designed for grinding and chewing plant food. Humans lack the sharp front teeth for tearing flesh, that are characteristic of carnivores. Meat eating animals generally swallow their food without chewing it and therefore do not require molars or a jaw capable of moving sideways.
Once within the stomach meat requires digestive juices high in hydrochloric acid. The stomachs of humans and herbivores produces acid less than one twentieth the strength of that found un carnivores. Another crucial difference between the meat eater and the vegetarian is found in the intestinal tract, where the food is further digested and nutrients are passed into the blood. A piece of meat is just part of a corpse, and its putrefaction creates poisonous wastes within the body, therefore meat must be quickly eliminated. For this purpose, carnivores posses alimentary canals only three times the length of their bodies. Since man like other non flesh eating animals has an alimentary canal twelve times his body length, rapidly decaying flesh is retained for a much longer time, producing a number of undesirable toxic effects.
One body organ adversely affected by these toxins is the kidney. This vital organ, extracts waste from the blood, and is greatly strained by the overload of poisons introduced by the meat consumption, and as one grows older this vital organ will not be able to cope with this stress, and the risk of kidney disease and failure increases.
The inability of the human body to deal with excessive animal fats in the diet is another indication of the unnaturalness of meat eating. Carnivorous animals can metabolize almost unlimited amounts of cholesterol and fats without any adverse effects. On the other hand, herbivorous species have a very limited ability to deal with any level of cholesterol or saturated fats beyond the amount required by the body.
When over a period of many years an excess is consumed fatty deposits(plaque) accumulate on the walls of the arteries, hardening of the arteries,(arteriosclerosis).
Because these deposits constrict the flow of blood to the heart, the potential for heart attacks, strokes, and blood is great.
Further evidence of the unsuitability of the human intestinal tract for digestion of flesh is the relationship, established by numerous studies, between colon cancer and meat eating. Because of the high fat, low fiber content of the meat-centered diet, the result is a slow transit time through the colon, allowing toxic waste to do damage.
More over meat while being digested is known to generate steroids metabolites possessing carcinogenic (cancer producing) properties.
NUTRITION IN A MEATLESS DIET
The ideas that meat has a monopoly on protein and that large amounts of proteins are required for energy and strength are both myths. When food is digested, most proteins break down into its constituent amino acids, which are reconverted and used by the body for growth and tissue replacement.
Of these twenty-two amino acids, the body itself can synthesize all but eight, and these eight essential amino acids exist in abundance in plant foods.
Grains, peas and beans, nuts are all but concentrated sources of protein. However, the primary energy source for the body is carbohydrates. Only as a last resort is the body's protein utilized for energy production. Too much protein intake actually reduces the body's energy capacity.
In a series of comparative endurance exercises conducted by Yale University's Dr Irving Fisher, vegetarians performed twice as well as meat eaters.
Furthermore studies carried out by Brussels' University's Dr J Iotekyo and Dr V. Kipani, showed that vegetarians were able to perform physical tests two to three times longer than meat eaters before exhaustion and were fully recovered from fatigue in one fifth the time needed by meat eaters.
Numerous other studies have shown that a proper vegetarian diet provides more nutritional energy than meat.
For most people, protein makes up more than twenty percent of their diet, although inadequate amounts of protein will cause loss of strength, excess protein cannot be utilized by the body; rather it is converted into nitrogenous waste that burdens the kidneys.
Diet & Coronary Heart Disease
Journal of the American Medical Association
Vol.222 No. 13(Dec 25 1972) p1647
Cancer and other Diseases from Meat Consumption
Dr Leonardo Blanche, 1979, pg12
Metabolic Epidemology of Dietary Factors In Large Bowel Cancer
Michael J Hill M.D Cancer Research, Vol 35 No11, part 2. (Nov 1975)
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