Diet plays a huge role in our health as well as the health of our planet. One can’t be a world saver eating meat, eggs, dairy or fish. If we are not honest with ourselves, we are going to cook our children’s goose, literally.
What is a Vegan vs. Vegetarian
Veganism is the practice of abstaining from the use of animal products, particularly in diet, and an associated philosophy that rejects the commodity status of animals. Distinctions may be made between several categories of veganism. Dietary vegans refrain from consuming meat, eggs, dairy products, and any other animal-derived substances. An ethical vegan is someone who not only follows a vegan diet but extends the philosophy into other areas of their lives, and opposes the use of animals for any purpose. Another term is “environmental veganism”, which refers to the avoidance of animal products on the premise that the industrial farming of animals is environmentally damaging and unsustainable.
A vegetarian abstains from eating meat, but will continue to eat other animal products such as eggs, dairy and honey. Because a vegetarian diet still perpetuates animal products, the meat industry continues. Five percent of American’s say they are vegetarian and 3 percent say they are vegan.
I always wondered why my friends who were 10 years older than me and were in better shape were all vegans. They all had more stamina, strength, general good health, avoided being sick. These are people in their 60s who skied the bump runs in Telluride, Colorado. Their health is a combination of what they do eat, what they don’t eat, plus a lot of exercise.
We do not need animal food products to be healthy. Feel your teeth; they are flat. We are not evolved to be carnivores. We are seeds, nuts, and roots munchers. Our bodies are evolved for the occasional meat, but not multi-daily meat. In fact, we don’t need animal products to get the 21 amino acids that make up proteins.
It was not until I met Dr. Alan Kapuler, a summa cum laude graduate of Yale University, I learned that we get free amino acids from a variety of plants. Dr. Kapuler, with a university laboratory, tested most common vegetables for free amino acids. He mapped which vegetables had which amino acids. Then he mapped which varieties of beets, for example, gave the most of the desired amino acids. We don’t need to eat animal products at all for our health.
Quinoa is a complete protein source, which means that it provides all nine essential amino acids. Quinoa has more protein pound-for-pound than beef.
What is the point of the cow?
One has to learn how to cook and eat vegan to get there. Hanging out with a group of vegans and going to vegan potlucks will help. For example, learn to substitute dairy fats with seeds, nuts, olive and avocado pure fats. Watch videos on YouTube on how to make healthy vegan food for an active lifestyle. I like the Simnett Nutrition and Forks Over Knives series.
The Bad News About an Animal Diet
Viruses from animals can transfer to humans. There is a world-wide trade of domestic and wild animals and fish for food. That the recent Coronavirus nCoV-2019 in China emerged from a non-human animal, probably a bat, and possibly after passing through another creature, may seem spooky, yet it is utterly unsurprising to scientists who study these things.
Imagine how disease spreads between crowded domesticated cow, pig, or fish farms living in their own shit. As many as 40 percent, or more, of farmed fish have disease, are malformed, blind or die before they are harvested. And they are floating in the water supply. Watch the Patagonia’s movies, Artifishal and Dam Nation. It’s horrifying to see what dams and hatcheries do to our fresh water systems and wild fisheries. There is no hope for inland wild fisheries until the dams come down and the hatcheries are closed.
Animal husbandry damages the land, water and air. The stench of the stockyards off Interstate 5 north of Los Angeles can be smelled from 10 miles away. We despoil more land growing animal feed crops than it would take to grow the plants to feed us instead. We irresponsibly graze cattle on fragile American desert southwest ecosystems.
It takes more calories to grow meat than the meat provides to humans. It takes 10 calories of fossil fuels per 1 calorie of meat.
Half of American adults will be obese by 2030. Meat plays a large part in obesity. No amount of exercise cures a bad diet.
U.S. Population will increase by 26 million in 10 years. World population will rise to 8.5 billion in 2030 from from 7.7 billion today. Humans are eating and breeding the Earth to death. Human overpopulation and resulting ecosystem destruction is now even destabilizing the Earth’s very climate. No matter our cause, it is a lost cause unless we reduce human population. One-child families are the only hope for the future. Read more.
Don’t Forget About Your Pets
Our pets eat a lot of meat and animal products. Almost 40 percent of American households own dogs and about a quarter own cats. Most of these 180 million cats and dogs has some form of animal products in their food. Much of the animal products that do not go into human food go into pet food. Get your pet spaded or neutered.
Human morality has not kept up with our scientific progress. Our feeble minds only care for what we depend on or are addicted to. Because civilization has replaced coexistence with wild ecosystems with domestic farming, humans now only care for what is destroying the world. Read more.
Tragically, it is very difficult to undo programming. We are caught in an infinite loop spiraling downward generation-after-generation. Because we live such a short time within our own isolated ego-minds, we do not empathize for the loss of unseen ecosystems and the thousands of species that play essential roles in making Earth livable.
I am skeptical that as a society we can make these changes. As dust storms the size of Britain engulf Australia, I see denial of climate change at the highest levels of government. As I witness the United States Senate acquit a president proven guilty of abuse of power, I am discouraged that we will never understand what it takes to save the wold. There are too many of us. We are eating too much. Our diet is destroying Earth. Our programming is not tied to what really sustains us. Civilization is a sinking ship of fools.
Our science has far outstripped human morality. We have to mature human morality to counter the consequences civilization. We have spent hundreds of thousands or millions of years perfecting the human tribal social organizational. Civilization, or domestic agriculture and industrialization, have only been developed in the last second relative to all human history. Tribal humanity cared for the Earth because we depended on the wild for our livelihood. But as a modern, domesticated society, we all appreciate non-human life.
We care about humans in death camps, but not billions of cows, pigs, sheep or chickens raised in farm death camps. Each animal is brutally slaughtered, dissected, and its parts shrink-wrapped for humans to purchase and consume. This present day reality is out of a horror movie worse than the 1973 MGM movie, Soylent Green.
Then there is Dairy. Imagine if someone took the women in your community and put them into crowded camps; forced them to be impregnated and breast-pumped; and took their children away from them at the youngest age possible. There may be a long-term viable way to integrate animal husbandry into small family farms, but industrial-scale animal husbandry is madness.
It is shameful that the most “religious” among us strive to protect human right to life, but ignore other species’ inalienable right to life. This is where modern religions disconnect us from living in harmony with all life. We are told this is how one lives in a civilized world. If that is the case, civilization is a nightmare for most life on Earth. What good is preaching commandments if we cannot look at the destruction of our own lifestyle and how we teach our children to live?
We have no morality to cope with the consequences of an over-populated world. We invented agriculture, cars and chainsaws, but we have not developed the sane ethics uses of them.
“But I Need Meat or I Don’t Feel Good”
This is called substance abuse and addiction. The average U.S. Meat consumer eats 222 pound of red meat and poultry per year. Eating farmed animals is promoted by society to excess.
We will not die if we eat a variety of vegetables, seeds, nuts, fruit, berries and sensible grains like millet, quinoa and amaranth. In fact our health, stamina and clarity will improve. Once we have been a vegan for a while, we can walk down the street and spot others with a similar diet.
We don’t need to eat meat for energy or protein, we have not for millions of years. The wolves, bobcats and tuna are the carnivores. Our teeth are flat, we can’t catch a deer or eat it by hand anyway. Load up on the veggies! By eating our vegetables, seeds, nuts and more we make both ourselves and our planet healthier.
Transitioning the world into a more harmonious place is not that difficult. A world of one-child vegan families would go a long way to making the world a better place for our children and all life. Ideas to start include: serve only vegan and vegetarian meals in schools; shift farm subsidies from animal to produce growers; eliminate meat coverage on food stamps; expand subsidies to carry healthy vegan foods at food banks; and end grazing on federal lands.
Imagine A World Without Meat
We everyone stopped eating meat, our health would improve immensely overnight. The biggest benefit would be what would happen to the wild world. We could let over half of destroyed farm and range land go wild. We would take our boot off of nature’s neck and let her breath again. Immense swaths of land farmed for animal feed and grazing cold be returned to the wild. Combine a vegan diet with one-child families and the Earth would become a garden of eden for humanity and the 30 million species we share this one home we have.
Share these ideas person-to-person. Don’t just read these essays, post links on your social media to essays that resonate with you. Our speech is not free if dissenting messages are hidden by search engines, and mainstream media. You found these ideas, now share them with others!
Post Editor, Beth Brown — Beth is a lifestyle writer and former assistant news editor of the Easley Progress. She graduated from Columbia College with a focus on Writing and Public Affairs. She is also a singer/songwriter/musician, yogi, activist and Love Warrior for Mother Earth.
 Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Veganism
 Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Essential_amino_acid
 Simnett Nutrition, YouTube Channel. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCpyhJZhJQWKDdJCR07jPY-Q
 Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/foods/quinoa#nutrients
 Forks Over Knives. https://www.forksoverknives.com/
 Patagonia. https://www.patagonia.com/artifishal.html
 Wikipedia. U.S. Census. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2020_United_States_Census
 Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_population
 Culturequake. Climate Change: Deforestation is the Cause. https://wp.me/p7tg2G-1yv
 American Veterinary Medical Association. https://www.avma.org/resources-tools/reports-statistics/us-pet-ownership-statistics
 Image: Jason Davies / Severe Weather Australia. Gold Coast Bulletin. https://www.goldcoastbulletin.com.au/monster-dust-storms-a-new-norm-for-rural-towns/news-story/91b36dc3b5d7c3e23a08d86c8d60845c
 IMDb. https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0070723/
 Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soylent_Green