The consumption of meat products has been associated with a number of health issues & most of the leading chronic diseases plaguing humans. Consumption of meat products is harmful for the human body, due to 2 primary reasons:
- The human body is not designed to consume meat products
- Certain substances in meat products, cannot be effectively digested by our bodies, which is the primary driver behind a number of chronic diseases
The human body is not designed to eat meat products
Both cursory and detailed studies into the human anatomy, indicate clearly that the human body has the greatest similarity with herbivores, and not with either omnivores or carnivores.
All carnivores have instincts & body structures that are designed to hunt, overpower & tear apart prey. Humans have no claws, our teeth would not tear into flesh, our mouths are not large enough to catch or wound an animal, nor do we have the speed and reflexes required to ambush and overpower an animal.
More importantly, the human digestive system is simply not designed to be able to effectively digest meat. Natural carnivores have an intestine tract that is only 3 times their body length, which allows meat to be expelled from the body before it starts to putrefy. Humans, on the other hand have a convoluted intestine, that is 10-12 times body length, which leads to meat starting to decay within the body before being ejected.
Carnivores have both a higher concentration of hydrochloric acids in their stomach and a more acidic saliva, both of which help to break down meat. In contrast, humans with a more alkaline saliva and digestive system, do not have the required acid structures required to effectively break down meat.
Harmful substances in meat products
Unlike carnivores, our body structures are not capable of effectively breaking down meat for digestion. A large part of all health issues associated with meat consumption, can be traced back to certain harmful substances present in meat products, which our bodies are not capable of absorbing without harm (unlike natural carnivores, who break down meat effectively).
The key harmful substances present in meat products include:
Saturated Fats (linked to heart diseases, cancers and diabetes)
The role of fat in our diet is often misunderstood, with the type of fat being consumed being more important for human health than the absolute levels of fat being consumed. While mono & poly unsaturated fats are actually associated with positive health benefits, saturated & trans fats are responsible for all adverse health issues.
Animal products (meat & dairy) are high in harmful saturated fats and are low in healthier unsaturated fats. Our body reacts to saturated fats in the following ways:
- accumulation of fat in the arteries, cause artery blockages & cardiovascular diseases
- saturated fats act as insulin inhibitors, preventing insulin from delivering glucose to the body's cells, leading to an increase in blood sugar levels & diabetes.
- saturated fats also lead to increased hormone production, strongly associated with prostrate, breast, colon and other cancers.
Acidic proteins (linked to kidney diseases & osteoporosis)
Most people would be surprised to learn that the majority of us consume too much protein, and that a vegetarian diet not only provides (a) more than adequate quantities of protein (b) but a form of protein which is better suited for human consumption. A non-vegetarian diet is associated with excess protein consumption by the body – increasing the strain on our kidneys for disposing protein wastes.
Additionally, animal proteins have more sulphur-containing amino acids (compared to a more alkaline form in plant based proteins), leading to an acidification of the blood. The body reacts by leeching calcium from our bones to neutralize this acidity. This leads to a fall in the bone mineral density (BMD) of our bones, and is one of the leading causes of Osteoporosis.
Sodium (linked to heart diseases)
Animal products have a higher concentration of sodium as compared to plant based products. A high intake of sodium is directly associated with high blood pressure or hypertension, one of the key causes of cardiovascular diseases.
Carcinogenic substances (linked to cancers)
The cooking and processing of meat, leads to the release of certain carcinogenic compounds (HCA – heterocyclic amines & PAH – polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons) that increase overall cancer and specifically colon cancer risk.