Vegetarianism is the Better Choice

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The trend of abstaining from eating meat and other animal products is a rapidly growing one. According to David Bender in Animal Rights Opposing Viewpoints, “Today, nearly twenty million Americans are vegetarians, and many more have greatly reduced their meat consumption” (139). One meat-eating person may ponder why these non-meat eaters would deprive themselves of the wonderful taste of meat and animal products. Another concern is over nutrition, mainly protein intake. Many meat eaters believe that a vegetarian diet does not and cannot supply the protein necessary for the body to function properly. There are many misconceptions (like the one above) and unknown facts associated with the vegetarian lifestyle. This essay will deal with the issue of nutrition and reveal the truth about how the vegetarian diet can improve one’s well being by, making weigh loss easier, boosting the level of energy one feels on a day to day basis, reducing the risks of Atheseriousis, cancer, diabetes, arthritis, osteoporosis, and heart disease. There are also many unknown facts associated with the vegetarian way of life. One of which is the great role vegetarians play in reducing the amount of waste in the environment. What this statement means is that by not eating meat one is promoting the use of farmland for food for humans instead of farmland for grazing animals (this greatly reduces water usage and waste; it also cuts down on the acreage of farm land used.)

Water usage will become an increasing problem if more people do not find and implement water conservation methods. According to data taken from John Robbins in Diet for a New America, if something is not done, the water in the Texas aquifers will be exhausted in less than thirty-five years (1). For reasons that will become clearer after reading this essay, vegetarianism seems to be an answer to the problem of water usage.

With the increasing amount of land being used for farming to mainly feed animals used for food by us, comes increased soil erosion and leeching. Leeching is a term used to describe the process of the loss of nutrients from the soil, and the end result is sand that cannot support plant life. Vegetarians help to reduce the amount of farmlands needed to support animals.

According to Robbins, in Diet for a New America, “Since 1967, the rate of deforestation in the U.S. has been one acre every five second...

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...nd most veal calves are subjected to confinement so severe that they cannot even turn around” (134). The purpose for this treatment is so the animals expend as little energy (in the form of calories) as possible so that the animal gains weight substantially quicker. The raising of other “food animals” is quite similar to the treatment that pigs and veal receive.

“Food animals” are often fed contaminated food, which poisons them and their meat. Dangerous heavy metals build up in manure, bones, and internal organs, such as kidneys and livers, and are then recycled back through livestock as feed. The diseased organisms that survive in animal tissue processed into feed can infect the livestock and inevitably infect us as well.

When one considers the serious health risks of a meat and dairy based diet, the environmental devastation caused by animal agriculture, the huge waste of resources in a world faced with chronic human starvation, and the violence to and suffering of billions of animals the switch to vegetarianism makes perfect sense. Even if one is not willing to completely give up meat, just eating meat at less often will make a difference in ones health, and the environment.

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