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Health Monster

Why We Don’t Need to Eat Animals to Be Healthy

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High protein diets have been a craze for years on end, and in the process, people abiding by these diets (or who are just in fear of going without protein), take in more than a few animal products a day. Or, young children and teenagers learn that the idea of a healthy protein is a skinless chicken breast or an egg white omelet. And perhaps fish is often thought of as a dietary medical prescription, instead of an environmental and health nightmare. 

The sad truth is, our country has fallen under the belief that we actually need to eat animals to be healthy. How and when did consuming the milk from another creature or harming another creature to obtain its flesh become the way we take care of ourselves?

Keep in mind, there’s no judgement here. Likely all of us that don’t eat animals, have been in a place in our lives where we believed that we needed them to maintain certain aspects of health, whether it be weight, body tone, heart health, or bone health. Some of us have realized that’s not the case, but perhaps others haven’t yet made the connection, or are just afraid of becoming unhealthy. You might be one of those people, and if so, we’re here to show you why you don’t need animals to be healthy. Nature has a fine way of providing everything we need without the need to harm another living thing.

Here’s why a plant-based diet is the best choice:

Plants Contain Plenty of Protein

First, let’s tackle the big horse (no pun intended.) Plants are actually packed with amino acids that build blocks of protein, and your body can use these quite efficiently to provide you with everything you need. (Here are 10 of our favorites.) Eat sources such as: edamame, chickpeas, lentils, quinoa, oats, teff, all beans and legumes, broccoli, kale, spinach, nuts, and seeds, and you’ll be sure to get plenty of body-pumping protein. Wondering about combining proteins together? There’s no need – while that will bump up your counts even further, combining foods isn’t necessary just to obtain a complete source of protein. Our bodies are able to use amino acids from any source to build complete blocks of protein just fine. Cheers to you kale!

Plants Are Packed With Better Sources of Calcium

Plants are also packed with better sources of calcium than milk. Collards, kale, almonds, some grains, and even chia and other seeds are all some of the best sources. These sources of calcium also don’t cause calcium loss in the bones like dairy-based sources do. Plants build the body, while animal foods break it down. This includes calcium, so please, skip the glass of milk and container of yogurt- they’re not doing your body a bit of good.

Plants Help Keep You Lean and Toned

If you’re one of those that eats lean meat, Greek yogurt, and egg whites or whey protein to stay lean and toned, then you’ll enjoy learning that plants can do that for you too, but without the negative side effects that eating animals brings. An oil-free plant-based diet was found to be the best diet to promote long, sustainable weight loss, more so than any other diet, and certain whole, plant-based foods actually lead to weight loss. While certain animal foods may help you drop some pounds quickly in the beginning, over the long haul, your body knows better. Some great meal ideas for staying lean and toned include pairing lots of leafy greens and veggies with whole grains, some beans and legumes, and very minimal amounts of processed foods or heavy nut dishes. Eat lower glycemic fruits to stabilize your blood sugar and base your meals off 100 percent whole foods whenever possible.

Plants Protect Your Heart 

Plants also protect your heart, in ways animal foods never could. It’s common sense, really. Why would another creature provide more benefits to our bodies than plants from the earth? Simple, right? Fruits, vegetables, beans, legumes, whole grains, nuts, and seeds have all the right ingredient for a healthy heart. Fill your plate up with these and prevent everything from diabetes, to high blood pressure, and even cancer. Broccoli and berries never looked so good, right? In fact, studies show that a reduced consumption of milk (and meat) have led to reduced rates of cancer.

If you can’t go 100 percent plant-based at first, that’s okay. The idea is to become more plant-based and ease your way into a healthier life. Because that’s what a plant-based diet is: a prescription for good health, any way you look at it.

Lead Image Source: Hannah Williams

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43 comments on “Why We Don’t Need to Eat Animals to Be Healthy”

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bob rosenberg
2 Years Ago

While I respect anyone\'s decision to not consume animal protein our genetic code is based on millions of years of history. Our paleolithic hunter gatherer fore bearers consumed a balanced diet of animal and plant based foods.
For anyone who thinks they are purely vegan, think again. The soil based organisms and insect larvae you consume are just as hurtful to that population.


Reply
Marato Gonzalez
2 Years Ago

Nacho Gozalbo


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Nacho Gozalbo
20 Dec 2014

Marato Gonzalez con mi corpachón aunque dejara de comer por completo por dos años creo que aun tendria proteinas suficientes

Robert Earl Mimm
2 Years Ago

Eat to Live by Dr.Joel Fuhrman


Reply
Sonia Cavallaro
2 Years Ago

Adam Cavallaro


Reply
Roxana Cazares Hasegawa
2 Years Ago

I haven't eat meat in 34 years, and I'm pretty happy and healthy, best decision ever!


Reply
Edwin Maldonado
19 Dec 2014

Exactly the same is my case...30 yrs...never been ill to a doctor...¡Te felicito!

Roxana Cazares Hasegawa
19 Dec 2014

Gracias Edwin Maldonado!

Martin Christensen
2 Years Ago

Morten Christensen :)


Reply
Morten Christensen
19 Dec 2014

I naturen er plantespisere byttedyr... Tænk over det ;-))

Stefanie Kiszely
2 Years Ago

Esther Lee


Reply
Shannon Sunshine
2 Years Ago

Jason Boone


Reply
Sammie Brokes
2 Years Ago

Anything in high amounts can be harmful to your body! Did you know that a three ounce piece of beef only has 1.3 nanograms of estrogen compared to 170,000 nanograms of estrogen per 3 ounces of soy! Plus, beef is a high quality and highly digestible protein that has several essential amino acids, vitamins, and minerals!


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Jayme Calhoun
19 Dec 2014

The problem is with our high population, eating meat as a main source of nutrients is destroying the planet. You don't need to eat soy for protien either. A diet with a wide variety of veggies and whole grains will give you all your protien

Sammie Brokes
19 Dec 2014

Livestock do not destroy the environment - people do. Ignorance, indifference and policies that misguide resource use are responsible for environmental degradation. Individual livestock owners, particularly in developing countries, often have very few options. It is up to policy makers to ensure that these options are environmentally sound. Organizations like FAO and AGAP work to insure that our policies protect our environment and meet the demands of a growing population. Our digestive systems are well equipped to make full use of the healthy fats, proteins and nutrients found in animal foods.The truth is that humans are omnivores. We function best eating BOTH animals and plants. High quality, unprocessed meat is among the most nutritious foods in the world. A 100 gram portion (3.5 ounces) of raw ground beef contains large amounts of Vitamin B12, B3 (Niacin), B6, Iron, Zinc, Selenium and plenty of other vitamins and minerals. Vitamin B12 is particularly important because it can not be gotten in ANY amount from plants. Studies show that out of vegans who don’t supplement with B12, 92% are deficient in this critical nutrient. There is also a plethora of important lesser-known nutrients in meat, that can not be gotten from plants such as creatine, carnosine, DHA and EPA. These nutrients are crucial for optimal function of the body. There are about 9 amino acids that we can not produce and must get from the diet. In this regard, animal proteins are excellent… they contain all the amino acids that we need, while most plant proteins have a suboptimal amino acid profile.

Edwin Maldonado
19 Dec 2014

Dead protein plus chemicals and toxins...not recomended...also no need to kill for living hapily and healthy...

Sammie Brokes
19 Dec 2014

Edwin, I have no response to that because I do not understand what you said. Not sure what you mean by "dead protein" or what chemicals and toxins you are referring to.

Elizabeth Steensma
19 Dec 2014

Simple Sammie; dead protein equates to the animals killed and toxins and chemicals refer to how these animals are raised and fed. Many of us choose to go vegan because we are against the slaughter of animals and the hypocritical nature of speciesism.

Sammie Brokes
20 Dec 2014

Elizabeth, I can asure you that the meat processed in this country is free of chemicals and toxins. We have very strict regulations about these matters implemented by our USDA. I respect anyone's decision to live a vegan lifestyle. Most vegans are very healthy not because they do not eat meat, but because they make healthy lifestyle choices such as avoiding processed and artificial food and exercising. The problem I have is when vegans condem others for choosing a different, but equally healthy and appropriate lifestyle. The animals in our agriculture industry are protected by the humane methods of slaughter act and are treated with respect. Eating meat in a perfectly natural and acceptable practice.

Courtney McFarland
2 Years Ago

Make sure to research "essential amino acids" which are the ones our bodies cannot synthesize and must be eaten to obtain them- Some are widely available in animal protein and dairy but only available from a few plant based sources, so do some research and make sure to include those in your diet if you are vegan.


Reply
Edwin Maldonado
19 Dec 2014

Thanks,well look...twinlab's and Dr.Norman's liquid yeast are the best and they are predigested enzymes...All essential aminoacids are there and it can be consumed the whole life and no need for any other source.And my advice as an ND having done my researches and still is for humans not to consume ANY kind of animal product, especially corpses...thank you very much for ur advice...very kind of u.

Kary Cham
19 Dec 2014

Edwin, the liquid yeast includes predigested enzymes or do you have to buy them apart? I'm interested in that/those supplement(s).



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