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I have several friends that are vegetarians and some that are not. And you might imagine that from time to time, there is always a debate whose food is better. I eat meat, but I am not an extremist about it, I like veggies too, but what are actual arguments against being vegetarian?

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I would like to say there are none. And basically, there are none. Except for several arguments that could be countermanded easily. Many say that since we have teeth for meat, we should eat meat. But that is stupid. I mean, we have only 4 fangs out of 32 teeth, what meat we are talking about here. You cannot eat meat raw, while in theory you can do that with vegetables. Still, I like meat from time to time and I am not planning on leaving it. I guess that is the strongest argument there is.
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hmm i don't know, i suppose the strongest argument against vegetarianism is about the lack of protein you will get in your diet, but i know that you can get your recommended amount of protein through other foods, but off the top of my head i can't remember what they are.
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I've none. There are many veggies withe loads n loads of protein like soybean. So there is no argument according to me.
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The answer to your question is nutrition.

The human body requires two macro-nutrients for proper nutrition: protein and fat. Carbohydrates are inessential to human well-being, and increasingly it is becoming apparent that carbohydrates are directly responsible for a lot of the degenerative diseases that plague Western civilization, including obesity, heart disease, and diabetes.

What is a vegetarian diet typically high in? Carbohydrates. Granted, most vegetarians are healthier than the general population, if only because they tend to cut out a lot of the refined sugar and flour, thus sticking to the *less unhealthy* complex carbohydrates. They also aren't eating the factory-farmed, hormone- and antibiotic-laced, unnaturally raised and fed animal's, whos protein is of questionable quality nutrition-wise.

But compared to someone who eats grass-fed and pastured animal products and avoids all carbohydrates except those found in green vegetables, the vegetarian loses every time. The human body prefers the types of fat and protein found in these animals.

Another problem with vegetarianism, and especially veganism, is that it tends to be low in fat. The human body absolutely needs fat more than any other nutrient, and yet vegetarian culture (and mainstream nutrition for that matter) seems to hate fat. On top of that, the fat that vegetarians tend to eat, like soybean and canola oil, is completely unhealthy to the human body - we did not evolve to eat this highly manufactured, unnatural garbage.

If you want to go for a healthly diet, eat animal products from humanely-raised animals , loads of green veggies, loads of nuts, fruit here and there, and avoid simple carbs like the plague.
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Vegetarian diet might be more healthy but it is harder to maintain. You'd really have to know how to combine various types of foods so that you have enough protein in your diet. I eat meat and all veggie dishes and have the best of both worlds. :-)
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Health wise, there's absolutely no proof that the absence of meat in your diet is the sole variable for better health. Vegetarians may lead healthy lives but thats due to other lifestyle aspects, not just the absence of meat in their diet, i.e a veggie who smokes and drinks alcohol can hardly claim they're going to live longer then a meat eater who doesn't. The bottom line is there are more factors involved in being healthy than just whether or not you eat meat. Also there are certain nutrients, such as iron, that are easier absorbed by the body from meat than from plants or supplements.

Humans are omnivores, therefore it's fact that we are adapted to eat bothplants AND meat and are not designed to eat either exclusively. To lead a healthy life it's important to have a balanced diet!

Of course veggies will also argue the ethical implications of meat eating. Apparantly eating meat is 'murder' and cruel to animals. What are they comparing that to?? Animals that are farmed and killed for food are on the large part well kept and killed in a humane fashion (granted there are plenty of cases of cruelty to animals in slaughter houses and farms but thats a different argument), whereas if they were in the wild they would struggle to keep themselves nourished and many would be ripped to shreds by other animals for food!! Do you think a fox would take the time to make sure a chicken dies peacefully before it eats it?? If anything an animal has the prospect of a better life on a farm than to fend for itself!!

The bottom line is that animals eat other animals and as long as there's life on this planet that's how it's always gonna be!!

p.s and my god meat tastes soooo good!!
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I recently stopped eating meat because I found it easy to do so and after a while, I began to build an association with meat being dead animal and not a 'tasty snack', now I just simply don't want to eat meat. At the same time, I have no problem whatsoever with the general concept of eating meat, food chain, each to their own etc.
I have, however, noticed that allot of my friends have a problem with my decision to not eat meat, and I personally think it is because they feel I am judging them. For example, for me to sit at the table and not eat meat when they are, It's as if I am taking some kind of moral stand against them. This is obviously not the case.
But when I'm in that situation, I often hear arguments such as:
''If you eat Quorn and 'meat substitute' products that are shaped like meat products, then aren't you just chasing the taste and look of meat anyway? And if that's so then why not just eat it?''
I find this argument absolutely ridiculous. Firstly because English culture is in some ways defined by the 'steak and kidney pie', 'sausage and chips', 'steak and chips' etc, so by eating products that can in some ways be related, vegetarians can 'fit in' and feel part of it all. Additionally, what else are vegetarians meant to eat? V shaped mushroom based snacks?
Also, we generally don't know anything else, so the easiest way to begin providing for vegetarians is to create direct substitutions for meat. Aaaand... Ultimately, Quorn isn't an animal!
I also find that this argument (as ridiculous as it is) can be used irreversibly. I.e- if vegetarians should eat meat because Quorn and other such products are based on it, then why shouldn't meat eaters eat the substitutes, seen as though there is no death involved also?
Another argument is that 'it's natural to eat animals' (which is of course true) but.. as a moral argument,, why not eat pet cats or dogs? If it's perfectly acceptable to eat pigs, cows, even rabbit, then why is it suddenly unheard of (In England) to eat cats, dogs, hamsters...
Every argument for both sides is paradoxical and completely biased, of course. It should just come down to a simple ''you eat meat, I don't.. lets leave it at that''
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I know it was a while ago that this topic started but I couldnt read all the nonsence that had been written without writing something myself!

So far the arguments AGAINST vegetarianism are; a lack of iron, the difficulty in sourcing protein, we are designed to eat both meat and plants and animals are humanely killed.

So, first I will mention the iron - Dried beans and dark green leafy vegetables are especially good sources of iron, even better on a per calorie basis than meat. According to the FDA iron deficiancy is not hugely common in vegetarians. (I know a large number of meat eaters that are anaemic.)

Protein - In a standard meat eating diet often people take in too much protein. Protein from meat can in fact have a negative effect on calcium uptake in the body. Protein can be found in high quanities from beans, nuts, fruit and vegetables. I am vegan and ALWAYS get enough protein in my diet without even thinking about it. Protein combining is of course necessery, but not difficult - beans on toast or lentils and rice give you a full amino acid count, one does not have to combine the protein in one meal, just over a day.

According to the British Nutrition Foundation - "A well-planned and varied vegetarian diet will provide adequate energy and sufficient amounts of these nutrients."

Someone mentioned that we were not DESIGNED to eat a plant based diet. Well for one thing we were not designed at all, we have evolved, according to Darwins theory. Not many people know this but Darwin himself was vegetarian and believed humans should not eat meat. We have much longer intestines than all other carnivores, cannot stomach raw meat and do not have the sharp teeth necessery for ripping apart flesh.

It was also mentioned that animals are "humanely" bred and slaughtered. This is a very ignorant statement from someone that has obviously never researched the subject correctly. A caged hen is kept in a cage smaller than the size of an A4 piece of paper. In britain 60% of eggs on supermarket shelves are from caged hens. A dairy cow could easily live 20 years, however after about 5 years it will collapse with exhaustion and be sent to a slaughterhouse.

"If slaughterhouses had glass walls we'd all be vegetarian." Sir Paul McCartney

I think one of the most important arguments for vegetarianism at the moment is the effect the meat industry has on the enviroment. A study looked at a steak dinner compared to a stir fried veg dinner and found that the meat dinner had 25 times the carbon footprint than the veg. Shifting entirely from an average American diet to a vegetable-based one would reduce the same emissions as 8,000 miles driven per year.

So there ya go, some arguments FOR vegetarianism. :)
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thank you veganlee, for haveing some intelligence. i can't even believe some of the things they were said. complete idiocy.
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Vegetarians on average live 7 years longer than non-vegetarians and have a significantly reduced risk of almost every serious disease (cancers, heart disease, etc.)

I just bought an excellent book about the longevity 'hot spots' in the world, and one thing all of these places had in common is that they ate meat very sparingly. When they did eat meat, it was from animals they either killed out of the wild or raised themselves. This was one of the contributing factors to them leading healthier, better quality lives than typical Americans.
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There are plenty of studies and opinions on what to eat and what not to eat. However, there is not one single conclusive study by any scientist that any one food or food category can be harmful to anyone. For the sake ofbeing a winger, nutrient per nutrient, a diet consisting of insects and bacteria is second to none - but you don't see people running their mouths about that now.

Everyone will die, that is the only fact of life. And when you do, your body will be eaten too. So as long as you sleep happy at night and smile in the day, no one's opinion makes one bit of difference in the end and nothing will ever change what people want to do with their diet.

Why not argue over something important - like which color ofthe rainbow is the prettiest.
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Of course everyone is going to die. The way I and many others see it is: Take care of your body today, and you'll lead a less painful life later. Proper nutrition and proper care of your body lessens the pain and suffering of most maladies. I plan on living a life full of energy and vitality past 100, myself. :-)
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I like to think of it in terms of SEX....
98% of the hormones in our body that promote a good sexual activity come for Cholesterol, know remember that not all cholesterol is good, but no all is bad either, we defenetly need FAT, and animal FAT to functions as nature wanted us to function, if we where meant to be only vegetarian he would have big big bellies full of bacterias that can eventually digest cellulose like gorillas do, but we don't, do we??? I'm not saying vages are bad, and just saying meats not bad either. Eat meat... its good, and it will do you good, specially in deb. :-)
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One things is clear from this thread - vegetarians write a much better argument. There are a lot of claims in here with no references to the source and study they are coming from. Check your facts people.
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