Currently, there is a lot of controversy regarding the appropriateness of eating meat. Many say that it is expensive, inhumane, and in some cases can cause illness and even cancer. And yet, despite many arguments, most people are never able to give up their carnivorous habits. Many do not want to give up a juicy, well-done steak, and in this article we have collected 9 reasons for such passion.
Let me remind you that this is not an ultimatum article, but rather an open discussion, as a continuation of the topic of meat and its benefits. LifeGlobe has plenty of material on vegetarianism as well. The material contributes to the discussion, where everyone can express in favor of their point of view.
Our bodies are meant for meat
Thanks to the miracles of evolution, humans can live very well on a meat-free diet. But this does not mean that we are natural vegetarians. Far from it: back in 2003, scientists found the remains of our ancestors, who ate meat about 2.5 million years ago. In other words, the love of meat is not a symbol of modern decadence; it is part of our traditional diet. Firstly, our body is deprived of most of the features that are inherent in herbivores. For example, we don’t have four stomachs, we don’t have the ability to digest cellulose, and we don’t have the complex intestinal tract of most herbivores. Second, our teeth are obviously designed to handle both meat and non-meat diets.
Man survived thanks to meat
From a strictly logical point of view, the human body is very bizarre. For starters, our brains aren’t supposed to be that big, apparently. In most primate species, brain size increases with body size, and humans are the exception. We use only a small part of our brain, but in fact it is full of neurons that can hold more individual thoughts than there are stars in the universe. What made us so special? According to one 2011 study, this is our appetite for meat. And it’s no joke: researchers in Spain have identified symptoms of malnutrition in a child’s skull dating back 1.5 million years. The theory suggests that we are so used to eating meat because our brains couldn’t develop without it. This idea was supported by other evidence, such as the complexity of the primate brain, depending on the number of calories consumed. It follows that we can make logical choices (in particular regarding vegetarianism) because we originally ate other animals.
Other primates eat meat
One argument most often made by vegetarians is that humans are the only primates that eat meat. Therefore, it must be unnatural for a human as well. But the whole point is that this is not entirely true. As early as 1960, Jane Goodall observed chimps hunting and eating other animals in the wild. It has since been proven that certain chimpanzee communities can eat up to one ton of meat annually. It’s not just about nutrition – they also use harvested meat to demonstrate a reproductive advantage over each other. It turns out that our evolutionary cousins really like a good steak…
Transportation of meat
One of the reasons for ditching meat is the devastating environmental impact of transporting large quantities of meat around the world. Indeed, our current transportation model is almost as environmentally friendly as wildfire. In fact, properly managed livestock can be very beneficial. One cow on a small farm can feed its owners for an eternity – this was the main essence of agriculture in the beginning. Therefore, it is not the meat itself that is the problem, but the current system of supply and transportation. If you create local farms that would cover the needs of each individual region, this problem would not exist at all.
Harm to the environment
Many argue that eating meat is a bigger killer of the planet than chewing on tofu. But it is not always the case. For example, compare organically raised animals to industrially produced tofu. The amount of land needed is greater, irrigating and harvesting soybeans requires more fossil fuels, and the end product often has to travel significant distances if you live somewhere in northern countries where the climate is not exactly favorable for the growth of meat substitutes. It turns out that that tasteless tofu burger you eat to save the future of our planet may actually be more harmful to it than a tasty hunk of beef.
Meat reduces aggression
Humans have certain psychological traits that are visible to the naked eye. Many people say that people who eat meat are more aggressive than vegetarians. However, a group of scientists decided to study the problem of meat and aggression, after which they came to a completely opposite conclusion. By showing men a photo of red meat, the researchers found that even looking at a steak could actually reduce aggression. So while we think a rabid steak eater is more violent than a guy who lives off soybeans and lentils, the opposite may be true.
No animal abuse
Of course, one of the main arguments against eating meat is that it is cruel. For example, chickens may be kept in a small cage and fed until they become too fat. But even if you give the animal a better life, there is no way to avoid the fact that an intelligent creature will have to be turned into dinner. Therefore, it is easy to understand why some people simply refuse to eat meat. But soon everything should change. Thanks to Dutch scientist Willem van Ilen, we are at the point where we can grow hamburgers in the lab. Yes, humans have indeed become more advanced as a species, and can grow a cow hunk in the lab without actually involving a live cow. Currently, this technology is too expensive to mass-produce, and the first lab-grown hamburger cost $300,000 and didn’t taste very good. But in a decade or two, there may be a world where steak, sausages, bacon, and even veal cutlets can be created without any animal abuse.
Meat can save the planet
Going for a walk in the countryside, you will see that the landscape here is extremely different from how nature created it. For thousands of years, animals belonging to our ancestors have driven dense natural forests to extinction. Nevertheless, there are considerable benefits in raising livestock. Raising livestock is important for increasing biodiversity and creating a truly sustainable world, environmentalists say.
The meat is delicious
All disputes between vegetarians and meat lovers ultimately come down to one point – meat is really tasty and it is impossible to argue with that.