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Vegetarian Diet Is Helpful or Harmful

Essay by   •  November 11, 2013  •  Research Paper  •  1,714 Words (7 Pages)  •  1,579 Views

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VEGETARIAN DIET IS HARMFUL OR HELPFUL

First of all, I think that we must know what vegetarianism is and after this we can discuss about it. Vegetarians are known to many of us as those people who do not eat meat. According to DEX, vegetarianism is "the principle or practice of excluding all meat and subsisting on a diet composed primarily of wholly vegetables, grains, fruits, nuts, and seeds" (1012, transl. mine).

Today many people become vegetarians because they know the benefits of this diet; however we need to find out more information about this. I think that we must know that are many different kinds of vegetarians. There are some vegetarians that eat meat occasionally or some products derived from animals, and some that do not eat meat, who are called vegans. The basic vegetarian diet as mentioned in definition consists of: fruits, vegetables, grain products, beans and nuts.

There are many arguments for vegetarianism and I will enumerate a few: diet is healthier consequently extends the human life, animals are not killed, is rich in some nutrients that cannot be found in meat. These are just a few of the arguments that I want to emphasize in my paper and which sustain this lifestyle. However there are also arguments which are against vegetarianism and we can include them here: risk of malnutrition, ethical overkill and another argument is that vegetarian diet is too expensive to have such lifestyle and sometimes is hard to find such products.

+ HEALTHY

I strongly believe that are few people who think that they can live without eating meat. Many studies made on different types of vegetarians have shown that "they have lower risk for the most common diseases which affect our society today and are known as: cancer, diabetes, heart diseases and many other" (Nadasan, Retete Culinare Vegetariene, 52, transl. mine). Another benefit is that vegetarian diet contains less saturated fat than animal products, and this is good because it prevent many diseases and helps to prolong the life of a person.

For instance we can take for example a study of German Cancer Research Center which has shown that:

"Vegetarians had a lower risk of dying from ischemic heart diseases compared to non- vegetarians. Although this finding to reach statistical significance, it may be truly attributed to abstinence from meat and is in line with the hypothesis that animal fat and a high cholesterol diet promote ischemic heart diseases" (Rautenstrauch, "Vegetarian Study..., no page, web)

In other words consumption of meat is bad for our health in consequence is recommended a vegetarian diet because is healthier.

-Risk of anemia

Some people believe that those who do not eat meat have a high risk of anemia. They think that vegetarians cannot get all the necessary vitamins for a healthy lifestyle because the most important of these could be found in meat. These claims are in complete contradiction with what I have mentioned above at positive arguments. Many studies have shown that "vegetarians who fail to supplement their diets with vitamin D, B12 and iron are prone to becoming dangerously anemic" (Davis, "How to: Argue against Vegetarians", 1, web). These vitamins are essential for our health as we must eat meat but with moderation. This argument seems to me that is not so real because all these vitamins can be found in vegetables and fruits too. Take for example this report:

"Two tablespoons of peanut butter contain 8 grams of protein (the same as a glass of milk); one cup of tofu has 517 milligrams of calcium, instead of one ounce of mozzarella cheese that contain only 145 milligrams of calcium" (Castleman, Nature's Cures, 368-370) .

In this report is demonstrated that vegetarian products are more beneficial than products derived from animals.

So all in all I believe that this argument it cannot be take in account because as we saw vegetarianism had more advantages than meat.

+ Animals are not killed

As far as I know there are some reasons for this argument. On the hand it could be the religion because are there some religions as: Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism that prohibit the killing of animals. They believe that having a vegetarian diet lead to a healthy life and protect animals from sacrificing violence: "Christian vegetarianism offers the ideal of transfiguring every meal into a sanctified act of reverence and gratitude for God's bounty" (Walters & Portmess, Religious Vegetarianism: From Hesiod to the Dalai Lama, 8). There are some Christians which encourages vegetarianism as a preferable lifestyle but not necessarily.

On the other hand it could be that some people become vegetarians because are compassionate when they know through which pass animals until end up in our plate. According to one article from Vegetarian Starter Kit in which is said that:

"The majority of farmed animals are confined that to the point that they can barely move, denied veterinary care, mutilated without painkillers, and finally, mercilessly slaughtered" (no author, "Farm to fridge", 4).

This study appears to be unethical. You cannot treat in these manner animals,

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