*Spoiler Alert*

Okay so I’m sure by now many of you have seen the documentary on Netflix titled ‘What the Health’. For those of you that haven’t seen it, the movie is about a hypochondriac turned vegan who is trying to prove that it’s actually not natural for us to eat meat. Honestly it was a super enlightening documentary and if you haven’t seen it I think you should just so you can see his side of things. What I thought the documentary really proved was how much big business really does influence everything around us. The more money they have the more power. However, I disagree with the whole point of the documentary. I don’t think we should all go vegan. I’m not trying to disrespect the vegan lifestyle, on the contrary I give major props to anyone who even attempts to go fully vegan because with all the limitations you have that is a very lifestyle to live. What I disagree with is their reasoning for why being vegan is healthier:

  1. Processed meats have harmful chemicals/meat causes diseases
  2. We are frugivores

Processed meats have harmful chemicals/meat causes disease: Now yes I can fully 100% agree that processed meats do contain added chemicals and hormones that are bad for you. When I say processed meats I refer to anything that is microwaveable and ready to eat in minutes, the prepackaged lunch meats, hot dogs, canned meats, most fast food meats, etc. Which yeah that kind of limits your options and makes for more work, but the companies that make those foods profit off of convenience, and that convenience is causing a lot of health issues that are present today in children (well in anyone really) that haven’t been present before. But just because processed meats are harmful doesn’t mean that it’s automatically unnatural for us to eat meat.– Actually humans are able to eat and digest raw meat immediately after an animal has been killed, without getting sick according to a professor of pathology at NYU.– Now for the meat causes diseases thing, in the documentary this still kind of correlated with the processed meats thing. Which yes, it makes sense that all those harmful chemicals would cause harm to your body. Now I will admit it is true that red meat is linked to greater risk of heart disease, but that is mostly for people who eat meat constantly. What the documentary didn’t tell you was that not eating meat leads to anemia and nervous system damage according to ‘the Vegan Society’ because if you don’t eat meat you begin to lack vitamin B12, and vitamin B12 is only naturally found in meats and is vital to the human body. The only other way to obtain B12 is to take supplements or eat fortified foods, which you would have to eat a lot of to maintain the amount your body needs.

We are Frugivores: With this I would like to start out saying that this is mainly a theory. There are different theories as to what humans truly are, and since according to science our closest ancestor is a chimpanzee, which are frugivores, people like to claim that we are frugivores as well. The problem for me is frugivore is still on the spectrum of omnivores, which omnivores eat meat. In the documentary they completely glossed over the fact that frugivores still eat some portions of meat. The link with the chimps was interesting to me because even though, scientifically, they are the closest ancestor to us, humans and chimps took different evolutionary paths. We have been separate beings for millions of years, so their diet wouldn’t necessarily be identical to ours. But for arguments sake lets say we do have the same diet as chimps. Chimps are classified as frugivores, making their main diet fruits, nuts, grains, roots, but according to BBC, chimpanzees do in fact regularly hunt. Their main prey are red colobus monkeys. So if we’re gonna go with that, then yes, we can still eat meat either way.

Now I really did find the documentary interesting, and I did learn a lot. I just wanted to give my opinion and the facts that I’ve found that I think other people should know before they let a very biased documentary completely change their diet. At the end of the day whatever you decide and whether you agree with me or not doesn’t matter! What matters is what works for you and your body! I’m not against trying a vegan diet I’m actually willing to try it for a few weeks, but I know myself and my body, and I know that I personally could never fully commit myself to that lifestyle. But do what makes you and your body happy and healthy!

I would love to hear any feedback! until next time live your Con{FIT}dent You!

 

References:

Nature News. Nature Publishing Group, n.d. Web. 18 July 2017.https://www.nature.com/scitable/knowledge/library/evidence-for-meat-eating-by-early-humans-103874273

“What Every Vegan Should Know About Vitamin B12.” The Vegan Society. N.p., 25 July 1970. Web. 18 July 2017.

Marshall, Michael. “Earth – Chimpanzees Over-hunt Monkey Prey Almost to Extinction.” BBC. BBC, 28 July 2015. Web. 18 July 2017.

Also published on Medium.

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