Meaty Facts This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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Humans are physiologically, mentally, and physically made to eat meat. If you are a vegetarian, I hope you think twice before trying to change a meat eater’s mind about their steak dinner. These are just the facts – believe them or not. Humans, in general, are omnivores, and I can prove it.

Historically, humans have been natural meat eaters. Why do you think meat tastes so good to us? It’s because our species has evolved to eat it. According to National Geographic, “We have an improved ability to process cholesterol and fat.” Ninety-eight percent of the world eats meat, and it tastes good to most of us because chemicals are released in our brain that tell our body it’s good.

Switching to meat gave our ancestors an advantage. Researchers at the University of Southern California have found that when ancient humans began to consume meat 2.5 million years ago, they gained access to a new source of protein that helped produce larger brains and superior intelligence. Where would we be if we hadn’t discovered the first steak?

Secondly, humans are physiologically designed to eat meat. We need the protein, iron, and nutrients that only meat can provide. Without it, we face the risk of inadequate vitamin and mineral levels. As omnivores, our bodies are designed to process both meat and plant matter. According to TIME online, “a quarter-pound of meat stimulates almost twice as much gastric juices as does a quarter-pound of carbohydrates, and is correspondingly better for normal digestion.” We may not have teeth like a cat that can shear a deer, or an intestinal track that allows us to eat raw meat, but we have the single-chambered stomach common to carnivores and omnivores. Herbivores, on the other hand, have multiple stomach chambers. Humans find cellulose (the main component of plant tissue) totally indigestible, while we digest meat quickly and efficiently.

Lastly, people who choose not to eat meat do not reach their physical peak. UK Cohort hosted a study of 3,086 meat-eating women and 593 non-meat-eating women. The non-meat eaters had significantly lower levels of energy, protein, zinc, and fats than meat eaters. In the TV series “The Truth About Food,” professional athletes (both vegetarians and meat eaters) were studied as they changed their regular diet. The vegetarian athletes ate meat two times a day, while the meat-eating athletes consumed only carbs and vegetables. Colin Jackson, a former world-champion sprinter and hurdler, said that he felt “physically weaker” after not eating meat for a month.

Eating meat is what people are supposed to do. We as a species are smarter, healthier, stronger, and more developed since we began to eat meat. Why would you want to change that?

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

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This article has 66 comments. Post your own now!

Sani.123 said...
Oct. 14, 2008 at 2:10 pm
Wel first of all when i eat meat i think about the poor animal that has been killed so i can eat it personaly i think your right but when i take time out to eat veggies i think about the wonderful juicy steak i can eat straight off the GRILL! so i think that i will stick with meat lol
mae-mae said...
Oct. 7, 2008 at 6:27 pm
wow. step back. if your going to tell me not to push my vegetarianism on people, then why are you pushing your meat-eating on me? Meat is not good for us! And any nutrients we get from meat, we can get elsewhere! Protein is pretty easy to come by. And why do so many people loose weight if they stop eating meat? And lastly, from a completely moral standpoint, why on Earth is it considered normal and okay to be eating living, breathing, thinking beings? When you eat meat, you are eating something ... (more »)
little-miss-sunshine replied...
Apr. 21, 2010 at 4:22 pm

I agree in part with the author and in part with mae-mae. Yes, you shouldn't say to vegetarians not to push their vegetarian lifestyle on others and then push your omnivore lifestyle on us. However how is meat not good for us, mae- mae? to the author I would like to state that vegetarians are probably vegetarians because of the thought of eating something living. I am not a vegetarian so I can't be sure, but I don't think it's because they think meat is bad! i do like your article, and agree ... (more »)

little-miss-sunshine replied...
Apr. 21, 2010 at 4:23 pm

My post double posted, sorry!


skinne said...
Oct. 3, 2008 at 9:19 pm
I appreciate your writing skills, but you need to check your facts again. Humans are NOT designed to eat animal products - it's basic biology. Why are humans the only animals to COOK meat? Why are so many people lactose intolerant? Just a few facts to ponder...
Rinalia said...
Oct. 2, 2008 at 10:45 pm
A few things:
- Just because we are omnivorous does not mean we'd actually enjoy a slab of raw meat. Most people season their meat and cook it. Most people do not truly like the taste or smell of raw meat (or cooked meat without seasoning). And it is important to be fair: Liking the taste of something does not necessarily mean it is good or healthy.
- An omnivore can thrive fine on a plant-based diet. This has been proven time and time again with scientific research. I would enco... (more »)
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