Why You Shouldn't Eat Meat

August 12, 2011
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Everybody has a favorite animal. Whether it's a horse, fish, dog, or pig, how do you feel knowing that hundreds of these animals are being killed everyday for people to eat? Do you feel strongly about it, and want to make a difference, or do you only care about how good the meat tastes? It's hard to give up something you've been eating your whole life, but if you take baby steps to your final conclusion- becoming a vegetarian- it will make a huge difference.

The reason that probably applies the most to you is that, contrary to popular belief, vegetarians are actually a lot healthier than carnivores. The amounts of meat products that have been recalled in just the past year are vast. Add that to the list of meats that are contaminated, but are still sold in restaurants and stores- either without knowing, or just to earn more money. Diabetes, arthritis, strokes, breast cancer and appendicitis are only a few examples of known diseases that people have gotten by eating contaminated meat. E. coli has also been found in chicken meat. Chickens are killed in filthy slaughterhouses that are coated in animal droppings, and meat that is contaminated with animal waste carries E. coli. A former farm-agency worker has said that “the final result is no different than if you stuck it into the toilet and ate it. Also, many people still believe that by not eating meat, you are not getting all the nutrients that you need to stay healthy. It is now known that that is not true. Meat does not provide any nutrients that vegetarians cannot obtain from other sources. In order to live normally, your body needs to be healthy. Would you rather continue eating meat, and live an unhealthy life, or become vegetarian and not worry about all the diseases you could get from your daily meals?

If you have a soft spot for animals, I think you might think twice about eating them after you hear how they are treated on large farms. First of all, farmers cut off baby chickens beaks so that when they are placed into their tiny, cell like cages, they wont peck the other seven or eight chicks that they have to share their cage with. Chickens on large farms don't even have enough room to stretch their wings, and hen's cages are built so that every egg they lay rolls away from them, and onto a conveyor belt to be collected and sold. When the hens cannot produce anymore eggs, the farmer first stops feeding them. Farmers have discovered that starving the hens makes them produce more eggs for a little while. Then, when the hens are finally run dry, and cannot produce any more eggs, they are driven to a slaughterhouse and are killed for meat. On meat farms, chickens are given drugs so that they grow faster and bigger, until they grow so large that they can barely stand. Hens that are raised naturally can live up to 20 years, but on large egg farms, they only live up to 2 years. Similar to chickens, cows get their horns cut off so that they don't attack the other cows that they share their cramped space with. They also get branded, which cause third-degree burns. If we all become vegetarians, farmers won't raise as many animals, because no one will be buying their products. And so animals won't be tortured like this anymore. All you need to do is stop eating meat and eggs. It shouldn't be a hard thing to do after just hearing how the animals are treated, all so that we can take their products.

People have hard times giving up eating meat, but there are some ways you can make it easier. Now stores sell meat alternatives, or imitation meats. Most people think fake meat doesn't taste like real meat, but some come very close. Plus, imitation meat is also made to look the same as real meat- the texture and color are very similar to the real thing. There are so many alternatives to meat that can help you if you ever transition from being a carnivore to becoming a vegetarian.

If you really care about animals, you can even go a step further than vegetarianism. You can become a vegan. A vegan doesn't eat any meat or any dairy. Lots of people think that cows need to be milked, but cows only produce milk for their babies. Farmers will allow cows to have calves, because they need the cow to continue producing milk, but only a day or two after the calf is born the farmer takes it away so that we can have the milk. If farmers didn't take the calves away, then the calves would drink the milk, and there would be no need for us to milk the cow! People also don't realize that animals aren't only treated horribly for meat, but also for dairy products. On dairy farms, female cows are hooked up to milking machines several times a day, and are forced to produce about 10 times the amount of milk that they would naturally.
Many people have become vegans to stop this atrocity. If you care enough, you easily can too.

You hear about World Hunger all the time. On TV, in the newspaper, online- everywhere. You feel pity for those starving people but yet you still go on eating meat. You're probably wondering why this is relevant to everything I've been talking about. Well, presently 70% of all the grain we grow is fed to farm animals so that wealthy people can eat meat. Meanwhile, millions of poor people are starving to death. If we stop eating so much meat, less livestock will be raised, and less food will need to be grown for them. Stopping eating meat could be the answer to the end of World Hunger.

Hopefully this makes you stop and think twice about eating meat. Vegetarians each save 100 animals a year. Each person counts. By becoming a vegetarian, you are making the world a better place for everyone- both animals and people alike.

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This article has 19 comments. Post your own now!

CJSAwesome said...
Nov. 17 at 11:26 am
I can see why you feel this way about eating meat, especially when you have a deep sympathy or connection with animals. Think of it this way, these animals exist for this purpose, to be eaten. Whether you believe in Creation, Evolution, or something else, there always have and always will be predators and prey. As for the treatment of animals, I can vouch for that to an extent. I raise pigs as a 4-H project. I have these animals from late march to early September, and I grow very attached to the... (more »)
SuperDoughnuts said...
Jan. 4 at 1:27 pm
My meat is also an option
shelvor said...
Feb. 20, 2014 at 7:48 pm
I disagree with being referred to as a carnivore with vegetarians not being known as herbivores if anything I prefer omnivore.
hollandpiggy said...
Jul. 19, 2013 at 2:58 pm
 You have strog points, but you forget to look at it from the farmer's view. I am raised on a farm and have been brought up to understand the farmer ways. You say that they "cut off" the cattle's horns when actually they dock them. This is to provide safety to the other animals and the humans that handle them.  Basically what I am tryying to say is that you need to take two sides to the point. Look at it from the farmers view. By raising those cattle, he feeds his fam... (more »)
someone... said...
Nov. 2, 2012 at 2:24 pm
farms aren't cruel. I know this 'cause I work at some farms. Here in New Zealand all the calves of dairy cows are given to children who raise them to be tame so that at dairy farms cows are like one of the family cows don't mind being milked by machine and are only milked twice a day. branding is done quickly and by vets, so it is done humane. horns are cut off cows because sometimes they can get too heavy and can make it uncomfortable for the cows, taking off horn is a compeletly pa... (more »)
Mtizzle said...
Mar. 12, 2012 at 1:44 pm
I liked this alot even if im not a vegitarian or will ever be you bring up many good pionts to your cause and belief more power to you =)
savetheplanet said...
Oct. 2, 2011 at 5:23 pm
Nice article!  I can't become a vegetarian right now, my parents won't let me, but I'm going to try later on!
Thesilentraven This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Oct. 4, 2011 at 8:37 am
Ha ha, my parents wouldn't let me either. Civil disobedience, Liz, civil disobedience. ;)
savetheplanet replied...
Oct. 4, 2011 at 6:09 pm
I'd try the whole refusing to eat thing but starvation and I don't get along too well, see?  It's also difficult to concentrate on a test when it's dead silent in the classroom and your stomach is grumbling incessantly, true story!
Thesilentraven This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Oct. 4, 2011 at 6:45 pm

Ah, quite understandable.

I guess it was easier for me, my parents gave in pretty quickly.

savetheplanet replied...
Oct. 4, 2011 at 7:35 pm
My mother isn't opposed to the idea but my dad is a total carnivore.   Oh well, I can eat whatever I want in college!
Thesilentraven This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Oct. 2, 2011 at 4:57 pm

You raise many logical points, and it sounds like you're a very passionate and compassionate person. I'm very glad to have come across one like you.

Many thanks for writing this article in the name of life.

Thesilentraven This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Oct. 2, 2011 at 4:59 pm

Oh, also, more practically:

I'm a vegetarian (I don't eat any meat, except for free-range eggs). How do you, as a vegan, suggest becoming a vegan? I'm not sure how to begin, how to get all the protein and such.

Janeyy replied...
Oct. 2, 2011 at 9:21 pm

Thank you so much! I really appreciate your comments :)

Okay. It's different for everyone, but I think it would be a little easier to slowly ease into becoming vegan. Start by kicking one food out of your diet. Let's say, milk. There's a simple alternative to cow milk, as you probably know: Soy milk. And I don't know about other people, but I LOVE Silk Soy Milk. I definitely reccomend you try them. So substitute your cow milk with soy milk, and so on. Slowly get rid of dairy products u... (more »)

Thesilentraven This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Oct. 4, 2011 at 8:37 am

Your advice is extraordinarily helpful, especially since it comes from a practiced vegan!

Just curious, do you eat a lot of organic food as well? It is expensive, but I wonder if it's worth the cost.

Janeyy replied...
Oct. 5, 2011 at 6:24 pm
Hm, well I do eat organic food occasionally, but I don't live off it... just sometimes, you know? ;) Really, I don't do much of my shopping, so I don't know for sure how much I do eat... but yeah. I don't eat too much. Well, good luck! Thanks so much for your comments :)
andromeda13 said...
Aug. 17, 2011 at 8:28 am
it wasa great article but your fightinga losing battle. I've tried to beome vegatarian, my mom won't cook the meals, 
Janeyy replied...
Aug. 17, 2011 at 12:55 pm
Yeah, I know sometimes its difficult, like in your situation... but if you support it in any way, like at least spreading the word, or protesting against animal cruelty, would make a difference. :)
Janeyy replied...
Aug. 17, 2011 at 12:55 pm
But thank you :)
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