The World Health Organization (WHO) has confirmed that eating bacon, hot dogs, ham, and other processed meats causes cancer. According to the WHO, processed meats are now in the same category of cancer risk as cigarettes and asbestos in terms of how dangerous and deadly they are. The WHO also said that all types of red meat, including beef, pork, veal, and lamb, are likely to cause cancer.
Not only do these meats cause cancer in humans, they also cause unimaginable suffering for the pigs, cows, and sheep whose body parts are used to make them.
In addition, researchers presenting at the annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research demonstrated that people whose diets included high meat consumption were up to 58 percent more likely to develop bladder cancer. In Australia alone, approximately 750 people die from this disease every year. And if you’re keen for a well-done steak, you’d better be prepared to hazard the steaks stakes: Cooking meat at high temperatures produces heterocyclic amines (well-known carcinogens), and consuming well-done meat nearly doubles your risk of developing bladder cancer! Consumption of other meat dishes—from pork chops to fried fish—also raises your risk.
Fortunately, a well-planned vegan diet with a healthy variety of food will more than adequately meet our nutritional needs—in fact, it’s healthier than eating meat! The American Dietetic Association and Dietitians of Canada’s joint position paper on vegetarianism asserts, “Vegetarian diets offer a number of nutritional benefits, including lower levels of saturated fat, cholesterol, and animal protein as well as higher levels of carbohydrates, fiber, magnesium, potassium, folate, and antioxidants such as vitamins C and E and phytochemicals .”
If you’re not vegetarian yet, take the Pledge to Be Veg, and we’ll send you our favorite tips for making the transition to a healthy and compassionate lifestyle.
Posted by Jason Baker