Although I could write a new blog every day, continuously, about nutrition and the health benefits of a plant-based diet, I thought it best to simply intersperse one every now and then amongst those that I write about our environment. Here is the first of many, that I promise to spread out a bit, related to depletion of our own health—or, what I refer to as “Why Do We Do It?”
Eating animal products are implicated as a leading risk factor in ALL four of leading causes of death in the U.S. today—coronary heart disease, malignancies, cerebrovascular disease, and diabetes. Looking at just one of these conditions, there are over 26 million people suffering from diabetes in our country, with another 80 million pre-diabetics. Eating solely a plant-based diet has been shown to significantly reduce your risk in contracting any of these four disease states. Certainly there are some very specific cases of each of these diseases that have causes not so much related to diet such as familial hypercholesterolemia and even some rare forms of cancers such as rhabdomyosarcoma, various glioblastomas, etc. However, the vast majority of all those individuals suffering from any of the four most prevalent diseases (including the five leading causes of cancer—colon, lung, breast, prostate, pancreas) could have reduced their risk of contracting it, very possibly can treat and reverse the disease, reduce or eliminate health care costs associated with the disease, and carry out a more productive, healthier, and happier lifestyle—all by eating a plant-based diet.
It is undeniably true.
Although I began lecturing and writing about this fact more than 35 years ago when documentation was scarce but available, today there are exhaustive amounts of studies, publications, and books written that demonstrate this. The scientific literature is replete with documentation showing that a purely plant-based diet is healthier for you. Because of this, nearly all of the largest health organizations in the world have now included some form of a statement reflecting their acknowledgement. This includes the American Dietetic Association, American Heart Association, American Cancer Society, American Academy of Pediatrics, and many others. Of course, then, the question becomes: why do so many of our ‘experts’, those formally trained or working in related occupations, fail to recognize, recommend, prescribe, or otherwise speak up and teach these irrefutable findings that their very own organizations acknowledge? The answer lies buried in layers upon layers of powerful influences—cultural, educational, political, social, and even from the media we are so constantly exposed to. . Nevertheless, it needs to clearly understood, that the link today between eating animal products, grass/pasture fed or not, and contracting many different diseases is as strongly supported by scientific literature and case studies as the link between cigarette smoking and lung cancer. By the way, I almost forgot to ask…do you smoke cigarettes?
So, in summary, what we all choose to eat, if it involves animal products (and whether immediately recognized by you or not), is depleting your own health, implicated in all of the most common diseases in developed countries, costs hundreds of billions of dollars unnecessarily spent each year on health care, and is not at all being correctly addressed. It does not have to be this way. Think…”smoke free environment”…businesses, restaurants, buildings, schools, homes…
More insights in “Comfortably Unaware”, Chapter VIII “Why do we do it? A word about nutrition—do you really care?”
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