Originally Posted by Nawal89
Actually, I do have proof. You should have asked for proof instead of being so cynical. Here is a research paper I wrote for an english class:
Benefits of Vegetarianism
Today, the majority of Americans obsess over their weight and dieting. With over sixty percent of American adults fighting obesity, it is easy to see why dieting products are so popular. Yet, what diet actually works? Which diet has the most benefits? Do any of the diets also benefit other areas in the world such as the environment? First, looking at the Atkins diet, one can see that yes, the diet does work for some, but has many side effects of increasing your risk of heart disease and other cardiovascular problems. The side effects are due to the large consumption of meat and small consumption of grains, vegetables, and fruits. Also, the Atkins diet correlates to the increase in meat consumption, which increases air and water pollution. Vegetarianism is a diet completely opposite of the Atkins diet. A vegetarian diet includes large amounts of grains, fruits, and vegetables, and absolutely no meat, and in some cases, absolutely no animal products. Benefits of a vegetarian lifestyle are a nutritious diet, an increased health, and a cleaner ecosystem.
First, vegetarianism comes with a healthy diet. Although many vegetarians do have access to unhealthy foods such as cookies, chips, and pizza, the benefits of a vegetarian lifestyle are based on those who do eat the recommended foods. For example, Body Bulletin reports, “vegetarians eat an average of 25% less saturated fat” (Veggie 1). This statistic is based on the fact that meat, not included in a vegetarian diet, provides for a large portion of saturated fat. Also vegetarians enjoy the benefits of phytochemicals1 from brightly colored fruits and vegetables, as well as the added vitamins of A, C, and E (Dworkin 3). The added nutrients and subtraction of fat all benefit the vegetarian not only for quick results, but also in the long run of their overall health.
Although a vegetarian diet adds many vitamins and gets rid of fat, people often question how they get important nutrients usually found in meat, such as iron, B12, and protein. With a wide range of soy products and vegetables, it is easy for a vegetarian to get enough of all three. For protein, vegetarians have faux meat products made of soy like veggie hot dogs, hamburgers, bacon, sausage, etc. Recently, companies such as Boca and Morningstar Farms have made almost every meat product available in a faux version. Vitamin B12 is now available in supplement form as well as in fortified foods such as cereal. Finally, spinach, peas, whole grain breads, dried fruits, and dried beans all provide large sources of iron (Rewards 5). Despite many misconceptions on deficiencies, it is easy to see that vegetarians have a wide range of food providing the essential nutrients without having to eat meat.
The nutritious lifestyle of a vegetarian leads to an improved overall health. A study from Loma Linda University and the China Health Project reported, “Vegetarians live about seven years longer, and vegans2 . . . about 15 years longer than meat eaters” (Dworkin 1). Harvard Health Letter describes that a vegetarian diet lowers heart disease because the diet lowers cholesterol levels, blood pressure, and blood fat levels (Vegetarianism 6). Stated in Vegetarian Times:
The National Cancer Institute says that women who eat meat every day are nearly four times more likely to get breast cancer than those who don’t. By contrast, women who consume at least one serving of vegetables a day reduce their risk of breast cancer by 20 percent to 30 percent (Dworkin 2)
Also, Harvard says studies suggest that vegetarians will lose less bone mass because meat is more acidic than vegetables. The higher amount of acid pulls calcium from the bone; thus making bones more brittle and weak (Vegetarianism 6). Gary Null Ph. D, who did a comprehensive eleven-year study of 11,000 American vegetarians, found people with diabetes’ blood sugar levels normalized, decreasing insulin necessities (EXCLUSIVE 1). The same study showed that people lost weight and kept it off, many of who had already tried various means of losing weight (EXCLUSIVE 1). To conclude, the vegetarian lifestyle truly adds years and reduces the risk of several diseases.
On top of a healthy array of food and remarkable benefits for the body, vegetarianism also does wonders for the environment. Vegetarian Times provides an ample amount of ecological benefits in its Vegetarian Beginner’s Guide and article, “ 22 Reasons to Go Vegetarian Right Now.” The group states that, “64 percent of American agricultural land is used to grow livestock” (Vegetarian 7). Also, in the article they supply that the grain it takes to feed animals used for the meat industry could feed the entire world, ending world hunger (Dworkin 4). For the fish population, “39 percent of the oceans’ fish species are overharvested, and . . . 11 of 15 of the world’s major fishing grounds have become depleted” (5). In terms of waste and air pollution, a pig farm in Utah produces more waste annually than the entire city of Los Angeles (3). Manure is also rated by the EPA3 as one of the top ten pollutants in the U.S. Plus add all the gases from manure, urine, and cow flatulence to the list of air pollutants. In addition, twenty-two millions animals are slaughtered every day to feed Americans (Dworkin 3). Besides the amazing health benefits, the environmental benefits alone should be enough to change a person’s mind about their eating habits.
A healthy diet, an improved well-being, and an enhanced environment are all benefits of vegetarianism. Despite, many people’s love of meat, the benefits of pitching the meat and picking up the veggies are enough to change even the most devout carnivore. Besides, already thirty million Americans have adopted the vegetarian lifestyle (Broadman 1). Even some of the most famous people have been vegetarians such as Albert Einstein, Leonardo DiVinci, Pamela Anderson, Socrates, Alec Baldwin, and the list continues. Hop on board the veggie train and create a better life and world today.