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A growing body of scientific evidence indicates that wholesome vegetarian diets offer distinct advantages compared to diets containing meat and other foods of animal origin. The benefits arise from lower intakes of saturated fat, cholesterol and animal protein as well as higher intakes of complex carbohydrates, dietary fiber, magnesium, folic acid, vitamin C and E, carotenoids and other phytochemicals. Since vegetarians consume widely divergent diets, a differentiation between various types of vegetarian diets is necessary. Indeed, many contradictions and misunderstandings concerning vegetarianism are due to scientific data from studies without this differentiation. In the past, vegetarian diets have been described as being deficient in several nutrients including protein, iron, zinc, calcium, vitamin B12 and A, n-3 fatty acids and iodine. Numerous studies have demonstrated that the observed deficiencies are usually due to poor meal planning. Well-balanced vegetarian diets are appropriate for all stages of the life cycle, including children, adolescents, pregnant and lactating women, the elderly and competitive athletes. In most cases, vegetarian diets are beneficial in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases, such as cardiovascular disease, hypertension, diabetes, cancer, osteoporosis, renal disease and dementia, as well as diverticular disease, gallstones and rheumatoid arthritis.
Consuming non- vegetarian food gives rise to digestive problems. The protein content in it is quite more than that is required by the body. Non-vegetarian food has higher amount of protein content and makes digestion difficult. Consuming non- vegetarian food may lead to acidity and constipation which in turn might cause other digestion related complications as well.
Expected Life Reduction
According to studies, if you consume non- vegetarian food daily, it may reduce your life span. Vegetarians are expected to live a longer life than the non- vegetarian food lovers.
Health - Related Diseases
In red meat, the cholesterol present may result in accumulation of fats (cholesterol) in the veins and arteries which will cause obstruction in the blood vessels which may result in major health related problems like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), hypertension (increased blood pressure), cardiac arrest, atherosclerosis etc.
The method of growing animals in farms is unhygienic. Many drugs such as antibiotics are often administered during the regular maintenance of these farm animals.
These antibiotics might enter the food chain and the body of someone who consumes. This may lead to severe problems related to immunity.
Consuming large amount of meat causes ingestion of more cholesterol which may result in steroid hormonal imbalance.
Though bad effects of consumption of meat are not proved with any scientific evidence but many observational studies are happening to find out the harmful effects of consuming meat. Following are the observational studies which only can show the relationship between consuming meat and bad effects but are not scientifically proven.
Red Meat and Cancer
Consuming large amount of red meat results in several cancer types such as prostate, breast, kidney and digestive tract. Among all cancer types, the colon cancer has a strong link with the red meat intake and well processed meat. Yet studies showed that poultry meat consumption reduces the colon cancer risk even when it is cooked up to charring.
Observational studies show the relationship between meat consumption and heart diseases. According to studies, consuming processed meat products increases risk of heart diseases. Frequently consuming meat may lead to a high-risk factor for heart diseases.
Consumption of meat and obesity
Observational studies linked the intake of red and processed meat and obesity. The key reason for quick weight gain is high calorie and protein content. Yet, some studies showed weight loss in spite of higher intake of meat.
Type II Diabetes
When one daily consumes high amount of red meat, type II diabetes risk increases by 30%. For such people, diabetes may develop within four years. Though, scientifically it is not proven.India has had a vegetarian culture since ancient times, and the people at that time were in good health and longevity. All types of food have their advantages and disadvantages. Just choose the right diet and stay healthy.