Is Meat the New Tobacco?

*I am going to start adding sort of words for thought about food related articles I have read and found interesting.  I hope you enjoy*

The article at hand comes from The Huffington Post focusing on meat and how it can be compared to the tobacco health crisis of the 90s.  Meat has recently been in the news for being a cause of the current health issues facing Americans today.  Heart disease, obesity, and cancer have all been linked to our elevated meat consumption in America.  Kathy Freston is suggesting/hoping that someday we will look at meat the same way we look at cigarettes, addictive killers.

My personal opinion on the topic stays the same as it has for general meat consumption, we eat way too much as a society and too much of anything is not good.  I treat meat as an occasional treat (about once a week).  Given the amount of time and energy put into making my pork chop or steak versus my lentils, I feel that it is balanced.  I also eat meat that lived a good life before slaughter and was treated humanely.  If you have been reading my blog you know all of this.

My problem with this article is that it reduces the farmer that is trying to raise his herd the right way to the level of the McDonald’s beef supplier.  Not all meat is created equal.  Yes, we eat too much of it, but why does it have to be all or nothing?  Vegan or Carnivore?

As a society we aren’t going to stop eating meat.  Instead of pushing a, “become a vegan or you will die” philosophy, I believe we should focus more on the local/sustainable/humane food system.  Is your mango, grown in South America, on a plantation that works children 12 hours really all that better than my beef burger?  I know humanity didn’t really come into the article, but I think it is all connected.  Eat meat that has been treated well = support fair wages for farmers = healthier, happier, animals = healthier, happier, humans.

What did you think of the article?  Does it make you re-think your meat consumption?  Would you go vegan?

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3 Comments on “Is Meat the New Tobacco?”

  1. Katherine says:

    I grew up eating red meat at least 3 or 4 times a week.. my grandfather would have one of his cows slaughtered and gave my family 1/4 of the meat. After he sold the farm and stopped raising cattle, my family would still eat store bought meat multiple times a week. I never thought anything of it. After many conversations with you about sustainability and local foods I have tried really hard to only eat happy foods…I am far from perfect with it, but I am working on being more concious and responsible for what I put in my body. Thanks Beans, for teaching me a better way to eat =)

  2. click says:

    I Am Going To have to come back again when my course load lets up – nevertheless I am taking your Feed so i can read your site offline. Thanks.


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