View Full Version : Vegetarian - why so?

26 November 2009, 09:00 PM
hariḥ oṁ


In the past I have been asked , why not eat meat? I offered a few reasons¹ yet more conversation always focused on health. The conversations/debates went from 'humans were designed to eat meat' to 'where do you get your protein from ?'. The conversations were always opinion-oriented without any scientific basis, until now. Let me offer the following.

There has been several studies that have been completed. The latest one I have read was the work by Dr. T. Colin Campbell , Professor of Nutritional Biochemistry at Cornell University. He published his work and also written a book called The China Study.

This information is significant - that is, statistically significant. His work held statistical significance at the 95% confidence level and at the 99% confidence level i.e. highly statistical significance = 99% , or a 1% chance of probably due to chance or randomness of the data.
His findings ( my words here) - what you put in your mouth completely influences one's health or ill-health.

Proteins specifically from animals contribute to cancer growth; The tests initially started in the lab, then ended up in a full-scale study that occurred in China - hence the 'The China Study'. Why there?

Prior to Dr. Campbell going to China , a national study was completed there. 880 million Chinese people in this study analyzing death rates for 12 different kinds of cancer, taken from 2,400 areas across their nation. A database of all this information existed - a base line for further info, studies, work was now inviting Dr. Campbell to this country. Multiple people were on his team. The research project culminated in a 20-year partnership between Cornell University, Oxford University, and the Chinese Academy of Preventive Medicine.

The study looked at the following:

12 different kinds of cancer
~48 different kinds of diseases , including individual cancers
heart disease, infectious diseases, etc. to name a few.
They gathered 367 variables, and cross compared each variable with every other variable.
They visited 65 areas across China, administered surveys and blood tests, urine samples, etc. on 6,500 adults
They evaluated/recorded what people ate and also analyzed the food that was eaten.When complete, that has more then 8,000 statistically significant associations between life style, diet and disease variables i.e. extremely comprehensive! I could add more on this but its best you read the book or look for yourself.

You can also take a look at this site: http://www.thechinastudy.com/about.html (http://www.thechinastudy.com/about.html)
and excerpt from the book: http://www.thechinastudy.com/PDFs/ChinaStudy_Excerpt.pdf (http://www.thechinastudy.com/PDFs/ChinaStudy_Excerpt.pdf)

Many things were found - too long to list out so let offer just a few ideas in my words.
Some findings:

An excess of animal protein in a human's diet, compliments/supports a fertile bed for cancer growth to occur.
NOTE I am not saying meat is the carcinogen e.g. chemicals from industrial processes that is one cause for cancer cell growth ; it ( the animal protien) is considered a promoter to cancer cell growth.

One example given by Dr. T. Colin Campbell for this condition of animal meat's contribution to ill-health ( again my words):
Think of growing grass , you put down seeds in fertile dirt, then add water and fertilizer. If one is prone to cancer (genetics, environmental conditions) , the seeds are sewn. Yet if you do not add the water and fertilizer ( animal proteins) the seeds will not take, will not grow. Here is where animal protien is the 'promoter' - the water and fertilizer in this example.
Animal fat ( not just meats, but cheeses, butter , butter milk, etc.) also contributes to multiple diseases, heart disease, etc.
The more animal protein the more heart disease a country will experience ( data from 20 different countries)
Reducing (eliminating) animal protein sources as a food supply is a healthy choice.
Where you get your protein from is important, yet protein is not the total story on health.
FYI: First to offer this insight came from an Indian research paper 'The effect of dietary protein on
Carcinogenesis aflatoxin' by T.V. Madhavan and C. GopalanTons more data and findings - but if you have interest, it is worth the reading the fact-based, science-aligned book.


1. Benefits of vegetarian ( my view)

Spiritual - do the least amount of harm - ahiṁsā we know as non-injury, and a few others from yama-and-niyama
Economic - a efficient/least cost model
Environmental - less strain on the environment ; less invasive
Health - best for the body

27 November 2009, 10:08 AM
hariḥ oṁ


He who does not know food, how can he understand the diseases of man? - Hippocrates (circa 460 BC)

Food is medicine, medicine is food - A Key Ayurvedic principle

27 November 2009, 11:04 AM
hariḥ oṁ


Often people just do not believe scientific studies on health and food results. Here is a perfect example .

Some years back in the USA there was a huge concern over a food additive called sodium nitrite. It was especially used in hot dogs as a preservative and killed bacteria. A report came out that inferred that nitrites possibly converted to nitrosamines - a carcinogen ( cancer causing substance).
It said, ' animal experiments have shown that as chemical exposure increases ( to this substance) the incidence of cancer also increases'
This was in the news and caused a big sturr-up in conversations across the USA. For my self I was fine with it, as hot dogs were unlikely a food for me to eat as a ball-peen hammer.
Yet that said, how much would one have to eat to = the amount of this substance that was given to the 'low dosage' rats in this study? Dr. T. Colin Campbell gives us the equivalent as per our body weight ( compared to the rat).

One would have to eat a 1 lb. bologna * meat sandwich, with the same ingredients (sodium nitrite) found in a hot dog for 30 years. Well, one could say that is possible. What I left out was the following: You would have to consume 270,000 of these one pound sandwiches per day for that 30 year period. This is how much one would need to consume to be equivalent to the amount that was given to the 'low dose' rat sample set.

Now when people get this information that just yawn and say how can I believe this stuff from the scientific community when it is so unreasonable?

This is why this China Study is so profound: It's real people, eating, working, in daily life; a real world environment - No massive doses - unless of course the person chooses to do this on their own.