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Michelle Perez
Professor Jackie
English 101
10 November 2015
Vegan Is Better
Although most of the population believes that meat is necessary to
human health and survival, it is not. Since childhood, most people are raised
eating large quantities of animal flesh and animal products, focusing less on
healthier foods like grains, legumes, fruits, and vegetables. It is burned into
their minds that they need meat for nutrients, they need milk to grow and
maintain strong bones, and that plant-based foods just are not enough to
keep them alive and healthy. All they know is what they are taught by
society, and since society supports an omnivorous diet, most are afraid of
deviating from the norm. For years, research has shown that the standard
American diet, focusing on large quantities of meat as well as meat products
and less so on plant-based foods has negative effects on health and other
aspects. A better option than the standard American diet is the vegan diet.
Opting for a vegan diet is not only better for human health, but is also better
for the environment and sustainability, and is more ethical.
The article Vegetarian Foods: Powerful for Health lists and describes
the many different health benefits of following a vegan or at least vegetarian

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diet. The article states that Scientific research shows that health benefits
increase as the amount of food from animal sources in the diet decreases, so
vegan diets are the healthiest overall (Vegetarian Foods). Uneducated or
mislead people can argue all day long that eating meat is necessary and
healthy for humans to eat, but the proof is in the research. One of the most
incredible findings is that following a vegan diet reduces the chances of
getting many types of cancer. For example, when women eat meat and dairy
products, they are putting more saturated fat into their bodies as well as
causing difficulties in digestion, which makes them more likely to develop
breast and ovarian cancer (Vegetarian Foods). Animal products cannot
possibly be necessary or healthy if they are cancer causing. There are many
more health benefits of being vegan. Whereas animal products contain high
levels of saturated fat and cholesterol, vegetables have less fat if any and do
not contain any cholesterol; as an added benefit, vegetables have fiber in
them that helps fight cholesterol (Vegetarian foods). For these reasons,
following a plant-based diet over a meat dependent diet prevents heart
disease and lowers blood pressure. A classic and untrue, argument is that
vegans do not get adequate amounts of protein in their diets. The irony here
is that meat eaters generally have too much protein in their diets, which
makes their bodies produce an excess of bad chemicals, which then form
stones in the kidney (Vegetarian Foods). All food contains protein, and a
balanced vegan diet is definitely capable of providing enough protein and a
healthier, more appropriate amount of it as well. These are just a few health

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benefits that come with excluding animal products. With these offered
benefits and the many more that veganism offers, humans can live longer
and healthier lives.
If humans are leading healthier and longer lives, then there will be
more humans populating the planet at once. In the article Vegetarianism
and Sustainability Alexis Clarke discusses the ways in which switching diets
can help to better sustain the environment for the nine billion people who
will be living on Earth by 2050. With so many people living, the world is
producing more food than ever, yet there are still notable amounts of
malnourished and starving people around the world (Clarke); this is because
food is being made and used in the wrong ways. As everyone has heard and
been warned for years and years now, the world is running out of resources,
including land and water. As time goes by, humans keep adding more and
more meat to their diets and this increase in the use of meat and dairy
products is one of the big factors contributing to loss of resources and harm
to the environment. This is proven by the fact that eighty percent of the total
agricultural land, seventy percent of the water supply, and seventy percent
of the worlds grains are currently being used for producing meat and animal
products (Clarke). The world is using most of its supplies to feed and raise
animals who are just going to end up being slaughtered and eaten. The
[Food and Agriculture Organization] has suggested that adopting a
vegetarian diet is one option to increase the amount of water available to
grow more food in an increasingly climate-erratic world (Clarke). Instead of

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using excessive amounts of water and land to grow grains and crops for
feeding animals who are only being fed to then be killed and eaten, people
should use those resources to feed themselves a plant-based diet. This will
cause less harm to the environment as well as causing less harm to the
animals themselves.
One of the most important reasons to adopt a vegan diet, is to stop
causing unnecessary harm to animals. There is so much information out
there about how animals raised for eating are mistreated, kept in unpleasant
habitats, and killed in inhumane ways. It is highly confusing how people
choose to ignore whats going on or simply dont care and continue to eat
the animals. In The Politics of Veganism Emma McGrath discusses the
many different ways that people have argued as to why we should not eat
animals or animal products. While some people argue that an animals life
has a purpose and meaning of its own, other than being here for humans to
kill and eat them, others argue we simply should not cause harm to animals
because they can feel pain and they can suffer (McGrath). Although these
are two very different viewpoints, animals should not be killed or eaten for
both of these reasons. McGrath talks about how humans hold an attitude
where they only hold the best interest of their own species in mind, not
considering the interest or rights of other species or animals. She compares
this to the way that people saw other races or the female gender as having
or deserving of less rights in the past. This also relates to how we believe
that killing and eating dogs, cats, and other pet animals is wrong, but we

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dont care or feel bad about eating a chicken or a cow (McGrath). This is
wrong because humans choose to set rights for only certain groups and not
for others whenever they see fitting or when it benefits them. Since humans
can speak and have higher capabilities than animals, they think they have
more rights than animals. The truth is humans are just a different type of
animals, but they are still animals and all living, feeling, thinking animals
should get equal respect. Meat producers and consumers support killing
newborn male cows, old ones, or disabled ones, arguing that they wont be
useful for anything other than food; some argue that that is wrong because
in human society, it is not acceptable to kill off people with mental or
physical disabilities, old people, or newborn babies who arent necessarily
useful (McGrath). No one would feed a baby or an old person to say, a
hungry lion who could use it. So why is okay to kill and eat a baby pig or an
old cow who cant walk anymore? Meat eaters can argue that animals
cannot speak up for themselves, therefore they cant have rights, well
neither can some disabled people or babies, but they are still deserving of
rights and dont get mistreated for it in society. Even though animals cant
speak up about the wrong that is caused to them and fight for their rights,
humans need to look at them as living creatures who are capable of thinking
and feeling and realize that they dont have the right to take away their lives
just for their benefit. Out of selfishness and desire to eat something that
tastes good, humans have stopped looking at animals as living things and
instead see them as food and food-making things (McGrath). People have to

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go back to thinking about their actions and why they are wrong. They have
to look past the taste and pleasure of eating meat, to realize that animals are
alive and can feel and they deserve the right to live just as much as human
animals do. There are those who can agree that the way we treat animals is
wrong, but they continue to eat the animals because they think that one
person cutting meat out wont make a difference. These people need to
realize that they do matter and that they can make a difference and that
veganism is an effective political boycott and is a practical expression of
discontent at the current practices of the animal industry (McGrath). Think
about how many people out there who say I wont make a difference or
Me eating meat doesnt matter. If you add all of these singular people into
one group, you will see that their added power can work together to protest
injustice and make a change. Every single person can contribute to saving
the animals by transitioning to a vegan diet.
There are many different reasons as to why more people should
become vegan or at least try to cut more meat out of their diets. Abstaining
from eating meat can reduce as well as prevent a variety of diseases and
promote better health. Fully excluding or cutting down animal products from
ones diet can reduce environmental impact and help sustain a livable planet
for future generations. Being vegan is better for the animals because if
people stop buying and eating meat, the demand for meat can go down and
it can reduce the amount of animal lives being taken for the unnecessary
benefit of humans.

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Work Cited

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Clarke, Alexis. Vegetarianism and Sustainability. Journal or the Australian


Traditional-Medicine Society 21.2 (2015): 106-110. Web. 3 Nov. 2015.
McGrath, Emma. The Politics of Veganism. Social Alternatives 19.4 (2000):
50-59. Web. 4 Nov. 2015.
Vegetarian Foods: Powerful For Health. PCRM.org. Web. 22 October 2015.