There are many good reasons to be a vegetarian and we’ll discuss some of them here. We’ll begin with what 99% of the 1996 survey respondents list as the major reason for their being vegetarian – health.
Americans cannot escape the information coming from research regarding diet and health. The media, medical professionals, and experiences relayed by friends and associates tell us that diet is a factor in heart disease, osteoporosis, stroke, obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, atherosclerosis, dental disease, cancer, and gastrointestinal diseases.
Saturated fats and cholesterol originating from animal products promote the development of diseases because the body has a difficult time moving fat and cholesterol through the bloodstream. The bloodstream is the avenue for getting nutrients throughout the body. Some imagery may help to understand how this works.
Think of your veins and arteries as roads by which nutrients enter and wastes exit the body. Think of meat as a slow moving vehicle within your system. It runs hot and slow, spewing black smoke from the muffler. Faster, sleeker vehicles (nutrients without fat and cholesterol) have to pass it to get where they have to go. Each time you eat, you contribute to the traffic on your body’s roadways. When you ingest meat, you not only put a “lemon” on the road, slowing up the traffic, but the “lemon” takes its toll on the road itself. The body works harder to digest meat. It takes what nutrients can be used and pushes the remains on. These remains leave debris (plaque) on the road (arterial walls).
Some people put so many lemons on their internal road systems, they have major traffic jams – disease. Sometimes roads have to close and alternate routes bear increased nutrient traffic. So, why are you a vegetarian? Maybe to prevent so much stress on the body’s roadways. Health experts recommend you increase your intake of vegetables, fruit, and whole grains for optimum health. Plant-based diets are lower in total fat than animal-based diets. The bodies of vegetarians who adhere to a balanced diet seem to absorb vital nutrients better than others. They generally have lower rates of the above-mentioned diseases and higher energy levels. The body doesn’t send out flares when its roads begin to deteriorate. It sends in repair cell crews. It rides around the lemons and deposits of fat sludge on the side of the road stoically and successfully for years. But as the traffic becomes dense, and the roads continue to deteriorate, good cell crews cannot reach areas in need and a major illness develops. Disease doesn’t have to be the great awakener to a healthy diet. Learning to nourish your body without meat is a great start.
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