Plant-Based Foods May Be Better for Physical Health – But What About Mental Health?

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I once read that every strip of bacon one eats takes five minutes off one’s life. If that were true, I’d have died in 1863.

Too much of anything can be bad for you. That’s obvious. And now yet another tiresome study is out, again seeking to suck all the joy out of life. This time, the study is advocating giving up bacon and eggs for beans and nuts. With Thanksgiving coming in a few days, that’s just a bit too much.


The review, published November 16 in the journal BMC Medicine, analyzed the results from 37 earlier studies, and its findings “emphasize the potential health advantages of incorporating more plant-based foods into the diet,” Sabrina Schlesinger, head of the systematic reviews research group at the German Diabetes Center in Düsseldorf, told CNN.  

Schlesinger, who was the paper’s senior author, and researchers from several German institutions collaborated on this paper which, they say, is the first systematic review to focus on a wide range of health outcomes that are associated with swapping out animal-based food for plant-based food.  

Everyone should decide their own dietary preferences and be free to act upon them, of course. But eating meat, well, that’s part of what makes us human. It’s likely that the very beginnings of cooperative behaviors in humans began with people banding together and hunting, which requires not only communication and cooperation but also a capacity for planning, not only the hunt itself but what to do in the event of something unexpected: “Groog, if auroch runs into trees instead of away towards prairie, take Ugg and Urg and chase back,” for example.


(Read also: Grunting Girlbosses: Science Mag Says Neanderthal Ladies Hunted While Stay-at-Home Cavemen Sewed)

What’s really interesting about the plant-eating advocates here is that they appear to be all German; I’ve lived in Germany, and while I love German cuisine, I seem to remember there is a lot of meat in traditional German dishes. There are few things better than to sit at an outside table overlooking the Neckar River in Heidelberg, enjoying a big plate of schnitzel and a cold pilsener; that’s an experience I enjoyed and hope to enjoy again.

While the researchers here are advocates, there always seem to be those who have to take things to the level of crime. Animal rights advocates, while shilling for veganism, are not above committing crimes to “liberate” livestock, which livestock usually die very quickly. That’s not only cruel; it’s a waste of delicious protein.

(Read also: Animal Rights Activist Facing Jail Time for Stealing Chickens and Ducks From Farms)

It’s telling that the article linked above stresses the need for extra nutritional scrutiny when adopting a plant-based diet.

Anyone considering becoming a vegetarian or vegan should also be sure their diet is carefully planned to include enough iron, iodine, vitamin B12 and vitamin D, (Registered dietician Duane) Mellor told CNN in May.


Any diet should be varied and healthful, obviously. A diet containing meat can be perfectly balanced and healthy. It will deliver all the nutrients one needs while also being delicious. Every cat its own rat, as my grandfather was fond of saying.

Advocating is fine; free speech, you know. These folks are free to munch their greens, and I’m free to enjoy a cheeseburger. That’s called liberty. People, after all, can’t live on grass. Fortunately, there is already a well-known method of converting rough fare, such as prairie grass, into delicious, human-edible protein. It’s called a cow.

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