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  #1   ^
Old Sun, Feb-23-20, 12:15
Demi's Avatar
Demi Demi is offline
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Default Going vegan may be good for the environment, but is it damaging your health?

Going vegan may be good for the environment, but is it damaging your health?

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/health-...amaging-health/

Quote:
Scientists are concerned that increasingly popular fake meats and vegan fast foods may be less healthy than their meaty alternatives

If you’re among Britain’s 600,000 vegans – or the estimated 400,000 more who signed up for Veganuary this year – the chances are you stopped eating animal products for the sake of the environment and your health. But is it possible the world’s fastest growing consumer trend could actually damage, not improve, your health?

No-one disputes that eating more fruits, vegetables, wholegrains, and nuts is good for us and reduces the risk of chronic diseases. But scientists and nutritionists are concerned that increasingly popular fake meats and vegan fast foods may be less healthy than their meaty alternatives.

British shoppers spent £474 million on meat-free groceries including burgers, sausages, ready meals and cooking ingredients in 2019, according to consumer analysts Kantar Worldpanel - an increase of eight per cent on the previous year. This doesn’t include sales of vegan fast food, which are also skyrocketing.

There are also fears that vegan diets may be causing deficiencies in crucial nutrients that could lead to serious health problems.

The whole issue of plant-based food products is highly contentious. Scientists at a farmers conference in London last week hit back at veganism, suggesting that eating tofu – a key protein source in many plant-based diets – might be worse for the planet than consuming some meats. The theory is that per unit of protein absorbed, tofu production may cause more greenhouse gas emissions than rearing lamb, pork and chicken for the table. The fact that Almond Milk production requires vast amounts of water in drought afflicted California is also well documented.

But whatever the environmental pros and cons, the booming meat-free food market has prompted some doctors and scientists to question whether some of these products can be considered part of a healthy diet.

Meat substitutes

From ‘meatballs’ and ‘burgers’ to ‘goujons’ and ‘bacon’, imitation meats are everywhere. Some have been around for years. Seitan, traditionally used in Chinese cookery, is a form of wheat gluten. Many people are familiar with Quorn, although perhaps not what it’s made from: mycoprotein, a protein derived from fermented fungi, bound with egg albumen or potato protein. And soy products like tofu and tempeh have long been used in Asian cuisine as a plant-based substitute for meat.

All these products are good sources of protein and are nutritious to varying degrees. But some, like tofu and seitan, are not ‘complete’ sources of protein, that is, they don’t contain all the essential amino acids our bodies need. And seitan and Quorn are also highly processed. Seitan would not be suitable for anyone with gluten or wheat sensitivity.

In recent years, a new generation of high-tech products made from plants has been developed to recreate the exact taste, texture and appearance of meat. Most are also highly processed, made with a long list of unfamiliar ingredients and sometimes new production methods. The Vegan Butcher range, for example, lists ‘soy structure’ as the main ingredient in its Chickened Out Burger and Good Karma Shawarma. According to Unilever, which owns the brand, this is an amalgam of water, soy protein, wheat starch and wheat protein.

Beyond Burgers, which are sold in over 25,000 food outlets worldwide and found in the meat section of some British supermarkets, are among the new fake meats made with pea protein isolate. Impossible Burgers, widely available in the US but not yet approved for sale in the UK, are made with soy leghemoglobin. This is a protein that carries heme, an iron-rich molecule that gives the futuristic patties their realistic colour, aroma, and flavour of meat.

Last year, Harvard’s School of Public Health researched these novel meats to determine whether they could be considered part of a healthy diet. They concluded that the answer was “far from clear” as studies are currently inconclusive.

However, Chair of the Department of Nutrition, Dr Frank Hu, said it couldn’t be assumed that the health benefits of fruits, vegetables, wholegrains and nuts were the same as meat alternatives made with highly processed plants. “Food processing can lead to the loss of some nutrients and phytochemicals naturally present in minimally processed plant foods,” he said.

Dr Hu added that a recent study by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive Kidney Diseases found a link between highly processed foods and weight gain, although the study did not focus on meat substitutes.

Salt and sugar

Other ingredients going into industrially processed vegan food are also causing concern. To make these products taste as similar as possible to their non-vegan counterparts, manufacturers include many additives, notably salt and sugar. Recent research by content agency JBH revealed some vegan fast food contained much more salt and sugar than their non-vegan equivalents. Subway’s Meatless Meatball Marina, for example, clocked in with 3.6g of salt (more than half the recommended daily intake of 6g) and 19.3g of sugar. Its Meatball Sub contained much less of both, with 1.9g and 13.5g of salt and sugar respectively.

Many popular brands of meat-free burgers, sausages and bacon sold in supermarkets also contain high levels of salt, according to Mhairi Brown, a nutritionist and policy co-ordinator with campaigning group Action Against Salt. She says the main problem with these products is the perception – encouraged by food manufacturers – that vegan food is healthy simply because it’s made from plants. “They often use green or orange packaging, and also the term ‘plant-based’, to create a ‘health halo’,” she says. “People think these products are healthy when that might not be the case at all.”

Registered dietitian Sophie Medlin agrees. “Many people think that if a food is vegan it’s healthier,” she says. “The truth is there are some really great vegan alternatives to meat and dairy but there are plenty of food manufacturers simply chasing the vegan pound. Fast food outlets that have questionable animal welfare standards and poor environmental practices are selling vegan alternatives that are often deep fried carbohydrates in a bun.”

Deficiencies

Although vegan advocates insist it’s perfectly possible to eat a well-balanced plant-based diet, nutritionists are concerned that many people simply don’t manage it. Medlin reports a rise in cases of anaemia at her clinic caused by vitamin B12 deficiency. Essential for brain and nervous system function, B12 is naturally found in animal products but generally not in plant foods unless they’re fortified, putting vegetarians and vegans at particular risk of deficiency. Untreated, vitamin B12 deficiency can cause irreversible nerve damage.

It’s not surprising that demand for B12 injections and intravenous drips at high street vitamin salons is rising. “We administer 20% more B12 shots now than we did two years ago, and around 30% of our customers are vegetarian or vegan” says Richard Chambers, founder of Get A Drip. “In December alone we administered 528 B12 products.” (Medlin strongly advises against going to high-street providers for injections or IVs).

Another cause for concern is the risk to bone health caused by calcium and vitamin D deficiency, says Professor Ian Givens, director of the Institute of Food, Nutrition and Health at Reading University. Research shows vegans have lower bone mineral density and fracture rates nearly a third higher than the general population, with teenagers and post-menopausal women were particularly at risk. “Vegetarian and vegan diets can increase the risk of reduced bone strength and special care is needed to ensure adequate intake of the key nutrients,” Prof Givens says.

“We also think there may be a lot of new food allergies issues emerging due to the ingredients being used in some vegan foods, “ adds Professor Chris Elliott, from the Institute of Global Food Security at Queen’s University Belfast. “It is too early to say this for sure for we are watching this closely.

We doubt very much about how well nutritionally balanced many of these are and will only add to the issues we’re already concerned about.” He says long-term studies into these foods are needed.

Heather Russell, a dietitian for the Vegan Society, says anyone considering opting for a plant-based diet needs to educate themselves about good nutrition and healthy protein sources (nutrition information is available on their website). “Whether you’re vegan or not, it’s a good idea to use food labels to keep an eye on added fat, salt and sugar and limit highly processed foods,” she says.

Experts do agree that the healthiest diet includes an abundance of minimally processed plant foods, and limited amounts of the highly processed stuff. But just because food is made from plants doesn’t mean it’s good for you - that bag of crisps might be vegan, but it’s not health food.

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  #2   ^
Old Sun, Feb-23-20, 12:42
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Ms Arielle Ms Arielle is offline
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wow, a relatively comprehensive review.

Chickens are a great source of eggs and meat, and have less environmental impact if they are backyard birds .
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  #3   ^
Old Mon, Feb-24-20, 07:59
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bkloots bkloots is offline
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This is an informative overview of what vegetable-based manufactured food consists of. This is so far from "real food" that using these products IMHO negates the whole idea of vegetarian or vegan persuasions: that is, responsible eating for people and the planet.

Yes, I support humane production of animal foods. Yes, I support efforts to protect populations of seafood. Yes, I support worldwide efforts to provide men and women with responsible means of reducing human fertility.

No, I do not support manufacture of "food" using wheat, sugar, soy, and chemicals with unpronounceable names, along with massive amounts of water. Plus the necessity of pills and injections to make such foods nutritionally safe.

Real food? Probably it's time to encourage backyard gardens, with chickens, bees, fruit trees, and cricket farms. Just dreaming.
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  #4   ^
Old Mon, Feb-24-20, 13:50
tess9132 tess9132 is offline
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I reject the notion that meat eaters are harming the environment more than vegans. Since I'm a carnivore who eats primarily beef, I figure I eat about 2 cows a year and maybe 2 chickens. I try (but don't always) eat grassfed beef and free range chicken, which have even less impact on the environment. Think about the effort it takes to get two cows and 2 chickens to market. Because I also do the shopping for my more omnivorous family, I'm in the habit of going to the store once a week. If I were only feeding myself, I would shop monthly or even less frequently, thereby reducing my carbon footprint even further.

And then there are the vegans. All the pesticides, organic and not. How many acres of food are they eating each year? All the workers and farm machinery required to harvest their daily bread. All the trucks that need to bring that huge volume of food to market. All the packaging for all that food. All the workers and all their fossil fuels getting to work. No way vegans could keep a months supply of food in their fridges. And there are few vegan who could keep even a weekly supply's worth of food on hand.

I think we low carbers need to stop buying into the premise that our way of eating is worse for the environment than a vegetarian's.
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  #5   ^
Old Mon, Feb-24-20, 14:27
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Bob-a-rama Bob-a-rama is offline
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Going Vegan Is Not Good For The Environment - This Is Propaganda

There are millions of square miles of prairie (grasslands) on this planet.

To grow crops on this grassland you need:
  1. Copious amounts of our most precious, limited resource, fresh water
  2. Tons of toxic herbicides
  3. Tons of poisonous pesticides
  4. Mega-tons of artificial fertilizer, the manufacture of which generates 100 times more methane than all the cow burps and farts (source; Cornell University and the Environmental Protection Agency)
To grow beef on this grassland, you need:
  1. Nothing - nada - zero
When the Europeans came to North America the bison were so plentiful that they were uncountable. They existed on nothing but what mother nature provided. They nourished the grass with their excrement, and the grass provided food for them.

The only time beef is bad for the planet, is when we feed them farmed corn. Farming the corn is the problem, not the cows. If you eat 100% grass fed beef, you are doing the planet a favor.

This vegan propaganda, propagated by Big Ag and the PETA people must be corrected every time you hear it. If we let them get away with it, they will plow up the prairie, pollute the planet to grow crops, and beef will become so expensive few of us will be able to afford it.


Bob

Last edited by Bob-a-rama : Mon, Feb-24-20 at 14:36.
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  #6   ^
Old Mon, Feb-24-20, 15:29
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Quote:
No-one disputes that eating more fruits, vegetables, wholegrains, and nuts is good for us
I will dispute that. Whole grains are not healthy for humans. Fruits have to be limited in consumption as they are harmful to health in large amounts.
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  #7   ^
Old Mon, Feb-24-20, 16:37
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Meme#1 Meme#1 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tess9132

And then there are the vegans. All the pesticides, organic and not. How many acres of food are they eating each year? All the workers and farm machinery required to harvest their daily bread. All the trucks that need to bring that huge volume of food to market. All the packaging for all that food. All the workers and all their fossil fuels getting to work. No way vegans could keep a months supply of food in their fridges. And there are few vegan who could keep even a weekly supply's worth of food on hand.

I think we low carbers need to stop buying into the premise that our way of eating is worse for the environment than a vegetarian's.


Well said and I would like to add to this the quantities of processed and manufactured fake foods that they eat like bars, shakes, fake meats, imitation milk plus all of the paper/plastic wrappers and packaging from producing these items. They say that the production of Almonds for Almond fake milk is one of the biggest waste of water compared to all other crops produced.
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  #8   ^
Old Tue, Feb-25-20, 10:47
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GRB5111 GRB5111 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tess9132

And then there are the vegans. All the pesticides, organic and not. How many acres of food are they eating each year? All the workers and farm machinery required to harvest their daily bread. All the trucks that need to bring that huge volume of food to market. All the packaging for all that food. All the workers and all their fossil fuels getting to work. No way vegans could keep a months supply of food in their fridges. And there are few vegan who could keep even a weekly supply's worth of food on hand.

Well stated, and I would add the number of animals killed as a result of these "humane" farming practices directly conflicts with the moral argument against eating animals. I've said before that I like the spiritual approach in that you honor the lives of the animals you eat. Leaving carcasses to waste on plowed and harvested fields doesn't do that at all unless you are a vulture or a buzzard.
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  #9   ^
Old Wed, Feb-26-20, 15:34
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Bob-a-rama Bob-a-rama is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GRB5111
Well stated, and I would add the number of animals killed as a result of these "humane" farming practices directly conflicts with the moral argument against eating animals. I've said before that I like the spiritual approach in that you honor the lives of the animals you eat. Leaving carcasses to waste on plowed and harvested fields doesn't do that at all unless you are a vulture or a buzzard.

Habitat destruction is also a major reason for extinction of various forms of wildlife. Factory farming is a main contributor to that.
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  #10   ^
Old Sun, Mar-01-20, 00:49
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Demi Demi is offline
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Vegan and veggie meals at fast food chains ‘more likely to give you a heart attack than meat burgers’

https://www.thesun.co.uk/fabulous/1...rt-attack-risk/

Quote:
VEGAN and veggie meals sold at fast food chains are more likely to give you a heart attack than regular meat burgers, a probe has revealed.

Leading cardiologist Dr Aseem Malhotra analysed meals then ranked them in order of which is worst for your ticker.
Quote:
Dr Malhotra warned people not to be fooled into believ~ing vegan or veggie is always healthy as the meals are still “ultra processed”.

Many contained high levels of refined carbohydrates and lower levels of protein. Protein protects from high levels of insulin, the major trigger in heart attacks.
Quote:
High levels of sugar and salt were also found in many of the meals, plus “toxic oils”.

Dr Malhotra said: “I was surprised to find that the top four burgers most likely to give you a heart attack were all vegan or vegetarian.

“The ones that were least likely to cause heart disease were your regular burgers, such as the Big Mac.

“The vegan diet is becoming more and more popular in Britain as people think they are being healthy, but as this investigation shows, that is not always the case.”
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  #11   ^
Old Sun, Mar-01-20, 01:15
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Meme#1 Meme#1 is offline
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It baffles the mind to think that they would want to eat fake food, heavily processed with chemicals, to replace a perfectly healthy piece of meat.
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  #12   ^
Old Sun, Mar-01-20, 04:17
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Demi Demi is offline
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Following on from the Sun article posted above:

Which Bandwagon-Jumping Vegan or Veggie Burger Will Kill You Off First?

https://www.allhailkale.com/home-1/...l-you-off-first


Quote:
With the whiff of Veganuary still in the air, the world’s crappiest fast-food joints have been predictably piling onto the vegan and vegetarian bandwagon.

Sure, it’s excellent news for cows and chickens - and having a few less farting cattle can’t be a bad thing for the climate.

But in their pursuit to recreate the taste of a beef burger or chicken nugget, they’ve also managed to replicate the crappy health levels of hyper-processed fast-food.

The question is: just how bad are these new meat-free offerings? Could they actually be even worse for you than the usual Big Macs and Whoppers?

We eventually managed to cajole the burger chains to send over full lists of ingredients which we passed onto Dr Aseem Malhotra, a leading cardiologist and food campaigner.

In-between performing heart transplants, Dr Aseem ranked these meals - the original and the vegetarian/vegan alternatives - into which was most likely to give you a cardiac, if you had to subsist off them.
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  #13   ^
Old Sun, Mar-01-20, 06:14
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WereBear WereBear is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Meme#1
It baffles the mind to think that they would want to eat fake food, heavily processed with chemicals, to replace a perfectly healthy piece of meat.


And that they believe the existence of grazing animals, when buffalo used to cover much of the North American continent, is what is causing climate change.
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  #14   ^
Old Sun, Mar-01-20, 09:44
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Meme#1 Meme#1 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WereBear
And that they believe the existence of grazing animals, when buffalo used to cover much of the North American continent, is what is causing climate change.


Yes, that is the wackiest thing I've ever heard. Why don't they consider places where they create pollution that contaminates land, water and air because they have no EPA or laws to regulate their actions.
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  #15   ^
Old Sun, Mar-01-20, 10:01
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Bob-a-rama Bob-a-rama is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Meme#1
It baffles the mind to think that they would want to eat fake food, heavily processed with chemicals, to replace a perfectly healthy piece of meat.

The majority of people are like sheep, they just follow the lead and do what they are told. It seems they don't want to think for themselves.
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