Why Meat-Eaters and Vegans Are Both Wrong

Meat-eaters say that people must eat a lot of meat to stay healthy. The paleo diet, high in fat and protein, is really a meat-based diet. Bugs are out of the question, even though they are very nutritious and less costly to produce than traditional big farm animals, because it's unpopular among the target audience, which is most likely Westerners. On the opposite end, vegans say that people must eat a plant-based diet; that 100% plant-based is "ideal". I think they are both wrong. The most optimal human diet is somewhere in the middle, not vegan or meat-based, depending on biological adaptations and cultural conventions of different human populations that facilitate primarily carnivorous or herbivorous eating habits. This assumes that humans don't use any tools to facilitate a 100% plant-based diet.

Why Meat-Eaters and Vegans Are Both Wrong

Biology

Cats are obligate carnivores. They can't synthesize their own proteins. They must eat meat, because meat contains complete proteins. Humans can synthesize their own proteins from the amino acids provided from plants. This may suggest that humans naturally are herbivores, but the problem is, even though the human gut bacteria can synthesize vitamin B12, the vitamin B12 cannot be absorbed as the bacteria exist in the colon, not the small intestine, and thus the body will develop macrocytic anemia because of vitamin B12 deficiency. Eating solely from plant-derived foods is insufficient. Naturally, a grazing animal will pick up the bacteria, and the vitamin B12 will be absorbed into their bodies, and humans will eat the grazing animals. Unfortunately, this is not sustainable nowadays, because there are too many of us, and we really should not produce so many of them to feed us because of environmental issues and limited resources. Instead, we must find a new way to derive our vitamin B12, using fortified food products, supplements, or termites and grubs. Given that it's natural for humans to use tools, humans can rely more on their tools to facilitate a 100% plant-based diet. In other words, a well-managed vegan diet is natural for us, because it is the result of our reasoning and tool use proficiency. However, the same level of tool use is not widespread, so some humans may be able to go on a vegan diet, while other humans really should remain as flexitarian omnivores because of economics and limited resources in an area.

The Ethics of Eating Meat

Nature is amoral

Morality cannot be ascribed to nature. Nature is neither good nor evil. It is beyond the scope of morality.

We are wicked and selfish

Humans are born evil. They are selfish and self-centered, the exact opposite of altruism. But the good thing about morality is that it suppresses the evil natural state and forces humans to work together to achieve a common goal, putting the goals of the community above the goals of the individual. By working together, humans create civilization, peace, and harmony.

Killing animals for nutrition is not speciesism

Speciesism is belief that animals are inferior to humans in a sense that they are less important in the ecosystem. Many animals are very important in the ecosystem, and we humans depend on them for our survival like using bees to pollinate our plants. Transporting bees or pest predators (chickens) to an unknown location against their will may be a form of animal exploitation and injustice, but they provide an important role in the anthropogenic biome, also known as the farm. So, essentially we are being "cruel" to them simply because we are violating their free will, even though we place them in a position so we don't die because of crop failure due to unwanted pests.


The Negative Emotions of Taking Another Life

The YouTube video suggests that humans are not carnivores, because they get emotional when they have to take a life. However, I think the video is missing the point that humans are cultural as much as biological creatures. Maybe the women in the culture are conditioned to think that killing anything anthropomorphic is wrong. Personally, if it were my own mother, she'd have no qualms about killing, scaling, and de-gutting a fish; and when she was younger, she raised a chicken as a pet and used the chicken to lay eggs.

Pure altruism is unnatural

Altruism is natural, but pure altruism is not natural. Nature is not purely, completely altruistic. For altruism to occur in a species, there must be an implicit benefit to the species. For us to be altruistic, there must be an implicit benefit to us. If ethical vegans and animal rights advocates believe that humans must serve the welfare of animals, allowing them to live at the expense of human life, then humans might as well just kill themselves. Though, since some ethical vegans and animal rights advocates believe this, they should be the ones to kill themselves, because they would be doing a great favor for the animals. Less of humans, more of other animals. Simple as that.

The Three N's of Carnism

In the definition of carnism, meat-eating is natural, normal, and necessary. But even chimpanzees dig for termites. Does this mean that they view termites as inferior? No. Termites are important, necessary, normal, and natural. Termites also happen to contain vitamin B12, which is something that vegans often lack because they emphasize too much on not taking any animal's life. So, they take vitamin B12 from bacteria. Human gut bacteria do synthesize vitamin B12, but it isn't absorbed in the body. It's just released in the poop. Humans aren't coprophagic by nature, so eating their own poop is unreasonable and dangerous. If other animals pick up the vitamin B12, then there should be no reason why humans shouldn't eat the animals that pick up the vitamin B12. In this situation, eating meat is perfectly natural. How can something be inferior if humans biologically rely on it? We often take for granted that humans have free choice that we can pursue any kind of food, but in reality, this free choice is constrained by our own biology. That said, because termites are a rich source of vitamin B12 and chimpanzees just happen to eat termites occasionally, we should eat like the chimpanzees, our distant cousins in the evolutionary tree. We should end this taboo against bug consumption. We can't rely on factory-farmed animals, because they tend to live in filthy conditions and require antibiotics, which may also kill their gut flora. While pasture-fed meat does allow animals to eat more naturally, it is not sustainable for our big human population that demands more meat than necessary. Animal products are required in the diet, but our culture is overdoing it because of commercialism and consumerism. And thanks to modern tool use, animal products become unnecessary in the diet, thereby making veganism feasible.

We should end this taboo against bug consumption in Western culture.

Eat animals, but be mindful that it is immoral

Eating meat is undoubtedly immoral, because we humans have defined morality as "ending suffering in all living things". That is, our natural state is immoral, because we have to take another animal's life to feed ourselves. But don't worry. With our smart brains, we have invented a way to bypass our evil natural state. We just use vitamin B12 supplements derived from bacteria. Now, we can be moral, even though getting vitamin B12 from bacteria directly is not something humans are evolved to do, as humans aren't evolved to eat their own feces.

Nature is NOT morality.

Humans by nature are born evil. Empathy is innate, because of mirror neurons. But morality is not innate. It must be learned culturally to maintain social agreements among humans. Why is murder wrong? Some people may say that murder is wrong, because the victim is suffering. I say murder is wrong, because our mirror neurons enable us to feel pain in the victim, hence empathetic towards the victim, to protect ourselves from revenge. We know that when we are afflicted, we will try to take revenge on other people, so by minimizing harm to others, they will not harm us. Taking revenge on something requires the ability to remember the past and plan the future, and this cognitive ability, which exists in the prefrontal cortex, may not be present in other animals. So, animals can feel suffering, but they may not be able to plan for revenge for a previously felt pain. So, there is no social agreement between humans and animals based on the fear that animals can take revenge. Though, I think humans anthropomorphize non-human animals to the extent that, when an animal attacks a human, other humans would take revenge and kill the animal. Anyway, even though human nature is fundamentally evil, humans must strive for the opposite of that. Humans must strive for morality. In the past, we humans ate meat, because we didn't have a choice. We occupied a specific ecological niche in life, and that niche did involve animal products. But now, we know why meat was nutritious and can use this knowledge to circumvent our omnivorous biology, so that we don't have to eat meat and still live happy, healthy lives. Only in our current situation, meat is unnecessary for survival. Why eat meat when you can eat a well-planned vegan or flexitarian omnivorous diet? (I must mention "well-planned", because too many vegans on YouTube promote unhealthy fad diets, such as the RawTill4 diet. Those vegans are bad advocates for veganism.)


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Most Helpful Guy

  • Generally I agree. We are omnivores. There are some people who think they need meat three meals a day, but I don't think there are many who think that way.

    My view is that meat is very highly nutritious, so we don't need much of it. A small amount goes a long ways. I wonder what the meat industry would be like if people ate meat, but didn't insist on having it 2-3 meals a day.

    Just to add some points:

    I've noticed animals that are the most widespread in the world, can live on a wide variety of diets. For example mice are everywhere in the world, and they can live on almost anything. Animals with a highly restricted diet have a very narrow range. Humans are also everywhere in the world, even in some of the most harsh environments.

    Look at the peoples in the far north of N America and Asia. Could they survive on a vegetarian diet? Nope, not unless it was all brought in from outside.

    Look at the "native" population of the Americas. Could vegetarians have crossed the Bering land bridge? I sure don't see how. Without meat, there would never have been any "natives" in the Americas. That was 15,000 years ago or whatever. How far back do you have to go into pre-history before it becomes natural? To me, 15,000 years of a diet makes it natural.

    There is a big difference between living on a particular diet, and thriving. Humans are highly adaptable and resilient. Even if a total crap diet decreases life expectancy by 20 years, let's say from 75 years to 55 years, that's still a very long life on a total crap diet. There are some diets that can have serious health effects very quickly, but it's very rare in the modern world, even with crap diets.

    In many (or most) parts of the world where humans live, the ONLY way they can be relatively healthy on a vegetarian diet is by shipping food long distances. In my mind that is not natural.

    To me, "natural" means that I can walk out the door with nothing but myself, and with some hard work and knowledge, survive and be healthy. I don't think there are many places in the world where that can be done without any flesh at all.

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Most Helpful Girl

  • "The YouTube video suggests that humans are not carnivores, because they get emotional when they have to take a life. However, I think the video is missing the point that humans are cultural as much as biological creatures." -- true however you can see that difference from the second we are born. If you put a bunny into the crib with a baby or toddler. They will play with it. However replace the baby by a kitten and it will try to attack it. You will see a baby try to bite of the head of a small animal. And if it did would you let your baby play with that baby?
    There's a difference between how carnivores and non carnivores behave around potential food

    "vitamin B12, which is something that vegans often lack" -- I wouldn't really say often. And you know where you can find vitamin B12? In soil. Or you used to anyway. But cleaning our vegetables with chlorine and decreasing soil quality eliminate that

    I agree with the rest. As far as saying what is more natural... it's pointless. We're not herbivores or carnivores. We're just survivors. We can survive on almost anything, that's why we made so long
    That being said, since we can survive on almost anything what you eat is a choice, I think vegan is clearly the more moral and therefore better choice. And I say that not being vegan myself

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    • Actually, vitamin B12 deficiency is not limited to vegans, but diet is one contributor to it.

      Also, it is true that vitamin B12 is found in the soil. . . and grazing animals eat the grass with the dirt. . . and it gets absorbed. . . and then humans eat the animals. It's a cycle. Like I said, humans don't eat bacteria directly.

      Also, I wouldn't advise eating unwashed produce. That's a great way to catch Listeria monocytogenes and other bacteria! If your goal is to get vitamin B12 through eating poop or soil, then you might as well just get a pathogenic strain of Escherichia coli as well.

      I'd argue that we are omnivores.

      I think vegan is a moral choice, because we have defined morality as "ending suffering" instead of "social agreement". If the definition of morality is "social agreement", then vegan wouldn't even make sense.

      Vegan is only better in our current situation.

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What Guys Said 6

  • That's why I'm a vegetarian, not a vegan. Of course, most humans are naturally immoral but remember this, humans are mentally evolved enough to realize that eating meat is not a moral thing, therefore, they have a natural right to stop eating meat. By the way, unlike meat-eater's myth, even vegans can get vitamin B12 from non-animal products: Alfalfa (Lucerne), Tempeh, some types of Seaweed (Chlorella, Spirulina, Blue-Green Algae etc), Cremini Mushrooms etc.

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    • Actually, even vegans say that getting vitamin B12 "has not stood the test of time", whatever that means. But I think it means the vitamin from those foods is not really reliable. Also, consider that vitamin B12 deficiency is as much of a metabolic issue as it is a dietary issue.

      Link: www.vegansociety.com/.../what-every-vegan-should-know-about-vitamin-b12

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    • I disagree. There are vegetarian and non-vegetarian Hindus. No one knows how many there are of each category. Of the non-vegetarian Hindus, they eat eggs, chicken, goat, lamb, and pig. They just can't eat the cow, because the cow is sacred. The cow is so sacred that it is allowed to venture on the streets like a human.

      Japanese people eat various meat products, but pork is the most popular in Japan. Link: www.japantimes.co.jp/.../#.WLt4CYWcGUk

      The type of restaurant varies. The traditional Japanese diet does contain offal. The Okinawa people of Japan is known for their longevity, and when they eat animals, they consume every part of the animal - muscle and offal. But meat only comes on special occasions; most of the time, they eat a plant-based diet.

    • Well, there are non-vegetarians in India, but most of them are Muslims, Sikhs, Atheists as well as minority of Christians and Parsee.
      Hindus are predominantly vegetarians, except those who are worshipers of goddess Kali - they are somewhat like "satanists of hinduism" (known for sacrificing people in the past).
      But you're right, Cows are protected by the law, as sacred animals.
      I know that Japanese eat pork, but I never knew it was so popular, probably because of Chinese influence, anyway, most Japanese restaurants have pork dishes, but they mostly offer fish and beef dishes, however, there are no offal dishes there.
      Okinawa was annexed by Japan in the late middle ages or later (officially in the 19th century). Indigenous Ryukyuan people were not originally Japanese, but they were mostly assimilated after the annexation.
      When it comes to longevity, ethnic groups with more vegetarians are usually the champions ;)

  • I honestly don't give a fuck about animals, that's why I can't stand Vegans (the ones who choose it for moral reasons). I choose, and always will choose humanity over animals. This moral superiority of theirs is absurd. They accuse us of being evil and immoral for eating animals yet they do the exact same thing, choosing what life is worth eating. To them it is anything with a nervous system should not be eaten. Well that's fair isn't it. Fuck the life which still wants to survive but just lacks the ability to feel. Not just that. Why draw the line from eating a dog or pig, or a chicken, or a fish etc? Is it their intelligence? Because they will never achieve human intelligence. Their lives are so pointless, they can't even define meaning. The life of any creature other than human is exactly the same, they shit, eat, sleep, fuck, die. They don't invent, they don't create art, they don't create civilizations. Their lives are exactly the same as one another, only difference is their shape. Life is so much easier and happier once you just say, I care only about people. I don't and will never care about animals. That's fair.

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    • This logic is retarded. Most peoples lives are pointless, they literally work a 9-5 job, eat and sleep until they die. Should we kill them too? Should we kill homeless people aswell, since they dont contribute to society?

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    • Except I can't avoid killing some insects while I walk, its inevitable. But I can avoid killing other animals simply by NOT buying a piece of meat for example. I get it, you dont give a fuck about animals, but just because a cow can't read or write doesn't mean we have the right to torture or kill it

    • @Aweir But you can avoid killing insects, by simply not walking. You would probably die yes but you would have saved their lives wouldn't you. The reason why you don't is because it is a massive inconvenience to you. You chose to saves the cows life because it is less of an inconvenience. I choose to not care about the lives and well being of animals because it is far FAR more convenient for myself not to.

  • I honestly don't care about the diet, just eat meat, fish vegetables, fruit, grains, drink water, stay away from processed food, eat organic food or hunt or fish or garden yourself. And you will be fine from a health standpoint.

    Stop with this diet and that diet just eat what comes from the earth, you need a variety of things if you want optimal nutrients.

    Source: Fitness/Nutrition Professional.

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  • humans are not born evil. hitler was beaten, and had a terrible life.. he BECAME evil, you're not born that way

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  • How about we just eat what we want and get over it? Who's with me?

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  • Humans evolved to be omnivore because it is the superior diet in terms of survival and brain power. End of discussion.
    Also, vegans are either girls or gay guys.

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What Girls Said 10

  • It's something that has been happening since the mankind had to survive. Thy did it to survive!
    But since decades the humans started to do it to earn money and things got so bad like nowadays, animals are prisoners living in terrible conditions being fed 24h so just they get bigger faster an the farmers can get paid more often.

    My family is from Africa and they had farms so they survived with their farms and plantations (vegetables). We used to eat vegetables and almost no meat because the animals grew up naturally. we would barely eat meat. It would be a special occasion for us to eat meat.
    And we all didn't have a choice we were fed meat without someone asking us if we wanted or not. I think that is unfair...

    I quit eating meat, I agree it's immoral.
    I prefer being vegan. Plant based only. I choose to be vegan. Now that I can make my own decisions.
    We can survive without killing animals and eating them.

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  • Can I just throw a curveball?

    "Cats are carnivores"

    Completely agree. Not disagreeing. But.

    Why do people not take the time to think about what they are feeding their pets. Big name brands like whiskers, felix, whatever the US versions are, look at how much meat is in it.

    Felix: meat content - 8%. THATS IT. The rest is all vegetable matter or cereals. The reason it's cheap is because you are feeding your cat crap. It's also why they can't have much of it. It's filled with calories from the veg and cereals so they have to eat less and get less of what they need.

    I feed my cat high end cat food. It's 98% meat. It's lower calories and he can have more of it. He is the most soft, glossy, healthy cat I've ever met.

    Whatever diet a person chooses is their business, have your view on right and wrong in private. But an animal is controlled by you. Think of their needs.

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  • I don't know any meat eaters who say that you must eat a lot of meat in order to stay healthy.

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  • you have such a skewed and distorted perception of reality. Most of your opinions are based on one sided, non proven, pseudoscientific beliefs. also being too "generous" with the logical leaps, and the out-of-the-butt derived hypotheses over events lost in the long gone past, dont help your case at all... .

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  • True, we need both meat and vegetables. However, out of meat - eater and vegan, vegan seems to be the slight healthier one. Vegetables are healthier than meat, therefore they should be consumed more. Many non vegans forget to eat enough vegetables, which is bad.

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    • I think eating 90% vegetables is better than 100% vegan diet. Even chimpanzees would die on a vegan diet. It's like talking about the strength of alcohol and effectiveness. 70% alcohol is actually better than 100% alcohol.

    • Sure it is, I just meant that including more vegetables in a diet is important. I never said 100% vegan diet is ideal.

  • What should we eat?

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  • Paleo diet? or Paleo diets?

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  • Pescetarian diet is the best
    Fruit, veg, whole grains, beans, nuts, seeds, and fish 2/3 times a week. Not processed shit.
    can't go wrong

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  • Well im going to continue eating meat but thanks.. my vegan sister told me the same crap , no thanks

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  • well i guess im right because im a vegetarian! yay me

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