The role of meat in the human diet: evolutionary aspects and nutritional value

(Bob M) #1

OK, it’s in Animal Frontiers, so it’s likely preaching to the choir on some levels, but this is a nice set of arguments for meat:

Also, I’m somewhat familiar with the lead author, Frédéric Leroy, being a great guy on Twitter (when I was on there).

But it is a really good overview of why we shouldn’t jettison meat eating.

(Joey) #2

I’m trying to imagine if the Bliblical Israelites, instead of burning their prized meat as sacrifices on the Temple altar, had offered up avocado toast? :thinking: … nah…


Paraphrasing Leviticus 11:4 Nevertheless these shall ye not eat of them that hath the carbs, or of them that add the sugars: as the starches, because they raise insulin so easily; it is unclean unto you.

(Joey) #4

As it is written, so shall it be.

(Bob M) #5

Though it is troubling that so many religions don’t like pork.

(Peter) #6

yeah, that is strange. Never understood why. A chicken I can understand. Why kill something that makes eggs, or a goat that makes yogurt etc etc…

(Bob M) #7

I’ve read that is was because pigs were unclean or their meat had issues such as parasites, eg:

Something that we protect against now, although it’s still not totally cured. A little above zero:

(Edith) #8

Didn’t God favor Abel over Cain, because Abel offered lamb in his sacrifice and Cain offered vegetables? I think that’s why Cain was jealous and murdered Abel: God liked lamb/meat better.

(Joey) #9

“Fruit of the ground” - a sure way to piss off the Lord.

(Chuck) #10

I grew up on the farm in the late 1940s and 1950s, I was raised to believe that you ate what was available and on the plate. That was what we raised and grew ourselves. When a chicken hen stopped laying eggs she became a dish of something to eat on the table, we had cows for milk and steers for meat on the table. Pigs were fattened for meat for our family and the leftovers were smoked or salt preserved. Nothing was wasted.

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #11

As Nina Teicholz points out, in the story of Cain and Abel in Genesis, Cain is a farmer and Abel a shepherd. Eventually Cain brought an offering of his crops and Abel an offering of fat from the firstborn of his flock. And the offering that found favour in God’s sight was Abel’s, not Cain’s.

Now Abel was a keeper of sheep, and Cain a tiller of the ground. In the course of time Cain brought to the Lord an offering of the fruit of the ground, and Abel for his part brought of the firstlings of his flock, their fat portions. And the Lord had regard for Abel and his offering, but for Cain and his offering he had no regard. (Genesis 4:2 & 3)

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #12

Pork was risky back then, because of trichinosis.

(Bob M) #13

Though I’ve always found it odd that it ended up in religion. Were they trying to protect people?

Possibly so:


If you say eating pork is okay as long as it’s properly prepared, that was correct back then. And even now, I’d think about eating (and have eaten) raw beef, but I wouldn’t eat raw pig, even from a local farm.

Edit: Though I did eat somewhat raw pork liver. Seared it on the outside, then put in my lunches. I did reheat my lunches, and further cooked the liver, but I wonder how much was basically raw and whether I should be fully cooking pork liver.

(Brian) #14

It is interesting that there is no mandate for Gentiles converting to Christianity to quit eating pork. It was a common food back then. And if there was indeed a mandate, the Apostles sure did drop the ball on proclaiming it.

Some don’t want to eat it today, for lots of reasons. That’s OK. If a person feels it’s wrong for them to eat it, they shouldn’t. I don’t believe they get to make that choice for everyone else, though. But that’s just my take.

(Alec) #15

Alas, I fear that this is the direction that things in general are heading: governments will tell us that they know what is good for us (vegan slop), and they will execute policy to guide us into what they believe is right (using persuasion and then subsidies and taxes) despite the science suggesting that they are completely wrong in their “beliefs”. Smells a hell of a lot of hidden agendas, power plays and conflicts of interests.

The days of my desire to get active in politics are long gone, but if this agenda gets worse, I may have to use my upcoming retirement to derail this BS as much as I possibly can….

(Bob M) #16

It’s just a challenge to make our arguments relative to the normal arguments.

For instance, “cows fart methane and lead to global warming”. While it’s true that cows do belch (not fart) methane, the reality is much more complex than this. You’re immediately on the defensive, as you have to begin to figure out how to discuss something that’s complex rather than pithy.

And then there are things like “saturated fat” being bad for you. The “science” behind that has never been good and is unfounded really (see below). But that’s hard to discuss.

Below: How does saturated fat supposedly cause heart disease? I know of no physical mechanism this could take place. I have seen a chain: saturated fat causes LDL to go up; higher LDL is associated with higher heart disease. Two links in a chain.

The problem is that each link fails. For instance, “saturated fat” isn’t monolithic and instead is made of many fatty acids. I’ve seen very narrowly tailored studies where only one fatty acid is modified, say palmitic acid (saturated fatty acid) versus linoleic acid (PUFA). But we don’t actually eat single fatty acids, and something like ribeye has many fatty acids. This is for a ribeye:

Like most (all?) meats, it’s mainly MUFA for fat. You eat this combination of fatty acids, what happens to your LDL? It’s tough to say.

And it’s relatively easy to find studies where people with higher LDL live longer than those with lower LDL.

But all of this makes our arguments tougher, because we have to consider nuance.

(KM) #17

Not to mention, we’re usually arguing with people who don’t want nuanced arguments. They want sound bites, and even then, they’re basically looking for sound bites that reinforce their confirmation bias.