The benefits and dangers of vegetarianism

вегетарианство польза и вредThere are two types of vegetarianism — the pure vegetarianism forbidding all products of an animal origin, and slaughter free vegetarianism , allowing dairy food and honey.

Vegetable food is the basis of diet of all vegetarians, it contains vegetables, fruit, mushrooms, sea cabbage, sorrel, haricot, nuts, etc. Leonardo da Vinci, Newton, Byron, Voltaire, Bernard Shaw, Einstein, Lev Tolstoy and many others were vegetarians. Many Hollywood stars follow a vegetarian diet. Most of people become vegetarians out of a moral and ethical ban to eat killed animals’ meat.

Is vegetarianism as harmless as its followers state?

Protein is obligatory for normal metabolism in a human body. Proteins are of vegetable and animal origin. But if animal protein is well assimilable, you wont say the same about vegetable protein. The exception is made by soya beans and legumes therefore they need to be included in a diet of vegetarians. If you dont do this, it can lead to serious problems with health. But apart from protein, animal products contain other vitamins, microelements and fats necessary for the body.

For example, iron. The lack of iron in blood leads to the hemoglobin drop down, anemia or iron deficiency anemia, immunity breach, short wind, tachycardia, digestion disorder, lack of appetite, fatigue and other signs of body disorders. Very important B12 vitamin is present only in products of an animal origin — meat, fish, cheese, etc. Deficiency of this vitamin is very dangerous, leading to a change of nervous fabric, consequently developing anemia. Consequences of a lack of B12 vitamin emerge gradually into an overall disbalance: weaknesses, fatigues, a general malaise, irritability, intestinal problems, dizziness, numbness of limbs. Milk and dairy products are the main source of calcium which is necessary for bones’, teeth and nervous fabric fortification. Calcium arriving from food of animal origin is much better assimilated, than the one from veggies. Fish delivers microelements and polynonsaturated fatty acids of Omega-3 group required for prevention of cardiovascular diseases.

As a result, the refusal of animal food deprives a person of many vital elements that negatively affect health and lead at times to serious diseases. But what after all compels people to leave their regular diet and to become vegetarians? Mainly, it’s myths perceived by many as the truth:

1. They say vegetarians live longer and look younger than their contemporaries.
– But such statistics doesn’t exist. Therefore this statement is groundless.
2. Vegetarians have better character, they are quieter and more peace loving.
– There are many examples disproving it, for example, Adolf Hitler was a vegetarian as well.
3. People follow vegetarianism since it’s a part of human nature, we are not predators as we don’t have claws and canines to hunt and kill animals.
– A man is really not a predator, but all his internals, fermentable system and digestive tract are adapted for meat-eating.
4. The vegetarianism pays off – Yes, meat production is more expensive, than the production of veggies and fruits. But most people in our country can afford vegetable only in summer. During winter and spring vegetables and fruit go up in price dramatically, so you would exaggerate a great deal, talking about saving in this case.
5. Vegetarians have cardiovascular diseases less often as there is lower cholesterol level.
– No, it can’t be denied. Vegetable food is generally rich with cellulose which ties and takes out cholesterol. But the researches conducted at the end of the XX century showed that advantage of vegetarianism doesn’t come from the exclusion of animal food, but lies in the increase of the consumption of vegetable food (cellulose) by twice. But taking into consideration a popular Mediterranean diet where there is both meat and fish, and also a lot of vegetables and fruit, the statistics of cardio-vascular diseases of Mediterranean inhabitants is as positive as the one of vegetarians.

Thus, all myths about vegetarianism are only myths. It’s a way of life with a philosophical idea in its core about the world and the humankind. Vegetarian diet isn’t at all harmful if you diet this way 2, 3 days in a week or the whole week. But remember that sick and elderly people can not totally cut down on animal food. And vegetarians have to make up for the deficiency of protein as well as mineral and vitamin complex in the body.