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Should we stop eating meat for the environment? Show more Show less
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Several forms of pollution - e.g. deforestation, eutrophication of water, leaching of nitrates, antibacterial resistance, release of ammonia, nitrous oxides and methane in the atmosphere - are associated to livestock production. Should we stop eating meat to prevent major environmental pollution?

No - It is hard to maintain a nutritious diet Show more Show less

Meat contains important nutrients such as Vitamin B6 and B12 that are more difficult to obtain when eating plant-based, especially for those who lack time and resources for getting supplements or specific groceries.
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Meat is the best source of protein

It is harder to meet your protein needs while eating a vegetarian diet. Meat, on the other hand, offers the necessary protein intake from a single source.
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The Argument

Protein is the building block of life. They create and repair our cells and are therefore crucial for physical growth and development .[1] Protein cannot be built up and stored in the body, therefore we need a consistent supply to maintain our strength.[2] Protein deficiencies can weaken the immune system, making it more susceptible to infection and less effective at combatting it.[2] Protein deficiencies also lead to 'muscle wasting' which weakens the body overall.[2] Meat is overall a more accessible source of protein. Not all proteins are created equal. Plant protein is incomplete, meaning it does not contain all of the amino acids that the body needs.[3] Meat, on the other hand, does. Meat is a versatile source of protein – it can be cooked in lots of ways according to your skill and time restraints, unlike vegetarian proteins which require more preparation.[3] Vegetarian diets are not yet accessible to many people as they require more skill, time, preparation, and even money to prepare. Meat, therefore, offers the most convenient and effective way of maintaining our protein needs.

Counter arguments

Meat is certainly a good source of protein, but there is no evidence to prove it to be the objective best source. Some of the best sources of protein are not in fact found in meat. Yoghurt, milk, eggs, beans, and legumes all contain similar amounts of protein as meat.[4] Unlike meat, plant proteins also contain fiber, an important substance for healthy digestion.[5] Eating too much meat is not healthy, and therefore to depend on meat a primary source of protein may lead to other health consequences linked to eating too much meat, such as heart disease and high cholesterol.[5]

Proponents

Premises

[P1] Humans need protein to survive. [P2] Meat is the easiest and most accessible source of protein. [P3] Eating meat is the most effective way of consuming protein.

Rejecting the premises

References

  1. https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/002467.htm#:~:text=Proteins%20are%20the%20building%20blocks,cells%20and%20make%20new%20ones.
  2. https://www.verywellfit.com/what-are-the-effects-of-protein-deficiency-4160404
  3. https://www.meatpoultry.com/articles/21360-all-protein-is-not-created-equal
  4. https://www.eatingwell.com/featured/VegetarianFoodsPackedWithProtein
  5. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/322827#which-is-better-for-health

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This page was last edited on Wednesday, 12 Aug 2020 at 23:17 UTC

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