My journey to better health has finally placed me face to face with the elephant in my room – eating the flesh of dead animals and drinking the milk that has been taken away from new born calves.
I never really paid too much attention to it before. In the past, I had seen the videos and watched the conditions within which our our meat is raised and killed. Whilst I have no doubt that the barbaric clips and pictures that circulate the internet, shared by passionate vegans and animal rights activists may not be the norm (or maybe they are) it still didn’t push me to stop eating meat. Only recently did I come face to face with it again and this time it did get my attention.
The straw that broke the camel’s back was the dairy industry and how the cows are constantly impregnated to keep the milk flowing and that their newborns are constantly taken from them and denied the milk and the love of their mothers time and time again. I think the reason it hit hard this time was because my daughter (our 3rd child) was born 9 months ago and I watched as my wife breast-fed her and bonded in the early days. The comfort it provided and love that emerged is a powerful thing. Flash over then to the millions and millions of confused and afraid new-born calves, born every day into slavery. They are treated like nothing but emotionless machines by the world but behind it all we cannot deny that they crave that love and bond that should be their birthright to share with their mother. Yet we look on unmoved by the injustice. We put the milk in our tea, in our cereal, we enjoy cheese and butter and we even feed our own young with the milk that was denied to these vulnerable new born animals. The days of hunting wild animals for survival have gone. The need to eat meat and drink milk to survive are gone. This is not survival in the wild, this is mass slaughter and mistreatment of those who cannot protect themselves. We have enslaved, tortured and disrespected the natural order by what we have done and for me the time has come to accept my part in it. Every time we consume animal products we condone this this treatment that takes place behind closed doors. We are brainwashed to think it is our right to do it, we shut our eyes and open our mouths, always pretending that the food we eat isn’t what it really is.
The ridiculous fact of the matter is that this suffering is unnecessary and unjustified, animal products are not healthy; plant based foods are what the human body is designed to be eating and they can provide us a full profile of nutrients, vitamins and minerals (with the exception possibly of adequate plant based sources of vitamin B12 from what I have read to date). Today this is widely understood and accepted and we now have the platform to cultivate this approach for future generations. It will be healthier for us, for the animals, and the planet.
For me, the fact that plant based foods could provide me with my full daily nutrition is what originally lead me to increase the amount of these foods in my diet and it encouraged me to find replacement sources of protein to substitute for the meat and dairy I was consuming (particular for protein after a workout). Now, in the cold light of day I am even more encouraged to eliminate animal products because it will positively impact on the level of suffering that is inflicted upon the animal world. We condone a world of death and deprivation whist looking the other way. We then eat the dead and steal the food of their babies for ourselves, I for one have decided to no longer participate in the madness.
It may not be easy to eliminate it completely but it is a process. As long as I am trying, my conscience is clear. As I said, I have been trying for a while to replace meat with plant-based sources for nutritional and health reasons so right now my animal product food consumption is limited to my dinner and 2 organic free-range eggs in the morning. The eggs may need to stay for vitamin B12 but the meat in the dinners will be replaced with lentils and legumes. Milk is limited to my daily cappuccino but this will have to change too.
The time has come for the madness to end. In an age where scientific fact proves unequivocally that a meat-free and dairy-free diet is most healthy we must each do our individual parts to put an end to the suffering that lurks around every corner. Time to wake up.