First I should say that I am not against vegetarians. I used to be a vegetarian for a short time. I have had an interest in eating healthy for around 12 years now, so of course I have studied it. In looking at the issue of food I have found that there are many conflicting sources. From Atkins to The China Study. All over the board… I am aware of this and most likely you are as well. So I will state my foundations and biases as to how I come to my conclusions.
I base my eating first and foremost on the Bible. Of course I realize the world has changed and times have changed but the foundational truths have not. When the Bible mentions change in diet or mentions profitable foods it does so for a reason. That is not to say that we must now eat exactly as the Israelites did or that we are under the Mosaic law. It is however to say that it is beneficial and profitable for us.
So after the fall and as subsequently given to Noah and then Moses, God directed which meats were beneficial for consumption with the understanding that vegetables and grain were good in their proper context. SO of course I am a vegetable lover, and in fact, more so than any vegetarian I have met. Most vegetarians I have met (I will admit they have been in bands on the road) eat very poorly… mostly eating french fries, chips, soy protein bars, tofu, and popcorn.¬†
Now onward. In detailing which meat to be added to the vegetables and grains, God gave specific instructions due to the quality and cleanliness of the animal and meat. There is specific examples of roasting lamb over the fire, and choosing beef, poultry, and certain fish, while eschewing (I like that word, I mean avoiding) pork, ostrich, shrimp, crab, lobster, catfish, and all sorts of other unclean foods. Leviticus 11 and Deuteronomy 14 give the wisdom.¬†
So starting from that basis we can form a foundation and move forward. For example, today many things that were once ‘normal’, natural, and customary are no longer… like cows grazing in the pasture or unpolluted oceans. So the ramifications of these things should be taken into account. As modern technologies and so called modern wisdom corrupts good food… then beef from cows that are raised stuffed in a barn with 6000 other cattle, fed who knows what, and stuffed full of antibiotics, have their milk heated, homogenized, and then added with fake vitamin A and D and extra powder milk, then they are butchered. That is a far cry from the quality of milk and meat from a cow that is eating grass and hay (it’s vegetables) and is living how God made a cow to live and it’s food to be taken.
Also with regard to fish, because of heavy metal contamination in much of the oceans, many fish contain unsafe levels of heavy metals. Therefore one should continue to seek out, not only wild caught fish¬†(not farmed), but also fish caught where they will not contain unsafe levels of heavy metals like mercury.
So you can see how to have a foundation that promotes health and wellness and have to move forward from that. Foods like grass-fed beef and lamb, pastured poultry, and wild caught fish are excellent for health.¬†
Vegetarians face the problem of B-12. There is not real B12 in plants… only B12 analogues (similar structure) which can actually compete for absorption and lead to a B12 deficiency.¬†
Also, typically vegetarians stress a low saturated fat diet which is not accurate. In fact, fats like coconut oil and butter from grass-fed cows are extremely healthy and excellent for the body. Unrefined, extra virgin coconut oil is rich in lauric acid and butter from grass-fed cows is rich in trace minerals and fat-soluble vitamins that protect against cancer and infections. Isaiah 7:15 says, “Butter and honey shall he eat, that he may know to refuse the evil, and choose the good.” While they can eat both of these fats, the viewpoint is typically contrary to such fats.
I also do not believe that vegetarians live longer, in fact looking at history not only does it not appear true on the surface, often most of the quality and type of animal sources are taken into account and when they are the people group lives just as long or longer than anyone eating any way. Also, I do not eat for long life but so that if God should allow me long life it will be a means which He has ordained to carry that out as well as, so that I will be able to have a better quality of life in the present to carry out His will.
The whole idea promoted by some vegans and vegetarians that eating meat from animals is inhumane… is simply preposterous (another great word). Animals should be taken care of and raised with care, but they are for our benefit. We have dominion over them. We are allowed to use their skins for warmth and wear. We are allowed to eat them for nourishment. They are not humans. Jesus always noted how much more value humans were than animals. So it is not wrong to save the whales and baby seals… but come on… Americans are aborting human babies and neglecting the poor and elderly.
Some people just do not like the taste of meat. There are good animal products like organic eggs, raw butter, and raw milk from grass-fed sources that can fill the gaps.
Well… I am ready to stop typing for now. As always more can be said. AND as always I will say that high quality sources are important.