Power and Conflict
Nowadays, the majority of people are starting to take the care for their health more seriously and try to change their diets to ensure long and healthy future. They, however, still face such aggravating health problems as cancer, heart diseases, and diabetes. Unhealthy eating habits are among the major possible reasons of these conditions. Although with the stability of economic situation most humans can afford the products of animal origin even more comparing with the previous few decades, some of them are convinced that avoiding the consumption of such types of food may have significant health benefits for them. It is thus sensible to suppose that people should become vegetarians because vegetarianism helps to avoid cancer, heart disease, and diabetes.
Each individual has their own reasons for becoming a vegetarian. Some are religion-based whose adepts abstain from eating animal products. For example, Hindus are not allowed to kill animals as they believe they would have bad karma if they deprived the latter of their life; Buddhism is about keeping the ideas of non-violence but love to everything that surrounds people; Jainists’ values are also connected with non-violence to the point that these people do not even swat mosquitoes; in Islam carnivorous animals are considered dirty. People who do yoga and are involved in spiritual practices usually do not eat meat and fish due to their beliefs and the observance of non-harm. Consequently, individuals become vegetarians with the intention of protecting nature and animals. However, there are also a great number of people who abandon meat because of the health problems linked to consuming it.
Below is an outlined list of the types of vegetarians as per Vegetarian Society (2016):
· lacto-ovo-vegetarians who do not consume either fish or meat;
· ovo-vegetarians who eat eggs but abstain from dairy products;
· vegans who avoid products of animal origin at all;
· pesco-vegetarians who do not favor meat, but eat fish;
· frutarians whose diet consists only of fruits, seeds, and nuts (Vegetarian Society, 2016).
As it may be inferred from the mentioned above, there can be various incentives for adopting this life style: religious beliefs, environmental or health concerns. It is everybody’s choice whether to be a vegetarian or not, but the fact that being vegetarian has lots of advantages which help to prevent various illnesses and protect health in the modern world is worth taking into consideration (American Council on Science and Health, 1997).
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Vegetarianism and Its Impact on Cancer
Diet and cancer are closely connected. According to Physician Committee for Responsible Medicine (n.d.), vegetarian diets may well lead to preventing cancer. For instance, meat and dairy products consumed excessively are said to cause various forms of cancer such as that of ovaries, breast, prostate, and colon. In fact, meat consumption develops cancer risk by approximately 300 percent (Physician Committee for Responsible Medicine, n.d.).
ACSH (1997) asserts that food intake which includes much fat leads to the production of estrogens (estradiol) what can be connected with breast cancer. The risk of developing breast cancer is incredibly high among women whose estradiol level is off scale. The fact which shocks is that the dairy food which is commonly regarded as safe and healthy is indeed able to cause the ovarian cancer (ACSH, 1997). The matter is that after consuming milk sugar converts into galactose, which is the ‘staple food’ for cancer cells and is likely to damage the ovaries. The way to avoid this conversion which may lead to cancer is to substitute cow milk by drinking this product made from soy, coconut, or almond. There are lots of occasions when men switch from regular milk to one of its substitutes. What is remarkable here is that a large number of people who did it said that they eventually felt more vigorous and generally positive. At the same time, there are some doubts about the bad impact of meat, fish and dairy products (The European Food Information Council, 2011).
While it is clear that vegetarians eat a great number of vegetables, fruits and grains, what lowers cancer risk, it is not obvious that people should stop eating all products derived from animals because they decrease the cancer risk. While avoiding red meat may lower the risk of colon cancer, fish-eaters has a smaller risk of cancer diseases than total vegetarians. People are recommended to eat less than 500g of red meat per week (The World Cancer Research Fund). This Fund advises to reduce the consumption of meat to 3-4 times a week if people do not want to change the food habits totally to become vegetarians. However, fish in combination with vegetables, fruits, and grains is regarded as healthy diet. People should not eat meat every day if they want to keep their health strong. Those who consume 100g of red meat (red meat is lamb, pork, or beef) or 50g of processed meat might have an approximately 20% higher risk of developing bowel cancer than vegetarians who do not consume any of these meats. At the same time, vegetarians consume lots of vitamins which regularly help to avoid this disease (EUFIC, 2011).
Furthermore, vegetarians’ blood is rich with a high level of specialized white blood cells. Then these blood cells attack cancer cells (Physician Committee for Responsible Medicine, n.d.). That is why vegetarians have many more benefits than non-vegetarians regarding the protection from cancer, making it one of the diseases which can be avoided with the help of vegetarianism.
Vegetarianism’s Impact on Heart Disease
Vegetarians’ intake of the vitamins needed for the healthy organism is often believed to be higher than that of the general population. To speak specifically, people who avoid eating animal origin food consume only 3 nutrients less than non-vegetarians (ACSH, 1997). In the meanwhile, this healthy diet consists from a higher amount of nuts, fruits, vegetables and grains. As vegetarians do not eat meat, fish, eggs or dairy food, it can be substituted with healthier products. After having examined vegetarians from the point of view of diseases, Gillet et al., (2017) made a conclusion that people who restrict from animal origin food are suffering from cancer, heart disease and diabetes a way less than non-vegetarians. After the combined analyses of 5 prospective studies by Gillet et al. (2017), it was claimed that 24% less people die from heart disease when they are vegetarians compared to non-vegetarians after adjusting for sex, smoking, age, and social status (McIntosh, 2011). Furthermore, the studies which were comparing vegetarian and non-vegetarian have found that 40 percent of people who avoid caffeine, smoking and alcohol are vegetarians (Gillet et al., 2017). The matter is that it is healthy to consume products with low glycemic index, such as legumes, as they provide keeping the blood sugar steady. What helps to keep healthy blood lipids is high fiber, which is found in plant-based diets. There is a list of products which may help to reduce the risk of heart disease and most of them are plant origin products. For example, soy beans, seeds, avocados, and nuts (Go Red. (n.d.). And there is no meat, fish, or dairy food among them. It makes think about the consumption of meat.
The benefit of various vitamins also depends from which products that vitamins are received. For example, omega- 3s helps to decrease the heart disease risk. Omega-3s from fish decreases triglycerides but increases good cholesterol levels while omega-3s from walnut works to reduce total cholesterol and bad cholesterol levels (EUFIC, 2011).
Pursuant to the aforesaid, vegetarian diet prevents heart disease. However, it may be not the benefit from the avoiding of meet, but the benefit of the amount of grains, fruits, vegetables consumed by vegetarians. To look deeper, humans need to reduce cholesterol levels and it can be done with the help of fiber. The matter is the food of animal origin does not contain any fiber. Although vegetarians eat less saturated fat and cholesterol, they consume way more healthy nutrients. Vitamins C and E, dietary fiber, potassium, magnesium, and phytochemicals are the common diet among vegetarians, what is unlikely for general people (Harvard Women’s Health Watch, 2017).
Reversion of the atherosclerosis is a common aim among people who suffer from it. Humans have been told about healthy lifestyle for years: at school, at work, at home. But what is the clue of achieving the atherosclerosis reversing? Doing sport, reducing stress, quitting smoking, and being cautious with medicines must all be combined with vegetarian diet. The main point is that diet should be low-fat. It is clear that low-fat food, in addition to vegetables and fruit, is the secret of the long-term health and prevention of cancer, heart-disease, and atherosclerosis. But what is about diabetes?
Vegetarianism and Its Impact on Diabetes
Vegetarianism is a prevalent choice of those who have a desire to reverse diabetes. In combination with regular exercises, a vegetarian diet helps to reduce or prevent diabetes. Here is the matter of the insulin, which needs to work effectively in order to get rid of diabetes. The diet which is low in fat, high in complex carbohydrates and fiber helps the insulin. Vegetarian diet is able to decrease the amounts of insulin used. However, some diabetes types are insulin-dependent and auto-immune reaction to dairy products is able to cause insulin-dependent diabetes (ACSH, 1997).
The low rate of diabetes among vegetarians may also be the consequence of the small body mass index among vegetarians. Non-vegetarians have the highest body mass index, what can lead to diabetes. At the same time, vegans differ from all other people because they have the lowest BMI.
What should be taken into account is that the sex of the person plays a great role in the question diabetes question. When concerning cancer, being vegetarian is more important for women, here is a deal which refers to men. Due to the studies, non-vegetarian men are approximately twice likely to die from diabetes than vegetarian men. However, women do not show a big difference between vegetarians and non-vegetarians who die from diabetes (Findings regarding Seventh-day Adventists). Here is also an additional risk associated with eating process meat, such as bacon, ham, salami. In addition, people with diabetes have a high risk of cardiovascular disease while plant-based products help to reduce blood pressure, blood cholesterol and keep the weight adequately. In the end, these steps help people to reduce the diabetes. Eating healthy food is plant-based food is able to improve blood sugar control. Then it makes body more responsive to insulin, what helps to decrease the problems related to diabetes (EUFIC, 2011).
Being a vegetarian has healthier benefits than being non-vegetarian. It seems that vegetarians’ diet is full of vitamins which general people often do not receive. It may be hard to change food habits and restrict from meat, fish and dairy products. However, there are many different types of vegetarianism and people are provided with the ability to choose a certain diet concerning their own beliefs and aims. Vegetarian diet provides a strong health, enriches with a multitude of vitamins and helps to prevent many illnesses. It is able to prevent from cancer, to decrease a heart disease risk and reduce the diabetes. The consumption of lots of fat leads to production of estradiol what is connected to breast cancer. That is why non-vegetarian people often face with this disease nowadays. What is more, dairy products develop the risk of the ovarian cancer. The milk sugar converse into galactose that can lead to ovarian cancer. At the same time, the vegetarian’s diet, which consists from a great amount of vegetables, fruits and nuts helps to prevent cancer. Vegetarians eat food with law glycemic index, which keeps the blood sugar steady. Vegetarianism reduces weight, what can also prevent from diabetes. There is no denying that people who want to become healthier should consume more grains, nuts and vegetables. It can be better to eat healthy products, substituting the meat, fish and dairy products. To remain healthy it is important to be sure whether the consumed food is healthy or not. Vegetarianism is the future of people who want to live healthy life without diseases.