Many people think if they just eliminate red meat and poultry from their diets, their eating healthier. This is partly true, but there are hazards to eating fish and seafood as well. The harm that humans have done to the environment has had a direct effect on the fish and seafood we eat.
There are elements of fish and shellfish are an important part of a healthy diet. Fish and shellfish contain high-quality protein and other essential nutrients, are low in saturated fat and contain omega-3 fatty acids. A well-balanced diet that includes a variety of fish and shellfish can contribute to heart health and children’s proper growth and development. So, women and young children, in particular, should include fish or shellfish in their diets due to the many nutritional benefits.
However, nearly all fish and shellfish contain traces of mercury. For most people, the risk from mercury by eating fish and shellfish is not a health concern. Yet, some fish and shellfish contain higher levels of mercury that may harm an unborn baby or young child’s developing nervous system. The risks from mercury in fish and shellfish depend on the amount of fish and shellfish eaten and the levels of mercury in the fish and shellfish.
Therefore, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) are advising women who may become pregnant, pregnant women, nursing mothers, and young children to avoid some types of fish and eat fish and shellfish that are lower in mercury.
Is this any way to eat? In fear of what unhealthy elements are lurking in the food we eat? Eliminating red meat and eating a more vegetarian diet is an excellent start on the road to more healthy eating. Eliminating fish and seafood is one of the final steps towards eating a completely vegetarian diet and the health benefits that are your reward for making that change.
What are the reasons we eat food? That might seem like a silly question, because we eat to feed our bodies, first of all. Many of us also obtain an emotional gratification when we eat, and most of us are omnivores, meaning we eat everything, including meat and poultry.
There are many compelling reasons to move towards a vegetarian diet, many of them health-related. But many people refuse to eat meat because of the inhumane treatment of the animals that are mass-produced to feed the population.
Animal farming on the scale that it needs to be to satisfy U.S. consumption is grotesquely cruel. When you eat meat, you’re eating the flesh of an animal whose life has been artificially shortened by overfeeding it to get it to a slaughterhouse earlier.
They’re kept in small pens and cages, where they endure chronic stress. If they bear their young life, their babies are taken from them, sometimes a day after they’re born. They’re fed growth hormones and antibiotics and kept from the natural behaviors and actions that characterize the normal life span.
Pigs aren’t allowed to root. Calves are kept immobile. Chickens are kept in cages, their beaks seared off with a burning hot knife to thwart aggressive behaviors that are the result of unnatural confinement.
Do you really think the flesh of the animal is separate from its spirit and its energy? The agony and stress they endure in their shortened lives infuse every cell of their bodies. Consider that depression and stress can make humans ill, can infect our muscles and organs. Is an animal so very different? We don’t need meat or milk for survival. We’re no longer a hunting society; we’re merely a consuming society.
Isn’t it time we all started thinking differently of what we consume to nourish our bodies? We’re evolved from herbivores, and yet we’ve veered off our own evolutionary path. One can make a case for hunting and eat meat when it’s the only means for survival. But that’s no longer the case and our options are plentiful.