“The doctor of the future will give no medicine, but will interest his patients in the care of the human frame and in the cause of and prevention of disease.” – Thomas A. Edison
My personal observation is that what we eat and drink is directly responsible for how we think and feel; it also affects our personal relationship to our Creator. Many times I have talked about the end products of our digestion and how the metabolism is affected by frequent toxic reactions of food that is poorly digested, perhaps due to overeating, poor combinations, and unnatural mixtures of perfectly good food. The symptoms of the diseases that bring on aging and death are only an indication that the systems of our body are not standing up to the abuses of our daily habits. The most irregular and daily habit is that of eating. Thus I would say, look to this avenue for trouble and determine to prevent it.
The all-American diet of hamburgers, hot dogs, potato chips, ice cream, and soda pop can hardly be labeled “food,” and creates acid residues which are responsible for all kinds of disease.
We should eat to enhance our alkaline reserve, which would include about 50% raw foods—combined simply with other prepared foods that can be easily digested.
Even if not one year was added to our lives, the rewards of living when eating because of health reasons, instead of merely for the gratification of our unnatural appetites, could be enjoyed a hundredfold more in physical, mental and spiritual attainment.
The State of Health In America!
- Forty-eight million people in the United States suffer from heart disease. This, together with strokes, accounts for nearly half of the deaths in this country each year.
- Cancer is the second leading cause of death in the United States.
- Over one-million Americans die each year from these two diseases.
- Four out of five persons, age 64 and older, have disabilities or chronic disease.
- In 1945, one out of 15 people died of cancer. In 1971, one in every six deaths was due to cancer. In 1978, after millions of dollars had been spent on conventional methods of therapy, the rate was up to one in every five Americans. Current estimates are that cancer causesd one in every four deaths by 1988, and will cause one in every three deaths by 2008.
- American workers lead the world in degenerative diseases.
- In 1987, the U.S. Surgeon Gereral warned that of the 2.1 million Americans who died, nearly 1.5 million were killed by diseases associated with a poor diet.
Diet Facts in the U.S.
- 62% of Americans are overweight.
- 44 million Americans are considered clinically obese.
- Over half the nation is dieting or has dieted.
- In 1982, 15 billion dollars were spent on weight-loss schemes.
- Diets do not work. If they did, why is obesity increasing and new diets constantly being developed?
Statistics on Diet and Disease
- 1961—Journal of American Medical Association reported that a vegetarian diet can prevent 90-97% of heart disease.
- 1977—In the Senate Report on Nutrition and Human Needs, Dr. Mark Hegsted of the Harvard School of Public Health said: “I wish to stress that there is a great deal of evidence, and it continues to accumulate, which strongly implicates, and in some instances, proves that the major causes of death and disability in the United States are related to the diet we eat. I include coronary artery disease, which accounts for nearly half of the deaths in the United States, several of the most important forms of cancer, hypertension, diabetes, and obesity, as well as other chronic diseases.”
- 1982—At the National Cancer Institute, doctors said, “Changing the way we eat could offer some protection against cancer.” NCI has now made diet its number one area of research in cancer prevention.
- 1983—American Cancer Society stated its belief that “a greater use of fruit and vegetables can significantly reduce a person’s risk of developing cancer.”
Animal Disease Is On the Increase
- Over 100 million chickens die per year of chicken leukemia. About 235 million chickens die each year from all causes—many of which are transmittible to humans. Yearbook of Agriculture, pp. 466-474.
- Approximately 2.5 million beef livers are rejected annually by federal meat inspectors because they have cancer, abscesses or parasitic worms. The rest of the carcass is, however, allowed to be sold for human food. Yearbook of Agriculture, p. 11.
- Approximately 40 million hogs and piglets die of disease on our farms each year and never (we hope) reach the meat market. About 3 1/4 million that do reach the slaughterhouse are rejected in part or total by meat inspectors. Life and Health, Oct. 1969, p. 31.
- Over 71 thousand cattle were sold for human food in 1967 after malignant eye tumors were discovered. (Only the eye itself was condemned.) Life and Health, Oct. 1969, p. 31.
- Thousands of chickens contaminated or stained with feces are shipped every day instead of being condemned, 81 federal testified. The Atlanta Constitution, May 26, 1991.
- In January 1993, contaminated hamburgers were the cause of the biggest outbreak ever of the deadly bacteria, E. Coli 0157:H7. The outbreak killed four children and hospitalized 500 people. The Spokesman Review, January 23, 1993.
- In 1993 the USDA temporarily closed 30 beef slaughterhouses after inspections revealed contaminated carcasses at dozens of plants.The Tallahassee Democrat, May 28, 1993, p. 31.
- Two cattle diseases, Bovine Immunodeficiency Virus (cow AIDS) and Bovine Leukemia Virus have been discovered in the U.S. BIV and BLV are widespread and suspected of being transmitted to humans through the ingestion pathway. Beyond Beef, Jeremy Rifkin, p. 143.
Animal Agriculture and Environmental Damage
- Nearly 40% of the world’s grain and nearly 70% of U.S. grain are fed to livestock.
- Almost 1/2 of the energy used in American agriculture goes into livestock production. It takes the equivalent of 50 gallons of gasoline to produce the red meat and poultry eaten by the typical American each year—and twice that much to process, package, transport, sell, store and cook it.
- Livestock agriculture takes nearly 1/3 of California irrigation water, which amounts to about 190 gallons of water per meat-eating American per day—twice the daily water usage in the average American home.
- Half of the continental United States is used for feedstock, pasture, and range. Half of U.S. cropland grows animal feed and hay. This land is eroding quickly. For each pound of red meat, poultry, eggs and milk, farm fields lose five pounds of prime topsoil.
- 270 million acres of public land in the western United States are leased to ranchers for grazing. Already, 10% of this land has been turned into desert by livestock; 70% is severely degraded.
- Livestock produces 158 million tons of waste per year, some of which contaminates underground water tables with nitrates. Animal waste and feed fertilizers account for 40% of the phosphorous released into American rivers, lakes and streams.
- Cattle emit 1/3 of a pound of methane for every pound of beef they yield, contributing to the greenhouse effect. This, along with the fuel used in lifestock farming, gives every pound of steak the greenhouse warming effect of a 25-mile drive in an American car. The Vegetarian Times, Oct. 1991, p. 68.