Healthy Meat Diet?

Organic meat, when it is fresh and unadulterated can be a valuable addition to the diet. Unfortunately the majority of meat available commercially has been detrimentally affected by the methods of food production and processing.

Most animals are raised in poor conditions, may have a low quality of feed and are frequently dosed with antibiotics, hormones and other drugs. This ultimately affects the quality of the meat and the chemical residues can have negative effects on health. They may be especially implicated in hormonal disorders.

Processed meats such as ham, bacon, sausage, hot dogs and salami may contain up to 15% additives such as artificial colors, flavors and preservatives. They are also generally produced from the poorest quality meats and meat by-products. Most preserved meats contain nitrites which are potentially very strong cancer promoting substances and may have other toxic effects.

Many of these additives can be used to preserve the shelf life of the product and it may not be possible to detect the presence of harmful microorganisms as taste is not a reliable indication.

The overconsumption of meat can also produce an acidic condition in the body and toxic residues can be deposited in body tissues. This can eventually lead to the development of arthritis with stiff joints and weak muscles.

Kidney and liver function may become impaired and the risk of heart disease, atherosclerosis and cancer is increased. Digestive problems and constipation is also likely to occur. The risk of osteoporosis is also increased as excess protein increases excretion of calcium in the urine.

While meat can certainly be part of a healthy diet when consumed in appropriate amounts, it is important to be aware of the negative health effects of processed meats and to take care not to consume meat in excessive amounts.

The ideal amount of meat intake will vary from person to person and some people may find that they feel much better on a vegetarian style diet. It is important to listen to the body and to be open to the possibility of dietary change if the current diet does not appear to be meeting your needs in terms of promoting vitality and health.

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