Hong Kong has one of the highest meat consumptions per capita in the world at 664g per day, equivalent to two pieces of 10-oz steak. Pork and beef consumption are the highest, with average daily consumption four times higher than the UK. Most people don’t realize the negative impact that meat has on the environment and on personal health. By giving up meat just one day a week, you can reduce your individual carbon emissions and risk for certain diseases.
The World Health Organization has classified processed meat as carcinogenic (group 1) and red meat as probably carcinogenic to humans (group 2A). It even estimates that consuming 50g of processed meat (less than 2 pieces of bacon) increases the chance of developing colorectal cancer by 18%.
The use of antibiotics in farm animals as growth promoters and for the prevention and treatment of animal diseases has generated antibiotic-resistant bacteria. This antibiotic resistance can be transmitted to humans through animal food consumption and is now a major public health problem, causing illnesses that are difficult to treat, and resulting in increased morbidity, mortality, and health care costs.
In the 2015 – 2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, vegetarian diets are recommended as one of the three healthful dietary patterns.
The American Institute for Cancer Research encourages a plant-based diet, suggesting Americans consume two-thirds of their dietary intake from vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and beans.
Vegetarians and vegans are at a reduced risk of certain health conditions, including ischemic heart disease, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, certain types of cancer, and obesity.
Health Benefits of a Plant-based Diet
- What the World Eat by National Geographic , https://www.nationalgeographic.com/what-the-world-eats/
- Research by the University of Hong Kong , https://www.hku.hk/press/news_detail_17940.html
- Position of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: Vegetarian Diets , https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27886704
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