This morning I was utterly shocked to wake up to yet another report outlining a disgusting case of animal abuse on a farm. This time it was in Canada and the report outlines the horrific torture of chickens by farm workers, including forcing sexual acts. While I am always horrified and deeply disheartened by such awful events, I am not shocked.
I am not shocked that we hear of countless cases of animal abuse. As long as we treat animals as products rather than the sentient beings that they are there will be cases of abuse.
What does shock me however, is the attitude of the general population when these awful investigated stories are published. People in my own family have actually blocked my posts on facebook to avoid looking at images of distressed animals, yet continue to tuck into them. Maybe the reason you look away is because you are ashamed? Or maybe people just prefer to live on in ignorance and pretend that what’s on your plate got there as if by magic and not by slaughter.
Living on a wholly plant based diet has never been easier. Not only do we have an enormous range of foods available we also avoid carcinogenic red meats and cancer causing hormones. I am an almost six year vegan and life long vegetarian with no health issues – in fact after blood and urine tests my midwife has let me know exactly how healthy I am.
In contrast I am surrounded by meat eaters who suffer from anemia (something, which yes actually affects more carnivores than vegans), asthma, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, skin irritations, obesity and just for the cherry on top a Harvard study into the mortality of those who consume a meat based diet and those that don’t also have a much lower life expectancy than me. Go figure!
Yet, judgement is still passed on my health and the risks of a vegan diet. The strain we currently put on our NHS does not come from those living on a balanced plant based diet. The strain on our NHS has primarily come from those on a meat based diet who suffer from illness and disease which is directly impacted by this diet.
If you do one thing this week, please reflect on what you put in your mouth. Reflect on how it got there and who it came from, reflect on your own health and the positive changes you can make and please reflect on why ignoring animal abuse is a better option for you than acting on it.