Side Effects of Animal Protein
Why do we suggest staying away from animal protein? While talking about the negatives is rarely fun, it's important to be aware of the harmful effects of meat and dairy; Understanding is Key.
Cholesterol Damages Arteries
Did you know our bodies produce all the cholesterol we need? There is no benefit in consuming cholesterol. In fact, it's quite actually damaging. Our bodies react negatively when consuming cholesterol- it causes damage to the inside of our arteries as it travels within our blood. This causes our arteries to stiffen and makes blood flow less efficient; often leading to increased blood pressure (and cholesterol levels). Increased cholesterol is the starting point of heart disease. All animal protein contains cholesterol. (Tuso, 2015)
Our bodies view animal protein as a foreign substance and our immune system kicks into high gear to get it our of our system. Ever felt sluggish after eating a cheeseburger? That's because your body is using a lot of energy to get it out of your system. When we increase inflammation in the body, we are making ourselves more susceptible to various sicknesses and diseases. (Kostovcikova et al., 2019)
Inflammation is at the root of chronic aches and pains.
Remember that everything we eat makes its way to our brain. Depression can be described as a chemical imbalance in the brain, and wheat we eat affects that chemistry. The same inflammation mentioned before causes inflammation in the brain. This inflammation is found interfere with our serotonin and dopamine production. When testing for mood, meat eaters consistently score lower than their plant-eating counterparts. (Agarwal et al., 2015)
Seeing that it causes a problem throughout the body, it's no surprise animal protein is hard on our digestive system. Our stomach acid is not strong enough to efficiently break down meat, so it ends up sitting in our intestines for up to 7 days! As is sits there, it starts to rot. This causing bad gut bacteria to form leading to a number of potential health problems; one of them being colon disease. (Sinha et al., 2009)
Another big problem is dairy. We are the only species to consume milk outside of infancy. Our bodies tend to lose the ability to digest lactose (a compound in dairy) at a very young age. The vast majority of the world is lactose intolerant. Dairy is a major contributor to inflammation and bloating. (Matthews et al., 2005)
Promotes Insulin Resistance
Contrary to what is commonly thought today, we now know that type 2 diabetes is not caused be sugar intake, it's caused by fat intake. Elevated sugar levels are a result, not a cause. More specifically, it's caused mainly by the type of fat found in animal products- saturated fat. This fat gets into the cells and interferes with the cell's ability to respond to insulin, causing insulin resistance. Type 2 diabetes is often a result of excessive animal consumption. We'll dive more into this later. (Azemati et al.,2017)