From the history of vegetarianism

From the history of vegetarianism

Leo Tolstoy became a vegetarian because spared animals, and Adolf Hitler because he wanted to live to a hundred years. Today eat plant food has become fashionable, and new vegetarians not only relinquish meat, but also are active in the fight against meat-eaters.

The all-knowing science-stats in the world today there are about a billion vegetarians. Some countries are more of them in others — less. The absolute record for the number of people sitting on a vegetable diet, is India, where vegetarians make up 80% of the total population. However, this is not surprising. For most Indians, the cow is still a sacred animal and slaughter it to fry the steak — the greatest sin. Not too favor meat and overpopulated China, preferring the traditional rice and vegetables. In Japanese cuisine food animal has long presented seafood, not pork and beef. And here in America and Europe vegetarianism appeared recently, and his fans are still in the minority, there are only 5%.

In Russia vegetarians even less. However, every year vegetarianism is gaining popularity and the number of people who have decided to permanently give up meat, is increasing.

Once again facing vegetarians differ from their predecessors about the new from the old Russian. Assertive, confident in their own right, active vegetarians new wave is not just the people to give up smoking. They, like preachers are educating the masses. This is particularly evident in developed countries where vegetarianism has become a real fixed idea.

"Missionaries" vegetable supply distribute literature detailing the horrors of the life of animals and birds for slaughter, are boycotting the "McDonald's" with their burgers, hold rallies and demonstrations in defense of "our little brothers." Supporting the "Greenpeace", they are protesting against animal testing, precipitating the banks through which the scientists 'killers' list salary. The decision to hold the Olympics in Seoul, led vegetarians in awe: Koreans also eat dogs.

Make Kafka come true

At the beginning of XX century, the famous writer Franz Kafka, watching fish in an aquarium, once said: "Now I can look at you quietly, I do not eat you anymore." Author of "Castle" and "process" did not even know that his passing phrase go down in history, becoming a vegetarian slogan — "I did not eat. "

Strict vegetarians, called vegans, really, no one was eating. According to them, all that was running before, fly or swim, for a man can not serve food. Vegetarians refuse to eat meat and fish, and along with dairy products, and eggs. Some do not even eat honey, because it "is the product of exploitation of bees." Usually people who eat varied and may occasionally eat myaskom, vegetarians compared with the walking graves for dead animals and Swarm. Since 30% of herbivorous citizens claim that disdained to kiss a man who was eating on the eve of mortification.

And of course, among them There is a belief that the one who eats meat, deep down homicidal maniac. Because if a person can eat without remorse animal, therefore easily able to kill his own kind. If for a moment believe it, it turns out that the Chukchi, Eskimos and Kalmyks — the most murderous nation on earth, because from time immemorial eat meat. A hunting and fishing can immediately without trial to hide behind the bars as potential killers.

There is a science — logic

Not to be unfounded, the proponents of plant nutrition explain in detail why the person is counter to eat meat. Their most important argument: our bodies are inherently not suited to food of animal origin. And it was clear to all, compare man with predatory animals. Indeed, few similarities. Predators — sharp teeth and claws that help to torment prey and humans — and immature teeth, and nails instead of claws. Better digestion of meat contributes to acidic gastric juice: all the predators of its acidity is much more than a man. Long intestines, necessary for the digestion of plant foods, predators to anything, so their intestines several times shorter than that of humans.

Thus, vegetarians conclude: people — not predators, so should not eat meat. However, when compared with the human herbivores, the similarities will be even less. In herbivores — sharpened incisors and molars with a flat surface without chewing enamel. And because of the tough plant foods molars quickly erased, nature has taken care of that the herbivores are constantly grows.

Adapted for the fermentation of plant mass is huge (sometimes divided into separate chambers) stomach of herbivores, also did not like a human. And the acidity it will be smaller. Even the intestines of herbivorous animals such as humans. Do any of cows and rabbits it is about twenty times longer than the body, and people — only eight. It turns out, and vegetable food does not suit us.

This paradox of food has long been explained to biologists. It turns out that a person can not be attributed to the herbivores, or to predators. He, like his biological ancestor monkey is omnivorous. The human body is designed so that copes equally well with the food and vegetable and animal origin. And guess vegetarians about the original herbivores human error. Our ancient ancestors ate only vegetarian food, vegans do not let up. Then what about the rock art, which depicts scenes of hunting mammoths and other animals? There is no dispute, primitive man ate mostly edible fruits and roots, but dropped out when possible, and ate the meat.

Anthropologists believe that the most abrupt transition to food of animal origin occurred during the Ice Age, when most plants are destroyed by frost. In these difficult circumstances the man was simply compelled to stick to the meat diet. Does that mean that there vegetarianism theorists were wrong: our ancestors not only ate plants. However, despite the fact that vegetarianism is not peculiar to man by nature, it still appeared.

Pythagoras was the first

The first reliable information about people who deliberately refused to eating meat, date from about IV-V millennium BC. In order to successfully communicate with the gods and perform magic rituals, Ancient Egyptian priests became vegetarians.

May have played a role bestial appearance of many Egyptian gods, and maybe priests feared that the spirits of the living creatures eaten prevent full-fledged dialogue with the higher powers. In ancient Greece, vegetarianism came much later, in the days of antiquity. And the reason for its appearance was quite different. No mystery. Just progressive Greeks thought: why kill innocent animals, if you can eat good plants? Socrates, Plato, Diogenes, Plutarch and many other philosophers were vegetarians, and in his writings speculated on whether plant-based diet.

However, the key role played in the spread of vegetarianism in the VI century BC, Pythagoras. The famous philosopher and mathematician, believed in the transmigration of souls, so flatly refused to eat the meat of animals. His numerous students, young people from influential families, following the example of a mentor also switched to vegetable diet, it was the first "Society vegetarians" in world history. "Do not hurt the health of vegetarianism?" — Pifagoriytsev worried relatives. This question was answered in the IV century BC, the great physician Hippocrates. Talking about health nutrition, vegetarianism, and he approved.

With the decline of the ancient Greek civilization in Europe about vegetarianism long forgotten. Vegetable diet observed only members of certain religious communities, Christian ascetics and monks, hermits. The rest would have to eat, and not particularly thought about the origin of food.

Second coming

Interest in vegetarianism back to the Renaissance, but, in all sorts of innovations lover of Leonardo da Vinci's willing to gi
ve up eating meat was a little bit. Only towards the middle of the XIX century, vegetarianism began to acquire a mass character.

Officially, the British rediscovered vegetarianism. Along with the fashion for the entire east they brought from India (its largest colony) and the ideas of ancient Indian Vedic religion that prohibits the killing of living creatures for food. Looking at Aboriginal and brazen hungry cows and pheasants, carefree wandering around the city, the British thinking. And on their return, many of them abandoned the animal food.

Call themselves "vegetarians" are vegetarians, since 1842. The authorship of this term belongs to the founders of "the British Vegetarian Society." It seemed the most appropriate Latin word "vegetus", which means "healthy, hearty, fresh." It turned out quite symbolic, as it resembled the sound of the English "vegetable" — a vegetable.

England vegetarianism gradually spread throughout Europe and America. The main objective of the Western vegetarianism was the same as that of the Indian — to abandon the killing of defenseless animals. However, malicious political scientists argue that the Europeans played a role gryanuvshy economic crisis and the subsequent rise in the traditional meat diet.

Since vegetarianism do not disappear, although it did not use much in demand. At the plant-based diet often sat ecstatic intelligentsia led by Count Tolstoy in Russia, naturopathic physician Herbert Shelton in America, the poet Rabindranath Tagore in India and playwright Bernard Shaw in England. Gain popularity vegetarianism was only at the end of the XX century, when doctors have proven that you can live without meat. That's the story.

Meat — harmful?

Proponents of vegetarianism were happy, now no one dares to question the benefits of plant-based diets. They do not take into account one thing: doctors proved not for vegetarianism, and the harm of excessive meat consumption. And it is not as much meat as animal fats. It turns out that the scourge of modern society — heart disease is directly related to cholesterol, which is a lot in fat, butter and eggs. Small amounts of cholesterol — and the desired substance is highly beneficial from it formed hormones and bile acids, membrane constructed of all cells that comprise our body. If you overeat fatty foods, cholesterol immediately begins to deposit on the walls of blood vessels, and they are narrowed. By clogged blood vessels moving worse blood pressure starts to rise. Here close to a heart attack and stroke.

Another argument physicians about the dangers of overuse of animal food — statistical data showing that meat-eaters more likely to get cancer. Most interesting is that the reason for this phenomenon lies not in the flesh, but in a perverted human ingenuity. Meat products to spoil more slowly, their mandatory treated with nitrites, nitrates, and similar chemicals. On many farms, especially in the West, animals for slaughter, feed not only useful grass and forage. They are still being fed by special hormones and medications to quickly gained weight and grew fat. Of course, such meat do not eat every day, and some of these chemical additives can cause cancer.

And yet, how about vegetarianism? Does it make sense to completely switch to vegetarian food? The final opinion on the matter expressed in 1988 by the American Dietetic Association: "Subject to the additional intake of vitamins and minerals vegetarianism is one of the ways to prevent atherosclerosis, hypertension, some forms of cancer, diabetes and other diseases, despite the low biological value protein strictly vegetarian diets."

It turns out that vegetarianism — a healthy diet that lacks essential vitamins (B2, B12, D) and minerals (iron, calcium, zinc). It's good that vegetarians have come to the aid of pharmacologists and began to produce vitamin tablets. Otherwise, getting rid of some diseases, proponents of such a power would have earned more: anemia, brittle bones, neurological disorders, and decreased sexual function. According to doctors, the most sensible vegetarian diet — not strict, which allows to eat dairy products and eggs. On the one hand, man does not suffer from a lack of nutrients, on the other hand, gradually gets rid of some diseases. And do not kill animals.

How and what to eat, each person must decide for himself. And the plant, and animal food has its advantages. Caucasian elders live to be a hundred years old, eating meat. People are far Hunza tribe eat only vegetarian food and live no less. That is to say, everyone — his own.

Natalia Klim

According to the magazine "Paradox"

Like this post? Please share to your friends: