For thousands of years, many around the globe have considered vegetarianism as a dietary choice. Some consider it a moral choice to avoid what they may consider to be inhumane treatment of animals. For others the choice was made for them due to the unavailability of meat. Still others practice vegetarianism as part of their religion. While many today still choose a vegetarian diet to take a stand against cruelty to animals, it is becoming more prevalent to make the switch to vegetarianism for good health. More and more people are becoming convinced that a vegetarian lifestyle is beneficial to good health and economic health as well.
From the beginning, human culture is thought to have used farming and hunting to supply food for a diet that was heavily dependent on meat. In The Ethical Case for Carnivores, Leanid Josephus concluded that the choice to be vegetarian stems from forgetting that hunting and eating meat is really what it means to be human. Supposedly, according to Josephus, to be vegetarian means to lack confidence and strength (Josephus). On the contrary, the most human attribute is not that desire for blood-thirsty conquest, but the incredible power to make an informed, intellectual choice. Thousands of people continue to choose a vegetarian lifestyle for one reason or another, often facing personal ridicule for choosing a path that sometimes may not be very popular in the personal culture in which they find themselves. Vegetarianism includes the results of a 2009 Time/CNN poll that surveyed vegetarians to find out their main reason for choosing that diet. Approximately one-third selected "health" while only one-fourth selected "love of animals" (Vegetarianism). More often than not, those who practice vegetarianism reveal in their overall good health, weight loss, and energy level increase that their choice was actually a positive one.
Many doctors express concern over the decision to become vegetarian. It is certainly not a decision to be entered into lightly. One does have to learn as much as possible in order to know how best to plan and prepare meals for the prevention vitamin and mineral deficiencies. In the article Counterpoint: Vegetarianism is an Unhealthy Dietary Choice, Micah Issitt and Rosalyn Carson-Dewitt suggest, "contrary to the message portrayed by many vegetarian proponents, vegetarianism is not a healthy alternative to a rounded diet unless special precautions are taken to avoid dietary deficiencies" (Issitt). With any dietary decision, caution must be exercised before entering into it blindly. Vegetarianism is no different. However, it does not warrant any more cause for alarm than choosing to eat a high protein, low carbohydrate diet or join Weight Watchers. A vegetarian diet is not one that is unbalanced or lop-sided just because meat is avoided. Meat, itself, is not a food group, but proteins are. There are many other options available to meet the body's nutritional needs in this area.
Many people choose...