Still, another problem may account for the “ low moments” several members of this family experience during the day. Because they eat meat at virtually every meal (with the possible exception of the occasional peanut butter and jelly sandwich of which the youngest is still fond), they are eating both beef and pork every single day: pork in their bacon, sausages, luncheon meat, ham, pork chops, beef in their hamburger, roast beef sandwiches, steaks, etc.
Now there is a danger to eating any food every single day, a danger that has been discovered by physicians whose specialty is clinical ecology. This is the danger of food allergy addiction. It is possible to become allergic to the foods we eat most often, without being aware that an allergy is developing. This is because this type of allergy disguises itself as an addiction: like a drug or alcohol addict, we feel sick when we don’t eat the food often enough. Even though it is really the food that is making us sick, it appears to us as if it is the food that makes us well! Food allergies can affect any organ of the body. They can make you feel tired, edgy, or nervous; they can give you depression or a headache; they can cause arthritis, stomachache, and many other health problems.
It is very possible that, because they have been eating the same two foods every day for years, one or more members of this family are now allergic to either or both of them. Perhaps the son’s mild hyperactivity is caused, not by food additives, but by allergy to the foods themselves. Perhaps the grandmother’s high blood pressure is an allergic reaction, or the daughter’s weight problem (which she is, ironically, trying to solve by eating almost nothing but beef and pork). This family would be able to find out whether this was the case if they varied their diet, rotating beef and pork with other sources of protein so they didn’t eat anyone’s food more often than every four or five days for three months. In this way, they could test the effect of different foods on their metabolisms. And they could prevent many food allergies from developing by making sure to vary their diet from day to day instead of sticking so rigidly to the traditional meat and potatoes.
So this typical meat-eating family, who thought they were treating themselves to a nutritional plus by eating protein from beef or pork at nearly every meal, have in reality been doing themselves a substantial disservice. They are eating too many calories and excess saturated fat, increasing their cholesterol intake, consuming a high degree of sodium and nitrites in their hot dogs and hamburgers, and absorbing uncounted chemical additives, antibiotics, tranquilizers, color stabilizers, growth-stimulating hormones, etc. none of which they are aware of.
The Cumulative Effect of Food Additives
If tonight’s dinner was the only meat they ate containing those chemicals, it would not be that serious. But what happens when they’re consuming these foods every single day, and the effects are cumulative?
The body becomes a polluted reservoir. The family doesn’t put water in their gas tank; they don’t put mud in their carburetor; they don’t put concrete in their radiator; they know what fuels the car needs to function properly. Yet they continue to put unhealthy, unnecessary, polluting products into their bodies and assume the body can tolerate it and that nothing wrong will occur.
If the human body were as simple a machine as our cars, we would quickly see the danger that is done. The effects are usually longer-term in the body in the shortening of our life span and the onset of chronic and degenerative disease.
The cumulative effects of meat-eating are difficult to define. Unconsciously, we may become addicted to any food we eat every day: the result can be allergies whose symptoms can only be alleviated by continuing to eat the food frequently or by going cold turkey.
No one knows the cumulative effect of all the chemicals in our meat. But we do know that vegetarians tend to suffer less from degenerative diseases such as heart disease and cancer as well as intestinal digestive disorders.