Image by: Alex Choi

Not everyone has to become a vegan, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t cut down on our consumption of animal by-products.

Our gluttony and excessive consumption has allowed livestock abuse to continue. It’s a problem that’s affecting us globally and physically.

The main problem lies in the way the food industry operates. Factory farming has grown to replace traditional farming methods because of the high demand for animal products.

According to CBC, in Canada, there were 55,765 farms in 1982. By 2001, the number of farms fell to 15,472 but the number of pigs raised had increased by five million.

Jonathan Safran Foer blogged on CNN about these animals getting pumped full of antibiotics and growth hormones.

These conditions mean that the meat we eat isn’t only produced in inhumane conditions, but could also potentially harm our health.

In some cases, the cattle at these farms get excessively milked for products like cheese.

Cheese produces a large amount of casomorphins in the body, which means that it has addictive properties when consumed by humans. With this occurring, there is a higher demand for milk to make more cheese.

Limiting our consumption and buying organic is a good start to making a change for our health and the globe. However, according to Marisa Miller Wolfson’s documentary “Vegucated,” there is no law on how “organic” livestock can be treated when it comes time to transport to the slaughterhouses — organic just guarantees that your food has no added hormones.

The only tangible solution to avoiding these negative repercussions is to start cutting down on portion sizes. This will force us to slow down the vastly growing factory farms, promote ethical meat production and save our health.

It’s time to revise our eating — there’s no need to buy items that contain animal products so we shouldn’t do it in excess. We need to change our culture of overindulgence and eat these products mindfully and in moderation.

Julia Vriend is one of the Assistant News Editors at the Journal.


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