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Inside America's first all-vegan school watch

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    (Original post by sportykitty)
    your probably not very fit or muscly tho hun? ye you can be in good health xxx
    I am vegan and more muscular than most women I know. I was vegan when I became a beach lifeguard a few years ago and the training alone requires a high level of endurance, stamina and strength to even complete the training course which many many fail. I passed a course and the season which caused many 'buff' intense athletes to drop out of because they couldn't hack it.

    If you're a personal trainer you should be very aware of the high protein content of legumes (beans, chickpeas, lentils), tofu, tempeh, nuts, nut milks, grains (spelt, quinoa, brown rice, etc), veggies, meat alternatives (many from wheat gluten which has a high protein content or soy).

    I think it's quite a generalization to make about vegans not being very fit or muscular. All of the vegans I know are very athletic and very much care about their health and well being. They are not dying in a corner with protein deficiencies. I'm sure if you're a personal trainier you work with people who are very much out of shape, not muscular and are probably not getting key nutrients from their meat eating diets. I'm not saying all vegans are in shape but again not all those who eat meat are in shape and healthy either...

    If there is anyone to destroy this odd stereotype of vegans being weak and unfit - please look up Germany's Strongest Man Patrik Baboubian who is vegan.
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    Do you have to eat more food to get the same amount of protein? Is it still healthier then? Maybe fibre is what actually makes it healthier, not the difference in protein?

    I love vegetarian food BTW. The yummy recipes always seem really complicated to prepare though.
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    (Original post by jeremy1988)
    Animals are not sentient beings, and there are plenty of things that can be done in the meat industry to reduce the environmental impact. If we stop doing everything that might hurt the environment, we won't have any quality of life to speak of.
    Nonhuman animals have conscious experiences, have the capacity to feel pain and suffer, and therefore have the capacity for their lives to go well or badly, and some aren't just sentient but they're also self-aware (chimpanzees and other primates, dolphins, elephants and some birds, for instance), demonstrably more self-aware than a human infant or a severely intellectually disabled human.

    There's an overwhelming pile of scientific evidence in favour of this: there's just as much evidence in favour most nonhuman animals being sentient as there is in favour of you being sentient (from my perspective): we share the same neurophysiological structures associated with being able to feel and have conscious experiences, which are evolutionarily ancient; we share the same behavioural responses when we suffer and are subjected to pain, and so on.

    To claim that only humans are sentient is akin to me claiming that only myself and people who were born after me are sentient: since Darwin, we've known that there is no dividing line between humans and nonhuman animals.

    And no, there aren't plenty of things that can be done in the meat industry to reduce the environmental impact. Just think about it: to meet the current demand for meat, we need to grow crops to feed the animals; transport them to the farms; use energy to power the farms, which will produce a lot of waste from the animals, and methane emissions from cows; transport the animals to the slaughterhouse; use energy to power the slaughterhouse; and then transport the meat to all the shops.

    By contrast, with plant-based products, we simply grow them then transport them to the shops.

    (Original post by jeremy1988)
    I'm mostly thinking of complete proteins and amino acids found in meat, as well as Vitamin B12, and a certain kind of iron more easily absorbed by the body. If anything, women need meat more than men do because of iron.
    It's very easy to get all of the essential amino acids on a plant-based diet: soya, for instance, is a complete protein, or you could simply mix and match different foods as you would do in everyday life: a serving of rice and a bean curry would get you all of the essential amino acids.

    You don't need Vitamin B12 in every meal, so that doesn't apply to this topic. Iron is found in kale, broccoli and numerous other plant-based foods, but again, you don't need iron in every single meal.
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    (Original post by viddy9)
    Nonhuman animals have conscious experiences, have the capacity to feel pain and suffer, and therefore have the capacity for their lives to go well or badly, and some aren't just sentient but they're also self-aware (chimpanzees and other primates, dolphins, elephants and some birds, for instance), demonstrably more self-aware than a human infant or a severely intellectually disabled human.

    There's an overwhelming pile of scientific evidence in favour of this: there's just as much evidence in favour most nonhuman animals being sentient as there is in favour of you being sentient (from my perspective): we share the same neurophysiological structures associated with being able to feel and have conscious experiences, which are evolutionarily ancient; we share the same behavioural responses when we suffer and are subjected to pain, and so on.
    Well, I don't think we're using the same definition of sentience. You seem to be defining it as the ability to feel pain or other emotions. I would define it as intelligence and self-awareness. Without intelligence, pain is less meaningful. I don't think the pain of animals is meaningful because they're not intelligent.

    A computer is not sentient because it is not self-aware, although it is intelligent. An animal isn't sentient even though it is self-aware, because it is not intelligent.

    And if you're going to try using mentally retarded people as a counter-argument, I would say that many of them have lost a large and fundamental part of what it means to be human. I'm sure that would upset their families, but I do genuinely believe that a given level of intelligence is a defining attribute of sentience, and thus people with a certain level of mental retardation are not sentient, regardless of ability to feel pain.
    To claim that only humans are sentient is akin to me claiming that only myself and people who were born after me are sentient: since Darwin, we've known that there is no dividing line between humans and nonhuman animals.
    I would actually argue that evolution IS the dividing line between humans and nonhuman animals. Perhaps humans weren't sentient hundreds of thousands of years ago, but now we are clearly distinct from other animals as a result of evolution.

    Besides, if there is no dividing line, then why is it okay for Tigers or even omnivores like Bears to eat meat as a part of their diet? By your argument they should be held to the same ethical standards. If you would argue that they aren't intelligent enough to understand the ethical implications, then you undermine your own argument that they are sentient in the same way as a human being. There's a dividing line either way.

    I was also thinking of humane farming practices, things like free-range chickens. I think humane slaughter methods more than fulfill any ethical obligations we may have towards animals.

    And no, there aren't plenty of things that can be done in the meat industry to reduce the environmental impact. Just think about it: to meet the current demand for meat, we need to grow crops to feed the animals; transport them to the farms; use energy to power the farms, which will produce a lot of waste from the animals, and methane emissions from cows; transport the animals to the slaughterhouse; use energy to power the slaughterhouse; and then transport the meat to all the shops.
    Cows are probably the worst example. There are meats that are more environmentally friendly to produce, like fish or even chicken. Also, we're working on ways to grow meat in labs without a need to actually raise the animal and slaughter it, simply for the sake of efficiency. I think it's even possible that we could literally have meat growing on or in trees someday.

    It's very easy to get all of the essential amino acids on a plant-based diet: soya, for instance, is a complete protein, or you could simply mix and match different foods as you would do in everyday life: a serving of rice and a bean curry would get you all of the essential amino acids.
    The essential ones, yes. I'm not saying you'll die without meat, but I do think that you need at least some meat every week or so to be completely healthy. It could just as easily be fish or a wild rabbit as a cow. There are amino acids you can only get from meat, but they're not essential to life and aren't readily produced by the body. You may not need them, but they are good for you.
    You don't need Vitamin B12 in every meal, so that doesn't apply to this topic. Iron is found in kale, broccoli and numerous other plant-based foods, but again, you don't need iron in every single meal.
    Yes, but the iron found in vegetables is less readily absorbed by the body. The kind found in certain meats is more bio-available.
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    As a private school they are well within their right to market themselves however they want and actually with our importing world we really don't need to eat much meat (which can be provided at home).

    That said if I'm paying a tonne of money in school fees I'm doing it for their academic achievement, not to teach them to be vegan.
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    (Original post by The Rad Prince)
    Meat is part of a healthy and balanced diet, this is not healthy this is like carrying or an experiment on children.


    Americans should learn not to get so fanatical in their ideas, if I lived in America I would never pledge allegiance to their stupid flag.
    Too much meat is unhealthy though and I eat meat myself
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    (Original post by iamthetruth)
    Too much meat is unhealthy though and I eat meat myself
    Relative to what?


    Red meat can be unhealthy in large amounts, but in general a vegan diet is unhealthy.
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    (Original post by LinnyPinny77)
    I am vegan and more muscular than most women I know. I was vegan when I became a beach lifeguard a few years ago and the training alone requires a high level of endurance, stamina and strength to even complete the training course which many many fail. I passed a course and the season which caused many 'buff' intense athletes to drop out of because they couldn't hack it.

    If you're a personal trainer you should be very aware of the high protein content of legumes (beans, chickpeas, lentils), tofu, tempeh, nuts, nut milks, grains (spelt, quinoa, brown rice, etc), veggies, meat alternatives (many from wheat gluten which has a high protein content or soy).

    I think it's quite a generalization to make about vegans not being very fit or muscular. All of the vegans I know are very athletic and very much care about their health and well being. They are not dying in a corner with protein deficiencies. I'm sure if you're a personal trainier you work with people who are very much out of shape, not muscular and are probably not getting key nutrients from their meat eating diets. I'm not saying all vegans are in shape but again not all those who eat meat are in shape and healthy either...

    If there is anyone to destroy this odd stereotype of vegans being weak and unfit - please look up Germany's Strongest Man Patrik Baboubian who is vegan.
    I meant its harder to get vital proteins then eating meat xxx
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    (Original post by jeremy1988)

    I'm mostly thinking of complete proteins and amino acids found in meat, as well as Vitamin B12, and a certain kind of iron more easily absorbed by the body. If anything, women need meat more than men do because of iron.

    .
    Garbage, except B12. I'm dying for you to explain how plant proteins are not complete.

    The highest individual specific source of most amino acids is a ffffing plant. You are talking 1234ing b1llocks. All plant proteins have all the amino acids in some extent.

    There is nothing deficient about plant protein on the whole, and you are just spouting sh1te.
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    (Original post by jeremy1988)
    There are amino acids you can only get from meat,
    Name one.
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    (Original post by The Rad Prince)
    in general a vegan diet is unhealthy.
    Thanks for that pearl of wisdom, got any others?
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    (Original post by The Rad Prince)
    Meat is part of a healthy and balanced diet, this is not healthy this is like carrying or an experiment on children.


    Americans should learn not to get so fanatical in their ideas, if I lived in America I would never pledge allegiance to their stupid flag.
    A vegan diet, appropriately planned, is a very healthy and balanced diet. It is perfectly fine to not feed a child meat. I have never eaten meat in my life, I am perfectly healthy. I have an IQ of 126 so it hasn't negatively impacted my intelligence at all.

    There is actually significant evidence to show that a vegetarian diet may be good for children. They are far less likely to overconsume junk food because there is far less junk food available. Much of the harm is taken out by removing the meat anyway. I am yet to see a scare story about soya or tofu causing cancer.

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    (Original post by llys)
    Can you elaborate on this? As you say, "low protein" rather than vegetarianism - basically if they can stuff themselves on protein from other sources, it should be fine. However, there are no Hindu professional footballers... which is kind of random, I know, please don't get hung up on this point - this is just a random observation that made me wonder in the past whether, in general, there is a link between vegetarianism and lack of athleticism in professional sports.
    There are however many Hindu professional cricketers. There are many alternative sources of protein to meat. A vegetarian diet is not necessarily low in protein or any other nutrient.

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    (Original post by VV Cephei A)
    Would send kid to school with a glorious packed lunch full of beefy goodness so he can eat it in the face of all the vegan peasants.
    You do realisethat vegan food can be absolutely delicious. Never eaten meat and never wanted to. I don't get jealous of other people eating meat, I actually find it quite disgusting.

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    (Original post by Katty3)
    You do realisethat vegan food can be absolutely delicious.
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    Lold hard
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    (Original post by VV Cephei A)
    Lold hard
    What? Cooked well it is. Vegans don't live off salad you know.

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    (Original post by Raiden10)
    The only thing that I can see lacking is vitamins B12 and to an extent B3. But you can supplement these easily by taking B vitamins...
    It tends to also be quite difficult on a vegan diet to get sufficient docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA).
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    (Original post by Katty3)

    There is actually significant evidence to show that a vegetarian diet may be good for children. They are far less likely to overconsume junk food because there is far less junk food available. Much of the harm is taken out by removing the meat anyway. I am yet to see a scare story about soya or tofu causing cancer.

    Posted from TSR Mobile
    Vegetarian is not inherently any healthier than diets that include meat. The "health benefits" of vegetarian diets come from the fact that vegetarians tend to be more health conscious on average, their diet forces them to eat more fruit and vegetables, and it automatically cuts out a lot of junk food (not all of it though). They don't come from simply cutting out meat, and they can be achieved on a meat diet as well as a vegetarian one.

    You can cut bacon sandwiches, sausages and burgers from McDonald's out of a kid's diet without cutting out meat altogether and forcing them to go vegetarian.
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    (Original post by jeremy1988)
    Well, I don't think we're using the same definition of sentience. You seem to be defining it as the ability to feel pain or other emotions. I would define it as intelligence and self-awareness.
    According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the definition of sentient is: "able to perceive or feel things".

    Intelligence and self-awareness are characteristics in their own right. Every sentient being has some level of intelligence, and self-awareness is certainly not a prerequisite for sentience. Quite the opposite, actually: all self-aware beings are sentient, but not all sentient beings are self-aware.

    (Original post by jeremy1988)
    Without intelligence, pain is less meaningful. I don't think the pain of animals is meaningful because they're not intelligent.
    You make a scientific claim here with no evidence whatsoever to back it up. According to the vast majority of experts in the field, nonhuman animals are able to feel pain and suffer.

    Indeed, if nonhuman animals could not feel pain and suffer, why does their behaviour change so profoundly after being subjected to pain? Why do their eating and sleeping patterns change if the pain was not meaningful? Why do injured chickens eat food containing pain-killing drugs rather than regular food?

    And, to claim that nonhuman animals "are not intelligent" demonstrates substantial ignorance of the research into animal intelligence, which has demonstrated that pigs, cows, chickens, dogs, primates, birds and many others are highly complex, intelligent social animals. Pigs, for instance, can outperform three-year-old humans on video games. Which begs the question: if intelligence is linked to the ability to feel pain and suffer, should we be able to do whatever we like to human infants? Can they not feel pain or suffer?

    (Original post by jeremy1988)
    An animal isn't sentient even though it is self-aware, because it is not intelligent.
    A plethora of nonhuman animals are sentient and intelligent, and a minority are also self-aware (chimpanzees and other primates; dolphins; elephants; and some birds).

    (Original post by jeremy1988)
    Besides, if there is no dividing line, then why is it okay for Tigers or even omnivores like Bears to eat meat as a part of their diet? By your argument they should be held to the same ethical standards. If you would argue that they aren't intelligent enough to understand the ethical implications, then you undermine your own argument that they are sentient in the same way as a human being. There's a dividing line either way.
    Again, see above: you confuse sentience and intelligence. The capacity to feel pain and suffer comes from evolutionarily ancient neurophysiological structures, which evolved tens of millions of years ago, long before even the common ancestor of all mammalian species lived. The capacity to reason, by contrast, is a relatively recent phenomenon, which is why we can understand the ethical implications of our actions whereas tigers cannot.

    Nevertheless, I actually don't think it's permissible for tigers and other omnivores and carnivores to rip other animals to shreds and subject them to pain and suffering. Nor do many other vegans, which is why research into wild-animal suffering and how best to tackle it is underway, including discussion about phasing out predation in the wild, for instance through mass sterilisation or genetic modification of omnivorous or carnivorous species, with the resulting population growth of herbivores being controlled through sterilisation. Obviously, we would need advanced technology to do this.

    By the way, you again ignore the research demonstrating that other animals, from dolphins to mice to other primates, do exhibit signs of altruistic behaviour. Capuchin monkeys, for instance, have a remarkable sense of fairness: as research by Frans de Waal has shown, they reject unequal pay (in food rather than in currency, of course).

    (Original post by jeremy1988)
    I was also thinking of humane farming practices, things like free-range chickens. I think humane slaughter methods more than fulfill any ethical obligations we may have towards animals.
    Free-range is a marketing term, which simply entails that there can be a small hole in an overcrowded shed of chickens through which they can escape for a few hours a day. Humane slaughter methods, whilst an improvement, still go wrong in a significant proportion of cases (studies range from 12.5% to up to 40% of stuns going wrong), meaning that millions of nonhuman animals die every year in intense amounts of pain.

    (Original post by jeremy1988)
    Cows are probably the worst example. There are meats that are more environmentally friendly to produce, like fish or even chicken.
    They're still significantly less environmentally-friendly than almost all plant-based foods, however (see this analysis by the Environmental Working Group, for example).

    (Original post by jeremy1988)
    Also, we're working on ways to grow meat in labs without a need to actually raise the animal and slaughter it, simply for the sake of efficiency.
    Well, no: many lab-grown meat companies do so out of ethical concern for animals too. But, we're in agreement here: I'm strongly in favour of lab-grown meat. It's better for the environment, massively reduces the amount of suffering in the world if certain practical issues are dealt with, and is better for health too.

    (Original post by jeremy1988)
    The essential ones, yes. I'm not saying you'll die without meat, but I do think that you need at least some meat every week or so to be completely healthy.
    All of the evidence we have suggests that this isn't the case.

    (Original post by jeremy1988)
    There are amino acids you can only get from meat, but they're not essential to life and aren't readily produced by the body. You may not need them, but they are good for you.
    They're not good for you. Our bodies can produce the non-essential amino acids, first of all, and literally any amino acids and proteins that your body does not need can be harmful, which is why any excess amino acids are removed by the body.

    (Original post by jeremy1988)
    Yes, but the iron found in vegetables is less readily absorbed by the body. The kind found in certain meats is more bio-available.
    True, but cooking the vegetables increases the absorption levels markedly, and having Vitamin C with the source of iron (in the form of orange juice, for instance) powerfully increases the absorption too.

    So, it's not at all a problem, and even if it were, I doubt meat-eaters would limit their meat consumption to the amount required to get their required iron intake! If they did, they'd be eating a lot less meat than they do currently.

    (Original post by RFowler)
    Vegetarian is not inherently any healthier than diets that include meat.
    I would say that cutting out saturated fats does have a benefit if they're replaced with cis unsaturated fats (see here, here and here, for example), but the difference between a health-conscious meat-eater who eats meat maybe three or four times a week and a vegetarian would probably be negligible.

    A massively pedantic health-conscious person, who wants to reduce his risk as much as possible, even if it's negligible, would probably not have any animal products in his diet: nutrients found in animal products can be acquired elsewhere, whilst replacing saturated fats with cis unsaturated fats is always going to do some good, but with diminishing returns.

    But, I'm in broad agreement with you about health-conscious meat-eaters being just as healthy as most veg*ns. And, as you say, veg*n diets aren't necessarily going to have healthy stuff in them.
 
 
 
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