Meat: The Big Debate

A Continued Series

The origin of Humans consuming meat dates back to millions of years ago. It wasn't much of choice, but rather a natural selection process that was proven to be effective.

As a race, did we consume meat primarily, or as a reserve for when vegetation, fruits, and other plant-based foods weren't readily available?

 

The answer is the latter; we ate meat when we had to, in order to survive. Meat is not our first choice option when it comes to food selection. We are a species who thrive off plant-based nutrition, with the genetic capabilities to consume meat and enrich the nutritional areas when we are not receiving enough nutrients from vegetation. 

 

The taste and craving for meat is one that has been gradually acquired over time by the human race. 

Protein is necessary, but meat is supplementary to our diet.

Meat is a valued source of nutrition for many.

Because of this, it is necessary to take a look into where meat is coming from, how it has been processed, and observe the quality and condition of animals before they are processed for consumption. If you choose to eat meat, take into consideration of quality care of farm animals, animals in tight spaces pumped full of antibiotics, and meat with final additives, aiding a longer shelf-life. 

Fast forward to modern day, the human meat consumption rate, is not a natural rate that can be sustained, unless, human intervention plays a part. The same can be said for fruits and vegetables. 

What do humans have that make it possible to eat and digest meat?

We, as a species, have four canine teeth, which are sharp teeth used to tear tough foods into tiny pieces, for example meat. The rest of our 32 teeth (28 for those with extracted wisdom teeth) are flatter with the front teeth used to bite through softer foods and the teeth in the back used to mash and grind. 

Eating meat, especially raw meat, requires specific digestive enzymes that make it possible to consume and pass meat through our bodies without resulting in severe sickness. Being unnatural for our race to consume large amounts of meat, it was primarily consumed in small amounts most likely as a last resort.
 

Over time, we gradually consumed more amounts of meat, learning from those before us, and the cycle of eating meat continued to modern day. 

 

A small intestine is required, which is present in modern day humans. The small intestine is the place where lipids, or fatty acids are digested. Animal flesh is full of lipids.

"Wild" meat vs "Domesticated" meat.

There is a difference between the two. Wild meat refers to animal flesh that originates from animals that have been caught in the natural setting of wilderness, a hunter-gatherer (same as our ancestors) style. Domesticated meat refers to meat that has been obtained by western day animal farming methods. Environmental concerns aside, one of the most intriguing findings is the lipid factor, or fat content. Wild meat remains to be the much leaner of the two, while domesticated meat seems to be full of a higher saturated fat content, which can be deadly for most humans in excessive amounts.