Why Is Pork Bad for Humans? The Best Nutrition Secrets
Is Pork bad for humans?
Are there any nutrition secrets?
What are you going to choose?
It’s well known that a healthy diet is all about choices.
The trick is…
With each and every meal, we have to assess our options and make the choice that’s best for us.
...despite the fact that we’re fortunate enough to have a say in what we eat, we regard certain food groups as non-negotiable.
Like meat - we just have to have it.
And it’s totally normal and natural, right?
Or do we?
...meat can be part of a healthy diet for some people.
But if you choose to include it, it deserves the same judgement you level upon the cupcake or ranch dressing. Perhaps even more, if you listen to what I have to share today.
So today, we’re focusing on one kind of meat - pork humans nutrition secrets.
We’re going to learn more about what factors come together to make pork one meat you should quit.
Sorry, bacon lovers!
Secrets of The Other White Meat
That little phrase above rings a bell, doesn’t it?
In the late 1980’s, the National Pork Board began a campaign using the slogan “Pork - The Other White Meat”.
It was only several years ago that they introduced another slogan: “Pork - Be Inspired.”
The “Other White Meat” campaign was that much of a success.
Big Pork spent millions on it, got endorsements from professional athletes, and ultimately, achieved what they set out to do.
They made people believe pork was healthy. Or as they put it, “to increase consumer demand for pork and to dispel pork’s reputation as a fatty protein.
[It] was developed to position pork as a good tasting, versatile and nutritious meat that is easy to prepare and appropriate for any meal.”
The prevailing attitude among mindful consumers has generally been that red meat (beef) is less healthy than white meat (poultry).
Obviously, the industry used the pale flesh of pigs to align pork with a “lighter, healthier” meat.
Presently, pork is the most popular meat in the world to eat and produce.
Does that surprise you?
I was certain it would be poultry, or maybe even goat, but... no.
And to be fair, it is leaner than beef, and indeed quite versatile.
The meat itself contains vitamins, as well as that needed protein, so it’s not devoid of nutrition, either.
From slices of deli ham to strips of bacon, people love pork.
So what’s the problem?
Six Nutrition Reasons to Cut Pork Out of Your Life
It would be an understatement to say that what follows here isn’t pleasant.
Personally, it’s kept me up a night or two.
But I still firmly believe that knowledge is power. You have the right to make informed decisions about what’s on your plate.
Set that sausage aside...
...and read carefully.
Here are six health nutrition secrets that ruin pork.
1. It’s often processed.
The biggest thing the pork industry isn’t forthcoming about when discussing the nutritional value of pork is processing.
Consider what kind of pork you eat.
Maybe it’s chops, loin, or shreds of barbecue you favor, but that’s not what people reach for most.
People tend to eat more hot dogs, sausage, bacon, and deli meat. Bacon alone is responsible for much of pork’s popularity.
The bacon obsession is the result of industry strategy as well.
So, it’s the side of pork that appeals to people’s hedonism, their desire for indulgence
...it seems at times that most processed meat products are made from pork.
It’s a crucial point you won’t see made in an ad campaign expounding the nutritional virtues of pork.
That’s because we now know what processed meats are - they’re carcinogens.
Eating regular servings of processed meat has been shown to increase the instance of certain cancers, like colorectal.
The interesting thing here is that researchers also work to identify foods that would reduce the risk.
What are the findings?
Plant foods help reduce cancer risk.
Namely, whole grains.
As pork pushers spread the word that pork is lean and natural, the products we actually buy are anything but.
2. It’s cruel to animals.
When you think about it, there’s a very specific reason we don’t call pork “pig”, or beef “cow”.
You want to separate the picture you have of the living creature from what’s on store shelves.
Few people actually enjoy thinking about where their meat comes from. Even so, most of us can accept that an animal had to die for our food.
But what about the pig’s life prior to slaughter?
Two out of every three farm animals live on a factory farm.
There, their babies are taken from them, they have no room to move, and they live in squalor.
Pregnant pigs are kept in gestation crates so that they cannot even turn around.
They’re full of drugs.
All of this causes levels of emotional and physical distress no living creature should suffer. It’s a far cry from the pastoral scenes we imagine when we think of farm animals.
We also know that pigs are very smart.
They’re social, they recognize and love other pigs, they can solve puzzles, and they love to play with toys.
They have more awareness and understanding than many other animals. If a human points at something, a pig will look to see what they’re pointing at.
And despite the fact that they will cool down in some mud, they are clean creatures.
The conditions forced on them in factory farms are precisely the opposite of what they need to stay healthy.
When it does come time for slaughter, I will spare you the details. Suffice to say, this industry is not well regulated.
It’s too profitable to come under fire for serious ethical violations. In fact, they’re heavily protected from public reproach.
3. It’s cruel to humans.
Certainly, many people will avoid examining the impact on the animal’s well being, and that too is a choice.
Yet many of the negative impacts of this kind of production directly affect humans as well.
One consideration is for the people who work on these “farms”.
Pig waste collects in what we know as a manure lagoon.
These lakes of manure are even more noxious than they sound, and workers die from exposure to them.
You will note, if you care to look into it, that the manure in question is actually pink.
This is one major clue that the meat you’re eating does not come from a healthy animal.
The combination of antibiotic overuse and the deplorable environmental conditions leads to a lot of disease.
Pork production doesn’t just proliferate disease, it invents it.
These unquestionably impact humans.
Finally, one of the best kept secrets about these farms is that they’re way more typical in lower income areas.
These are individuals who often do not have access to adequate healthcare.
They are at a much greater risk of suffering physically and economically because of pig farming practices.
4. It’s cruel to nature.
If humans and animals suffer, chances are, the planet suffers.
We dedicate approximately 40% of our land to raising these animals, since they provide a proportional amount of our gross domestic product.
Fossil fuels lead the way in terms of climate change contribution, but our modern agriculture plays a role as well.
It’s not just the manure that’s a problem here. In order to grow food for the millions of cows, pigs, and chickens we eat, we take out a lot of trees.
Scientists even estimate that we lose seven acres of forest per minute to animal agriculture.
That’s in addition to the more than 2,000 gallons of water necessary to produce one pound of meat. In fact, we use half of our water on livestock.
And those lakes of manure laced with fertilizer?
They contribute to what’s known as a dead zone, where thousands of square miles of marine life die.
While it’s true that beef may have a bigger footprint than pork, the packaging and transfer of all meat (and there’s a lot of it) contributes.
From slaughterhouse, to processing, to trucking, the nearly 100 billion pounds of meat we eat annually increases energy usage.
5. It’s contaminated.
Among cultures that don’t eat pork, you’ll hear them refer to it as “unclean” - and they’re not wrong.
When it comes to toxins, pigs are full of them (hey, it’s not their fault).
Their digestive systems are not as complex, and as a result, they move food through their systems very quickly.
They’re also not incredibly picky about what they will eat. Therefore, they are more likely to eat pathogens, including viruses and mold.
Typically, many toxic particles would meet their end during digestion. But because pigs’ systems move so quickly, a lower number of these get to leave.
Additionally, pigs do not sweat very much; they lack the proper glands. That’s why they love a cool dip in the mud!
For those of us that do sweat, it’s a key way we detoxify. It’s yet another process that pigs lack in terms of keeping their bodies biologically “clean”.
Finally, I want to assert that you don’t even know what a pig tastes like.
The reason for this is that pigs are known to produce a ton of stress hormones just prior to slaughter.
Yes, they have a good idea of what’s coming.
This flood of hormones impacts the quality and flavor of the meat we buy.
When it comes down to it, the complexity of pork’s flavor includes more than a few notes of terror. If this doesn’t bother you, at least consider how their hormones can impact yours.
6. We don’t need it.
If humans never ate pork, ever, we’d be fine.
It’s not essential.
In fact, many cultures abstain from all pork. You cannot say the same for plants.
That isn’t to say that meat didn’t play an important role in who we are today, although even this is arguable.
We only began raising animals for food 10,000 years ago. This marks the beginning of the period where over time, we begin eating meat with nearly every meal.
Inevitably, however, the word “protein” comes up.
The idea that people who eat less meat are at risk for protein deficiency is, frankly, a bit of bunk.
It finds that just like meat eaters, we all get enough protein on average. What we are lacking is fiber.
Pork has no fiber.
So put that bacon down, and get on board with foods that provide good nutrition, including fiber.
Just because pork is off the menu, doesn’t mean you have to switch to poultry.
Of course, plenty of people love their turkey bacon, but you can get fiber, protein, and flavor without any of these.
The trick here is to not fall back onto meat-free options that are also unhealthy.
While not eating that sausage is a wise decision, this doesn’t mean that you’ll have mac and cheese every night instead.
If keeping your protein/amino acid intake up is your goal, eat these:
If fiber is your focus (as it should be), eat these:
If the flavor and texture of pork is your real weakness, don’t be afraid to think outside of the box.
For instance, jackfruit is a rather common pork substitute in barbecue.
...it’s stunning how similar this fruit and pork are in texture. And jackfruit is a good source of vitamin B-6 and C.
For bacon... you must try mushrooms.
Vegans and vegetarians alike have been replacing meat with mushrooms forever, so there are a lot of really solid recipes available.
With a healthy dose of olive oil and smoky sea salt, it’s the next best thing.
Final Word on:
Why Is Pork Bad for Humans? The Best Nutrition Secrets
Can humans eat pork without dire health consequences?
Yes... if you don’t constantly eat the fatty, processed kind.
If you’re resistant to the idea of cutting out meat, I’d recommend trying Meatless Monday... Shop now at Amazon.com, and being more mindful of where your meat comes from.
Always remember that pork products come from pigs.
On top of all that, the way we process our food makes pork products even more dangerous to your health.
If nutrition matters to you, cutting out jerky, bacon, sausage, and deli ham is a great way to cut your cancer risk today.
It’s your turn!
What do you think about the secrets of the pork industry?
Have you ever met a pig?
Check in with me in the comments, and I’ll be back before you know it.