Do you rely on meat for most of your daily protein intake? Many people do. New research has found that thinking about where your animal protein comes from – cows, pigs, etc. – might make you go vegetarian.
Researchers rated participants’ empathy based on their reactions to pictures of animals compared to the source of meat they typically provide. Several studies were repeated using words and phrases instead of pictures.
Seeing a picture of a pig instead of a pork chop – or seeing the word “slaughtered” instead of “harvested” – tended to make people more empathetic toward the animal in question.
In other words, really thinking about where your meat comes from can convince you to choose a veggie burger instead of beef.
You don’t have to quit animal protein completely. However, eating less of it is pretty great for the environment and tends to be a lot less expensive. If you’re worried about not being able to get enough protein if you don’t eat a ton of meat, you shouldn’t be. You can give up one steak and replace it with veggies without any consequences.
MP’s Take: You can get quality protein from plants sources – nuts; grains; vegetables – the list goes on. Just because you’re not getting your protein from animals doesn’t mean you’re not going to be able to gain muscle. You’re also not going to lose the muscle you already have. Studies have suggested that diets high in processed meats are especially harmful. Red meat can be … if you eat it every day. If you like meat, you certainly don’t have to give it up. You’re much better off at least limiting the number of hot dogs you eat, though. If the idea of eating a chicken or a pig makes you feel uneasy, you can go vegetarian and still get plenty of protein. Don’t let that fear stop you.