Two words…meat sweats. If you haven’t had them, then you’ve never truly gorged on red meat. I could remember this rule just for the sake of NEVER having the meat sweats again. It’s a truly terrible and uncomfortable condition that lasts for hours, and sometimes into the next day. Food hangovers are terrible.

I also have more recently had a bit of a moral conflict with anything relating to the production of red meat. It’s an easy dilemma to have if you do even a minimal amount of research into our country’s meat industry. I am still undecided on where I stand on the moral and ethical side of red meat consumption.

However, if I do eat red meat, I stick to high-quality local grass-fed beef that wasn’t locked in a small pen for most of it’s life. That also means that I can’t eat it very often. And, if I am looking at how humans should eat based on our biological systems, that’s a common sense practice. Humans aren’t meant to have meat with every single meal. We’re not even really biologically set up to eat meat every day.

Our intestines aren’t built to break down that large of an amount of complex proteins. Increased red meat consumption is one of the less talked about reasons for colon cancer. But, if you think about it, it makes complete sense. Our body takes on average at least 6 to 8 hours to get food through our small intestine and stomach. So red meat and any other food is spending at least half that time at room temperature in your stomach. Your body can handle this, but if you do it too much it is not good for your long term health.

Most carnivorous animals have specific bodily features, both internal and external, that overall make up for meat being an easily digestible energy source. Humans are not carnivorous, we are omnivores. This means that we have to strike some sort of balance. Our entire anatomical system is better suited to having the majority of our diet be non-meat based. That means, you’d probably feel better if you cut back a little on the meat consumption and upped your veggie intake.