Chicken Out: Something Simple to Do for Your Health, and Animal Welfare

meatrixAs we’ve learned more about the health hazards of ‘red meat’, the chicken factory farming industry has exploded, and with it the cruel treatment of battery caged and ‘broiler’ chickens and the dangers of factory farmed meat and eggs to human health. I won’t subject you to details of what the 98% of all Canadian and US egg-laying chickens who spend their entire lives in battery cages go through, or the gruesome life of the ten billion chickens born, fattened up and slaughtered at the average age of six weeks in North America each year (if you want this information and can stomach it, go to factoryfarming.com or themeatrix.com).

What I do want to mention is what ingesting these poor chickens and their eggs can do to your health:

  • 15% of the weight of broiler chickens is the filthy ‘fecal soup’ they are rinsed in to try to rid the meat of some of its toxins
  • many or most broiler chickens are diseased and/or hemorrhaged and/or otherwise badly injured when they are slaughtered (salmonella infections, for one, are so endemic to factory farmed chickens the USDA no longer even tries to keep count)
  • you don’t want to know how modern eviscerating machines operate, and what ends up in ‘chicken by-products’ in processed human and pet foods
  • no one knows what the massive quantities of antibiotics, disinfectants and other toxic chemicals broiler chickens are fed, injected with, sprayed with and soaked in will do to long-term human health (they are suspects in the epidemic of human immune system diseases, and have given rise to antibiotic-resistant supergerms)
  • it takes 815 gallons of fresh water to ‘produce’ a single pound of edible chicken
  • the crap that’s fed to battery-caged egg-laying chickens makes its way, in concentrated form, into the eggs you eat (that’s why battery-hen eggs are virtually devoid of the Omega 3 that used to be one of the main nutritional benefits of eggs)
  • chicken and egg factory farming is now strongly suspected to be the cause of virtually all poultry flu outbreaks, and this flu poses one of the greatest threats to human life and health we face today
  • many USDA inspectors (and there are similar reports from Canadian inspectors) are so revolted by what they see in factory farms and slaughterhouses that they do not feed their own families factory-farmed chicken or eggs, and acknowledge they are forced to approve tainted food by the powerful agribusiness oligopoly

There is something you can do about this:

  1. Only eat chicken and eggs that are produced by small, local farms using free-range chickens. They’re not that hard to find. They may be more expensive, but they’re much better for you, for the environment, and for the poor creatures who give their lives to feed you. If possible, confirm that the free-range claims on the package are true (there’s a lot of fraudulent and misleading labels on big agribusiness products; don’t mistake ‘organic’ for free-range) by visiting and picking up your produce from the farms themselves. It’s a relationship worth fostering for you and the local farmer.
  2. Consider becoming a vegetarian or vegan. This is a little harder, but there are millions who’ve made the transition and, despite the agribusiness propaganda, they’re healthier, not sicker, than the rest of us. If you’re skeptical, at least go online and learn how easy it is.
  3. Adopt the 100-mile diet (learn more at 100milediet.org). This can also be a challenge if you try to do it 100%, but if you find out what happens to food (and the environment) when it’s trucked thousands of miles, you’ll appreciate that it’s worthwhile taking the pledge to buy local.

Don’t be fooled into believing the chicken and eggs you’re eating are safe, healthy and cruelty-free, unless you’ve verified it yourself. There’sat least a 98% certainty they’re not.

Itís time we all ‘chickened out’.

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1 Response to Chicken Out: Something Simple to Do for Your Health, and Animal Welfare

  1. Bharat says:

    I recently came to know about an ecological principle called “10 percent rule”. Apparently, on average only about 10 percent of the plant material consumed by animals results in new growth. Most of the rest is apparently used-up in animal’s day to day functioning. So it takes roughly 10 pounds of grain to produce a pound of beef. As grains get pricier (as they already are), and scarcier (due to climate change etc), maybe we will see more people turning vegetarian ? Perhaps that’s the answer to food security problems down the road, if grain production drops.On a completely different note, there is a belief in India, mostly in religious circles, that vegetarian diet is the best to keep the mind calm, away from restless thoughts, agressive behaviour. That is why vegetarianism is advocated to anyone engaged in practices like meditation etc. Ofcourse, AFAIK, there is no “scientific” proof of this, as in case studies etc, but it has been the practical/observational experience of sages from ancient times (As is the case of most knowledge from those times). This is a long shot but, — could it be that modern civization (especially the west), is too violent/agressive , because of too much meat eating ?

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