Meat Consumption and Chronic Illness . . . America vs Europe

Posted on June 20, 2008

I read here on World Changing that after the age of 50, Europeans . . .

. . . are only about half a likely [as Americans] to suffer from chronic illnesses such as heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, hypertension and even cancer. They are only half a likely to suffer from depression and anxiety, and they spend only half as much on average as we do for health care. Studies show their better health results from more exercise, more socializing with friends and families, less stress and more sleep; all of these are made possible by having more time.

I wondered . . .  ‘heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, hypertension, cancer… these are the exact conditions that are directly linked to meat consumption.’

I thought further . . . I wonder if, by chance, Europeans eat half as much meat as Americans?

A few clicks on Earthtrends and I discovered they almost do!

Total populations:
Europe                     729,391
North America         322,266

Total meat intake:
Europe                     53,996,792
North America         39,716,290 (metric tonnes, could you believe it?)

So Americans eat 1.6 times the meat that Eurpoeans do! I think this must account for the higher portion of the diseases which are scientifically linked to meat consumption – just as much as – or more than – the lifestyle factors mentioned.