Home
I now present two pieces of information that are supported by the data, as far as I know. Provide a link if you know otherwise.

First, 80% of healthcare costs go toward chronic diseases such as diabetes, cancer, and heart disease.

Second, a huge study on diet and its correlation to disease, called The China Study, found that chronic diseases, particularly the ones I just mentioned, only get triggered if you eat a plant based diet, for the most part, regardless of your genetic propensity.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_China_Study

The author's thesis, backed by a mountain of data, is that the only safe level of animal based food is zero. No milk or cheese either. Moderation simply doesn't work when it comes to eating meat. That's the data talking, not me, according to this expert. I haven't seen any data that contradicts that notion. Provide a link if you have.

As a practical matter, it would be impossible to ban meat from the diets of average Americans. But when you are talking about insurance of any sort, whether it is health or auto or hurricane, we accept the principle that risk factors can be considered in pricing. So all we need to do is charge meat eaters four times as much as vegetarians for health insurance. Over time it will create more vegetarians, for economic reasons alone, and healthcare costs will plummet.

You might say it is unfair for the insurance company to charge a higher premium for earthquake insurance to people who actually live on a fault line. But I say that's just good business.

Insurance companies shouldn't charge more to people who have preexisting or genetic problems of course, as these are things which can't be controlled. But people can certainly control their diets if they want to save money. As it stands now, vegetarians are subsidizing your cheeseburgers by paying more for health insurance than they should. (Insert counterpoint involving the non-existence of free will here.)

I want to stress that I'm not the sort of vegetarian who cares if you live or die, so long as you're enjoying yourself along the way. You can eat rusty tin cans and medical needles for all I care, so long as I don't have to subsidize it.

 
Rank Up Rank Down Votes:  -10
  • Print
  • Share
  • Share:

Comments

Sort By:
0 Rank Up Rank Down
Feb 14, 2010
There can be no right to health care. Health care is a commodity, just like food and housing is. It needs to be produced by another human being, and you can have no claim on the life of another human being. You have no right to demand that they serve you.

Profit is what drives innovation in heath care, and what attracts the best type of people to work in the health care industry.
 
 
Aug 5, 2009
Profiting from another human's health issues is immoral. Period.
 
 
Aug 5, 2009
Phantom II, the only thing true in your post was "I misspoke".

You can fool idiotic teabaggers with your socialism crap but not people who actually think.
 
 
-1 Rank Up Rank Down
Aug 1, 2009
Dr. Ted Morter argues that all dis-eases are caused by acidosis. This is not whether or not the food itself is acidic but what the pH balance of the body is after digesting it. pH can be measured (obviously different organs will have different optimal operating pH -- the stomach, for example, is supposed to be highly acidic otherwise we wouldn't digest our food). SURPRISE: Meat has an acidic effect on the body. SURPRISE: Most fruits and vegetables have an alkaline effect on our bodies. SURPRISE: People in the US consume more meat (and meat products) than almost any other country on the planet!

I forget which doctor-for-health it is that argues protein too: If you are a mammal then the percent protein you should be eating is the percent that is in your mother's milk. Cows have the highest protein level in milk. Humans have about 2%.

In defense of meat, however, you have to wonder how many of the detrimental effects of meat are based on how it is "farmed" as opposed to the fact that it is meat. After all, there are native populations that have very little access to plants (think way far north). Their non-20th century incidence of diseases isn't as high. Is that because of their lifestyle? because of the quality of meat? or have we been lied to about their access to plants?
 
 
Jul 31, 2009
Get over yourself. Live and let live.
 
 
Jul 31, 2009
I would just like to direct you to this study, which makes a case against vegetarianism and is also supported by loads of data. http://www.second-opinions.co.uk/vegetarian.html
 
 
-1 Rank Up Rank Down
Jul 31, 2009
They ding you for being male on auto inshurence, so why should people with genetic problems get off free?
 
 
Jul 30, 2009
I agree with Scott's post. The China Study (for anyone who bothers to read it) is eye opening.

As far as other people's comments, I don't even know where to begin. For those who are looking for scientific evidence to back up Campbell's conclusions, look at the research done by doctors Esselstyn, Ornish, Barnard and McDougall. These doctors conclusions are opposite of the mainstream, because the mainstream is wrong. Most medical research these days is funded by medical companies whose sole purpose is to prove that their latest money making pill or procedure will in fact make them more money. It is the brave few doctors such as those that I mentioned above who have the American publics best interests at heart. Their advice to drastically increase plant food and drastically decrease animal food is against everything that we have been taught. But it wasn't that long ago that cigarettes were seen as harmless. And who funded the research on cigarettes? the cigarette companies themselves!
 
 
Jul 30, 2009
Denton42, your absolutely right.
Here's his comment:
Meat is murder. Meat eaters do not want to hear about this issue. They would rather continue denying they have a perversion with eating flesh. That's why most meat eaters don't want to hear about the cruelties at factory farms and processing plants. Most meat eaters will not eat dogs, cats, and horses. I don't give a crap about people's diets, but why is there such an internal philosophical dicotomy about eating meat with meat eaters? At least the Chinese don't have this dicotomy: they will eat dogs and horses without putting an imaginary/arbitrary ethical boundary between conventional meat and unconventional meat. This ethical, no-pet, boundary becomes the real issue in the mind of some meat eaters. But I say that boundary is just a diversion from the perversion. Why stop with cows and pigs (that make nice pets), why not eat death row inmates or non-organ donor crash victims (I'm creating another ethical boundary regarding old vs young meat so that there's still some sort of boundary to cling to)?
On his comment, I noticed something about ethics. If some one goes and shoots either 50 pigs or 50 pets (cats dogs etc.) which do you think the public will be madder about? The latter. Duh.
 
 
Jul 30, 2009
Denton42: Off your meds again today?

Murder is defined as the killing of a person, not a cow or pig or horse or dog. I'm with namenotavailable. If it moves, I'll eat it. That's probably why my dog is always looking at me nervously. She's still young, but when she gets too old to fetch the paper, get the 12 gauge and get ready to stuff her mouth with an apply. Yum.
 
 
Jul 30, 2009
Hmmm, I suppose we could start eating convicts on death row, make it a super expensive rare item that only the rich can afford at first. Then slowly change the laws so that more and more charges result in the death penalty to ensure the supply lines keep increasing.

(Better not get a parking ticket if the judge is a fan of barbequed convict)

Of course the inmates would have to be treated a little better than they are right now, no access to drugs, legal or illegal to keep them clean. And no more obese inmates, get them out in the yard running and lifting weights, I like my meat lean.

This would have the added effect of cleaning up crime in most areas, after all, if you knew the punishment was going to be death by deep frying, you might reconsider holding up a convenience store.
 
 
Jul 30, 2009
goosemonster: "Although it's hard to fault the logic of one of the previous posters who asked why 100% of education taxes aren't paid for by parents. "

Thank you! I'm a parent, but I send my kids to private school. I would LOVE to get vouchers or stop paying taxes to send other people's kids to school! Its good to see other people on my side of the voucher issue.
 
 
-1 Rank Up Rank Down
Jul 30, 2009
"chronic diseases...only get triggered if you eat a plant based diet"

please pass me the cheezeburgers!
 
 
-1 Rank Up Rank Down
Jul 30, 2009
"chronic diseases...only get triggered if you eat a plant based diet"

please pass the cheezeburgers!
 
 
Jul 30, 2009
If true, then you could make a bundle selling insurance only to vegans. Charge 25% less than other insurance companies, and pocket the actuarial savings.
 
 
Jul 30, 2009
Whoops, forgot to mention something.

This is a piece of anecdotal evidence. My wife has visited some of the areas of China that the author used for his study. She says that although the diet is low in meat, meat is very highly prized. People use it whenever they can get it; they just can't get it often. It is therefore a small part of their diet - but, they believe, a critically important part!

So even if you accept his (highly questionable) belief that these diets are healthier for having less meat, he simply has NO data to back up his assertion that NO meat is good for you.
 
 
Jul 30, 2009
I note two things.

1) The "Mountain of data" he's collected conflicts with practically every other study on nutrition. His answer is to attempt to discredit them. He may be correct, but this at least triggers a warning that this man may be too attached to his theory to treat it scientifically. Looking over his response to a criticism of his work (http://www.vegsource.com/articles2/campbell_china_response.htm), I note that his usual response to criticism of his work is to attack the person who said it rather than to answer the criticism. He has a lot of emotion invested in it. In short, he's a fanatic, and fanatics make great campaigners but poor researchers.

2) He has a tendency to draw a very long bow from his data. He may have a mountain of data, but it doesn't necessarily say what he claims it says. One of his critics, who doesn't even have a PhD is easily able punch a lot of holes in his argument BY USING HIS OWN DATA!

I also note that he is associated (perhaps peripherally) with lunatic fringe groups such as PETA, so his ability to analyse the data criticially is likely to be seriously compromised.

It is also worth noting that although you *can* have a healthy vegetarian diet, it is possible to be badly malnourished by eating an inappropriate vegetarian diet. One simply cannot assume that plant=good and animal=bad. One has to ask "what plants?" and "What animals?". A dietician should be involved - but you may be surprised to find that dieticians often recommend animal products!

Therefore I say that despite the size of his study, his credibility is under serious clouds. Any insurance company who altered their premiums according to such fatuous evidence would be misguided at best, and at worst downright foolish.

Have a nice day! :)
 
 
Jul 30, 2009
Oh come on people!

Don't tell me you think Scott actually believes this. He's just pulling your chain.

Although it's hard to fault the logic of one of the previous posters who asked why 100% of education taxs aren't paid for by parents.
 
 
Jul 30, 2009
I think BobjustBob is absolutely right.

In India we did not have anything like medical insurance until about 10-15 years ago and the system worked just fine.

Now since most people have medical insurance, all doctors and hospitals have gradually upped their rates by hundreds of per cent. Patients do not care what they are being charged as the expense is reimbursed by the insurance companies. And every few years, the insurance companies increase their premiums due to rising claims. Now hospitalisation costs have increased so much that nobody can really afford to remain uninsured.

A vicious cycle is brought about, as BobjustBob mentioned, due to a disconnect between the service providers and the consumers.

Only the doctors and hospitals, and probably the insurance companies, benefit at everybody else's expense.
 
 
Jul 30, 2009
Actually, 99.9% of the people have it entirely wrong about healthcare. What we really should do is get rid of health insurance entirely. The reason healthcare costs have risen so much faster than inflation is that the ultimate consumers of healthcare are completely disconnected from the costs of healthcare. This throws the supply/demand curve completely out of whack.

By making the consumer the one who is ultimately responsible for his healthcare costs you will see people naturally adjust their lifestyles to more healthy choices, because the unhealthy choices will become too expensive, and the consumer will feel the expense directly.

I came up with this line of thinking about five years ago while pondering the causes of the healthcare crisis. I was delighted to find others thinking along the same lines recently. Check out the 7/29/09 post on the Of Two Minds blog: http://www.oftwominds.com/blog.html .

(By the way, Scott, I gradually adopted a way-of-eating that is about 85% vegetarian starting in 2001. I lost over 25 pounds, and I look and feel so much better. My cholesterol dropped to 151.)
 
 
 
Get the new Dilbert app!
Old Dilbert Blog