This post is Part 5 of a continuing series of posts tackling persistent myths in the world of healthy eating, with a particular focus on the consumption of animal foods as a source of ill health and environmental destruction.
You may like to read the whole series starting from Myth busting – Part 1
Myth: But big strong animals like gorillas don’t eat meat. A gorilla is a vegan and he’s made of muscle! So who needs all that protein now then?!?!
You may have seen this image circulating on social media sites, lots of folks who don’t really know much about health and nutrition like to share this image as some kind of ‘proof’ that it is healthiest to be a vegan, and no one needs to eat animal foods at all.
I don’t want to sound rude, and this next line isn’t meant to be an attack on any vegans or an insult to anyone specifically, but in all honesty, sharing this Internet meme as some kind of ‘proof’ that people shouldn’t eat meat is pretty much the highest display of ignorance out there in the whole ‘meat vs. vegetarian’ discussion.
Not ignorant because the people sharing it don’t know much about the digestive system of a gorilla; that’s fair enough, most folks probably don’t; but ignorant because the people sharing this are stupid enough to think the digestive function of one animal somehow acts as some guide of evidence-based scientific guide to the digestive system of another. That is just plain dumb.
Why would the digestive system and food habits of a gorilla have anything to do with a human?
Oh because gorillas have muscles, therefore this is ‘proof’ of how to build muscles?
Well elephants have muscles too; maybe I should eat an elephant’s diet? Read more