Under the theory that humans are natural vegans, what caused the start of meat eating?!

Question: Under the theory that humans are natural vegans, what caused the start of meat eating?
I am a vegan who is starting to question myself after about 15 years. My health is fine; I have a couple of minor problems, but far fewer than my meat-eating younger sister. Still, I am aware that vegans are sometimes deficient in B-12 (my levels are in the low end of normal), and I have been wondering if it might not be better for me to eat an egg here and there. (I actually tried to eat one today, for the first time since my teens, and it was just disgusting. I don't know how people do it.) Part of my increased concern about this is the fact that I am trying to get pregnant.

Perhaps that was more background than was necessary, but there you have it. I have never really bought the argument that humans are natural vegans, and that meat eating has been some sort of colossal mistake. It was good enough for me that I enjoyed a vegan diet, and did not seem to suffer any ill effects; I didn't need to do what other people did. Now, after tasting that disgusting egg, I would really, really like to be convinced that humans are natural vegans, and that the best route towards a healthy pregnancy is to never touch one of those disgusting things again.

I see that Richard Leakey (quite a big name in paleontology) believes that humans are natural herbivores, and it gives me great hope. The central claims seem to be that humans do not appear to have a physique that is suited towards taking down prey and ripping meat off of bone, and that human agriculture did not develop until well after our physiology was in basically its current state. The idea, then, is that these early humans, who were not well suited to natural methods of predation, and did not have the capacity to keep animals as we do today (or even as we did 1,000 years ago), would not have been able to obtain meat, and, therefore, did not eat it.

Is this enough of an argument? Are there others?

I in no way mean to suggest that vegans should stop being vegans because of what our ancestors did or didn't do. I am asking this as an academic question, and whether or not I end up applying it to myself is no reflection on what I think others should do.


To answer your main question: It is believed that humans started eating meat because they had to. They/we began to be able to live in parts of the planet and during times that were inhospitable to most of our plant diet. Somewhere along the line we developed a taste for it. I've said it before: Being *able* to eat meat and being *meant* to eat meat are two completely different things.

I am on the omnivore/herbivore fence. Articles like this chart have really made me think: http://www.tierversuchsgegner.org/wiki/i…

I haven't verified everything on that page yet though, so take it with a grain of salt.

Here are some vegan pregnancy articles for you:


btw, B12 is produced by bacteria, not animals, and is found EVERYWHERE. Well, everywhere except our very clean food supply. It's found primarily in the soil and animal feces (human feces too). Eat much feces lately? Didn't think so. Personally I'd rather take a multivitamin. So, "reliable sources of B12" are proof of nothing except our misguided war on bacteria.


Human beings capable of digesting small quantities of meat would be better able to survive in times where vegetation was scarce.

Nutritional yeast has B12 in it, check it out you can use it in kale chips.

why would you want to know this and a short and sweet answer to your question we got hungry

People are veg and plant foods and plant based protein well before they ate meat.

There's no need for your b12 to be low.
For example- buy spinach with dirt on it ( a local shop or farmers market) the grains of soil contain enough b12 for you- any soil rich food. Marmite, Vegemite, Miso and other fermented foods and BEER will give you b12.

The thing is most people eat a really poor diet and never touch 98% of the foods that are mysteriously, for some strange reason found in nature- these natural plant based foods, packed with all the nutrients human animals need, are in fact the VERY THING humans need to thrive and live well.

An orchid in a forest in Sikkim usually finds the water, temperature and soil the perfect environment to grow and thrive. Humans are designed to get all the nutrition they need from these very substances which surround them- easily attainable at waist height, arm's length, without the need to somehow get tools and jaguar speed to get them.

Nature does not make any organism to get sustenance from its surrounding nutritive environment and get sick and die off it. No wild animal gets heart disease or a stuck colon from occasionally eating a packet of junk food, ice cream, or organic sunchips- they just eat the food nature provides them with ease. We get ALL the nutrients we need from fresh plant based sources.
Bottom line fact. IF IF IF we did need the magic ingredient of meat or something from the flesh of an animal it makes no sense on earth that humans can thrive and live much healthier on an animal-free diet.

So, if you're actually honouring the foods that nature provides you to take it- the veg and fruit, seeds, legumes and all the b12 contained in those things, then you're not deficient.
Most people eat very poorly and lack any kind of variety compared to what they COULD eat.
Nobody in USA eats bitter green veg regularly ( well of course some do, but generally not) or bean curd, or raw vegetables.
They eat paste- white bread and stuff. Then ask how to get protein and b12.

Look at the rainbow colours of fruit and veg and ask what kind of acid-head made that up?
You couldn't make it up- so eat the good things and no hassles about poor health.
We are created by the very thing that also provides us with easy-to-get nutrition every day of the year. Including dried and stored foods, for those non-nomadic tribes who decided they liked growing crops and sticking with them in the same place thousands of years ago.

The theory that I have read is that when people moved out of the more tropical climates where there is an abundance of fruit and greens year round we were required to eat something over the long winter. One of the options was eating leftovers from larger predators, bone marrow for example. From there we began to hunt.

zdawg0- I adore the kale chips!

Regarding the b-12 issue, I have worried about it for 20 years. I have never taken supplements of b-12 even through my pregnancies, but I did have it monitored very regularly, now annually. I do eat marmite, nutritional yeast, several other supposed sources regularly. I dont think we know all we need to know about the body processing b-12 but I think it is important to be aware and make sure that your bloodwork looks healthy.

I'd ask for a reference from a non-veg*n site for Leaky's saying humans are naturally herbivores. For a reference to show we're NOT naturally herbivores, I'll point to B12. B12 is NOT found in any source of plant food. None. B12 has only been available in pills for about a generation or so. Where do you think your grandmother, your great grandmother got B12? If they hadn't eaten animal products that contained B12, they would have died, pure and simple, and you would not exist. Human beings are omnivores. We are quite capable of eating both plants and animals. We get our protein and iron better, easier, from animal sources.

Protein is made up of amino acids. Our body makes some of those, the rest we need to get from food. Meat, eggs, dairy products have all the amino acids needed for complete protein. Most veggies contain only some (or weak versions) of those amino acids. You should eat a wide variety of veggies every day so your body can combine the amino acids from each into the complete protein it needs.

Iron in meat, eggs, dairy products is heme iron. Your body absorbs and uses it much better and easier than the non heme iron in veggies. You need to eat a lot of the iron rich veggies to get the iron your body needs or you could wind up anemic.

Vitamin D from animals is much better absorbed and used by your body than the Vitamin D from plants. Then there are the omegas. Your body converts ALA to DHA, but not very efficiently. Most nutritionist recommend a supplement for DHA if you don't eat animal products. In fact, some vegan registered dietitian recommend supplementing for iodine (especially if you eat a lot of soy), DHA, B12, vitamin D, calcium, zinc, B2 and B6. How could you possibly consider a diet "normal" or "natural" if you need to supplement for so many necessary nutrients?

I'll link to an article on Jack Norris' veganhealth site that lists some problems vegan babies have suffered with the lack of proper nutrition by their mothers. You owe it to your baby to really look at your diet. If you're low on B12 now, where will you be after nine months of building another human?


Take time to look the veganhealth website over carefully. Other than the laughable contention that B12 used to be everywhere and farming destroyed it, Norris is pretty good about pointing out the holes in a vegan diet and offer suggeststions how to get around those holes. But he is a vegan. He believes in the diet. You have to make your own decision and you will be deciding not just about your health, but about the health of your child. A lack of just calcium for a growing child can affect them for their entire life. Vegans are infamous for having children with dental problems. Good luck....

Humans are not natual herbivores, I have seen the work of the Leakeys and I recall differently. Humans have a brow ridge which supports the muscle required for a strong grip on meat, we have canines which are designed for meat, as are incisors. As tool users mans brain development is said to be likely derived from the scaveging of brains obtained from the skull by way of tools into the opening afforded by the neck of a corpse. We have also cannibalised our own pretty uniformly across the whole range of humanity. This is backed up by the presence of a gene that gives us some natural immunity from sicknesses caused by eating necrotic brain tissue and another present in cannibals. Man, as tool users did not need to continue genetic traits favouring the removal of flesh from bone.

That said, what you put in your mouth is up to you. If the idea of meat disgusts you, don't eat it. But you'll need a strategy to get Taurine, Vitamin B, Iron and protein into your system or it will ruin the health you set out to achieve.

vegans babies tend to be very low on B and D
no we did not start as vegans, we have always eaten both
and in the early days we needed the the high protein we could only get from meat
and until farming started we could not depend on finding plants that could support our needs
however meat did a great job of giving us what we needed

We may not have had the physiology to become uber-predators, but the combination of bipedalism, opposable thumbs, and larger brain capacity made it so we could construct tools that overcame our physical limitations and allow us to bring down game that we wouldn't have been able to kill with our bare hands. Also, our teeth are not built for a diet purely based on plant matter. Herbivores don't have incisors or canine teeth, which are needed for chewing meat.

There is no theory that human beings (Homo sapiens) are vegans. Humans are omnivorous, capable of consuming a wide variety of plant and animal material.
"Implications of Plio-pleistocene diets for modern humans". In Peter S. Ungar. Evolution of the human diet: the known, the unkown and the unknowable. pp. 264–5.''

I suggest you learn the fundamental differences between an opinion and a theory.

Humans are meant to eat both meat and vegetables, you can tell be looking at our teeth. Carnivores have all sharp teeth, Herbivores have all flat teeth, and Omnivores, like us, have a combination.

I would rather die, and have my own children die rather then to use the exploitation, rape and murder of animals. Veganism is natural, and if me and my 2 baby girls and 5 year old son were in the wild, and it was eat meat or die...guess what...we will eat dirt and leaves before I let them feast apon the rotten corpse of my brother animal. I am not a Thug. I would not eat a human nor my brother creature. Vegan is the ONLY way to go! THE ONLY WAY!

Deer Hunter. You are such a sad little "person" more like a THUG! Eating meat...Pfft...DISPICABLE!

DEER HUNTER: either way, For the rest of my life i'll always point and shake my pure little VEGAN finger at you and say "Tsk Tsk Tsk, You meaty thug!"

Humans are biologically omnivores. The only way people can be vegans is because of money and fully stocked grocery stores. There are literally millions of people on this planet that don't really have a choice of what to eat. They have to eat whatever they can find to survive. Before world wide shipping, money and grocery stores, this is how it was for everyone. For millions of years people had to eat what was in their LOCAL region (walking distance). When a human is stuck with foods that are only in their local area, there is not much variety and they have to eat whatever they can get just to survive. Much of the plant matter animals eat humans can't digest. Most places on Earth are either a cold climate, a hot dry climate, or a climate with seasons. In all cases meat was a MUST for survival, and since it was this way for Millions of years humans have evolved as omnivores. Its in the science books.

To say that meat does not have any vitamins that cannot be found in plants is true enough. But that is being presumptuous because not all people have access to the variety of fruits, vegetables and grains that constitute a well balanced vegetarian/vegan diet. For all practical purposes, for those who do not have access to such foods, meat is the only exclusive source of these nutrients. Protein deficiency may not be prevalent in the West but it is a serious problem is many countries. It is even more ridiculous to say that meat is not a good source of the nutrients mentioned. That is vegetarian propaganda influenced thinking at it's finest (and most delusional). A good example is b12 which even the Vegetarian Resource Group has acknowledged that does not have a viable source in plant foods outside of a special yeast and specific fortified foods.

Every single life from on this planet exists at the expense of another life form. If you took this out of the equation all life would die. In order for something to live, something has to die. Its how the world works whether people like it or not.

Just because early humans couldn't take down large prey doesn't mean they didn't eat meat. I can catch all types of animals with my hands. It doesn't have to be big to be meat. Also there are cave drawings of man hunting Woolly Mammoths.

Delicate Starlight, your views of me are just your personal opinions. Have a nice day. You can shake your finger all you want. It doesn't bother me at all. What does bother me is your smug arrogant attitude along with your ignorance. And that finger of yours is going to get tired. There are around 6 Billion people that eat meat.

That is true, humans relied on fruit trees, berries and much more. They respected the animals and only started to kill animals once fire was created. Just before fire they ate raw fish. Even though they ate raw fish they still ate more vegetables and other natural grown items like fruits. The reason why humans turned to meat was because of the blood in the meat. It wasn't because of the reasons why we eat it today but only for the blood. May sound kind of odd but the blood in an animal provides many vitamins and goods for your body in what it needs. As the years progressed, man became dependent on hunting and using tools like spears and hatchets made from rocks. Tribes were made and hunting parties were formed to gather food for the villages. In today world we literally punish the animals and give them steroids to make these animals grow faster and produce more materials in a quicker pace. I personally eat meat and always will. Eating an egg is very good for you but this egg was once a unborn chicken but it was not fertilized because it was not fertilized I feel that eggs, milk and yogurt but not cheese is a very good choice to make. I eat cheese and anything but eat very little of it and remain extremely healthy.

The reason why people eat meat today is because many people need the iron and zinc even nickle or mercury your body badly needs. Just because humans have relied on meat for so long we can't live with out it.

In the bible I do not recall where though but it might be in Geniuses or Ezekiel that man and animal would be at peace and no blood shale be shed. I don't recall how it goes but it deals with animals and humans are at one with each other.

Random bible quote

Rom 14:1 Now receive the one who is weak in the faith, and do not have disputes over differing opinions.
Rom 14:2 One person believes in eating everything, but the weak person eats only vegetables.
Rom 14:3 The one who eats everything must not despise the one who does not, and the one who abstains must not judge the one who eats everything, for God has accepted him.
Rom 14:4 Who are you to pass judgment on another's servant? Before his own master he stands or falls. And he will stand, for the Lord is able to make him stand.
Rom 14:5 One person regards one day holier than other days, and another regards them all alike. Each must be fully convinced in his own mind.
Rom 14:6 The one who observes the day does it for the Lord. The one who eats, eats for the Lord because he gives thanks to God, and the one who abstains from eating abstains for the Lord, and he gives thanks to God.
Rom 14:7 For none of us lives for himself and none dies for himself.
Rom 14:8 If we live, we live for the Lord; if we die, we die for the Lord. Therefore, whether we live or die, we are the Lord's.
Rom 14:9 For this reason Christ died and returned to life, so that he may be the Lord of both the dead and the living.
Rom 14:10 But you who eat vegetables only - why do you judge your brother or sister? And you who eat everything - why do you despise your brother or sister? For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God.
Rom 14:11 For it is written, "As I live, says the Lord, every knee will bow to me, and every tongue will give praise to God."
Rom 14:12 Therefore, each of us will give an account of himself to God.

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