Reverse Evolution: From meat to plant-eaters


Graphic by Amy Kang

Grace Lee, Staff Writer

From gorging on your favorite meat lover’s pizza to ordering the vegetarian dish on the menu, your intake or resistance to eating meat is a central issue in the nutritional world. However, by looking back into our history and focusing on the facts, it is clear that humans should return to leaning towards a more vegetarian diet.

This can first be explained through the evolution of meat-eating among humans themselves. The early humans long ago mainly had a plant-based diet, and the domestication of animals only started once the Agrarian era, otherwise known as The Agricultural Age, began. In other words, this means that we were not born to start eating meat; humans simply started evolving to eat them.

In addition, sources including PETA and Huffpost continue to state that humans still have not adapted to eating meat today. Illnesses like diabetes, heart diseases, cancer, salmonella, obesity, E. coli, high blood pressure, stroke, and many more have been recorded as potential side effects of eating meat. MillionDollarVegan stated, “A 2019 study of 500,000 adults found that for every 100 grams of red or processed meat that individuals consumed per day, their risk for heart disease increased by 19 percent.” Not only were humans mostly plant-eaters in the first place, but meat consumption also continues to plague people’s health and nutritional safety.

A comparison between the body systems of herbivores, carnivores, or omnivores once again suggests that humans were designed to abstain from eating meat. Vegetarian Guide references a study conducted by Milton Mills, M.D. who compares the three categories to a human’s based on eighteen points, which includes traits like stomach type, saliva, teeth type, etc. After observing the differences and similarities, it was then concluded that humans are the most biologically alike to herbivores.

Of course, there are exceptions to these arguments. Such as the Mills’s study, this would not apply to animals like pandas, who have sharp teeth, but consume bamboo and are herbivores. Nonetheless, the fact that humans have not always eaten meat, meat continues to be responsible for countless diseases, and that we are biologically closer to herbivores prove that it may be wise to start veering towards a plant-based diet, just like how we evolved from being plant to meat-eaters.