Myth or Truth 'Meat Rots in Your Colon'? - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 03-05-2015, 06:57 AM
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Myth or Truth 'Meat Rots in Your Colon'?

I have heard the assertion that ‘Meat Rots in Your Colon’ and am sceptical.
However I am open to being convinced if provided with credible evidence to support or refute it.

I am aware of the many reasons why people choose to be vegetarian, and have no issue with their choices.

My intention is not to belittle or insult anyone, but to find credible EVIDENCE – on the specific point.
The merits of a vegetarian diet - or of one including meat - are not the point of this enquiry.
I wish to avoid being diverted from the central point with anecdotes of why, as individuals, people choose to eat or avoid certain types of food; or an airing of people’s many ‘beliefs’, ‘views’ and ‘My friend had a gross experience…’ stories.

My enquiry therefore is:
What is the sound, evidence backed response to the following specific assertion?:
“In normal, healthy humans meat does not ‘linger’ or rot in the intestines/colon for weeks/months/years.
Humans digest meat and other foodstuffs in the same time frame (of approx. 24 to 48 hours).”

(In other words: The ‘Meat Rots in Your Colon’ story (and its variants) is – or isn’t - a myth.)

I have attempted to be clear, concise and respectful in this enquiry, and trust that responses will be adopt the same approach.
Thank you.
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#2 Old 03-05-2015, 07:08 AM
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It cause mucoid plaque in your colon.
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#3 Old 03-05-2015, 08:58 AM
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I imagine meat does rot slightly as it passes through you, just like plants. I've never looked into it though as it's simply a gross out thing people say that holds no value with me.
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#4 Old 03-05-2015, 09:24 AM
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Hi Enquirer. May I enquire if you're a vegetarian or thinking to transition? This board is more for support than debate; the terms of service require that you are vegetarian or transitioning to one.

As far as I'm aware, digestion takes about the same amount of time for most foods.

A legit health reason to avoid ingesting and digesting meat:

"Dietary factors classified by WCRF/AICR in relation to bowel cancer risk (Table 4.1) include;3

Red meat, processed meat (increases risk)
Dietary fibre, garlic, milk, calcium (probably decreases risk)
Haem iron, dietary animal fat, cheese, dietary sugars (possibly increases risk)
Non-starchy vegetables, fruit, dietary folate, dietary and supplementary selenium, fish, dietary vitamin D (possibly decreases risk)" http://www.cancerresearchuk.org/canc...r-risk-factors
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#5 Old 03-05-2015, 11:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by odizzido View Post
I imagine meat does rot slightly as it passes through you, just like plants. I've never looked into it though as it's simply a gross out thing people say that holds no value with me.
Check out mucuid plaque on YouTube.
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#6 Old 03-05-2015, 12:15 PM
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I would recommend you also take a good look at it as well. I've been reading up on it and it seems overwhelmingly clear that it's simply false.

If you wish to show me evidence that it is true feel free but I doubt you will find any. I am 100% open to being wrong BTW, and if I am I would like to know.
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#7 Old 03-05-2015, 12:47 PM
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Objectivity and the 'Meat Rot Myth'

The initial responses have raised a few points which I’ll address.

LedBoots asks about my status. I adopted a vegetarian diet some time ago.
The reason for my post relates to a desire to be sure, one way or the other, of the voracity of the ‘Meat Rots in Your Colon Myth’.
It is my belief that people adopt a vegetarian diet for a wide variety of reasons, which often incorporate consideration of ethics, health, resources etc. All of those have their merits, but the propagation of outrageous ‘myths’ to defend the choice of a vegetarian diet serves no-one well.

Having chosen a particular path it is counterproductive to try to shock/scare/revolt others with untrue claims, either to defend one’s position or in an attempt to ‘convert’ them.

I believe it is reasonable to encourage others to be objective and not deal in outrageous (untrue) claims in support of the vegetarian position. It’s your prerogative to disagree.

(The remainder of LedBoots’ response does not fully address the main proposition. It leans towards refuting it, but omits any evidence to support the comment. The risks of ill health are obviously worth considering – but do not explain, support or refute the proposition.)
_____________ _____________

Moving on – I note that respondents haven’t provided evidence either way. There are a few comments which seem to lean towards a conclusion that the meat rotting story is indeed a myth, but no evidence. Certainly there is nothing – yet – to support the story.

(IF we are to believe that Mucoid Plaque exists and is caused by diet it does not address the question of how long it takes to digest the meat.
The various information I’ve seen concerning this suggests M.P. is a highly debatable subject better suited to a separate thread. Mucoid Plaque DOES NOT address the question.)

Remember my request was to stick to the central point and suggest credible evidence of the truth or otherwise otherwise of the proposition:
“Humans digest meat and other foodstuffs in the same time frame…. etc.”
Is there evidence to support or refute this?
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#8 Old 03-05-2015, 01:07 PM
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Meat does not rot in the colon, it gets broken down by stomach acid and digestive enzymes. On the other hand plants DO rot in the colon and that's a good thing as it encourages growth of good bacteria

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#9 Old 03-05-2015, 02:08 PM
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The term 'rot' hasnt been defined in this thread. It is not a scientific term.
To paraphrase foodie guru Sandor Ellix Katz 'The difference between rotten and pleasantly fermented is most often just a cultural one'.
In veg*ns, omnis, and extremist baconophile carnivores alike there will be bacteria in the colon which digest that material which reaches the colon. Scientific literature will often broadly group classes of colonic microflora into fermentative and putrefactive. Plant foods promote communities of fermentative bacteria whereas animal foods encourage putrefactive microörganisms.
'Rot' is a lay term generally regarded as bad, so if your world view says plants fermenting like sauerkraut is good whereas meat putrefying like a days old steak laying behind the trash bin is bad, then putrefaction is rot and fermentation is bubbling goodness.
If you go by health effects, the metabolites of phytophyllic bacteria (propionate, butyrate, etc.) tend to improve blood pressure, endothelial function, etc. while the metabolites of putrefactive organisms tend to be more carcinogenic (nitrosamines, polyamines, etc.) so theres that.
Theres other ways you can choose to define 'rot'. But why not ignore the meaningless emotive descriptors like that and define a more definite and quantifiable hypothesis. Like health effects or something.
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Last edited by Auxin; 03-05-2015 at 02:11 PM.
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#10 Old 03-05-2015, 03:17 PM
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Although I'm aware of health benefits from vegetarianism, I cannot address the specific point you bring up, and you were clear that you wanted to focus on that.

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#11 Old 03-05-2015, 04:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Enquirer View Post
The initial responses have raised a few points which I’ll address.

LedBoots asks about my status. I adopted a vegetarian diet some time ago.
The reason for my post relates to a desire to be sure, one way or the other, of the voracity of the ‘Meat Rots in Your Colon Myth’.
It is my belief that people adopt a vegetarian diet for a wide variety of reasons, which often incorporate consideration of ethics, health, resources etc. All of those have their merits, but the propagation of outrageous ‘myths’ to defend the choice of a vegetarian diet serves no-one well.

Having chosen a particular path it is counterproductive to try to shock/scare/revolt others with untrue claims, either to defend one’s position or in an attempt to ‘convert’ them.

I believe it is reasonable to encourage others to be objective and not deal in outrageous (untrue) claims in support of the vegetarian position. It’s your prerogative to disagree.

(The remainder of LedBoots’ response does not fully address the main proposition. It leans towards refuting it, but omits any evidence to support the comment. The risks of ill health are obviously worth considering – but do not explain, support or refute the proposition.)
I couldn't care less about whether your assertation is true or not. For how humans live in this modern world, I feel omnivores have a far harder task in defending their diet.
You are right about it being counterproductive to suggest things about veg diets that aren't clearly proven, so why are you asking VeggieBoards to debate this point? I don't understand your logic
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#12 Old 03-05-2015, 06:01 PM
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While I don't totally buy into the "meat rots in your colon" bit either, I do believe meat takes longer to digest than plant matter which may be where this saying originally derived. A quick search on Google brought me to an article on Livestrong that actually cites studies regarding the time it takes to digest meat versus plant matter:

http://www.livestrong.com/article/44...egetarian-one/

People often say their digestion improves considerably when ditching meat, and for me this was certainly the case. I always felt lethargic after eating meat, and like food just sat in my stomach and intestines, though I know this was not the case literally.

I can understand the frustration a person would have of some of the false or misleading claims people use to promote vegetarianism. It hurts our cause because it discredits our movement. I believe there are plenty of excellent reasons to go vegetarian (and even more so vegan) but I personally wouldn't use the meat rots in your gut one as i do find it slightly obnoxious and exagerated. However, I did mention to my coworkers who were complaining about scrubbing their ovens and dishes that as a vegan I have a much easier time of that than when I was eating animals. not that I even considered that this would be reason enough for someone to make the switch lol. It was more just to plant a seed and get them thinking...
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#13 Old 03-05-2015, 11:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Auxin View Post
[...] Scientific literature will often broadly group classes of colonic microflora into fermentative and putrefactive. Plant foods promote communities of fermentative bacteria whereas animal foods encourage putrefactive microörganisms. [...]
If you go by health effects, the metabolites of phytophyllic bacteria (propionate, butyrate, etc.) tend to improve blood pressure, endothelial function, etc. while the metabolites of putrefactive organisms tend to be more carcinogenic (nitrosamines, polyamines, etc.) [...].
That was really most interesting! It also helps me to understand why meat is associated in particular to bowel cancer.

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#14 Old 03-06-2015, 02:48 AM
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Is the 'Meat Rots... Myth' debunked?

Thank you to those who’ve taken time to respond.

MozIsMyShepherd: Your concise explanation reflects my own understanding of the digestive process.
This seems to be ‘established scientific fact’ and there are many sources of objective studies to support it.

Yet there are people who ‘have heard about’ and ‘believe’ something very different.
They then promote the view along the lines of “Meat stays in your guts for 8 weeks.” (I’ve even heard 8 years!).

Some people may accept the story, but many would dismiss the person (and by association vegetarians) as ‘nutters’.
Both outcomes are regrettable – if it is untrue.


I am trying to establish whether anyone has credible EVIDENCE to support the ‘Meat Rot Myth’, and to avoid dismissing something contrary to my own view through ignorance of the evidence.
----- ----- ----- -----

Auxin: I understand your point. In this case the 'Meat Rots... Myth' sometimes uses the word ‘rots’ as a pejorative term, as you rightly suggest.
But often the story is recounted as “Meat stays in your system for 8 weeks (months/years).” The teller doesn’t elaborate on what is happening during the meat’s extended stay in the alimentary canal.

I agree that it might be more helpful when discussing the merits of vegetarianism, to concentrate on health effects etc. but that isn’t the purpose here.
The thread is to prove, if possible, the truth of – or de-bunk – this particular story.
----- ----- ----- -----

Silva: Thanks for the support in decrying the spreading of false or unfounded scare stories.

The reason for my post is to test whether anyone can offer credible EVIDENCE that the ‘Meat Rots Myth’ has a foundation in fact.
So far no-one has provided any evidence – or even support - for ‘the myth’ so one could conclude it is indeed untrue.
I am reluctant to dismiss new ideas out of hand, and as I said would study any evidence to test my own understanding.


The plea is thus repeated:
Is there credible EVIDENCE that meat ‘lingers’ in your guts? (‘Meat Rots in Your Colon’, Meat stays in your system for 8 weeks/months’, etc.)
----- ----- ----- -----

Naturebound: I too have seen the Livestrong article which supports conclusions that (a) it takes food longer to transit in (low fibre intake) non-vegetarians, and (b) meat (& other food) DOES NOT stay in the system longer than 96 hours. It is thus a far cry from the 1,344 hours (8 weeks – or more!) often quoted in the ‘Myth’.

It reported average clinically studied ‘bowel transit times’ of 36 hours (in vegetarians/high fibre) and 72 hours (non-vegetarians/low fibre); with the shortest of 27 hours (in vegetarians), and the longest 96 hours (in non-vegetarians). It used a measure of fibre intake and not meat per say (not ‘no meat’ verses ‘only meat’); so the non-vegetarians had meat plus other foodstuffs in their diet.

Here’s the peer reviewed clinical study on which the Livestrong article is based:
http://journals.cambridge.org/downlo...5d621ee092fd38


And still (accepting the proviso that 72 hours might be the average higher transit time) - there is no EVIDENCE to disprove the accepted facts of 36 to 72 hours.
----- ----- ----- -----

It is beginning to look like an objective conclusion is: The variants of the ‘Meat Rots in Your Colon’ story are proven untrue.
…Unless anyone offers objective EVIDENCE to the contrary?
.
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#15 Old 03-06-2015, 03:13 AM
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May I ask what the purpose of your study is? And also why you would so persistently enquire here and rely on answers of individuals you've never met rather than investigate reliable sources yourself? What makes you think you will find your EVIDENCE here? And why is it so important that WE provide you with it, since it wasn't here that you heard that statement originally, was it?
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#16 Old 03-06-2015, 03:56 AM
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True or Not - Meat takes weeks to clear the system.

MozIsMyShepherd: My purpose is to discover whether or not there is any foundation in fact for the 'Meat Stays in Your Guts for 8 Weeks' (or similar) stories.

- My persistence here is because though many replies contain interesting information, most do not address the central point. (It is a common feature of forum discussions that a wide range of 'views', 'beliefs', and 'opinions. are expressed without offering or needing evidence. That's nice for a general chat, but not helpful in addressing a particular point.) In this case I tried to keep responses focussed on the point by acknowledging responses but re-stating the central point.)

- I have successfully sought information from other sources, and though willing to consider new evidence, have a view on where the truth lies.

- To date I've seen no evidence that ' The Myth' is true - but it doesn't necessarily mean I've been exposed to all the evidence from believers of 'The Myth'.

- My post on this forum (and on a couple of others) is to help widen the potential sources for reliable information and be confident in a final conclusion.

- You are correct that I didn't first hear of 'The Myth' here. What better place to find some answers than to ask a large number of well informed, enthusiasts? If I only asked for information from the source of 'The Myth' it's likely I'd hear only one side of the story; which isn't very objective.
(I did, by the way, ask the person recounting the story. They couldn't provide any reliable evidence - but that doesn't mean it doesn't exist.)

- I thought it was possible that there might be someone subscribing to the forum who does believe 'The Myth' and would be willing to provide the evidence supporting it.

Just because there is an accepted truth about something does not necessarily prove it is correct. A lack of evidence does not prove something false, but generally (and in my case) most weight should be given to strongest (supported) arguement.

So far no-one has come forward in support of 'The Myth', which currently seems to confirm that the 'Meat Rots... Myth' is indeed unfounded and untrue.
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#17 Old 03-06-2015, 09:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Enquirer View Post
MozIsMyShepherd: My purpose is to discover whether or not there is any foundation in fact for the 'Meat Stays in Your Guts for 8 Weeks' (or similar) stories.

- My persistence here is because though many replies contain interesting information, most do not address the central point. (It is a common feature of forum discussions that a wide range of 'views', 'beliefs', and 'opinions. are expressed without offering or needing evidence. That's nice for a general chat, but not helpful in addressing a particular point.) In this case I tried to keep responses focussed on the point by acknowledging responses but re-stating the central point.)

- I have successfully sought information from other sources, and though willing to consider new evidence, have a view on where the truth lies.

- To date I've seen no evidence that ' The Myth' is true - but it doesn't necessarily mean I've been exposed to all the evidence from believers of 'The Myth'.

- My post on this forum (and on a couple of others) is to help widen the potential sources for reliable information and be confident in a final conclusion.

- You are correct that I didn't first hear of 'The Myth' here. What better place to find some answers than to ask a large number of well informed, enthusiasts? If I only asked for information from the source of 'The Myth' it's likely I'd hear only one side of the story; which isn't very objective.
(I did, by the way, ask the person recounting the story. They couldn't provide any reliable evidence - but that doesn't mean it doesn't exist.)

- I thought it was possible that there might be someone subscribing to the forum who does believe 'The Myth' and would be willing to provide the evidence supporting it.

Just because there is an accepted truth about something does not necessarily prove it is correct. A lack of evidence does not prove something false, but generally (and in my case) most weight should be given to strongest (supported) arguement.

So far no-one has come forward in support of 'The Myth', which currently seems to confirm that the 'Meat Rots... Myth' is indeed unfounded and untrue.
K. So that's decided then.

Care to share any favorite recipes?
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#18 Old 03-06-2015, 11:33 AM
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You dont want "'views', 'beliefs', and 'opinions'" yet your only looking in places which will mostly only provide 'views', 'beliefs', and 'opinions' thats interesting.
Your also quite demanding.

If you want scientifically valid and quantified peer reviewed evidence then Google Scholar is your friend.
If your google-fu is weak and you want people to spoon feed you then be less demanding so people are less put off by you

You can attract more flies with organic dandelion flower syrup than you can with vinegar.
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#19 Old 03-06-2015, 06:02 PM
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You can attract more flies with organic dandelion flower syrup than you can with vinegar.
So THAT'S the vegan term for that? :P I have actually been wondering for the past year or two now!
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#20 Old 03-06-2015, 06:39 PM
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MozIsMyShepherd: My purpose is to discover whether or not there is any foundation in fact for the 'Meat Stays in Your Guts for 8 Weeks' (or similar) stories.

- My persistence here is because though many replies contain interesting information, most do not address the central point. (It is a common feature of forum discussions that a wide range of 'views', 'beliefs', and 'opinions. are expressed without offering or needing evidence. That's nice for a general chat, but not helpful in addressing a particular point.) In this case I tried to keep responses focussed on the point by acknowledging responses but re-stating the central point.)

- I have successfully sought information from other sources, and though willing to consider new evidence, have a view on where the truth lies.

- To date I've seen no evidence that ' The Myth' is true - but it doesn't necessarily mean I've been exposed to all the evidence from believers of 'The Myth'.

- My post on this forum (and on a couple of others) is to help widen the potential sources for reliable information and be confident in a final conclusion.

- You are correct that I didn't first hear of 'The Myth' here. What better place to find some answers than to ask a large number of well informed, enthusiasts? If I only asked for information from the source of 'The Myth' it's likely I'd hear only one side of the story; which isn't very objective.
(I did, by the way, ask the person recounting the story. They couldn't provide any reliable evidence - but that doesn't mean it doesn't exist.)

- I thought it was possible that there might be someone subscribing to the forum who does believe 'The Myth' and would be willing to provide the evidence supporting it.

Just because there is an accepted truth about something does not necessarily prove it is correct. A lack of evidence does not prove something false, but generally (and in my case) most weight should be given to strongest (supported) arguement.

So far no-one has come forward in support of 'The Myth', which currently seems to confirm that the 'Meat Rots... Myth' is indeed unfounded and untrue.
So basically you went around asking other people to do your research for you?

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#21 Old 03-06-2015, 06:39 PM
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So THAT'S the vegan term for that?
I dont know, I just made it up after discovering that dandelion flower syrup tastes similar to clover honey
Keep all the green bits out and it looks like honey too, may even fool an omni
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#22 Old 03-06-2015, 06:48 PM
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If you want scientifically valid and quantified peer reviewed evidence then Google Scholar is your friend.
I had no idea this existed. THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart lol. I have learned more on Veggieboards than the six years I put into college lol.
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#23 Old 03-08-2015, 04:06 AM
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It cause mucoid plaque in your colon.
Mucoid plaque huh? You mean the thing that is only considered to be real by ONE scientist. The same scientist who is the only one selling the treatment for it?
The same treatment that consists of eating large amounts of clay?

Get out of here with that nonsense.
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#24 Old 03-08-2015, 08:08 AM
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When someone makes an assertion that doesn't make sense and provides no supporting evidence to back it up, there is no need for you to waste your time proving it wrong.
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#25 Old 03-08-2015, 09:27 AM
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MozIsMyShepherd: My purpose is to discover whether or not there is any foundation in fact for the 'Meat Stays in Your Guts for 8 Weeks' (or similar) stories.

- My persistence here is because though many replies contain interesting information, most do not address the central point. (It is a common feature of forum discussions that a wide range of 'views', 'beliefs', and 'opinions. are expressed without offering or needing evidence. That's nice for a general chat, but not helpful in addressing a particular point.) In this case I tried to keep responses focussed on the point by acknowledging responses but re-stating the central point.)

- I have successfully sought information from other sources, and though willing to consider new evidence, have a view on where the truth lies.

- To date I've seen no evidence that ' The Myth' is true - but it doesn't necessarily mean I've been exposed to all the evidence from believers of 'The Myth'.

- My post on this forum (and on a couple of others) is to help widen the potential sources for reliable information and be confident in a final conclusion.

- You are correct that I didn't first hear of 'The Myth' here. What better place to find some answers than to ask a large number of well informed, enthusiasts? If I only asked for information from the source of 'The Myth' it's likely I'd hear only one side of the story; which isn't very objective.
(I did, by the way, ask the person recounting the story. They couldn't provide any reliable evidence - but that doesn't mean it doesn't exist.)

- I thought it was possible that there might be someone subscribing to the forum who does believe 'The Myth' and would be willing to provide the evidence supporting it.

Just because there is an accepted truth about something does not necessarily prove it is correct. A lack of evidence does not prove something false, but generally (and in my case) most weight should be given to strongest (supported) arguement.

So far no-one has come forward in support of 'The Myth', which currently seems to confirm that the 'Meat Rots... Myth' is indeed unfounded and untrue.
By now you should realize the vast majority here do not care about that particular assumption. We're all veg'ns because of the overwhelming FACTS that prove, it's the best thing to do. The facts support vegetarianism for environment, for health, sustainablity, and ethics/morality. There are just so many studies that we can use without dissention that we don't care about the extraneous ones like the rottening colon meat thing. So what?
What I care about is that vegetation for the modern human diet can be grown with more efficiency, less resources, and total nutrition than forcing different species of animals to breed, live in cages, and then slaughter them, just to provide that caveman aroma or methane, toxic water and wasted land.

Your persistence is like questioning whether smoking cigarettes contribute to hair loss. Who needs to prove/disprove a theory when so much else has been proven?
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#26 Old 03-08-2015, 10:40 AM
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The assertion mentioned by the OP that "Meat rots in your colon" has received no endorsement from VeggoeBoards' members. That being the case, it's difficult to find the rationale for the thread "Myth or Truth: 'Meat Rots in Your Colon'" remaining in the Vegetarian Support Forum area any longer. I'm therefore moving it to the Compost Heap area of the forum where the more heated/contentious discussions traditionally take place.

Leedsveg: Moderator Team.
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#27 Old 03-08-2015, 07:34 PM
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I was about to suggest Google Scholar but I see someone beat me to it.

I understand the OP's concern to be that of yet another myth promoted by vegetarians. After having been raised by a hippie dippie anti-science nutjob who almost killed me with alfalfa sprouts and avoidance of medical care, I share this concern.

There are so many legitimate reasons to be vegetarian (and no legitimate reasons not to be). Therefore there is no reason to embellish or fabricate facts to support it.

Toxins, vitamins, iridology, ear candling, herbs, colons holding waste that causes cancer, chakras, GMOs--the list of unsupported/potentially harmful practices is endless, and just when one finally is nearly extinguished, others rise to fill the void.

This marginalizes us as a wacked out fringe group instead of a growing horde of conscientious, intelligent people who are living life in an ethically superior and healthier manner.

[/rant]

Beanitarian.

Last edited by imagineaa; 03-08-2015 at 07:37 PM.
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digetion of meat , myth

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