The Ethics of Eating Meat

Junior (College 3rd year) ・Healthcare&Medicine ・APA ・4 Sources

Ethics are the basic moral principles which govern a person’s behavior and help in building in character. Society today has different factors which influence ethics ranging from religion, beliefs, culture and even scientific evidence especially nowadays. Therefore, a person’s ethical morals change depending on the environment they associate themselves. This paper seeks to create an argumentative analysis of whether it is ethical to eat meat.

Ethical concerns regarding the consumption of eating meat have been subject of raging debate going on in our species for a long time now. Despite the number of grievances brought forth regarding the consumption of meat, I believe that indeed it is ethical to consume meat and its products due to a number of benefits it brings forth in an individual’s body and society at large.

Health Benefits

In the modern world, the growing of food has become non-existent especially at the small-scale level. Big food companies in the industry have instead taken measures to produce food at a mass scale through the use of technology and science which has replaced traditional rearing techniques. Modern comforts have replaced manual labor of farm work and while the argument has always been seen as cost-effective, this does not sum up the entire process. This kind of meat production lends weight to the argument that it is unethical to eat meat, however, it is important to consider that there are meat production farms and industries which invest on producing the right kind of meat. Meat should be rich in vitamins such as A, B, and D as well as nutrients such as Zinc as well as a highly important source of proteins (May). All these are essential body building parts and are found mostly in meat. Although plant products also have some of these essential products, only meat has a combination of all these elements while plants carry different nutrients. Meat in itself, therefore, has numerous specific benefits for the growth of an individual but the question that should be posed is the production of such meat. Financial gains should be the least of drives when it comes to meat or any other food production. Instead quality and adherence to strict guidelines on healthy food production techniques ought to be applied. The question should not, therefore, be whether eating meat is right or wrong but rather the kind of meat eaten and its essential to one’s body.

Environmental Demands

Additionally, while looking at the values of meat to a person’s body it is also crucial to look at the surrounding environment of the person consuming the meat. Eskimos live in one of the harshest environmental surrounding in the world which are cold and snowy throughout the year. Plants and vegetables are not even found in such regions, therefore, making it highly ethical for them to consume meat. It is the only source of all building blocks of their body from childhood to adulthood. The lack of choice in other food products makes the consumption of meat an inalienable choice that fulfills their purpose in everyday life (Eisenstein). Furthermore, this acts like a reinforcement for all arguments which try to undermine the relevance of taking meat and the consequences it has been associated with such as obesity, high blood pressure, and even higher cholesterol levels in a person’s body. Although this is true, it does not necessarily point to meat consumption alone. Lifestyle choices are the cause of most medical complication. Too much consumption of any kind of food without regular exercise and physical body workout is a health hazard. People consuming meat but in a more tolerable well-balanced diet are less likely to fall into a health hazard, unlike regular consumers without any balance or physical workout. Henceforth, taking meat is as important to the body as any other meal and also is consequential if abused just like any other meal.

Life Cycle Chain

From a scientific standpoint as well, I believe that all living things on the planet are under a complex and necessary food chain which has been the order of survival throughout time. Eating meat is an important factor in the food chain as it is important in the recycling cycle of life. There are numerous objections against eating meat ranging from it is inhumane to slaughter animals, or harm them or even how we kill the animals. All these are valid points; however, it is important to understand that animals are an important aspect of the food chain. It is a cyclic event which creates balance in the environment at large. Plants are eaten by both animals and humans and their growth also depends on manure which mostly comes from animals. Sustainability is achieved when all components of the food chain grow, die and get recycled. Therefore, ethically speaking, eating certain ethically moral domesticated meat such as beef, goat, and chicken among many others is essential. Objections should not be based on arguments against eating meat but the big issues have always been the mode of production and productivity. Financial purposes are the fundamental basis as to increased dynamics in the consumption of meat. Quality has been replaced by quantity, however, ethics are principles which should not change especially if the meat is produced in a serene and pro-life environment (Rivera).

Cultural Hypothesis

Above all, ethics are shaped by culture, beliefs, and religious practices, as well as science. It is ignorant to base the choice on if it is ethical to eat meat or not from a single perspective. Furthermore, the decision that has been met or decided upon should not be enforced to individuals but rather influenced in a subtle manner. From a religious perspective, there are numerous doctrines on meat consumption, for example, Christians agree that although meat should be eaten, temperance is an important doctrine that most Christians should adhere to. Subsequently the doctrine goes further to ensure that only certain clean animals are eaten and tries to teach and influence self-control which is sorely needed at this time. Lack of self-control has led to unorthodox meat production techniques as well as consumption which is arrogant and against basic humane principles.

All these doctrines which shape society are essential and should be held in high esteem since they are what makes society. As much as I agree it is ethical to eat meat I base my answer mostly on my beliefs, values, and tradition as an individual as well as educated knowledge. For another individual in a different social setting or environment that mine his ethics with regards to eating meat might fluctuate from mine. However, ethics on if it is acceptable to eat meat is a dynamic question which has varied answers and all are acceptable since it’s the perception of an individual.


I think it is ethical to consume meat, the argument for far outweighs those against. Health wise there is no harm in consuming meat if it is in moderate amounts and in a more balanced diet. Studies have linked it to a number of illnesses such as diabetes, obesity, hypertension, among other diseases but the common denominator is that most patients suffering from such diseases are abusive in the consumption of meat products. Ethics are the basis of an individual’s character. As long as a person’s essence is at peace and comfortable with taking meat, therefore, it becomes irrefutable to change such views. However, it is within the constructs of society that better ethics with regards to its consumption are influenced where productivity is of a sustainable manner, consumption is self-controlled and the ends do justify the means.


Eisenstein, Charles. ""The Ethics of Eating Meat."" The Weston A. Price Foundation for Wise Traditions in Food, Farming and the Healing Arts 3.2 (2002): n. page. Web. 19 Nov. 2017.
Goldfarb, Ben. ""The Real Reason That Eating Meat Is Ethical."" N.p., 2012. Web. 19 Nov. 2017.
May, Gareth. ""Cheer Up, Steak Lovers: Red Meat Isn't Always Bad for You."" The Telegraph 2015. Web. 19 Nov. 2017.
Rivera, Lizzie. ""Can Eating Eat Ever Be Ethical?"" Independent 2016. Web. 19 Nov. 2017.

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