Public Health Experts call for Help Preventing Future Pandemics

Public health experts have been warning us for decades that Intensive animal agriculture is the origin of most of our communicable diseases and that we need to change the food system fast.

Don’t like to read? Listen to the podcast version of this article.

The 300-pound gorilla that no one is talking about is that the main cause of all contagious diseases is domesticating animals for agriculture, and the frequency of outbreaks has increased over the last 20 years. The World Health Organization finds that 75 percent of all emerging pathogens over the last decade are zoonotic in origin.

I was shocked to find out that most of our contagious diseases come from livestock and not just a few rare cases of viruses like Covid-19 from exotic wildlife wet markets.

Why didn’t I know this?

Most governments and health care strategists downplay the fact that zoonotic transfer has been the root cause for most of our contagious diseases and 61 percent of all human diseases over the last 10 thousand years.

Influenza from birds, Measles from cattle, Smallpox transferred from camels, typhoid from pigs, Spanish flu in 1918 probably spread from ducks to chickens and then humans, just to name a few.

“The conditions that triggered the emergence of COVID-19 exist in plain sight on factory farms. Shouldn’t governments take action before the emergence of another, possibly deadlier, epidemic, rather than after?” ~Sentient Media

Covid-19 might just be a dress rehearsal for something worse

The Root Cause of Covid19 video by Plant Based news

Focus on a vaccine is just a band-aid when the root cause is staring us in the face from our plates!

According to The Root Cause of Covid-19 by Plant-based news, Covid-19 might just be a dress rehearsal for something worse.

Covid-19 has been devastating for families who have lost loved ones as well as for the worldwide economy, and we don’t even know what the total damage is yet.

But luckily covid-19 is a fairly mild novel virus with a relatively low mortality rate and contagion level compared with some of the other virulent viruses that have emerged in the last 20 years.

Replace Covid-19 with Ebola virusNipah virus, or some other novel virus strain with a much higher contagion rate and mortality rate and it could have just about ended human life on the planet.

Imagine if…

  • grocery stores shut down due to lack of healthy staff to run them
  • food production came to a halt worldwide
  • the health care system shut down
  • the internet stopped working along with electricity and other infrastructure and other basics became unavailable overnight.

Yes, the Coronavirus shut down has been devastating…

But Covid-19 might be just a dress rehearsal for future outbreaks that could be much worse according to scientists and health care experts in the field of contagious disease.

“Three-fourths of human infectious diseases come from animals.”

~ Aysha Akhtar M.D., M.P.H, D.

How Intensive Animal Agriculture Produces Epidemics in Human Populations

Numerous outbreaks of dangerous novel viruses similar to covid-19 but much more lethal have erupted from factory farms, meatpacking plants, and feedlots and not just from rare and exotic wet markets.

You never hear of a human being catching Dutch Elm disease or aphids. Plants are not the problem. Most of our infectious diseases originally come from an animal host and jump to humans in a more lethal form because of antigenic shift.

An antigenic shift can happen when a virus jumps species and suddenly becomes more lethal in a new species that has no antibodies for the new virus. So a virus that gives bats the sniffles, could make pigs moderately ill and then jump to humans and become even more severe.

Why are novel viruses so much more prevalent in the last 40 years?

In the 1990s dangerous novel viruses that jumped species became more common when intensive animal feed operations reached a tipping point.

In 1961 global meat production increased dramatically. Humans now consume 44 pounds more meat each year than they did 60 years ago.

In the 1950s more than 50 percent of Americans made a living on small-scale family farms. Now only 1% of the US population is farmers. The rest of food production is done by vertical conglomerates known as “integrators”.

“When humans kill 1-3 trillion animals annually to dine on their bodies and secretions, viruses are bound to jump from the victim species to the consuming species. This is how biology works.”

~ Dr. Sailesh Rao PhD

“It pays to produce a pathogen that could kill a billion people”

Evolutionary biologist Rob Wallace author of Big Farms Make Big Flu

“To create A global pandemic build factory farms.”

~Dr. Michael Greger author the book of Bird Flu a Virus in the Hatching

Why Public health experts call for a predominantly plant-based diet

  • Reduce the risk of epidemics
  • Reduce the risk of heart disease diabetes and obesity
  • Reduce the compromised immunity that causes higher mortality

During the Covid-19 pandemic, the highest mortality rates have been in countries that have the highest rates of lifestyle diseases.

Diabetics, people with heart disease, and those who are overweight are dying at much higher rates than other people including those with asthma.

Meat and dairy compromise the microbiome, our main producer of immunity.

In conclusion

A Focus on Vaccines and medical preparedness alone miss a lot of important factors that contributed to the pandemic.

Will we be prepared for a highly contagious virus with a higher mortality rate next time? Vaccines and medications take time to be developed and produced for specific strains of viruses.

Is it even possible to prepare for more virulent strains each year or will we always be playing catch up endlessly in an ever more depleted economy?

The expense alone will make it prohibitive to give the vaccines and medications to the entire population of the planet. A safer bet is to create an environment with healthy soil and healthy people.

If we focus on fighting the latest virus with vaccines and medications instead of treating the cause It will be like playing whack-a-mole with new viral strains popping up faster than we can hit them unless we stop consuming so many animal products and limit factory farming as a start to building healthier immune systems for all humans.

There are myriad other environmental issues that need to be addressed to make the planet safe for life again but limiting or replacing factory farming would be a  great start. The end goal should be limiting factory farming to Confined Plant Feeding Operations (CPFO).

Steps you can take now to reducing the risk of future novel virus outbreaks

Cut down on meat fish poultry and dairy and eat a plant-based diet and boycott meat and dairy conglomerates as much as possible while supporting alternatives like lab-based meats.

Resources for eating plant-based

Important small steps that leverage big results

Ways to grow food at home

The best way to make sure you have control of a healthy microbiome is to grow some of your own food

If you own your own home and still have money after corona you could be prepared with water cisterns, solar power, and off-grid energy as much as you can.

What’s Next?

Want to learn more about how to eat a healthy plant-based diet? Check out my FAQ page and the Whole Foods Plant-Based Primer.

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