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The myth that animal research is inevitable and animal proteins are indispensable

   

The meat industry, the dairy industry and the pharmaceutical industry have a number of mutual features. To begin with, these are branches with a cashflow of billions, and tens of thousands of people earn a very good living working there. The second mutual factor is the use and, in most cases, abuse of animals. The third mutual factor is the used tactic, namely the maintaining and the further spread of untruths by means of advertising and false information.

Misconception: animal proteins are indispensable to a full eating pattern for humans.

It is not true that people need meat and/or dairy products to stay healthy. From a growing number of publications, and from daily experiences of people who restrict themselves to vegetable proteins, it's apparent that in fact it is possible to get sufficient proteins and calcium from vegetable food. It has even been proved by research in the past years, that meat and dairy products are causes of a great deal of prosperity diseases.

 

Misconception: medication and treatments that have been tested on animals guarantee a safe use for humans.

Animals are not human beings, as much as they might seem alike, both physically and psychologically. The suggestion that a drug tested on animals would be safe for people has been proved scientifically untrue.

Tests on animals are part of the so-called experimental research: scientists try to imitate the same disease in a healthy animal as has appeared spontaneously in a human being.
This means that with the testing of a medicine on this animal, the spontaneous human related original disease can not be examined. For this reason modern medication often has such a long list of side effects.

A notorious consequence of this kind of research was the medicine Softenon; it was extensively tested and was 'found safe' on numerous different lab animals, but ultimately it proved to deform people.

     
     

The true reason for researchers to continue working with lab animals (millions each year), is that these animals are much cheaper than human guinea pigs, and there are almost no limitations to adapt to in research for the (ab) use of animals. Where for humans there is an obvious consideration between the possible risk and the expected improvement for the human race (and of course a considerable settlement for the human test person), lab animals have no such thing.

Nothing is too crazy to use lab animals for, and anyone who reads the newspaper, knows to which revolting experiments this has led. The consumer demand for an effective, wellpriced, ethical responsible health care, isn't the drive behind the developments in the medical/pharmaceutical industry, but the hunger to introduce new technical tour de forces. This is done over and over again and aimed to lure the public with possibilities, growing wishes, raising hope and to gain a lot of money out of it.

 

What is the alternative: prevention and clinical research.
A disease is a sign, that you should pay more attention to your body. You can better take these signs seriously, and try to take every possible precaution (clean food, time to relax). You can for example take advantage of the Chinese (preventative) art of medicine: she has been practised for thousands of years and consists of regular examinations and treatments, against lability, e.g.

Avoid medicines that are developed to only remove the unwanted symptom from the body (chemical medicines that are tested on lab animals and general large groups of people). Instead, take, when prevention has failed, medicines that are developed by and for people, and that are specially prescribed by the specialised doctor for the person concerned, in the right composition.

Homeopathic and anthroposofic doctors urge the recovery of the good, self-healing powers of the body, instead of trying to suppress the unwanted symptoms with chemicals.

     

The chicken or the egg?

What existed first, the food producer trying to keep producing cheaper in order to make more money, or the consumer who refused to pay a fair price for a good product?
What existed first, the western people who started to believe in the endless possibilities of the medical industry, or the medical industry holding out a carrot to the western people, as a 'possibility'? If there is someone who knows the answer it won't do us any good. What we have to do, is turn our back on the present escalations. A grievances that turns big, doesn't have to just stay that way. For instance, think of nuclear energy, a piece of modern thinking and acting that is unparalleled, which was connected with huge economical interests and yet…..

At some point the joint feeling and sense prevailed and now nuclear plants are being closed, one after the other. This could also be possible for other abuses like factory farming, the medical-technical industry and poisoned agriculture- and stockbreeding industry. If only we want to. If only every individual wants to. Because indeed, a better world starts with us.

  • animal proteins are indispensable in a full food pattern for people
  • medicines and treatments that are tested on animals, guarantee a safe use on people
  • the alternative: prevention and clinical research
  • the chicken or the egg?

When you leave out dairy- and meat products from your daily food, or have some as a delicacy on an exceptional base instead of as a 'daily necessity', it has enormous positive consequences for your own health as well as for the wellbeing of animals, the environment and the social relations in the world. Who wants to read more about objections against the (production of) dairy products, click here.
The deep-rooted dogma in the Netherlands that 'meat is a necessity and we need milk to obtain calcium' is the direct result of our economical interests as a 'dairy land' and long-term advertising. This result is fed by the constraint to make profit; not by the need to restore a better life to the people and better environment.

 

In 1999 723.816 tests on animals took place in the Netherlands, in 68.400 cases genetically modified animals (mostly mice) were used. Almost half of these tests were done for scientific research for the cause and treatment of human diseases. Over 40% were done for sera, vaccines, drugs and medical or veterinarian products.
Unfortunately, in our technocratic society, the modern thought on life and death are dominating: you don't have to put up with illness; everything would have a solution and should be curable; everybody has a 'right' to a long life free of sickness or 'right' to a child.
To take responsibility for ones own health (by eating healthy food, free of chemicals and pesticides, to take time for fresh air, rest and relaxation) would be expensive and time-consuming.
It is much cheaper and easier to reach for the medicine jar 'when something is wrong'. Under influence of the medical-technical industry people have been dissociated so far from their own responsibility for their health that even an absolutely hideous idea like animal organ transplants (= to keep animals like little plants of spare parts for people) is taken seriously. It is sad to see that even organisations that claim to be fighting against animal testing are convinced of the dogma that these tests are unavoidable. They fight for the reduce and avoidance of animal tests and for making them less painful, but exactly with this soft not-rigorous-rejecting-all animal-tests approach, they confirm the public's idea that tests on animals are necessary and cannot be avoided.

A human being is a mortal creature, just like an animal, not a meccano set (toy with) which can be fiddled about with, and there is a reason for this. Death and decay have a place in nature next to birth and growth; also a human life ends at a time.
Still, there will be situations, like a serious disease that attacks a young life, when the persons concerned will demand the biggest qualities of medical science, in order to preserve the life. In this case it would be not only ethical but also most efficient from a safety view, a matter of to do using only clinical research and medicines that were clinically tested. This means also: methods and cures that are found by extensive research on people with the same symptoms.

Author Anna van Beek

     
Reduction in the needs for animal experiment   Further reading
BioSim is a Network of Excellence established by the European Commission. The main objective of the Network is to demonstrate how the use of modern simulation technique through a deeper and more qualitative understanding of the underlying biological, pathological and pharmacological processes can lead to a more rational drug development process, improved treatment procedures, and a reduction in the needs for animal experiments.  

See also non-valid arguments for experimentation with animals.
Video about the protest against dissection.

The Netherlands Centre for Alternatives to Animal Use (NCA) is the central point in the Netherlands for coordinating research and disseminating information on alternatives to animal experiments.

     
Author: Bert Stoop
 
This page describes one aspect of the influence that man has on the quality of life of an animal.
Other pages on this site describe other aspects that contribute to the growth of global awareness that freedom is important for an animal too. The quality of the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.
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