SCORE ONE FOR MSN
I opened Internet Explorer to its default page on this computer (not mine), which is MSN.com, and was immediately greeted with their front-page story, "Is it Cheaper to be a Vegetarian? Meat may be murder ... on your wallet." Fearing the worst, I read through that and a sidebar, "Is a vegetarian diet really healthier?" and I have to say, taking into account the idiom, i.e. mainstream, lowest-common-denominator journalism, this is a pretty fair account. One hint is that when you click through that opening question to the article, the headline on the page is "Go vegetarian to save money," with the subhead, "Staples such as rice, corn and beans can make trips to a grocery store less expensive. But the biggest savings may come in health-care costs years later." And while the piece on the "healthier?" question retains its question mark in the headline, the article is pretty unequivocal.
The second paragraph starts out, "Evidence has been building for two decades that people who eat a mostly vegetarian diet have the upper hand. But ..." ah, yes. The "but" - what is the writer going to counterpose against the supposed evidence? The sentence continues, "even scientific studies may not be enough to convince meat eaters to give up their lust for flesh in exchange for a longer, more disease-free life." Wow. So there really was nothing to contradict the truth - only a separate issue of whether meat-eaters will care about the truth.
And with phrases like "we’re not talking a few percentage point differences, but 25 percent to 35 percent less risk," this piece does get the clear benefits across, well, clearly. And sometimes startlingly: "[W]hile the dairy industry would have you believe that milk is the best source of calcium, research suggests otherwise. 'When we think calcium, we tend to think dairy,' Andrews says. 'But when you take a step back, the main source for all minerals-including calcium—is soil from the ground.' So plants such as bok choy, broccoli, collards, and kale are a good source of calcium. In fact, calcium from these plants is absorbed by the body twice as readily as calcium from cow’s milk." Wow. What's next, an in-depth report on Vegetarian Summerfest?
Thursday, July 26
SCORE ONE FOR MSN