Right.. since no one else opened up this discussion (That I know of.. and if this is a double up, please let me know so I can delete this) I thought I'd throw down on it.
Someone (I can't remember who) had a blog post on the subject, but it is a lot easier to debate things in the forums as opposed to blogs because we have the direct reply-to ability here.

So......Are humans carnivores, herbivores or omnivores?
For me, I think the answer is pretty simple.
I eat plants. I eat animals. I do so liberally, with no digestive issues. My parents did likewise. My grandparents did, too. As far back as recorded history goes, we've eaten both plants and animals. I've traveled the world, and can't think of a single culture that has ever survived as vegans.
I also eat raw meat without any trouble.
I love sashimi. I love all forms of carpaccio. It has never made me sick.

I'm a pretty green person, and I freely admit that meat eating is a huge burden on the earth. I try to balance it out by doing other things, such as walking to work every day instead of driving, ect.
I believe in buying the most responsible animal products possible. I do not condone entire lives lived in cages to produce eggs. The pork I buy comes from a creature that ran around on a farm during it's life. I hunt. I hunt only during hunting season. I don't waste food. It isn't financially or environmentally intelligent.
I don't eat as much meat as I used to, because I realize it is better for me and the entire earth to consume less.
I think that Jonathan Safran is a dick:
Jonathan Safran posits that consideration, as promoted by Michael Pollan in The Omnivore's Dilemma, which has more to do with being polite to your tablemates than sticking to your own ideals, would be absurd if applied to any other belief (e.g., I don't believe in rape, but if it's what it takes to please my dinner hosts, then so be it). (Taken from Natalie Portman's contribution to Huffington Post.)
I think he is a dick because he just compared my cheeseburger eating habits to a woman (or man) being sexually assaulted. For anyone that has ever been sexually assaulted, I'm sure it helps your healing to know that some dipshit out there just found your assailant on par with a kid that loves beef stew. He didn't vilify meat. He shushed down RAPE.
I've lived briefly as a vegetarian while visiting friends and didn't mind it. I feel a lot of respect for people that are willing and able to.
I've had blood tests done, and have absolutely no allergies to any dairy at all.
I like soy milk more than cow milk, and goat milk more than cow (unless it is with brownies, then I like cow milk better than the others.)
Saying humans are the only creatures to drink milk past childhood is laughable to anyone that has ever owned a cat. Lots of animals happily drink milk. We are just the only ones with thumbs to get it without nursing.
I wouldn't be opposed to cannibalism if it wasn't for diseases or law breaking. In fact, I think eating convicts would be a lot cheaper than a costly funeral after execution. (I'm also not strictly pro-death penalty, but only because it costs the state more to get such a punishment as opposed to life imprisonment.)
I've eaten dog.
And liked it both times.
I am very opposed to trawl fishing.
I helped write a textbook on scuba diving spear fishing.
I do not hunt for sport, only food. (If it was a 'sport' then I'd expect the doe to have a fucking gun, too.)

Um... ok. That is all I can think of now!

Put on your gloves and go to town!

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I have to disagree here. You need to let the children pass puberty and procreate so the food source doesn't diminish. They may taste better, but... you only get children from adults (er... children who've had children at least).

Guys, the answer is simple! We just genetically modify children so they can be artificially bred at a young age, then we have the best of both worlds! YAY! I'm sure it won't harm us to eat genetically modified kids, right?
at what age shall I set the menu to

take care man
Whoa to the theist who comes across this discussion, lol. I can see the headlines now...
Andrew, I have to know, just in case, anyway they believe their god will stop me eating their kids.
I almost said oh my God!lol.....
I Don’t Know!

I don’t know all the answers. No human does; that is why I keep asking the hard questions. My blog’s on diet certainly caused a storm of debate. The evidence that I found on animal and human physiology appeared to be very clear on comparative anatomy of carnivores and herbivores. From "The Comparative Anatomy of Eating", by Milton R. Mills, MD. When examining the jaw and teeth structures, chemical analysis of saliva digestive enzymes, intestinal length, stomach digestive enzymes, stomach acidity levels, mastication verses swallowing, colon size shape and length, liver function, Kidney function and urine concentration levels, sharp claws verses flattened nails or blunt hooves his finding seem conclusive. Obviously he had put a lot of time and research in to his findings. In fact I have spent several days trying to find his research materials. As far as I can tell they are unavailable on line. Next I tried to research his findings for myself using the Internet. Most of the information was too vague to be of much use. If anyone can direct me to a scientific source for this information I would be grateful. My next step is to contact Milton R. Mills, MD. and see if he will send me his reference list.

I found his article and findings all over the Internet. The only place that I found anyone who disputed his finding were an article on “Second Opinion” were MacGregor R. Structure of the Meat Animals . The Technical Press Ltd. London, 1952 was the reference source. I will include a link at the end. With a little research I found that his anatomy of digestive tracts did not coincide with any of the university web sites information. There we a number of forums that I looked at that provided no scientific findings or research to back up their opposing arguments. Mostly emotional based comments.

As best as I can tell there is a real augment among the scientists, anthropologists, and biologists as to where humans find themselves in this debate of herbivore or carnivore. Most believe that humans are omnivore.

The best answer that I found was on Wiki Answers: It said that humans can be both carnivore or herbivore. It seems too simple but it is obvious that humans can survive and live on either plant diets alone, or diets containing plant and animal products. Which is best? The debate will rage on I am sure.

As of the last 16 years I have been a vegan. I was born into a vegetarian household. My father had turned vegetarian in 1937. My mother turned vegetarian in 1956 the year she married my father. My father died a few months before his 90th birthday. He had always been active and healthy with no signs of arthritis. He never needed to take any prescription drugs. Always remained slender, his blood pressure always stayed about 120/80 or less. He eventually died from complications related to a blood clot in his bladder.
My mother is 84 years young and still teaches dance twice a week. Her mind is sharp and clear; she is slender healthy and enjoys learning new things all the time.

From all that I have read and studied and experienced I am betting on my vegan lifestyle to keep me healthy, happy and active into a very old age. At present I am 53 years old with low blood pressure perfect body mass index and running the legs off of cyclists years younger than myself and I feel great. Both my doctor and I think veganism is working for me. I particularly like the fact that it reduces my impact on the environment.

From what I found in a few minutes of googling, you're not finding any source material for this paper because it was not a scientific paper, but rather a column that Dr Mills wrote for a newspaper. I can't find any reference about any actual scientific research done on the topic by Dr Mills, although I freely admit that my skills at searching for such things are limited to using the normal indexes such as PubMed.

Incidentally, Dr Mills has, from my searches, zero published papers on any subject. From this, I gather that he is a doctor, not a scientist or researcher.

Another link you might be interested in perusing, by the vegetarian John McArdle, Ph.D, from a talk he gave on why humans are omnivores and the common myth about humans being naturally herbivores.
And even a close relative of ours is an omnivore. The Chimpanzee is known to snack on monkeys. Also, they are known, on rare occasion, to feast on baby chimps from other groups. So we share not only omnivorism with them, but cannibalism, too!

Now, I am not sure if omnivorism was a trait of our most common ancestor or is convergent, but I'd be willing to bet a small sum on the former.
Thanks for the link. Informative.
Looking at your post you raise two points in favour of eating meat:
-Historically humans have eaten meat.
-Humans are capable of eating and digesting meat.

History doesn't make something right. There are a lot of things that have been done in the past that have since been found to be wrong. Slavery is one example.

The ability to do something doesn't make it right. This is particularly true if you think we weren't designed by some god, there is no 'design intention' just features of evolution. That we evolved with an ability doesn't make it ethically correct to use it. Nature did what it did without thought or consideration, without conscience or morality. (If you're a creationist then you can second guess what the creator wanted us to eat and what we were "meant" to do. Any argument would be wasted on a creationist however, hence the parentheses.) Keep in mind that there are lots of things we are capable of doing that aren't right.

There are some points in favour of not eating meat:

-Agricultural resources
This is generally measured in terms of land. There is a food shortage in the world, but it's not something we see due to western economic power. It takes far more land to support an omnivorous diet than a vegetarian one. This issue concerns humans rather than animals, so is an issue no matter your stance on the treatment of animals.

-Treatment of animals
This is a difficult point to argue. The crux of this issue is how much does farming or hunting infringe on animal's lives and how much does unnatural pain and suffering for animals matter. An issue for a separate debate?

-Health benefits
I've seen this argued either way and it would take some effort to filter the bad science from the good science. However I do feel vegetarian food is more healthy.

-The choice
We have a freedom to choose either way. We can go vegetarian if we want. We won't starve or die or have adverse health effects by going vegetarian.
As far as health goes, I know that being a vegetarian has helped me to lose weight and keep it off. That's the substantial reason that I am a vegetarian, because I don't think that I on an individual level can change anything that is happening to animals right now that shouldn't. Also, i just don't really like meat that much, so it makes for an easy, cut-and dry diet that is good for my appearance.

If that's helping the world, that's great, but I don't think that enough people will ever be vegetarians to make a difference. The meat industry is known for doing terrible things, but it is them doing these things, not those who eat their product. I suppose I see how one would think that eating meat is condoning the behavior of the meat industry, but I don't see any solution. Assuming that it were possible for a significant amount of people to abstain from meat for life, I'm apt to believe that it would throw off the fiscal and environmental balance of the world and cause an entirely new set of problems. It's hard to say at what point of balance things "should" ideally be to correct past damage or prevent this damage further.


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