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A friend new to veganism needs convincing on why eggs and fish are bad for health

He is transitioning from SAD to vegan and is sometimes hungry for those foods. No ethical explanation will convince him. My arguments about cheese made him give it up, but now he is thinking about fish and eggs.

He thinks cholestorole and cancer are extreme examples. It needs to be more general and somewhat scientific of why they are bad for health.

I don't need convincing, so don't know.

Any ideas?



  • Fish contain high levels of mercury and can poison the body, particularly the liver. Fish is high in fat (despite what the SAD community tells you) and can raise cholesterol and triglyceride levels. The oceans are also being fished to death, we've experience 90% loss of fish population since the 1950s. Fish also live in polluted water, so when you eat the fish you take in all the pollutants that fish swam in for its life. Thats a big problem with farm raised fish, they live their whole life in a small tank swimming in their own ick.

    Eggs are baby chickens, not food. Would you eat a human embryo, a horse embryo, a pig embryo?? I think not. Plus most egg production keeps chickens in tiny cages where they cant even move, lose all their feathers and get shat on by the chickens in the crates above. Most eggs are also pasteurized before shipping to extend shelf life. True eggs will go off quite quickly otherwise. The pasteurization, like all other things, kills the nutrients that one would normally get from them.

    If you can't get him to give up the eggs, try and get him to at least switch to free range organic, local eggs.

  • one good point that i often fail to remember is ethically for the environment. some people may argue it is okay to kill one animal once in a while but factory farms are entirely unnatural and produce more pollution than all automobiles put together!

    natural foods are all rich in sources of fiber but fish and eggs have no fiber. fiber is what gives the intestines something to push around in the stomach. since theres nothing to push around it gets trapped in the intestine and rots. all sort of nasty things are produced when it rots. really toxic stuff.

  • If he is responsive to ethical arguments like you say--- the egg industry is one of the worst in terms of cruelty... Chickens bred for meat often live on the floor (a nasty crowded floor with their beaks chopped off)-- but egg-laying hens spend their whole lives in a cage, being covered in the feces of those above them, are pumped full of hormones so they can lay the eggs, and never once are able to stretch their wings!! -- wait-- they may be able to finally do that on the way to be slaughtered...

    and for fish-- fishing is depleting the earth's fish stocks at an unbelievable rate-- and moreover, fishing practices ALWAYS end up killing other marine animals that they are not aiming to catch... it is a very destructive and cruel business. As for farm-raised fish-- they are forced to swim in and end up eating bodily wastes--- and then people eat the fish...?? yum

  • Advise him to read "The China Study" by Dr. T. Colin Campbell as to the numerous scientifically proven reasons not to eat any animal products, including eggs and fish. Seemingly odd name for it, but the book is full of scientific and medical studies from across the U.S and world over a forty year period, many done by our own gov't but then not distributed to the public and the media. Unfortunatley I have loaned mine out to an aquaintance to read so cannot look up the info/studies on those two specifics. The book is what caused me to go vegan years ago. Started for the health benefits, now just as passionate about the animals and the belief in living peacefully with all... so perhaps he, too, may change his mind about the ethical benefit of eating/living peacefully in time. Good luck and congrats on being a positive influence, helping him get healthier and cut down on his meat consumption. :)

  • I'm confused about what works and what doesn't - if he's concerned about health, why is he not concerned about cholesterol, for instance? Or saturated fat? What does he mean by "extreme examples"?

    What about foodborne illness, like salmonella? That's more extreme than cholesterol.

    Fish and shellfish - ditto the contaminants, environmental toxins, and now traces of pharmaceuticals that have permeated the water supply. http://tinyurl.com/cal5u8

    Increased egg consumption linked to mortality


    He doesn't sound like he's transitioning to a vegan diet, he sounds like he's giving up meat (other than fish). That's cool. Maybe that's all he's ready to do at this time. You can't push people to do something they aren't ready to do, it won't "stick."

  • I know someone gave you a book suggestion, but one of my favorites is Diet For a New America by John Robbins as in Baskin Robbins. He was heir to the family biz, but instead denied his position and pursued his passion for veganism. If you haven't read it, it's a really good book, you'll find all kinds of info you can give him.

  • Thanks, guys.

    He says after day two he is not feeling so hot.

    Even if he is not raw, is he detoxing from dairy, coffee, and sugar?

  • BluedolfinBluedolfin Raw Newbie


    ABSOLUTELY!!! His body is addicted to the foods he has stopped eating and/or is starting to "wake up" to the toxic build up. Many chemicals and foods cause a "numbing" effect in the body. The detox might last for a bit and that is where the fortitude comes in.. or this "round" of detox could be short. For info on detoxing, goto http://goneraw.com/node/7725. Very important to increase water consumption (PLAIN water or water with fresh lemon juice). A rule of thumb for "adequate" water intake is 1/2 body weight in ounces (eg. a 100 pound person drinks 50 (100/2) ounces of water)... now I need to go and figure this out in the metric system for someone I was talking with just this morning. HELP!!! lol

    To your wellness...

    PS. How is the paper going? Please share some of your insights when you are done. :)

    EDIT: For those in the metric system... re: water consumption formula... drink 1/3 your Kg weight in liters. A 45 Kg person (100 pounds) consumes ~1.5 liters of water (50 ounces). I think that is right... anyone? I so wish the US would go to metric... I know, I know... cost of converting... but the cost to the brain to try to use the English system. Oy! lol

  • I haven't ever seen any "proof" that eggs or fish are "bad for you". I've read a lot of the China Study, but I have also heard that he twisted things a bit (who knows?), and there are at least as many or more sources that suggest that including some organic animal products in the diet brings greater health than veganism. People who choose veganism generally do so because of ethical issues.

    Definitely, if a person stops consuming toxic foods, there will be a period of detox. It doesn't take a 100% raw vegan diet to allow detox of those other substances.

  • BluedolfinBluedolfin Raw Newbie


    The operative word is "organic" eggs and fish (never heard of organic fish though [I might have read that wrong]...maybe wild in clean waters vs farm raised or from polluted waters). In addition to the conditions, and due to the conditions, that animals are raised in, they are given hormones and antibiotics. It might not be the consumption of the actual "meat" that is prodominate stress in the body, but the drugs the meat contains. In the area of the actual meat, there is evidence that BBQed meats contain carcinogenics and other harmful substances.

    One can be as unhealthy consuming a raw vegan diet as someone consuming fast food. "Junk food" is not limited to non-raw/vegan food nor are all raw vegan foods "good" (and/or nutritionally dense) for someone. One wins the game of wellness by giving the body what it needs, however that looks. There is a whole continuum of options to obtain and maintain different levels of wellness in addition to other non-food options such as getting rid of or reducing toxins in the home. A person shifting their eating habits can enter into a detox situation. Carnap did mention sugar and coffee in addition to dairy... the sudden and radical exclusion of which some people experience a very intense "detox." How many people out there have experienced headaches or feel crappy when getting off sugar and caffeine? *fin waving wildly* :)

  • Do a little research on the effects consuming animal protein has on the human body. Basically it plugs us up. Not just our main arteries, the obvious ones that the genius doctors (plumbers*) have figured out how to cut on. It's the billions of tiny ones that touch every millimeter of you inside and out, these are the one's that you should worry about. 'Cause the small ones plug up first. Our blood carries the fuel to our cells. Guess what happens to the cells that the blood can't get to anymore? Weak Cells = Pizza for Cancer!

    What about the tiny, tiny ones in your brain? When they plug up... that's right Stroke!!! or senility, etc.

    Or you buddy can just go on believing that all the Health problems of our parents are a normal and natural part of life and just part of aging!

    Cheers, Chris

    *Sorry to all plumbers everywhere.

  • Bluedolfin -

    thanks for asking. I might have to abstain from internet for awhile, because I have to finish the paper, and study for loooottttss of things I just realized are gonna take me hours and hours a day.

    Spring break ! And for us, that means work.

    Bye for now.

  • If he is feeling cruddy or experiencing flu-like symptoms, its detox for sure. When my friend went cold-tofurkey into veganism, he detoxed so hard that he was very ill (bedridden) for two weeks. At the end he felt better than he ever had. Recommend naps, yoga, and meditating to your friend, it will help to alleviate the symptoms. And let him know that this is normal and that radiant health awaits him after the healing crisis.

  • The Okinawans , with the healthiest most longest living centenarians, eat a little fish and eggs.

    So people can say this and that without any evidence to back it up.

    But can the people on this site honestly say that they will live healthier and longer than the longest living people who do eat fish and eggs??

    Where's the proof??

    Here's the link:


    I would rather follow something that is proven to work , then what people "think that works".

    But again , we must listen to our bodies. Right now my body says "feed me". lol

  • Yes, rawcanadian. The Sardinians and the Seventh-day Adventist are the two other groups that produce the most centenarians (like the Okinawans). Of the three groups, only one is mixed vegetarian & vegan (with vegetarians living 7 years longer and vegans living 10 years longer than the average SADer). However, I think this may change since more Seventh-day Adventist may be eating meat (clean/unclean).


  • Personally, it's all in the ikigai - Japanese word for "the reason for living."

    (from the video link above)

    As aspire mentioned, China Study is a good read too!

  • My friend just told me he only drinks one glass of water a day. I told him his kidneys were going to suffer. I told him his new vegan diet was not going to help as fast if he did not start drinking a liter and a half, at least, of water a day.

    All that and I only got him drinking two glasses a day.

    He does not feel thirst.

    He is so frustratingly stubborn. I don't know how to tell him why it is so important, he only listens if I give him fifty reasons a day for fifty days...

  • sv3sv3

    Carnap, I think it's great you are trying to help your friend but sometimes you can only do so much.

    I have tried (sometimes subtly and other times not so subtly!) to encourage friends/family with healthy eating and there are some who listen and take things on board and others who just think I'm odd or slightly obsessed. At the end of the day, all you can do is offer your thoughts/advice - then the rest is up to them. People have to want to do these things for themselves for it to work out in the long term. :-)

  • Rawcanadian, you said, "The Okinawans , with the healthiest most longest living centenarians, eat a little fish and eggs," and it seems as if you considered that proof that "a little" fish and eggs are healthy; however, you don't know how these people would react, negatively or positively, if they STOP eating fish and eggs, so there is no proof either way (not that *I* need any; I don't).

  • The main reason I won't eat fish is because fish makes you stink like fish, lol.

    Eggs...they actually make my stomach hurt. I just can't eat them anymore. You should tell him to start checking after he eats stuff for how it makes him feel, how it's digesting, how it's exiting, and even if it's affecting his mood, energy etc. If he can become an expert at that, then he won't need science and facts and theories....not that those aren't interesting 'n all.

  • Actually, today he told me his nose was running and he was shocked that my prediction of mucus discharge from going off dairy came true !!!

    He then said "I'm vegan and proud".

    He's convinced now !!!

  • My heart hurts reading some of these answers. I just sent this to my Mom to help better educate her on this topic. She went vegetarian but still consumes fish... and dairy products: eggs, cheese, milk, etc. and without sounding like a preacher it was safer to send her here. Anyhow, reading about the cruelty to innocent livestock really created a deep hurt and sadness for the abuse happening. I am fully aware it's been going on forever but when you see it and read it - it goes right to the heart... well for those who care. I often wonder where love has gone in a world with so much carelessness and selfishness... Sorry, not the best energy in this comment but abuse isn't something I feel positive about. The only positive in abuse is stopping it... creating change. Thanks to everyone here who cares.

  • i think sometimes people do well with a gradual change. In high school i gave up red meat. Then i read Fit For Life and went vegetarian right afterwards and so on.. now it depresses me when i am not able to be 100% (RAW). Depending on how mainstream he is regarding the SAD diet and the changes involved, i would keep introducing healthy things and i would think his body would want to adjust eventually. i was just on the other thread about smoothies first thing in the morning and we all agreed that it kicked our cravings. It sounds to me like he is in an early stage since he is going from meat eater to raw. That's a big jump and i think it's pretty amazing that he would consider such a big change. Good luck!

    If that doesn't work, there are always one of those HORRIBLE chicken videos or of course the very scary worm pictures on the internet.

  • i think introducing someone to how great it feels to drink smoothies, eat natural foods and such is more effective than calling them a murderer. I commend groups like PETA on their tremendous effort, but i think most people hear opposition and close their ears to change. In my humble opinion, a friendly conversation about what is healthy is more effective than saying, "hey stop! that's evil! you are wrong! you should be like me!" That just makes mainstreamers see us as crazy people sometimes, even though one might have the best of intentions. We would all like to see the day that greasy burger commercials are a thing of the past.

  • Has anyone seen this yet? An undercover investigation of a large egg factory farm in Maine, USA. Very sad! It was hard to watch. Unfortunately, this is not an isolated case. It just happened to be documented. This kind of severe cruelty is rampet throughout all factory farms.


    Hi RawDance, you're not alone. I also feel so much hurt and sadness for all the innocent animals that suffer on modern day factory farms. But I do my best to lead by example and share with as many people as I can, the lovely raw vegan food that is possible.





  • Good point, very very very wise point of view. Thanks for sharing "Readingatwork"

    This really is the best form of communication and if one is not able and stable to sit down in a calm manner and help guide someone questioning or transitioning then it's best to refer to them to people who can (exactly why I sent my Mom to this post). Otherwise the energy can become judgemental, pressurizing and very self-oriented in the sense of one's own eating and food values. To each their own. Thank you for this reminder... it reminds me to slow down and think before I speak out of anger towards the food industry or orthorexic obsessions.

    Anyhow, we don't know each other but I wanted to show you some gratitude for your comment on this post and let you know how it effected me, a stranger, in response to reading it. Thank you, I needed it today... big time.

    Pink Tutu Twirls,


  • Aww. That's very kind, Johnny. Pink TuTu Twirls- love it!

  • I was a raw vegan for almost 5 years and I developed hypothyroidism. I'm a lacto-vegitarian now, on a trial basis, and I'm doing better. There are food toxins in raw food that, if not prepared correctly (soaking, sprouting, fermenting, cooking), can cause physical illness. I eat a variety of cooked vegetables, eggs, quinoa and I still eat raw produce several times a week. The issue is health, not adhering to a particular diet if it isn't working. We are individuals, not machines. Diet is adaptable.

  • That may be fine for you, but when I eat dairy I turn into a moody mess. This is due to the simple fact that milk contains natural hormones meant for the cow to grow...

    I know I'm not a machine, thank you. But I also know I'm not a cow. And I am not longer dumb enough to put something in my mouth that makes me feel like garbage.

    And I am not even suggesting to my friend he go raw. He eats cooked vegan.

    However, you are making me freak out about this thyroid thing.

    Anyone else have that happen?

  • I don't eat dairy. I don't eat processed foods. I don't eat wheat or anything containing gluten or gliadin and I don't eat corn or potatoes. I still try to combine foods correctly. I just stopped eating raw foods with goitrogens (cruciferous vegetables, a few fruits and seeds). Cabbage has goitrogens that are intensified when cooked so I don't ever eat it anymore. There are plenty of foods that supply nutrition without eating those few on a regular basis.

    I was adding Boku, green powder, to my smoothies. It is made up of some of the goitrogens and I started noticing more symptoms after I had been taking it for awhile. That led me to the discovery that I should alter my diet. I added colloidal iodine and EFAs (made from anchovies). I have improved steadily but slowly.

    I eat coconut in small amounts because it causes a die-off reaction if I eat a large portion at one time. The same thing happens if I use the oil. I have candida overgrowth and coconut is anti-viral, anti-fungal, anti-bacterial and anti-yeast. I lowered my fruit intake and I only eat quinoa or brown rice occasionally.

    I got an email from a friend who treats her thyroid with an anti-oxalate diet. I haven't tried that but there are some foods in that category that I don't eat regularly anyway. I'm going to give it a shot. Meat, fats and eggs dominate the diet and the meat issue has kept me away from it for the most part.

    It was not my intention to imply that you are a machine but that is how a doctor who practices the Newtonian principle of medicine views a patient. I was rebuffing that philosophy.

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