Since you were young, you might have heard people saying that beans are good for your heart. Well, indeed beans produce more gas in your tummy which results in making you fart, but you might want to risk farting than having heart attack.
Apparently, beans are not only good for your heart, but they are good for a much bigger thing: the nature. How can beans be good for the nature? Well, in this case we have to make an equal comparison based on human nutritional needs.
The thing is, beans can be compared to one of humans’ most favorite food, meat. In other words, we can say that our farts are better than cow farts. How can it be possible? That’s why in this article we are going to talk about this topic.
Yes, turns out that our farts are better than cow farts, because cow farts contribute a lot in global greenhouse gas emission. Since cows are eating grasses, straws, and other kinds of plant-based foods, their digestion system produces a lot of methane as the result.
What can the animal do to release the gas in their tummies instead of farting? However, animal farts are not the only problem here, farm-related activities can also produce methane, along with other greenhouse gasses like nitrous oxide and carbon dioxide.
In example, the manure of livestock contributes greatly to methane production all around the world annually. Most of the methane is going to be released into the atmosphere if not being processed well and ends up making our planet warmer.
And such kind of thing happens every day and night all around the world. In fact, livestock farming contributes around 6 billion tons of greenhouse gasses like carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide to the atmosphere every year.
It has happened for centuries, but the difference with this modern day is that modern day farming activities include a lot more livestock and produce more greenhouse gasses. Turns out that modernization is not always a good thing.
On this planet, around 20 billion animals are raised in the farm owned by around 1.3 billion farmers. Farming actually contributes to around half of this world’s economic product from agriculture. From the number, we are allowed to assume that this kind of business is a successful one in this modern world.
The success is the reason why we keep seeing meat everywhere, the demands for meat is also high and comparable to the production rate. While in fact, the demands keep on increasing year to year and it is projected to grow to 70% by the year 2050.
If the prediction is true, then by the year 2050 livestock will contribute to even more of greenhouse gasses to the atmosphere. Will it result in bigger destruction to the earth? Some of us might have the guts to say ‘yes’.
The question is, why meat becomes such a valuable thing that even we risk our planet to keep eating it? There are two reasons why people are having such a great affection toward meat, first is because of its nutritional value and the second is because meat is ‘sophisticated’.
Yes, apparently meat is not only considered a ‘good’ food because of its nutritional value but also because of its ‘prestige’. We can see it from how expensive five-star restaurants are charging for a piece of their medium rare steak.
Apple To Apple
We can’t say much about the ‘prestige’ of meat, but prestige is not something that will make you live longer and happier. The only thing that we can realistically count is the nutritional value of meat, and this is going to be our main point of view.
Meat indeed contains important proteins and amino acid required by our bodies to work well. But beans can also give you the required amount of protein with many other benefits. Even in a cup-to-cup comparison, beans can give you more nutrition than meat.
In example, soybeans are one of the richest protein sources in the world. From just one and a half cups of boiled soybeans, you can get about 43 grams of protein. You need to eat a 5-ounce-steak in one serving to get that amount of protein from meat.
Not only protein, beans also contain dietary fiber and zero amount of cholesterol. Plus, while steak has no carbohydrate, beans have complex carbohydrate which is good for your body. Put in comparisons that beans are much better nutritional bargain compared to meat because of the price differential.
If only people don’t see meat as a more ‘sophisticated’ food, beans might have been a trend and starvation might have never existed. Not only that, there is also a possibility that this world could have been better, environmentally speaking.
Green Version Of Meat
We have mentioned many times above that beans are nicer to the nature compared to meat, and it includes the fact that cows fart. You might wonder how could we say that, and here is the answer to that question.
A study conducted by a group of researchers found out that swapping meat with beans can help us to meet upwards of 50% emission targets by 2020. “This is probably the first time that beans have been identified as a gas-reducing measure,” said Helen Harwatt, the lead author of the study.
50% is a big number in this case, even though that’s still not enough to completely eradicate our worries about climate change. The number came from shorter production process of beans, in addition to the fact that beans don’t fart or produce manure.
The good news is that the trend has already begun in United States. “Beef consumption is already declining in the United States, so these types of food shifts are just going with this trend and speeding it up due to the added urgency of climate change mitigation,” said Harwatt.
Joan Sabaté, executive director of Loma Linda University’s center for nutrition and the co-author of the study mentioned that only by swapping meat for beans can also help us to maintain our ‘modern life’. “The nation could achieve more than half of its greenhouse gas reduction goals without imposing any new standards on automobiles or manufacturing,” he said.
So, are we getting through this positive change nowadays? Maybe. If you want to be a part of the change, then what you need to do is to start doing it from yourself.