Indian textbook denigrates meat-eaters on Biblical grounds, claims carnivores are dishonest, lying sex criminals

November 16, 2012 • 3:18 pm

This falls under the category of LOLz, because I don’t know if this book will ever be used. Nevertheless, according to the BBC News, a new textbook has been published in India with some, well, peculiar viewpoints. The book, New Healthway by David S. Poddar, is, as the BBC notes, aimed at 11 and 12 year-olds and printed by one of India’s leading publishers.

The book in question.

It’s not know whether any schools have bought the book, but those that do will have some ‘splaining to do.

“The strongest argument that meat is not essential food is the fact that the Creator of this Universe did not include meat in the original diet for Adam and Eve. He gave them fruits, nuts and vegetables,” reads a chapter entitled Do We Need Flesh Food?

The chapter details the “benefits” of a vegetarian diet and goes on to list “some of the characteristics” found among non-vegetarians.

“They easily cheat, tell lies, forget promises, they are dishonest and tell bad words, steal, fight and turn to violence and commit sex crimes,” it says.

The chapter, full of factual inaccuracies, refers to Eskimos (Inuit) as “lazy, sluggish and short-lived”, because they live on “a diet largely of meat”.

It adds: “The Arabs who helped in constructing the Suez Canal lived on wheat and dates and were superior to the beef-fed Englishmen engaged in the same work.”

The publishers, S Chand, did not respond to the BBC’s requests for a comment.

I wouldn’t respond, either! I tried to track down David S. Poddar, and there’s a likely candidate on Facebook, but I haven’t “friended” him.  Poddar’s “about” section, open to the public, says this:

And since when did Hindus (the target audience) accept the story of Genesis?

h/t: James

110 thoughts on “Indian textbook denigrates meat-eaters on Biblical grounds, claims carnivores are dishonest, lying sex criminals

  1. Very similar to Seventh-day Adventist beliefs as encouraged by their prophet/plagiarist-in-chief, Ellen White.

    1. Nope, according to the BBC (I’ve added this above, the book “is printed by one of India’s leading publishers.”

      1. S. Chand is a major publisher of high school textbooks in India (my school used some of their maths texts). Indeed they are big enough for other textbook publishers to try to have similar sounding names.

        As for the target audience being “Hindus”, that is not true. Only about 80% of the country is even nominally Hindu. Further, many private schools are run by Christian Churches. I think this was just a case of poor editorial practice by the publication house.

  2. I don’t eat most meat except for seafood. I only lie and cheat part of the time. My sex crimes are limited to weekends and holidays because of my diet.

  3. I eat plenty of meat, on most days of the week, and I’m the worst kind of heathen anti-christian bad person of the lot. I spend as much of my spare time as I can muster doing mathematics, the science of Satan. Bwa-ha-ha-(yawn)-ha-ha

  4. I can reveal that David S. Poddar (which sounds suspiciously like an anagram) is none other than the Coptic Gospel’s wife of Jesus; for ‘he’ admits himself that he’s waiting for Jesus to come.

    Whether the Passover Lamb ever minted vegetarianism within Judeo-Christianity is an abstruse theological issue; I rather think not. There was far too much coming in the flesh going on 2,000 years ago.

      1. “dad’s avid prod”, which is, of course, the title of the Poddar’s Sex Education chapter.

        ‘Poddar’ is the noun derived from the verb ‘to pod’, meaning to inseminate, whilst vegetarianistically, considering the benefits of nuts, vide Poddar 2012; in the evolution of English, it has developed a pejorative undertone (several recent sources refer to the ‘P-word’), not to mention a post-1970s double entendre.

        Natheless, ‘poddar’ remains common ‘street’ slang, one of the few words derived from an author’s name to have entered the English language (see Dickens and ‘Dickensian’).

      1. If you’re eating humus, doesn’t that make you more of a saprophage? Hard to tell what had been animal or vegetable at that stage.

    1. Glad to hear it – I used to hear so much BS from vegans – some of them perfectly nice people, even if full of “New Age Fruitloopery”.

        1. You know … I’m not even sure that we have a sweet called fruit loops? The term “New Age Fruitloopery” has been used by the back-page commentator in the UK’s New Scientist for a good number of years ; I’ve never thought about it’s etymology before now.
          We (used to?) have a boiled sweet (sugar ; flavouring ; not necessarily non-vegan) formed into loops as a “fruit version of “Polo Mints”. But I haven’t looked at a packet in the shops for I-don’t-know-how-long, so what the exact ingredient list is, I don’t know.
          But since I need to go to the supermarket … I’ll look. If they have a sweet counter.

            1. I’ll make an excursion to the cereal section especially for the sight. I hadn’t thought of a pulped maize sludge brand. Doubt I’d eat it though (oatmeal porridge or scramble-on-toast for me).

    1. Dunno what they call it in the US of A but here in Britland we have Kentucky Fried Chicken, KFC, the front for the ever-avuncular and cuddly Colonel Sanders, a distant semi-literate, or plain diphthong-deficient relation, no doubt, of my dearly beloved.

      ‘Boneless Banquet’, they call the enticing bucket of chicken which they flog to the drunken, penniless masses. The under-strap trumpets, ‘A Banquet for One!’ Yummee!

  5. It seems like the author was trying to relate to meat eaters the same way we sometimes relate to Christians by using the Bible to try to make a point. For instance, in defense of veganism, I might first point out that Jesus was vegetarian in the Gospels of the Nazarenes (which was left on the cutting room floor when the put the Bible together); but even I would not use the Garden of Eden silliness (yet I know of an otherwise intelligent vegan author who did try to reach out to Christians by using it). We tend to baby them too much!
    Many vegans try to make being vegan into some sort of religion where a person like me has to be gentle all the time, or take up Buddhism, but being vegan is not a religion! It is simply not eating or using any animal products.
    That author used the same list of “sins” against meat eaters that Creationists use against atheists!
    Too goofy!

    1. Just as long as you are aware that vegans as a group sacrifice 2-3 years of their life for … well, whatever they do it for.

      “Research studies ever since the 1950s have shown that a Mediterranean diet, based on a high consumption of fish and vegetables and a low consumption of land-animal based products such as meat and milk, leads to better health.”

      “The results show that those who eat a Mediterranean diet have a 20% higher chance of living longer.
      “This means in practice that older people who eat a Mediterranean diet live an estimated 2 3 years longer than those who don’t,” says Gianluca Tognon, scientist at the Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg.”

      And there were _4_ of those studies, involving several thousands of people over many decades.

      By the way, how is believing that an extreme food regime is as good as any other, without having evidence, not a religion? If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird of the family Anatidae on our hands.

      1. The jury is out in this one. See, for example, http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12936945

        “Our review of the 6 studies found the following trends: 1) a very low meat intake was associated with a significant decrease in risk of death in 4 studies, a nonsignificant decrease in risk of death in the fifth study, and virtually no association in the sixth study; 2) 2 of the studies in which a low meat intake significantly decreased mortality risk also indicated that a longer duration (>/= 2 decades) of adherence to this diet contributed to a significant decrease in mortality risk and a significant 3.6-y (95% CI: 1.4, 5.8 y) increase in life expectancy; and 3) the protective effect of a very low meat intake seems to attenuate after the ninth decade. Some of the variation in the survival advantage in vegetarians may have been due to marked differences between studies in adjustment for confounders, the definition of vegetarian, measurement error, age distribution, the healthy volunteer effect, and intake of specific plant foods by the vegetarians.”

      2. So, it is certainly not the case that a statement like “vegans as a group sacrifice 2-3 years of their life” has proven to any reasonable degree of confidence. Indeed, one might argue that current evidence suggests that minimizing or eliminating meat intake (at least) might be a very good idea.

        1. the study you cited was speaking of LOW meat-protein intake diets.

          not NO meat intake protein diets.

          not at all the same things, so you can’t make the same claims.

          sorry, no win.

          1. I wonder where I made any claims at all: Torbhorn L seemed to be making all the claims, most of them unfounded and based on a biased look at the evidence, to try to make it look lopsided in favor of his favorite cuisines (I would think).

            I am sorry, but no matter what you might want to believe, the only consistent bit in all these dietary studies seems to be is that lowering meat intake is a good idea. On the question of whether vegetarians or non-vegetarians live longer, the evidence seems to be divided.

            I am well past the stage where I would declare a “win” or “no win” in a scientific argument when only this much of evidence is available. If you are not past that stage, that is your problem, not mine.

      3. As far as I know most studies show a vegetarian diet to increase people’s life span, with a number of caveats. But even in any case your article doesn’t say what you claim it says because they “compare 70-year-olds who eat a Mediterranean diet with others who have eaten more meat and animal products.” Vegans eat less animal products so the results there say nothing about vegans or vegetarians.

        1. Studies do indicate that vegans live the longest, and the countries on starch based diets have healthy elders. Spend time on Dr. McDougall’s site and see all the evidence. I enjoy looking under “medical info” then “hot topics” at all the articles.
          The Meditteranean diet does well despite all that olive oil and fatty fish because of the starches like breads, pastas and vegetables and fruits. Oil is oil and it is not a whole food. It will close arteries and is very high in calorie. Fish has dioxins, mercury, fat, cholesterol and all sorts of poisons from the lakes. Fish farms are overcrowded and spread diseases as well.
          But I am not a vegan for the health benefits – that is a bonus. After watching 4 factory farm videos (I have watched many more since then), I felt I morally should be vegan, and I have not been sorry one day of these past three years.
          There are a lot of suspect studies out there, and when you see one saying that “milk does a body good” and then realize that the countries with highest milk consumption have the most osteoporosis and broken bones, you have to pause and wonder. It always pays to see who funds the studies!

          1. so much misinformation in your post.

            starting with “oil is oil”.

            this simply is not true at all.

            not in any, way, shape or form.

            let alone dietary differences in oil.

            and, if you are a vegan, you eat a LOT of oil still, don’t kid yourself.

            1. Lance Armstrong also only had one ball after his cancer surgery. Have Armstrong and Hitler ever been seen together in the same room?

    1. Actually, no he wasn’t. This is one of those urban myths that refuses to die no matter how much evidence is wheeled out.

      Not that it would indicate anything even if Hitler *had* been vegetarian, of course. But still, the point is that it’s simply factually incorrect to call Hitler a vegetarian.

      1. I’m sure Hitler, like many vegetarians, had occasional slips, but he appears to have been a life-long vegetarian. I know of only one biographer who questioned Hitler’s vegetarianism – and that biographer was a vegetarian himself. Hitler certainly thought of himself as a vegetarian and his secretary, Traudl Junge, who may have known him best, described him as a vegetarian.
        Anyway, it doesn’t really matter. I was simply making a joke. I guess the point is that being a vegetarian, like anything else, doesn’t make you a great person in and of itself.

        1. Hitler ate squab, liver dumplings, ham, caviar and sausages. Not a vegetarian. But I am sure there are some criminal and murderous vegetarians out there.

          1. Not the way I heard it. One of the Mitford sisters was buds with Der Fuhrer. She said when they would lunch with friends and someone ordered soup with meat in it Hitler would ask if they were really going to eat their “corpse stew.” The fact that people would feel comfortable ordering meat dishes implies that Hitler was not dogmatic about his vegetarianism.

  6. If Adam and Eve had been meat eaters with a preference for snake meat, they would have avoided a world of trouble.

    1. A careful reading of Genesis 2 & 3 will reveal that the serpent told the truth to Eve, and God lied to Adam (if you eat the forbidden fruit, you will die that very day).

  7. Now I’m confused.

    Recently a large epidemic study resulted in that you lived longest on Mediterranean diet (as in ‘a little bit of everything’), while eating too much meats or greens cut your life short several years. It was a large study and they could take out the confounds.

    Does this means we can reject hinduism and “christianism” both? Or only one of them and if so – which?

    I wish the religious could make their minds up on what their religions are, and what they are themselves. Confused at the very least, deluded would others say.

    1. The problem is red meat I think. The more you eat it, the more your stomach has to work to digest it, pork being the worst on that scale. On a long term, the stomach gets tired used and because it is the motor of the body, it can only affect your health sooner or later. But genetic of course plays its role.

      Fish and poultry don’t cost as much as red meat to be digested. I reduced a lot my red meat consumption, to zero for a few years, but I love it so much… But I try most of the time to stick to fish and chicken, or no meat at all…

        1. The stomach by digesting the food, and by distributing to the body what the body needs, acts like a motor.

          Red meat requires more energy and more job to the stomach to digest than fish or vegetables. That is one of the reason why on a long term red meat is more damageable to the stomach than what isn’t red meat.

          1. “The stomach by digesting the food, and by distributing to the body what the body needs, acts like a motor.”

            No it doesn’t. Motors don’t digest food. Stomachs don’t burn fuel. You need to go check out an introductory biology book. Your understanding of physiology is childish.

            1. C’mon!! Eating gives us energy. And the stomach is the main organ that deals with the transformation of food into energy. That is why we can say that it is “like” a motor. Not a motor but “like” a motor.

              Or maybe my example is bad but it doesn’t change anything to the fact that the stomach transforms food into energy so that the nature of the food you’ll give it has consequences on the stomach on a long term.

              1. Thank you.
                I always thought that food was giving us energy and that the stomach had something to do with digesting food so it can be used as a fuel for the body.

              2. stomachs help break down all food, not just meat, and it makes no difference what the food is, the stomach does the same thing:

                add a protease
                add acid
                mix

                done.

                that’s what your stomach does.

      1. Doesn’t *the quality* of meat have something to do with it? “Organic” v animals who have been pumped full of drugs and fed insane things, like newspapers?

        1. All meats are laced with fat and cholesterol. Even organic. None of them is good for you. Most males have some heart disease. They can even find striations of fat in arteries of children from all the meat and dairy they eat. To get the necessary Omegas, grind a little fresh flax seeds and sprinkle on cereal. So easy and it is a whole food.

          1. again, your own post contradicts itself.

            if *just* meat consumption was factor, then there wouldn’t be a sexual dimorphism exhibited in heart disease.

            you’re lying.

            stop it.

  8. Isn’t there an argument that taking up a meat eating diet was necessary to provide sufficient calories to support the energy needs of a human size brain? Also, I think there are a number of studies that support the idea that a low total calorie diet extends longevity. Has anyone looked at relationship between brain size and development and diet? Is it really true, or just urban legend, that vegans have smaller, less functional brains than we carnivores.

    1. Just so stories. The brain isn’t that costly, about 20% of o2 consumption for a modern not very active person. Hominins were meat eaters long before they had big brains and meat isn’t particularly energy dense compared with seeds and nuts, unless you gorge on fat. Fat that, by the way, is useless as energy for the brain (it requires glucose).

      Brain size isn’t particularly useful in characterizing modern humans.

  9. I do not eat meat because I do not believe in breeding and killing sentient beings simply because I like the taste of their flesh and they are less intelligent than me. The problem of eating meat was posed to both Richard Dawkins and Sam Harris and though they both eat meat currently, (Sam was a vegetarian for many years) they both will freely admit that they have no rational to defend why they do.

    1. It’s beyond human capability to be rational all the time.

      I personally only have a problem with breeding and killing sapient beings for food.

    2. I don’t think ‘sentient’ has a definite meaning, so I haven’t seen a valid argument on those lines.

      You should be aware that many mammals, birds and reptiles (not to mention invertebrates) are killed or displaced by the practice of agriculture, so abstaining from their flesh doesn’t absolve anybody from having caused and benefited from their destruction.

      Palm oil, anyone? The long red hairs have been strained out for your peace of mind. But at least you’re not responsible for breeding more orangutans.

      1. Not a defense at all. Why make excuses for cruelty? Vegans try to avoid palm oil as well, and the small amount of animals unintentionally killed as a result of agricultural equipment is minute compared to the every day torture of the factory farm animal.

    1. I would prefer them not to exist. Wretched methane-farting global-warming water-polluting manure-spreading paddock-trampling pests.

  10. You can “bet your bippie” that, at the heart of this, is an “admonition-attraction” to a particular religion: “People who do as we do are good people, and they live good lives; people who do not do as we do are bad people, and they lead lives of depravity and sin, and will be punished.”

  11. I think the main point of Jerry’s article wasn’t about the health claims, however was about the violent personalities which the author claims are associated with meat eating. So is was about a total lie, rather than a quibble. To quote Jerry, ‘lying for Jesus’.

  12. I’m deeply offended.

    What is a reasonable response to this deeply offensive book?

    Should I burn down the Indian embassy?

    I know that’s a pretty mild sort of reaction, but at least it would be something.

  13. If David S Poddar’s ancesters had not eaten meat then David S Poddar would now be living in a tree and grunting.
    Reading this simply makes me want to say ‘he is talking 5407708’. If you know not what that means, you also, are grunting from a tree.
    Also, prove to me that god exists. More people believe in fairies!

    1. From up here in the branches, WTF? I tried Google, but all I got was a Sun memory part number, a patent number, and some poor geek with a shampoo fetish.

      The elves up here don’t believe in you.

  14. I saw a bumpersticker that said “If God wanted us to be vegetarians he wouldn’t have made animals out of meat.”

    1. For those who remember Flanders and Swann (English musical comedy duo of the 1950s – perhaps best known for the gnu song), there was “The reluctant cannibal”, with the line “if the juju had meant us not to eat people, he wouldn’t have made us of meat”.

  15. Adolf Hitler was a vegeterian.

    So God intended humans to eat only plants, huh? That’s the reason why He made humans with useless appendices. The appendix stores microorganisms necessary to properly digest plants, and God wanted humans to eat plants, so obviously the most logical thing to do was to create humans with atrophied and useless vermiform appendices.
    Of course.

    That’s the same Intellijunt Dezine that made tigers with extremely sharp fangs and teeth, perfect for cutting through flesh and bone, but actually intended for those creatures to eat only grass and boiled potatoes.

    Somehow these people make intelligent design even stupider.

    1. The stomach is always working. The more the food you’ll eat will be easy to digest, the best your stomach will be. The reason why when we eat too much we feel “sleepy” is because the stomach has too much to do to digest what we put in it.

      It is true that red meat is a very good source of proteins but on the other end, it costs the stomach too much to digest (if on a constant basis, and on long term).

      So from a spiritual perspective, if the body is too busy digesting, the quality of your attention will be affected and will prevent you to access to a higher quality of awareness. To be able to change significantly the quality of our awareness requires a constant training.

      And God knows I’m lazy…

      1. The more the food you’ll eat will be easy to digest, the best your stomach will be.

        Eh, you couldn’t be more worng.

        Food that’s easy to digest is food without fiber, with sugary drinks and fast food at the top of the list. That shit’ll kill you faster than anything that’s not an acute toxin — your liver has to do all the hard work of metabolism, and it’s the last organ you want to put undue stress on.

        My diet advice follows, for what it’s worth — and we’ve all got diet advice.

        Restrict your intake of sweeteners to the type and quantity of the Colonial era. That’d be the regular “natural” ones, primarily honey, table sugar, molasses, maple syrup, and the like…and only a teaspoon or two a day on average, with the occasional (rare) indulgence.

        Eat textbook-sized portions of your favorite proteins and carbohydrates (preferably whole grains and fruits, but the textbook portions are small enough that it doesn’t matter). Make sure you actually do get the textbook amounts; protein and carbohydrate deficiencies and excesses are both not a very good idea.

        And then satiate your remaining hunger (and, if you’re even vaguely remotely like a typical American, you’ll be powerfully hungry on a diet like this) with as much fresh vegetables as you can stuff in your mouth.

        It’s that first point, the elimination of sugar, that will be hardest; sugar is in everything in huge amounts. Basically every single processed food item on the shelf and everything you might order in a restaurant has unbelievable amounts of sugar in it. (The sweet fructose half of) sugar gets metabolized by the liver and turned into fat and blood-borne LDL cholesterol, almost exactly the same way that alcohol does.

        Check it out for yourself and do the math. A teaspoon of sugar is four grams. You want to be keeping your total sugar intake under ten grams a day, as was typical before the sugar trade and the obesity epidemic both took off. A single twelve-ounce can of Coke has 39g of sugar — and what soda drinker only drinks a single twelve-ounce portion? A tablespoon-sized serving of ketchup has a teaspoon, four grams, of sugar.

        And it’s that last point, of stuffing yourself on fresh vegetables, that makes it possible to stick to this sort of regimen. It’s almost as difficult to starve yourself as it is to perpetually hold your breath or abstain from sexual activity. If you’re already packing a few extra pounds, you’re not one of those few freaks capable of that sort of masochism — and you don’t want to be, either; starvation is bad for you. But fresh veggies are filling, excellent nutrition, non-toxic even in huge quantities, and will not contribute to obesity. Indeed, all that extra fiber will provide good exercise for your intestines and block the absorption of much of the high-energy foods you’re eating, and thereby actively contribute to weight loss.

        Cheers,

        b&

        1. When you say ‘textbook size’ I understand you refer to quarto volumes, but thickness of texts varies considerably so I am not sure what daily intake of protein/carbs you are recommending.

          Please indicate approximate number of pages or use more traditional mass or volume units. Thx!

          BTW, not sure there’ll be any room for veggies after that.

          1. Ha! Good one.

            Of course, I was referring to the definitions you’d find in the textbooks, such as a serving of protein the size of a deck of cards, grains in 1/4 cup dry-sized servings, and the like.

            Some textbooks give formulas based on body size and activity level, which isn’t so bad. But, after you’ve replaced sugar with fresh veggies long enough, your body’s own satiation mechanism will start functioning properly again and you’ll find yourself gravitating towards the proper portion sizes anyway. Until then, of course, trust the textbooks and fill the hunger with veggies.

            b&

      1. My claim that Hitler was a vegetarian was just an answer to the claim found in the textbook: “The chapter details the “benefits” of a vegetarian diet and goes on to list “some of the characteristics” found among non-vegetarians.

        “They easily cheat, tell lies, forget promises, they are dishonest and tell bad words, steal, fight and turn to violence and commit sex crimes,” it says.”

  16. Have heard a lot about ‘human digestive system being made for a vegetarian diet”, but can’t swallow it 🙂
    Cows and other Ruminants have a multi-chambered stomach, and they chew cud. Do humans ever do that?
    And another thing, bovine ruminants pass a lot of Methane gas. We humans do, too, except when we eat beans.

    1. All it takes is a quick glance at the teeth inside a human mouth to know that we’re omnivores.

      As are basically all primates (though I’m sure there’re exceptions).

      The chimpanzee diet probably hasn’t changed much since our last common ancestor with them, and I don’t think there’s a nutritionist who’d have much of a problem with a chimpanzee’s diet for humans, with the notable exception of the danger of food-borne pathogens from raw meat. Couple that diet with the activity needed to procure it, and you’d be in pretty good physical shape.

      Cheers,

      b&

  17. I used to belong to the Xtian sect mentioned above, and i was vegetarian. I still eat vegetarian most of the time out of habit–and revulsion toward the way meat is produced in the modern world–but i can’t help but notice the role of meat eating in the evolution of the human race as we find it.

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