Snellenburg is swimming against the current. After being a vegetarian for at least ten years, he finally recovered. For health reasons. But also because he is stuck in the scientific literature. "As a young physics student, surrounded by advanced students and trained in strong reductionist thinking, you are easily convinced of the need for vegetarian food. That just seemed logical and meaningful. I really thought I was contributing to a better world."
Until Snellenburg in his thirties had joint problems. "I came from year to year, until at one point I weighed over a hundred pounds. A colleague, who also lost weight, put me on another path: choose animal protein and fat and avoid too many carbohydrates. "
At first, Snellenburg felt guilty. So, the meat he ate as part of his new high-protein, high-fat diet had to be organic. "From time to time, I order a meat package from a Groningen farmer who I know animals have been walking in the meadow all year."
His conscience has been pure since he discovered in the scientific literature that the climatic difference between a vegetable (vegetarian) and any (diverse) diet is very small. "The climatic benefit of veg is minimal. In fact: more livestock grazing on marginal soil in the right way actually increases CO2 capture. The cow may be an ally in the fight against the greenhouse effect."
Snellenburg considers the avalanche of anti-meat stories a consequence of the latest IPCC report with aversion and misunderstanding. "These reporters don't seem to be reading." He doesn't mind returning to complex meat substitutes, combined with daily pasta, rice and potato carbs. "I feel so many times now."
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