29 March 2006

From Today's New York Times

To the Editor:

Re "Firefighters Gone Vegan? Even Austin Is Impressed" (news article, March 26):

Cancer made me a widow at age 33 and robbed my 4-year-old and 1-year-old of their daddy.

While there are many factors that cause cancer and other serious, often terminal, health problems, diet is a big factor and one that we can control.

Study after study links the consumption of animal products (dairy products, eggs and meat) with heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes, arthritis, high blood pressure, obesity and other serious health problems.

The Agriculture Department has acknowledged an 80 percent increase in the number of chickens contaminated with salmonella.

Government warnings advise that eating certain fish can cause mercury poisoning.

Then there are mad cow disease, growth hormones, antibiotics, pesticides and now bird flu to worry about.

Bravo to the Austin, Tex., vegan firefighters for choosing to improve and protect their health with every delicious meal.

May we all choose to stop killing ourselves slowly with our food before it's too late, not to mention causing unimaginable suffering to billions of animals on factory farms and at slaughterhouses.

Monica Ball
Peoria, Ill., March 27, 2006

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