MeatMeat and health

Animals must be treated as humans. Now we need to be concerned about several factors which may cause or raise the level of panic or stress in animals. These may induce the process to generate different metabolites which are proved to be unhealthy for human consumption. Thus, when humans consume animal products having panic or stress-induced metabolites may have an enormous impact on human health such as non-communicable diseases (cancer, mental health problem, etc.).

So, it is particularly important to formulate and adopt welfare policies for animals (supposed to be used as human food) for those countries that do not have any. It would ensure a normal environment from the aspect of animals’ concerns as well as help us to supply or get safe and healthy animal foods for human consumption.

Here are some examples, very frequently observed in Bangladesh, which may generate panic or stress-induced metabolites in animals. As a result, animals are stressed and panicked for the short, mid, or long term (Stress in Animals – Humane Slaughter Association (

  1. Most of cases there are no separate animal rooms or places for keeping animals before slaughtering.
  2. Animals also faced difficulty due to the shortage of food and water supply, room temperature, etc. during transport and storage before slaughtering.
  3. It is also miserable and pathetic to see animals very frequently exposed to an environment where animals are being slaughtered, cut meat is processed and sold, etc.
  4. ..

So, evidence-based data with future research are needed both in animal and human models. These studies may include different approaches such as the latest imaging techniques for monitoring brain signals, damages, etc., as well as measuring the level of panic or stress-induced metabolites generated in animals, changes in metabolites, and impacts on humans by those metabolized consumed with animal foods. We also need to consider the effects of the processing of animal products (such as washing, cooking, etc.) and food matrix (processing or consuming with other foods such as fresh leafy and non-leafy vegetables, fruits, etc. ).

At the same time, research should be conducted to minimize the metabolites already produced and available while processing foods for human consumption. As a result, humans will be less exposed to foods generated from the street or panic-induced animals. In addition, knowledge should be disseminated regarding raising animals and the consumption of animal foods to protect from health hazards produced intentionally or unintentionally.

One needs to raise the following questions regarding the safety and health concerns of both animals and humans for the short, mid, and long-term benefits. These would help us to formulate the right policies for the welfare of all as well as to address the situation properly.

Do I have any idea about the standards of the environment for animal housing? Farm structures … – Ch10 Animal housing: Animal environmental requirements ( Is the environment generating any panic or stress in the animal? What is animal stress and how is it measured? – PubMed ( Why do we need to be concerned? The Impact of Stress on Animal and Human Health – One Health and Development Initiative (OHDI) (

Distinct factors determine the composition, standard, and safety of animal foods. These foods further determine the quality and composition of animal products due to the variations of food intake, water quality, composition and type of animal feed, supplementation and drug provided, processing, etc. So, foods of animal origin such as organ meat, milk, etc. should be good in quality, meet the standards, free from contamination as well as unexpected metabolites that may be harmful to human consumption.

If you are interested to learn more about animal stress, please read the following articles:

What is Stress? – The American Institute of Stress

Effects of Pre-Slaughter Stress on Meat Characteristics and Consumer Experience | IntechOpen


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By Md. Khurshidul Zahid, Ph.D.

Md. Khurshidul Zahid Ph.D. is an Associate Professor at the Institute of Nutrition and Food Science (INFS) of The University of Dhaka (DU) of Bangladesh. He has completed his Ph.D. in Nutritional Sciences from the Department of Nutritional Sciences at Texas Tech University (TTU), USA. He was a finalist in the Emerging Leaders in Nutrition Science Competition organized by the American Society of Nutrition (ASN), Experimental Biology (EB) meeting held in Boston in 2015. He was also awarded a gold medal by “Professor Dr. Quazi Salamatullah trust foundation” of INFS, DU in 2005.

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