Editor's note: Jonathan Safran Foer wrote the novels "Everything is Illuminated" and "Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close." His latest book, the nonfiction "Eating Animals," (Little, Brown and Co.) will be published November 2. This is the second of two essays Jonathan Safran Foer has written for CNN.com on the consequences of eating meat. In the first, he condemned the practice of raising animals in factory farms and argued that it sickens Americans.
Jonathan Safran Foer
Special to CNN
Beyond the unhealthy influence that our demand for factory-farmed meat has in the area of food-borne illness and communicable diseases, we could cite many other influences on public health, most obviously the now-widely recognized relationship between the nation's major killers - heart disease, No. 1; cancer, No. 2; and stroke, No. 3 - and meat consumption.
Or, much less obviously, the distorting influence of the meat industry on the information about nutrition we receive from the government and medical professionals.
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