The History of Mad Cow Disease

In farming, it is convenient and healthy for cattle to be fed soybean meal as a part of their diet.

In England, soybeans don’t grow well, so British farmers fed their cattle an animal byproduct which contained the mixed meat and bones of cattle and sheep. This practice caused the infected brains, nervous systems, and blood of infected cattle to be fed to other cows, thus filling them with an accumulation of infected meat.

Obviously, more and more cows became infected and more and more cattle began to die. Also, at this time, the British had not declared a law that required the cattle feed to undergo an intense steam boiling process because they wanted to keep meat prices competitive.

Many diseases that are spread abnormally are caused by microbes but the infamous mad cow disease is actually caused by an infectious protein called a “prion”. These prion proteins are spread when the body of an infected cow or human is eaten by another being. When in an animal, the proteins actually become severely deformed into a contagious shape, and while in this form, the disease breeds plaque fibers, which slowly eat away at the victim’s brain.

One of the best ways to avoid many of the diseases, including mad cow disease and heart ailments, is to avoid meat altogether and switch to becoming a vegetarian.