THE ‘Time to go Veggie’ letter (Letters, March 16) raises some interesting points.

The study of 120,000 people over 28 years found the replacing red meat with plant-based protein produced longer life. The vegetarian diets tended to reduce diet-based diseases such as heart, obesity, diabetes and some cancers. The strange thing is many institutions have assured us that people, including those on ordinary diets, are living longer.

Considering that over many thousands of years, the world population developed and multiplied to billions, most of them on a diet including red meat, cultivating grassland, raising animals, producing red meat.

Billions of vegetarian beasts of numerous types have resulted, during thousands of years, and as part of the ecological process are eating through huge areas of vegetation, grass, etc. They produce the main diet of red meat for billions of humans and many other human needs.

Should this process ever be curtailed or cease in favour of the population going vegetarian? Would the billions of beasts we have encouraged to multiply be destroyed? The uneaten vegetation, mostly unfit for human consumption, would overwhelm vast areas of the planet.

You “go veggie if you want to”. But might not improve your ecological footprint!

J Beisly, Osprey Close, York.