Can you eat raw meat without an appendix?

In this brief article we will answer the question,” Can eat raw meat without an appendix?” We will also explain what vestigial organs are and their features. We will discuss reasons why the appendix might need to be removed and lastly talk about some bacterial infections that can occur from consuming raw meat.

Can you eat raw meat without an appendix?

Yes, you can eat raw meat without an appendix.The only concern with eating raw meat is the risk of getting food poisoning from bacterias that might be present on the meat. 

Apart from that, the appendix really serves no major purpose in the body and is widely regarded as a vestigial organ.

What are vestigial organs?

Human beings have a few organs that serve little or no purpose in the human body. They are considered to be residual parts from their respective ancestors. Examples of such organs are:

  • The appendix as mentioned above
  • Male nipples
  • Wisdom teeth
  • The tailbone.

Vestigial organs have been used in the Evolution theory by Charles Darwin to explain that human beings have evolved over time and they help in explaining adaptation. Some characteristics of vestigial organs are:

  • They have no functionality and are majorly residual parts from ancestors.
  • They are largely harmless but can become detrimental
  • They take long periods of time to be phased out.

Why would you need to remove your appendix?

Removal of the appendix is done through a surgical procedure known as appendectomy. An appendectomy is usually necessary if you have inflammation of the appendix also known as appendicitis. 

If your appendix is blocked, there can be accumulation of bacteria in it which can further lead to a very painful pain in the abdomen because of the formation of pus and subsequent swelling.

Some symptoms of appendicitis are:

  • Pain that suddenly starts from the right part of the abdomen.
  • Pain when you make movement or cough.
  • Vomiting and Nausea.
  • Loss of appetite
  • Indigestion
  • Diarrhea and constipation
  • Abdominal bloating
  • Low grade fever

There has been a myth that the appendix was earlier on used to digest raw meat. This stems from the fact that it is a vestigial organ that was in use by the early man before evolution. 

The early man, one species of Homo, discovered fire about 1.7 to 2.0 million years ago. It was a very huge discovery even described as the best discovery of the time by Charles Darwin. 

Fire was used to keep warm, provided lighting and was used to chase animals away. So, before this big discovery, it is believed that the Early man used to consume raw meat and tough tree barks. The appendix as an evolutionary remnant was used to digest such types of hard food.

What does modern research say about the role of the appendix?

In recent years, modern research has shown the appendix to have lymphoid cells. Lymphoid cells are immune effector cells which play a big role in helping the body fight off infections. The presence of these cells shows that the appendix plays a role in the immune system.

The appendix has also been shown to store good bacteria that are important for the well being of the gut. The human gut is naturally rich in good bacteria but these bacteria are usually flushed out of our bodies when we get infections such as dysentery and cholera. 

In such scenarios the appendix acts to release the good bacteria so as to rejuvenate the digestive system.

That said, we can eat raw meat and the only risk here will be to ingest contaminated raw meat that can result in food poisoning. Let’s take a look at some bacterial infections from consuming raw meat.


Salmonella is a group range of bacteria that usually cause a food borne illness known as salmonellosis. These groups of bacteria usually reside in the intestinal tract of bacteria and are therefore a result of cross contamination with feces. 

Symptoms of infection usually appear 6 hours to 6 days after infection and include: fever, diarrhea and stomach cramps.

Clostridium perfringens

Clostridium perfringens are anaerobic gram positive bacteria that usually form spores. They usually result in acute gastroenteritis infection which can be diarrhea. 

It also lives in the human tract and can as well be found in soil or animal feces. Symptoms of its infection are: Watery diarrheas that can result in dehydration and abdominal cramps. 

These symptoms usually appear 6 to 24 hours after eating contaminated food and the disease can last 24 hrs to 48 hrs.

Staphylococcus aureus

Staphylococcus aureus is a gram positive bacteria that is very common in the human skin and nasal passages. Actually about 30% of people usually carry it through their noses and can be easily transmitted to food causing food poisoning. Symptoms of infection are: abdominal cramping, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.

Other FAQs about Meat  that you may be interested in.

Can you eat polar bear meat?

Can you eat meat without teeth?

Can you eat meat without damaging the environment?


In this brief article we have answered if you can eat raw meat without an appendix. We have explained what vestigial organs are and their features. We have also discussed reasons why the appendix might need to be removed and lastly talked about some bacterial infections that can occur from consuming raw meat.