Just imagine having the opportunity to dramatically reduce your risk of chronic diseases as well as potentially saving an animal’s life. Well, together we can do this simply, by changing the foods that we eat. Veganism is defined as a way of living that attempts to exclude all forms of animal exploitation and cruelty. For these reasons, a vegan diet is plant-based and devoid of all animal products, including meat, eggs and dairy. Everyone should go vegan for the sake of your health, the environment and the precious lives of animals.
A vegan diet is one of the healthiest ways of eating. Following this diet can decrease risks of common chronic diseases including diabetes, cancer, strokes and many others. A recent study conducted by EClinicalMedicine, presents that adults with a high in animal protein diet are at increased risk of developing a wide range of chronic diseases. The authors recommended a plant-based diet to reduce these risks. In the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities study, participants who adhered to the overall plant-based diet, had an 11% to 19% lower risk of cardiovascular disease and all-cause mortality.
A vegan diet is the most morally correct and compassionate way to eat. This is due to the fact that 80% of people chose to go vegan for ethical reasons. Some people argue they eat meat simply because it tastes good. But are your taste buds worth more than an animal’s life? Every year, 150 billion animals are slaughtered worldwide. These suffering animals are placed in crowded, disgusting conditions, where their lives are soon cut short. Every time you eat meat, eggs or dairy, you are paying others to cause suffering and death to other animals that think and feel just like we do. Every vegan has the potential to save nearly 200 animals every year. There is simply no easier way to help animals and prevent their suffering than by choosing plant-based foods.
All animals, like humans, have a conscience and a desire to live. Humans have the ability to choose which animals deserve our love, while others are deprived of their lives. Typical pets in western culture including cats and dogs constantly receive our love. However, other animals including cows, chicken and dogs are completely neglected. This is completely hypocritical, getting to decide which animals deserve affection and which ones are butchered. Like humans, animals do feel pain.
Animal products waste energy, resources, food and water. Animal agriculture contributes to pollution and deforestation, resulting in it being the leading cause of climate change. It’s responsible for up to 52% of global greenhouse gas emissions and for 91% of Amazon rainforest destruction. The efforts we may make to take shorter showers are rather insignificant compared to the 9500 litres of water needed to produce 500 grams of beef. A 2010 UN report warned that a shift toward Veganism is vital to save the world from a climate catastrophe and food shortages.
So you say, where do you get your protein if not from meat? And to put it simply, it comes from plants. Heather Russell, a registered dietician at The Vegan Society, says there is no cause for concern. As plants “Can provide all the essential protein building blocks that we call amino acids.” Wouldn’t it just be more efficient to eat plants, rather than the animals who eat these plants?
If the prospect of simultaneously achieving personal dietary empowerment, lowering your carbon footprint and minimising animal suffering has any appeal, then Veganism is for you. But, you have to do it right, meaning consuming a broad diversity of nutrient rich plants. We say that children are our future but what future can they have when we are eating the planet to death?