Food

Why Veganism is More Than Just a Diet

In today’s health world, going vegan is the new trend. It’s healthy, fun.. and well… healthy. Most people see veganism as something done strictly just for health or as a personal choice; I know I once did. So because of this belief that we choose to follow this ‘diet’,  it therefore must be our own opinion and that not everyone has to follow that ideology. Well, I’m here to break those ideas and tell you that veganism is not just a diet. It’s world changing.

But before I get into that, let’s begin with health reasons, just in case anyone was curious about how this ‘diet’ that consists of no meat, dairy or eggs could be so healthy?

Vegan

Health

Did you know that being who follow a vegan diet have a significantly lower chance of developing cancer and heart disease than those who eat meat, dairy and eggs? Following a vegan diet also reduces your risk of developing the following:

  • High blood levels of total cholesterol
  • High levels of LDL “bad” cholesterol
  • High levels of triglycerides
  • High blood pressure
  • Overweight and obesity
  • Metabolic syndrome (group of risk factors: high blood pressure, high blood sugar, unhealthy cholesterol levels, and abdominal fat)
  • Diabetes

On the other hand, the typical meat-based Western diet may increase the risk of heart disease, compared with diets high in fruits and vegetables. One study shows that a Western diet increases a woman’s risk of getting heart disease by 46%.

Those who ate the vegan diet had LDL decreases of 15% to 25%. People who ate the lacto-ovo-vegetarian and primary plant-based diets had significantly smaller decreases: 10% to 15%.

The researchers also noted that plant-based diets are associated with:

  • Lower levels of triglycerides
  • Lower concentrations of inflammatory markers such as C-reactive protein (CRP)
  • Lower blood pressure
  • Decreased body weight and body mass index (BMI)
  • Decreased risk of death from any cause, including heart disease
  • Improved insulin sensitivity
  • Better blood sugar control in patients with diabetes

vegetarianStudies show that people who eat the most fruits and vegetables have a 20% reduced risk of heart disease and a 27% reduced risk of dying from cardiovascular disease, especially stroke.

Source: http://www.webmd.com/heart-disease/guide/plant-based-diet-for-heart-health

Researchers at Loma Linda University in California have been conducting a study to determine whether vegetarians and vegans live longer than the rest of the population. Although the research is only halfway finished, the results suggest that, on average, vegetarian men and women live 9.5 and 6.1 years longer, respectively, than their meat-eating counterparts.

The study also indicates that, in general, vegans are 30 pounds leaner—and five units lighter in terms of body mass index—and that vegetarians and vegans are less insulin resistant than meat-eaters.

Think about it: Vegan foods are cholesterol-free, generally low in saturated fat, and high in fiber, complex carbohydrates, and other essential nutrients. They’re often packed with protein and cancer-fighting phytochemicals, and vegans can easily obtain all the vitamins (including vitamins B12 and D) and minerals (including calcium and iron) that they need.

Meat, eggs, and dairy products, on the other hand, are high in artery-clogging cholesterol, saturated fat, and calories. They don’t contain fiber or various vitamins, and the hormones, toxins, and antibiotics that are often found in animal-based food have been linked to a litany of health problems.

Who do you think will have a better chance of living longer?

 
medicine

The Animals

No surprise here, but vegans save animals. One single person going vegan for one year can save:

  • 202 animals
  • 195 lbs of meat
  • 1,609 lbs of CO2 from being released into the atmosphere
    Lbs of CO2 not released into the atmosphere

(You can calculate your amount with the vegan calculator here)

Over 60 billion animals are slaughtered every year for meat, dairy and eggs. Is that really the kind of industry that you want to give your money to? And yes I know, most people think it’s normal to eat meat, and that we as humans were designed to do so, but we really aren’t – and it really isn’t normal. Yes it’s normal because we grew up believing that, but we grew up with a lot of things that aren’t right, and because our parents raised us that way, and society convinced us that these things were right – we believed them.

http://www.adaptt.org/killcounter.html

http://www.animalequality.net/food

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hMF3Mr2kQzk

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The Planet

 Now this is the biggest issue that we need to address. Going vegan literally saves the planet. I know most people won’t believe this, and most people say “Well I’m only 1 person, and I can’t make a difference.” You’re wrong – you can make a difference.

“The question is not “Can you make a difference?” You already do make a difference. It’s just a matter of what kind of a difference you want to make during your life on this planet.”-Julia Butterfly Hill

Now for some facts.

1. Going Vegan helps solve Global Warming

Factory Farming and Animal Agriculture are the leading cause of Global Warming. How? Think about it. We grow and feed billions of animals a year, only to slaughter them for food. We need so much land, water, food, and resources to keep these animals alive and to keep creating more of them in masses. If the world was vegan, we’d not only save land, but we’d save water, food, and every other resource. Not to mention that cows produce methane, and because the meat and dairy industry keeps creating billions of cows for the demand, they keep producing more and more methane which is terrible for our planet.

c51c1a8bb6c7f63c3c8a1f77e966efcc 2. Going Vegan helps end World Hunger

65% of the world’s grain is used to feed the 60 billion land animals (meat, dairy and egg industries) and tens of billions of marine animals that are killed each year for food, rather than the 7.5 billion people that are on this planet? The number one cause of world hunger is animal agriculture. If just all the humans in America went vegan, we could solve world hunger. The Council for Agriculture, Science and Technology even admit than 10 billion people could be fed with the available crop land if everyone in America alone went vegan. Example: 1 acre of land can yield 40,000 pounds of potatoes, but one of acre of land can only yield 250 pounds of meat.”

One person going vegan saves 1.3 million of gallons of water per year.

bb3d73e293bdc2cd0ded89cb3e00f0423. Going Vegan saves Land Use

With the amount of land used to house these animals, we are taking up far too much of the earths space. This land is not finite, and I don’t know how people are not realizing this. It’s one thing to cut down trees to make houses – but to cut down forests to make more room for slaughter houses? This is not sustainable.

Below I have inserted a screen shot from the new documentary out this year called Cowspiracy. It talks about the environmental factors of going vegan and how we can all help save the planet from just the foods on our plate. Here in the screenshot is shows how much land it takes per year to feed a vegan (1/6 of an acre of land), a vegetarian (requires 3 times as much), and to feed someone who consumes meat, dairy and eggs 18x as much land). This is because you can produce 37, 000 lbs of vegetables on one acre of land, but only 375 lbs of meat on that same plot of land. Again, this is not sustainable.

land use

A vegan diet produces half the amount of C02, uses 1/11th the amount of fossil fuels, 1/13th the amount of water, and 1/18th the amount of land. 

vegan vs omnivore

Per day a vegan can save:

  • 1100 gallons of water
  • 45 lbs. of grain
  • 30 sq.ft of forest
  • 20 lbs of C02
  • 1 animals life

So the question shouldn’t be “why vegan?” it should be “why not vegan?”

And if not for your health, and not for the animals, please, for the love of all things right – do it for our planet.

“I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something.”

which-earth-do-you-want-live-in2

the-greatest-threat-to-our-planet-is-the-belief-that-someone-else-will-save-it

 

 

 

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