JUNE 16, 2020

Why More And More People Are Going Vegan

At first, the idea of eliminating an entire food group from your diet might be a bit odd. After all, most of us have grown up with the idea that we are omnivores by design. However, the rising trend of people going vegan—completely giving up meat and sticking to a plant-based, cruelty-free diet—is hard to ignore.

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Don’t let these two words intimidate you (photo by pexels)

The vegan lifestyle protects animal welfare and upholds animal rights.

For most people, the main reason behind their decision to go vegan is their love for animals. To vegans, the idea of another species suffering just to satisfy the taste preferences of human beings is simply unacceptable. Vegans believe that speciesism shouldn’t have a place in society: that all sentient beings, human or not, have the right to live and be free.

If you’re against various forms of animal cruelty (such as product testing done on animals), then you’ll definitely understand where animal-loving vegans are coming from.

This is also why vegans avoid not just meat, but also eggs and dairy products. Even though the processes of obtaining milk and eggs don’t require killing animals, they do involve suffering—and more often than not, eventual slaughter.

Having that strong desire to uphold the value of sentient life is more than enough reason for many vegans to stick to their
plant-based diets.

The vegan diet is both sustainable and economical.

Animal lovers aren’t the only ones with a reason to embrace veganism, though. As it turns out, the rest of humanity does, too.

The typical misconception about veganism is that it’s an expensive lifestyle to maintain. That’s not quite true, though. In fact, one can adhere to a vegan diet without breaking the bank by simply sticking to the basics: fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes, grains, and oats. They’re inexpensive, highly nutritious, and free from any preservatives.

Aside from the cheap cost, veganism also promotes more sustainable food production. Meat and dairy production require three times as much land and resources as it takes to grow plants for food. Given the current state of the world, sustainability should be at the top of everyone’s priority list when it comes to feeding humanity. Ultimately, keeping production costs low enables the poorest of the poor to have access to healthy, high-quality food. Hunger may be a great equalizer—but a plant-based diet might be, too.

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Vegan food looks good, tastes great, and is good for the environment, too (photo by pexels)

Veganism can mitigate the damage we’ve done to Earth—and help us save it.

A quick look at the numbers would reveal the toll meat and animal production places on the environment.

There are about 74 billion farm animals grown annually, which means 74 billion animals’ worth of methane going up into the atmosphere. Methane traps about thirty times more heat than carbon dioxide; in other words, animal production ends up becoming a much more powerful catalyst for climate change than automobiles. And while animal methane emissions have greatly decreased over time due to advances in technology, they’re still a significant factor in global warming.

Plus, as we’ve mentioned earlier, it simply costs more to grow animals for food. Here’s an example: To grow enough animals to sustain Europe’s meat demands, approximately 5.6 million acres of Brazilian land is used for growing soya beans for livestock feed. Think about all of the animals displaced, trees uprooted, and species potentially driven to extinction, just to meet this constant, ever-growing demand. Compared to the amount of resources it takes to grow plants for food, though, the difference is staggering.

That’s why veganism goes hand in hand with environmentalism:
It’s better for mother nature, period.

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Make smarter food choices for a healthier, happier you (Photo by Pexels)

Going vegan can make YOU healthier and happier.

Last but not the least, people are embracing veganism to improve their own health and well-being. Whether the goal is disease recovery, weight management, or simply living comfortably, the vegan diet is an effective path toward achieving that.

For starters, research has shown a connection between vegan diets and improved cholesterol and blood pressure levels, as well as reduced risk of developing heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and certain kinds of cancer.

Additionally, you don’t really need meat to get all of your nutritional requirements. According to the Vegan Society’s registered dietician Heather Russell, it’s possible to get all the amino acids—the building blocks of protein—we need from beans, lentils, nuts, and soya products. As for vitamin B12, it’s possible to get that from food products with yeast extract, dairy-free spreads, dairy alternatives, breakfast cereal, or even over-the-counter supplements. And if you’re worried about your calcium intake, you can easily get that from fortified plant milk, calcium-set tofu, fortified yoghurt alternatives, and other calcium-enriched sources.

Ultimately, you shouldn’t feel pressured to commit to a lifestyle change you’re not yet ready for.
Still, we hope that this list of reasons why people go vegan might help you prepare to make that choice, #VEERAHwarriors!

References:
https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2019/jun/19/the-14-things-you-need-to-know-before-you-go-vegan
https://nutriciously.com/why-go-vegan/
https://www.vegan.com/why/
https://www.vegansociety.com/go-vegan/why-go-vegan

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