10 fabulous reasons to go vegan in the New Year
At V-Land UK we know that our readership consists of vegans and the v-curious. So if you’re thinking of making the change for Veganuary, we provide 10 fabulous reasons to go vegan for January and keep going long after Veganuary ends.
Save water, save the world
A U.N. report entitled “Livestock’s Long Shadow” has revealed that “eating meat is one of the most significant contributors to the most serious environmental problems, at every scale from local to global”. Thus switching to veganism is a powerful way to help save our planet. For every litre of cow’s milk produced, the global water footprint is 1050 litres! Furthermore, consider the fact that approximately 2400 gallons of water are needed to produce just one pound of beef! The numbers are crazy and unsustainable. Ditching animal products is most certainly the way to go.
Stop the unfair and unethical treatment of animals
Before I turned vegan, I was a vegetarian. I thought I was doing more than enough to help not only the environment but also the horrific treatment of animals. It’s only when you look deeper at how dairy cows are treated that you realise how barbaric dairy farming truly is. Go to Scary Dairy to see how consuming dairy products violates moral codes. Bottom line – dairy is not good for you or the planet. It’s only good for calves.
It may help you reach your ideal weight
The caloric density of animal products can cause people to exceed their energy balance and put on weight and potentially contribute to other health issues. Loading our plates with veggies, pulses and all the good stuff can help drop the pounds as they tend to be nutrient-dense but not calorically dense and often have higher levels of antioxidants than animal products. If you have trouble with or don’t like veggies, blend them into a pasta, chilli sauce or soup - that way you’ll still get all the health benefits.
Vegan doesn’t mean expensive
If you’re cutting meat out of your diet, you’re not only helping the planet but you’re also helping your bank account. Vegetables are cheaper than steak or prawns. Buying from a local market or trader is cheaper and contributes towards the local economy. You could also look at buying more expensive products like seeds and nuts in bulk either online or at a discount supermarket. Eating whole foods plant-based isn’t only cheaper, but healthier - something your health, waistline and your wallet will thank you for.
Help end world hunger
The amount of crops and water it takes to raise animals for food is astonishing. It takes up to 13 pounds of grain to produce only 1 pound of meat. That grain would be better used by distributing it for human consumption. Eating meat not only destroys the planet and your health, but it is hurting others. One in nine people in the world are undernourished but still a third of our global crop production goes towards the production of meat products. By ending this we could help in reducing needless hunger as we are able to grow more crops for people and not for livestock.
Help prevent and alleviate certain lifestyle diseases
Research has proven that a plant-based diet can help alleviate the symptoms of chronic conditions such as arthritis. It can also help prevent and treat life-threatening diseases such as diabetes and heart disease.
Avoid hidden nasties
There’s no polite way to say this but animal flesh can be contaminated with faeces, blood and puss. A study done by The Food Standards Agency detected Campylobacter spp. in 59.6% of the chicken skin samples obtained from non-major retailer shops. Campylobacter app. are the most common bacterial cause of foodborne illness in the UK, with chicken considered to be the most important vehicle for this organism. That is a whole lot of NOPE from us!
It’s easier than it’s ever been
Britain’s vegan population has increased from 150,000 to 542,000 in the space of just a decade. It’s become easier and easier to find vegan food in supermarkets and on restaurant menus. We don’t recommend eating faux products too often as these can be highly processed, but they do make the transition a lot easier.
A whole new culinary adventure
It’s easy to fall into a cooking rut when using meat and dairy. Cooking vegan food forces you to get creative. The vibrant colours of vegan food can be exotic and adventurous. There are thousands of edible plants to work with and culinary techniques have grown with the vegan movement. Who would have thought that the best vegan cheese is made from nuts, or that an omelette can be made from beans? The possibilities are endless.
A new community
Like with all changes in life, when going vegan, you will encounter some push back. Not everyone in your circle of friends and family will understand your decision. Fortunately, the vegan movement is large and still growing. There are plenty of people who have walked the path you are on and who are able to support you and shower you with patience and understanding. There are vast amounts of social media groups dedicated to veganism, so you are bound to make new friends and become part of a community that gets you when others don’t.
Want to know more about the financial side of veganism? Find out if it really is cheaper here.