"I would go vegan/vegetarian but..." How many times have you said or thought that when you are thinking about making some changes in your diet?
You are probably already aware of the changes you would need to do to go plant-based, eating less processed food, go for the vegetables instead of the meat, eat more fresh things etc... What's interesting is that doing the first step is always the hardest, so why not start slowly with one day a week?
What is #MeatlessMonday?
An international movement to help people reduce their meat consumption by 15% and to improve personal health and the health of the planet. On average, people tend to eat 45% more meat than the recommended amount, increasing the risk of illness and obesity. It can also help limit your carbon footprint and save natural resources like fresh water and fuel.
Monday is the beginning of the week, making it the perfect time to re-evaluate our choices and set our mind for the coming days. With a Meatless Monday, you have a scheduled, recurring reminder to start your week off on a nutritious note. And if this Monday passes you by, next week is another opportunity to focus on health!
Need more information on why to choose a plant based diet? These are my 3 main reasons:
1. For your Health
Plant based diets are literally rich in everything that's good for you! Vitamins, protein, fibre and healthy fats. Fruits, vegetables and grains are reduced in saturated fats, by eating more of them you will tend to loose fat and lower your risk of cardiovascular diseases, cancer and diabetes. Your immune system will get boosted, you will have more energy and even a better mood :)
2. For out Planet
Apart from your body feeling great, you will be helping the planet, here are some facts:
- A report published in the journal Climate Change, said meat-eaters produce nearly 50% more greenhouse gas emissions than each pescetarian, more than 50% more emissions than vegetarians and for approximately 100% more emissions than for each vegans. That means that a meat-eater has, on average, twice the carbon footprint of a vegan.
- The water needs for livestock are huge. An estimated 1,800 to 2,500 gallons of water go into 1 pound of beef.
- Plant-based diets require less arable land. The equivalent amount of animal-based protein requires 6 to 17 times the amount of land, 26 times as much water and 2.5 to 50 times the fossil fuels of plant-based protein.
- Knowing how the animals are treated and fed is a helpful step. Try to go organic on your meat and check brands to know how animals are fed and treated.
- Factory animals are not handled like living creatures. The factory farming industry look for maximum output while minimizing costs, always at the animals expense. Crammed into small spaces and injected with antibiotics and hormones that last until your plate. If you are feeling brave watch this video about animal cruelty.
3. For your motivation
Studies have shown a plant based diet will increase your overall mood, your brain works better and you will get longer hours of sleep. Also having accomplished a change to your diet it will empower you to take other challenges. Eating healthier will also motivate you to take healthy choices like exercising more often, join a gym or try a new sport.
A bonus benefit
You will have more money! Plant based diets are on average cheaper than the meat-filled equivalent. Processed packed foods and meat require extra expenses. Go meatless once a week and you will already cut down on your weekly budget.
A healthy lifestyle is a day by day choice. Gather as much information as you can to take your decisions and let me know if you join us on #MeatlessMonday!
Photo credit: daniekunzphoto.com