Veganism is just as misunderstood as feminism, and it’s mostly because people tend to misconceive veganism as a “conceded” way of living or it gets out of hand in society because people become too judgy of others in their attempt to do what’s good.
In reality, veganism is not just a diet that someone wakes up and decides to start doing just to spite people. It’s more about food itself! Being a vegan means having the dedication to change your entire lifestyle from the clothes and cosmetics you wear for the sake of the animals and the environment.
When you hear the word vegan you immediately think of hippies starving to death, but in fact, vegans have quite the rich diet, without having to exploit animals. The Vegan Society’s definition of veganism is a “way of living which seeks to exclude – as far as is possible and practicable – all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other
purpose.” Nothing wrong with that, right?
Let’s take a journey into veganism as we elaborate the benefits of such a lifestyle
More and more people worldwide are embracing the vegan oath of cutting off meat
and dairy completely from their diets. One of the motivational reasons (apart from
protecting earth and all the animals in it) are the health benefits that are promised.
Despite the misconceptions and concerns of starvation and poor intake of important nutrients that supposedly one gets only from meat, fish and dairy, the vegan diet is in fact considered to be higher in fiber and lower in cholesterol. And as for protein, not to worry, protein is found in almost every food, and there are many plant-based foods that are rich in protein! Interestingly, soy milk has about the same amount of protein as normal cow’s milk and it’s even easier to digest, so it’s a win-win situation! (maybe add a link to the blog about pant-based foods).
It’s true, however, there are risks with veganism because there are some nutrients
no plant or vegetables can offer, such as vitamin B12. This vitamin prevents nerve
damage and vegans naturally deprive themselves from it by cutting off meat and
dairy. But it’s easy to replace the recommended amount of B12 (1.5micrograms per
day), from nutritional yeast or fortified food such as plant-based milks. Other good news are, a recent study that involves 48,000 people over 18 years old, compared meat eaters, pescatarians (eat fish and dairy but not meat) vegetarians and vegans, and it has discovered that people who follow vegan and vegetarian diets have lower risk of heart disease. This is because of the low cholesterol levels that are associated with the vegan and vegetarian diet.
Following a plant-based diet also improves your digestive system, you feel less
bloated and you get to have that fresh clear skin. All these are results from cutting off dairy, as dairy food contain hormones, lactose and sugar that disrupts your body’s balance. What’s more, the Harvard-Based Women’s Health Study found that eating red meat (especially processed meat like bacon) can lead to type 2 diabetes.
Recent studies also suggest that dairy today is bad for your health and should be
avoided. For one, calcium that is said is good for the bones and it’s found in milk, is
actually a factor for cancer. Research shows that high intakes of both calcium and
dairy products may increase the risk of prostate cancer by 30 to 50 percent. This
doesn’t mean that calcium is all bad, we still need it in our diet, but probably it’s best not to be taken from dairy as it can be utilized by other healthier foods such as
greens, fruits, beans, nuts and whole grains.
And since we all love celebrating life, not only switching to veganism you can add up to four years to your life since eating more fruits and veggies decreases heart
diseases and the risk of a stroke, but you also spare the lives of about 30 animals
each year. Also, you help the earth breathe by cutting the carbon in half since animal agriculture is one of the main causes of climate change!
In fewer words, vegans are just people who are willing to get out of their comfort
zone and do their part to save animals and our Earth which we all take for granted.