A decade ago, vegan options were limited to beans, lettuce and the odd burger patty but now, it seems like every man and his dog are opting for plant based. But is it better for the environment and your health?
- Pescatarian, vegetarian and vegan are all variations of limiting a combination of either meat, dairy, fish or eggs in your diet.
- Many cultures and religions across the world adhere to certain dietary restrictions. For example, some Muslims choose to avoid pork while many Hindu’s generally follow a vegetarian diet.
- According to The Vegan Society, if the world was to switch to veganism, by 2050 around 8 million lives would be saved and greenhouse gas emissions would reduce by two thirds.
- Google trends show a seven-fold increase in searches for veganism between 2014 and 2019. Veganism now gets more interest than other searches like vegetarian and gluten free.
What the Health?
That increase in vegan Google searches is partly thanks to a number of documentaries that are meant to highlight the plight of factory farmed animals as well as how detrimental meat and it’s by products are apparently to human health. However, it’s been pointed out by nutritionists and doctors that these “shockumentaries” tend to be quite bias. They are typically funded by plant-based companies and benefactors. That doesn’t meant that decreasing the amount of meat you consume and upping your plant intake is bad for your health. In fact, it’s recommended by the World Cancer Research fund to eat little to no processed meat. That means ham, salami and sausages as they have shown to have carcinogenic properties. They also recommend limiting your red meat intake to a total of 350 g to 500 g (cooked) per week, this doesn’t include fish or poultry. The average Australian in 2012 was estimated to eat nearly 600 g of red meat per week.
Why Do People Go Vegan?
While health wise incorporating plant based meals into your diet is a great way to up your fruit and veg intake, it seems the main two reasons people choose to go vegan is for animal welfare and environmental reasons. From cruelty in abattoirs to reducing their carbon footprint, vegans are becoming more and more vocal with their opinions. Singer Moby, recently chose to have his dedication to the cause permanently etched onto his body with a bold Vegan For Life tattoo on his neck. It seems that veganism has gone from the outer fringes of society to mainstream, thanks to celebrities, influencers and shockumentaries.
LiveTribers, would you ever give up meat? Have you been actively decreasing the amount of meat you consume?