As part of a new section of the blog I was asked to write about my experiences with my new plant based diet and what made me make the change from vegetarian to vegan.
I became a vegetarian originally after my then girlfriend and now, very happily, my wife explained about and showed me footage of the shocking treatment that animals are subjected to in Britain and across the world just for us to have our daily meat: they are beaten, mechanically raped, tortured and and then slaughtered.
I had never even thought about where my food was coming from or the journey it took to get to my plate. I had been a meat eater all my life and had never even thought about chicken nuggets being and actual chicken or a burger being a cow; I had a generally meat and two veg sort of diet.
There is no doubt that being married to a life long vegetarian turned vegan has influenced my opinions. And I was encouraged to see how, having being brought up in a vegetarian family without, for example, any health problems whatsoever that this way of life is highly achievable.
But my embracing a vegan lifestyle is one that I have taken time to understand myself in all it’s complexities. I have been vegan for just over a month now and I have no intention of reverting and here are some of my reasons.
1. The animals: we know now that many domesticated animals are loving and caring creatures capable of the same feelings and emotions as humans – if you have a companion animal like a dog, then you already know this. I also constantly read and hear meat eaters say that there are human tragedies happening and we should stop caring about animals so much and focus on humans. As a vegan I not only care about my own species I care about reducing the suffering of all beings across the planet.
2. The health benefits: meat and dairy is full of hormones and antibiotics, crazy amounts and these clearly have an effect on human health. Additionally people scream at vegans about getting enough protein and calcium blah blah blah… This is based on misinformation and manipulation to persuade people into buying certain products a.k.a marketing. My base vegan diet consists of: nuts, lentils, beans, green leafy vegetables, oats, plant based milks, fresh fruits, potatoes – this list goes on. This is much more varied, balanced and on all accounts a healthier diet than I had eating meat where I ate a lot of fried and battered foods with poor nutritional value. I get all of my nutrition no problem and I feel great for it!
3. The Environment: Our planet is in trouble. We have known this for a long time, yet we refuse to to reduce our meat intake, one of the biggest factors in climate change. The meat industry is responsible for soy farming, deforestation and enormous emissions bigger than those produced by cars. Surely is only a matter of time before the West will be forced to legislate against our unsustainable rate of meat consumption and the resources that go into it. China has already set a target to half in’t meat consumption over the next decades we need to do the same.
For more information on the meat industry’s impact on the planet – check this out: http://www.cowspiracy.com/ facts/
This is a short introduction to my newly adopted vegan lifestyle, I will be updating you on my progress .