Why would one choose a vegan lifestyle? Many are now choosing this lifestyle due to the benefits that it provides not only for health, but also for the environment and for the benefit of animal rights.
Many vegans are concerned with health.
Vegans can enjoy a healthy lifestyle with benefits such as:
- low in animal fats
- low in cholesterol
- high in fiber
- high in minerals
- high in vitamins
- high in antioxidants
- high in vegetable proteins
- improved energy
- improved digestion
- improved brain function
- improved memory
- improved concentration and alertness
- improved skin tone
- reduced risk of stroke
- reduced risk of cancer
- reduced risk of heart attack
- reduced risk of obesity
- decreased cellular damage
- reduced sluggishness and lethargy
Obtaining these benefits would include the elimination of all animal products and ingredients. Foods to not eat include:
- meat (carne)
- fish (pesce)
- eggs (uova)
- milk (latte)
- cheese (formaggio)
- honey (miele)
Many vegans are also concerned with animal welfare.
Over 10 Billion animals die every year only to satisfy our palettes and our wants, or luxuries. Items such as fur goods or leather goods, or daily items such as most shampoos or soaps contain animal byproducts.
These animals suffer excruciating pain and horrific deaths. Slaughterhouses are places not only teeming with bacterias, disease and filth, but also pain, anger, hate, fear, rage and torture. If the saying “you are what you eat” is true, why would you want to put fear and hate, not to mention disease into your body?
Think for a moment:
How would it feel to you if you were put into an extremely tiny cage with 5 or 6 other humans with no room to move, after having your nose cut off your face? You have no room to spread your arms. This is the life of a chicken.
Or for a new mother that only seconds after birth your baby is ripped out of your arms and thrown into a cold, dirty, feces infested crib and left to starve. Your baby is not returned to you ever again, in fact, you are sent back to work, letting people and machines manhandle your body and abuse you. This is the life of a dairy cow.
The fact is is that animals have nervous systems and feel pain. They have emotions. Have you ever seen your dog when you come home from work? Or before a car ride or a treat? Have you seen the way they get excited? Those are emotions. The same emotions all animals feel and should be allowed to feel.
Think about it next time you want to eat a steak. Think of how you would feel if another species came to our planet. They didn’t speak our language and they felt because they were the more “intelligent” race, they could subdue us and use us as they wish. Would it be OK for them to consume our flesh for their pleasure?
Vegans are also concerned about environmental issues.
The effects of factory farming on our earth has been devastating. We have a contaminated water supply infested with hormones, antibiotics, veterinary drugs and other chemicals. These enter into the body of the animal and is then urinated or excreted out back into the ground. The ground absorbs it and enters our drinking water supply.
On a factory farm containing 35,000 hogs, for example, over four million pounds of waste are produced each week! The waste collected in these CAFO’s (concentrated animal feed operations) has a huge impact on humans. Hazardous fumes such as ammonia and hydrogen sulfide are released as manure decomposes. These fumes contribute to illness, diseases and even death in humans.
Factory farms take up space and waste valuable resources, such as fertile soil and water. A Cornell University study in 1997 found that around 13m hectares of land in the US were used to grow vegetables, rice, fruit, potatoes and beans, but 302m were used for livestock. And on average 60 gallons of water are needed for a pound of potatoes, whereas 20,000 gallons are needed for a pound of beef.
Not to mention the amount of deforestation due to the development of of CAFO’s, but also the crops needed to feed the animals we are eating! Animals eat much more than we do and require much more space. It takes 16 pounds of grain to make one pound of beef. How many people could eat with 16 pounds of grain??
Did you know that every day we lose a size of the rainforest almost as large as New York City? Just to have a hamburger??
We have to all start remembering that everything on this planet is within perfect balance. If we have no trees, no water, no soil, no plants, no animals…if we completely take everything the earth is giving us and exploit it, there will be no US, humans, left! We should leave the earth in a better condition than how we left it.
“Be the change you want to see in the world” –Ghandi