I’ve compiled 10 awesomely true facts that will make you love being vegan even more than saving all those animals! Cuddle up with a vegan and give this a read.
1. Vegans can eliminate their chances of getting chronic diseases, even they’re genetically pre-disposed to developing one.
In 2008, 63% of deaths globally were due to non-communicable chronic diseases. Such as, heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, obesity and certain cancers, according to the World Health Organization. Studies have continually shown that plant based diets decrease risks for these diseases, monumentally. Plant based diets are rich in antioxidants. Antioxidants soak up free radicals which can lead to chronic inflammation. Vegan diets also stop the formation of blood vessels that feed cancerous tumors. (source)
2. 150,000,000,000 Are Killed Every YEAR For Meat Consumption
Hold up, is that billion?!? Yes! 150 billion animals are killed annually for meat consumption in the world. Even if you’re vegetarian, baby chicks and baby calves are harmed and killed as a result of dairy and egg industry. This is NOT including animals killed in shelters, in circuses or zoos. This is simply just for meat consumption. 97% of animals killed are for food production. (source)
So put down the steak knife and pick up the salad fork. You never know which life you may save, it may be your own (read #3)
3. Vegans Live Longer
Now, we can be around longer to drive our children crazy! In all seriousness though, who wouldn’t want more time on this earth and to have their loved one around for longer. Loma Linda University followed 70,000 men and women for over 6 years, found that people who follow a plant based diet live longer. “After categorizing study participants into five dietary groups — non-vegetarians, semi-vegetarians, pescatarians, lacto-ovo-vegetarians, and vegans — authors found that vegetarian groups — the lacto-ovo-vegetarians and the vegans — tended to be older, more highly educated, and more likely to be married, drink less alcohol, smoke less, exercise more and be thinner. Mortality rates were also lower among those who followed meat-free diets — 12 percent lower than their carnivorous counterparts. This was particularly noteworthy among male participants, who showed a significant reduction in cardiovascular and ischemic heart disease-related deaths, researchers point out. The overall mortality rate was six deaths per 1,000 person years, or 2,570 deaths over a follow-up time of about six years. It’s the latest study to tout the benefits of a meat-free diet. Earlier this year, researchers from the University of Oxford found that the risk of hospitalization or death from heart disease is 32 percent lower in vegetarians than their counterparts. ” – NY Daily News
Eat those fruits and veggies!
4. Studies Find Eating a Plant Based Diet Makes You Happier and Less Stressed
New research was published in the Nutrition Journal, stating that those that don’t eat any meat are happier and less stressed than those that eat meat. The study took 39 meat eating participants and split them up into 3 groups: Fish/poultry/meat, Just Fish and No “Meat”. The ones who didn’t eat meat felt less stress and were happier than the other 2 groups. Researchers are attributing it to fatty acids. Diets that include meat and fish are higher in arachidonic acid (AA), an animal source of omega-6 fatty acids. Much of the meat Americans eat today is quite high in AA: The average omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid profile of modern grain-fed meat is 5 times higher than grass-fed meat, like our ancestors ate. And previous research has shown high levels of AA can cause mood-disturbing brain changes.
5. Vegans Tend to Have Lower BMI
What?! Being vegan makes you skinnier? Well basically. Loma Linda University did another study (yes, I referenced them earlier. What do you expect from a vegetarian University?! I say, keep ’em coming, guys!) that was published in The Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics study. It’s based on data from the Adventist Health Study 2, which includes dietary information from five groups: meat-eaters, semi-vegetarians (occasional meat-eaters), pesco-vegetarians (vegetarians who eat fish), lacto-ovo vegetarians (vegetarians who consume dairy) and vegans (who don’t consume any animal products). Data was collected between 2002 and 2007 from 71,751 Seventh-Day Adventist men and women, with an average age of 59. Researchers found that average BMI was lowest among vegans, while average BMI was highest among the meat-eaters. Looking at obesity (defined as having a BMI over 30), researchers found that vegans had the lowest percentage of people who were obese, only 9.4%. While meat-eaters had the highest percentage of people who were obese , 33.3%. About 24 percent of semi-vegetarians were obese, 17.9% of pesco-vegetarians were obese, and 16.7% of lacto-ovo vegetarians were obese. Even though calorie intake was similar across all the groups, there were differences in the types of nutrients consumed. Meat-eaters had the lowest intake of plant proteins, beta carotene, fiber and magnesium, and the highest intake of heart disease-linked fatty acids.
Don’t shoot the messenger!
6. Vegans Save Water
This may sound silly, but water levels are decreasing at a rapid rate, it’s a global crisis since we can’t survive without it. National Geographic reports that:
- The water it takes to produce the average American diet alone—approximately 1,000 gallons per person per day—is more than the global average water footprint of 900 gallons per person per day for diet, household use, transportation, energy, and the consumption of material goods.
- That quarter pounder is worth more than 30 average American showers. One of the easiest ways to slim your water footprint is to eat less meat and dairy. Another way is to choose grass-fed, rather than grain-fed, since it can take a lot of water to grow corn and other feed crops.
- A serving of poultry costs about 90 gallons of water to produce. There are also water costs embedded in the transportation of food (gasoline costs water to make). So, consider how far your food has to travel, and buy local to cut your water footprint.
- Pork costs water to produce, and traditional pork production—to make your sausage, bacon, and chops—has also been the cause of some water pollution, as pig waste runs into local water sources.
- On average, a vegan, a person who doesn’t eat meat or dairy, indirectly consumes nearly 600 gallons of water per day less than a person who eats the average American diet.
- A cup of coffee takes 55 gallons of water to make, with most of that H2O used to grow the coffee beans.
7. All of the Cool Kids Are Doing It
Who doesn’t like to be a trend setter? Many scientists are saying meat is not sustainable and by 2050, most of the world will be forced to be vegan. Meat production requires a lot of land and a lot of water, both resources that are, and will continue to be a scarcity as our population grows. Even Bill Gates was quoted saying, “The future of meat is vegan” (source). A lot of brilliant minds adopted a plant based diet, such as: Nicola Tesla, Aristotle, Pythagoras, Albert Einstein, Leonardo Da Vinci, Abraham Lincoln, Bill Clinton, Al Gore, Bob Marley, Albert Schweitzer, Buddha and countless others. For a full list (it’s really interesting, Brad Pitt is on it!) of famous vegans and vegetarians go here.
8. Better Sex
Who doesn’t want better sex? Studies have shown that a vegan diet leads to an increase in libido. Vegans tend to intake more zinc and vitamin B complexes than meat eaters and therefore have an increase sex drive. Also, a vegan diet changes our body’s overall chemistry which can make the body and bodily secretions taste and smell sweeter. Plus, fructose, a natural sugar found in fruit increases energy and stamina without crashing. High water volume in fruits and vegetables also increase lubrication and overall hydration in the body. (source)
Vegans do it better.
9. Makes Your Skin Glow
Don’t we all want glowing, radiant skin like those beauty ads constantly promise us? Well look no further, than to a vegan diet!
“So what exactly does meat do to our skin? For starters, it can be loaded with saturated fat, which increases the risk for cardiovascular disease. Unhealthy arteries means your skin isn’t getting the glow-inducing nutrients it needs to stay healthy. One study found red meat consumption in particular is positively associated with increased inflammation in the body, which worms its way into your skin to break down collagen and elastin (the building blocks of a youthful complexion). It may even contribute to breakouts, according to one study that concluded acne is linked, in part, to our western diet of excessive animal proteins. Researchers recommended we limit the total leucine — an amino acid found in meat — intake predominantly provided by animal protein to decrease acne on our skin……’A well-balanced vegan diet is typically higher in vitamin C’, says Kirkpatrick. ‘Vitamin C is needed for collagen metabolism, which increases the elasticity of the skin, providing a smoother and less-wrinkled complexion.’ You can get your highest dose in foods like papaya, strawberries, oranges, kale, lemon, cauliflower and garlic.” – The Huffington Post
10. A Solution to World Hunger
More than 925,000,000 don’t have food to eat. Even though we produce enough grain and corn to feed everyone in the world twice over, annually. So what’s the deal? Well most of our grain and corn are used to feed livestock. It takes up to 16 pounds of grain to produce just one pound of edible meat. According to the USDA and the United Nations, using an acre of land to raise cattle for slaughter yields 20 pounds of usable protein. That same acre would yield 356 pounds of protein if soybeans were grown instead, more than 17 times as much! (source)
So there you have it, being vegan is so much more than just choosing to save animals, it’s also about choosing to save the planet, for future generations to come. High five, vegans!
What’s your favorite thing about being vegan?