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With everything happening in the world today, updating your diet is probably at the bottom of your list of priorities—if it’s on the list at all! Still, the foods we eat have lasting impacts on our health and the world’s health. Additionally, if we are more careful in selecting which brands to support, we’re bound to make a world of difference. Who all benefits from a vegan lifestyle, and why should you transition to one?

Saving the Planet

Nutriciously’s feature article on the benefits of a vegan lifestyle summarizes the top benefits with a few simple statistics:

“Did you know that each day, a person who eats a vegan diet saves 1,100 gallons of water, 45 pounds of grain, 30 sq ft of forested land, 20 lbs CO2 equivalent, and one animal’s life?”

A 2019 report found that traditional “meat and potatoes” diets harm the environment. In particular, the livestock industry is detrimental to our planet; livestock industry trends can be traced to global warming, biodiversity loss, and the siphoning of water and other resources. 

A vegan lifestyle does more than impact how we eat and live—it impacts greenhouse gas levels, global acidification, erosion, and resource depletion. The faster we can cut meat and other animal-based products out of our lives, the sooner we can ensure a livable world for the next generation.

Saving Animals

The most apparent benefits of a vegan lifestyle are represented by the plant-based diet. Commonly, non-vegans worry about potential protein deficiencies caused by eliminating meat from their diets. However, necessary proteins can be found in seitan, tofu, lentils, nuts, and other sources. Plus, these foods are great for you—full of healthy fats and other nutrients that will keep you running! You can have all the benefits of a tasty burger without letting an animal die. Who wouldn’t want that?

Still, vegans aren’t just concerned with what they eat. Clothes, cosmetics, and other material goods used by vegans should be ethically sourced, without any animal testing or torture. This may mean buying from small, locally-owned stores—a benefit to animals and your community!

Saving Ourselves

Despite any misgivings about vegan lifestyles, they are proven to have positive health impacts. Not only is a vegan diet rich in nutrients (thanks to the emphasis on plant-based foods), but the diet’s focus on healthy fats and non-processed foods means lower blood sugar levels and the potential to lose excess weight. 

Imagine how rewarding it is to eat a veggie burger—something as savory and rich as anyone could ask for—without that meal costing an animal’s life. Recall what Paul McCartney once said:

“If slaughterhouses had glass walls, everyone would be vegetarian.”

Replace “vegetarian” with “vegan,” and think beyond slaughterhouses—think about clothing, cosmetics, and all of the brands that hide animal abuse behind concrete walls. What will you do about it?