There was a huge furore in the press and on social media recently, about an American dentist who paid a small fortune to hunt and kill a protected lion in Africa. Once he had killed the magnificent animal, he decapitated and skinned it for a trophy, presumably as a daily reminder his gallant bravery.
Now I was as disgusted as everyone else with this excuse for a man. Anyone that hunts animals as a means of sport and fun is really no better than the psychopathic killers of other humans.
But it occurred to me, that many of the people who were outraged, were meat eaters and it is no secret that worse things happen to millions of cows, sheep, pigs and poultry every day, before they end up on our plates.
With those thoughts in mind, I took the decision to give up eating meat altogether. I had been cutting down on the amount of meat that I ate for quite some time, both for health and conscience reasons. But Cecil the lion was the final straw that broke the camel’s back.
Many, many people avoid eating meat for numerous reasons, including their health, conscience and religion. Here are 11 reasons that MBG (mindbodygreen) came up with which confirm that cutting out, or at least cutting down on, meat is good for both you and the planet.
1. You’re likely to reverse heart disease.
Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the west. Switching patients to a plant-based diet has been shown to not only treat heart disease, but reverse its progression.
2. You’ll stay slim.
Research has shown that eating meat has been linked to obesity.
3. You’ll save money.
Vegetarian and vegan meals tend to be less expensive than meat.
4. You’ll reduce greenhouse gases.
Animal agriculture is estimated to produce more greenhouse gases than the whole of the transportation industry combined. Lowering or eliminating your meat intake can have huge implications on climate change.
5. You’ll reduce animal cruelty.
Millions of cattle and poultry are killed each year for meat, with a huge number of these being raised in factory farms. Switching to a less meat or no meat diet is voting to end the cruel treatment of animals.
6. You’ll be in good company.
Join the likes of the Natalie Portman, Ellen DeGeneres, Olivia Wilde, Paul McCartney, Carrie Underwood and Betty White.
7. You’ll be aligning with some of the greatest minds in history.
Albert Einstein, Benjamin Franklin, Gandhi, Charles Darwin and George Bernard Shaw all thought it was a smart idea to follow a plant-based diet.
8. You’ll join many ultra-endurance athletes in following a plant-based diet.
What do marathon-runner Bart Yasso, triathlete Rich Roll and ironman Brendan Brazier all have in common? No meat in their diets!
9. You’ll help save the Amazon from destruction.
The Amazon is being destroyed to grow feed crops for cattle and make space for grazing. The situation is severe — the majority of Amazon deforestation can be contributed to animal agriculture. Switching to a no-meat or less-meat diet can help save the Amazon, the earth’s lungs.
10. You’ll discover more delicious recipes.
Chicken for dinner again? Reducing the meat in your life allows you to expand your food horizons and discover exciting new main dishes.
11. You’ll be making a choice already embraced by religions around the world.
Whether you’re non-religious, spiritual or a God-fearing person, it says something that many world religions endorse a meatless diet in some form. For example, Buddhism, Hinduism, and Jainism all encourage followers to adopt a plant-based diet.
Reducing or eliminating your meat intake has so many benefits: look better, feel better and save the planet. Eliminating meat from your life is one of the more significant things you can do for your health and especially the planet.
If you’re still on the journey of decreasing or eliminating meat from your diet, start taking baby steps today. Improve your health and the planet, one meatless meal at a time.