So you’ve heard a ton about going plant-based (aka vegan) but haven’t made the leap yet? This should help. Beyond a healthier body for you, happier (alive) animals, and a cleaner planet – there are endless ways and reasons to go veg.
Here are 4 simply environmental reasons;
A Plant-Based Diet Reduces Your Carbon Footprint
Did you know that the meat industry is responsible for approximately 20 percent of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions? That’s more than the combined exhaust from all transportation. The average American’s annual beef consumption creates as much greenhouse gas as driving a car over 1,800 miles. Producing one calorie of meat requires nearly twenty times the amount of energy as one plant calorie! Switching to a plant-based diet saves 50 percent more carbon emissions than driving a Prius.
The United States uses a lot of water – 355,000 million gallons per day and 50% of that goes towards animal agriculture. If we ate plant foods half the time we could reduce our individual food-related water footprint by 30 percent. If we ate a totally plant-based diet, that water footprint goes down by almost 60 percent.
Cuts Down On Water Pollution
Livestock creates 500 million tons of manure a year. As runoff from this manure often makes its way to streams, lakes, and the ocean, it also has the potential to pass on diseases to humans. Even more, this animal waste is loaded with excess nitrogen and phosphorous. Plants don’t poop (obvious one, but had to be said…) and if we eat organically grown plants, we can reduce fertilizer runoff.
Our planet is currently losing over 15 billion trees each year (56 acres of forest every minute) and food is the number one reason for deforestation. Nearly 80% of land deforested in the Amazon is now used as a cattle pasture. If everyone were plant-based in 2050, we would need less cropland that we did in 2000. This means we could “reforest” an area about the size of the whole Amazon forest.
Meg Donahue is the co-founder of MamaSezz and a nutritionist. MamaSezz is a plant-based meal preparation & delivery service. 100% of the meals are gluten-free and oil-free. Also, there are no added sugars or preservatives. MamaSezz is founded by Lisa Lorimer, the former longtime CEO and President of Vermont Bread Company (one of the first all-natural and organic bread wholesale bakeries) and Meg Donahue who has a Plant-Based Nutrition Certificate from the T. Colin Campbell Nutrition Studies Center at Cornell and a Masters in Technology Management from Marlboro Graduate School.