Food

Week 35: Go Vegetarian

Ok, here we go – into controversial territory! I’m going to tell you something that you probably won’t want to hear, but I urge you to hear me through to the end. 

Eating meat is bad for the planet. There, I said it. I’ve done a lot of reading, a lot of research, and looking into sustainable animal farming for many years and I have yet to find an approach to eating meat that is better for our planet than just not eating meat. Here’s why:

“Recently Harwatt and a team of scientists from Oregon State University, Bard College, and Loma Linda University calculated just what would happen if every American made one dietary change: substituting beans for beef. They found that if everyone were willing and able to do that—hypothetically—the U.S. could still come close to meeting its 2020 greenhouse-gas emission goals, pledged by President Barack Obama in 2009.

That is, even if nothing about our energy infrastructure or transportation system changed—and even if people kept eating chicken and pork and eggs and cheese—this one dietary change could achieve somewhere between 46 and 74 percent of the reductions needed to meet the target.”

That’s pretty huge. Watch the video about “Beans for Beef” over here. It’s a good one. 

Aside from the environmental concerns, there is the ethical debate of whether it’s right or not to kill animals. For a few people I’ve met, this issue doesn’t bother them. For most of the others, it’s just something they’d rather not think about. So maybe it’s time to think about it and make some choices to improve your diet!

Here are the huge benefits of cutting meat out of your diet:

  • It’s cheaper. So. Much. Cheaper.
  • You don’t have to worry about mystery restaurant meat and whether it’s going to make you sick – or where they get the meat from…
  • You get to take control over your diet. Decide where you get your protein from. Experiment with different vegetables you’ve never touched before! Try recipes from cool mom-blog websites!
  • I’m saving this one for last – I truly believe it’s healthier for you. But I’ve had unhealthy debates with people who believe the opposite. So I’ll just leave these articles here for you and you can decide for yourself:

And ultimately it is your decision, but I can’t urge you enough to consider making the change. When you’re ready here are some great resources to help you make the transition:

If you’ve tried before and struggled in the past, I’d recommend starting part time – stop eating meat 2 or 3 days a week. There’s a learning curve in the cooking department to make food that is filling and satisfying after taking a huge portion of flavour and fat away. It can take some time to find food that is right for you and your family. Doing it part time can take the pressure off and still have a positive impact!

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