It’s veganuary! A huge movement that encourages people to try a vegan lifestyle for January. It began in 2014 and has been growing ever since. Over half a million people signed up this year. That’s why we have chosen to look at meat consumption in our campaign this month.
What does it mean to be vegan?
To be vegan means to choose a life that is kind to animals. Vegans do not eat, wear or use any food, clothes or products that have come from or exploited animals in any way. According to The Vegan Society veganism is:
“a philosophy and way of living which seeks to exclude—as far as is possible and practicable—all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose; and by extension, promotes the development and use of animal-free alternatives for the benefit of animals, humans and the environment. In dietary terms, it denotes the practice of dispensing with all products derived wholly or partly from animals.” – .
What the benefits of a vegan diet?
The most obvious reason to go vegan is for animals. Choosing a vegan lifestyle ensures you are not supporting animal cruelty or exploitation. It is not the only reason, though.
- Health benefits: A healthy, balanced vegan diet is good for our bodies. Research has shown that it may lower blood pressure and cholesterol and reduce the risk of heart disease and other problems such as diabetes.
- Environmental impact: The meat and dairy industries put a huge strain on our planet. Going vegan or cutting down your meat intake will go a long way to lowering your carbon footprint.
- Land use: It takes a huge amount of land to raise animals for human consumption and even more to grow food for them to eat. Lowering our reliance on animal products takes the strain off of the environment and will help in the fight against deforestation.
Does it have to be all or nothing?
No! If going fully vegan doesn’t appeal, opting to reduce your meat or dairy consumption will still have a positive impact on animals, your health and the environment.
Doing some research into where your food comes from, shopping local and opting for ethical and sustainable products will also help. You can find more tips in our AnimalKind section.