As current research has discovered, there are many concrete benefits to eating a mostly plant-based diet. The health benefits are undeniable and the obvious aid to animal welfare and the protection of our planet is apparent. Tara Haddad, the Founder and CEO of Modern Meat, explains why switching to a plant-based diet can is advantageous to everyone.
Health and Wellness
The primary benefit that most people are interested in when they switch to a plant-based diet is the effect on their health. When protein, carbs, and healthy fats are well-balanced, a plant-based diet can be superior to a diet that includes traditional meats.
Plant-based diets are a low-risk and cost-effective way to protect your health. They may lower blood pressure, body mass index, cholesterol levels, and A1C. They may be able to reduce the medication that many people take for chronic diseases like high blood pressure and diabetes.
It is easier to reach a healthy weight when you eat a plant-based diet. Since over 70 percent of the United States population is overweight or obese, rapid action to prevent serious health problems is needed. If more Americans switched to a plant-based diet, they would experience fewer serious health complications from obesity.
Better for the Planet
The environmental costs of producing meat, dairy, and eggs are far higher than the costs of producing the elements of a plant-based diet. One pound of beef takes 1,800 gallons of water to produce. This water is mainly used to watering the forage, grass, and feed that cattle need over the course of their lifetime.
In contrast, one pound of corn requires only 107 gallons of water to produce. One pound of potatoes requires 30 gallons. One pound of apples requires 83 gallons. The lowered impact on the water system is only one of the great benefits conferred on the earth by a plant-based diet.
In addition, the carbon footprint of a plant-based diet is much lower than that of a diet that includes meat, dairy, and eggs. Meat produces 56.6 percent of the greenhouse gases attributed to agriculture. Vegetables produce only 2.6 percent, while fruits produce only 1.6 percent. Rounding out the plant-based diet, grain products produce only 2.1 percent of the greenhouse gas emissions caused by agriculture. Globally, the United Nations has said that the meat industry produces 18 percent of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions.
Greenhouse gas emissions are not the only concern when considering the environmental impact of meat production. Environmental pollution and agricultural runoff are also dangerous. The meat industry is responsible for 57 percent of the agriculture industry’s share of water pollution and 56 percent of its share of air pollution.
Many meat-eaters do not like to think about their impact on animal welfare, but it is a point that needs to be considered. Animals are harmed by meat production and are sometimes mistreated in the farming process. People who eat a plant-based diet can feel good about the way their actions impact the animals with which we share our planet.
How to Switch to a Plant-Based Diet
After absorbing these statistics, it may make sense for you to changeover to a plant-based diet. It is best to make this transition gradually, both to work these new foods into your lifestyle and to give your body a chance to adjust.
When switching to a plant-based diet, your key to success will be changing your mindset about food. It is best to keep the positives about a plant-based diet in mind, rather than thinking about what you will be missing out on if you switch. Keep the health and environmental benefits of eating plants fully in mind while you go through the transition. You will find that you may lose weight, you may be able to keep chronic conditions under control, and you may have more energy.
Many people who would otherwise want to switch to a plant-based diet are hampered by their love of one particular meat, like bacon or steak. Giving up these foods can be difficult, but there are many great substitutes on the market today. It can also be hard to think about giving up dairy products like milk and ice cream, but there are also many satisfying swaps available.
One of the easiest swaps that you can make when transitioning to a plant-based diet is changing to healthy meat substitutes. Products like those made by Modern Meat are able to seamlessly swap in for the meat products you have enjoyed. Modern Meat produces several types of plant-based foods, including meatballs, ground meat, crab cakes, and gourmet sauces that contain no animal products.
Considering to Switch
All of these factors may play into your decision to switch to a plant-based diet. The positives far outweigh the negatives, and it is possible to eat in a way that preserves the environment and your health as well as protecting animal welfare. Tara Haddad wants to encourage everyone who is interested in a plant-based diet to try meat substitutes as a means of easing the transition.