You`ve probably seen lots of documentaries about food, explaining the health benefits of a vegetarian diet. Although you know the positive impact, you are still not ready to make that step and stop eating meat.
These few facts can give you the push you need. Read about these incredible benefits of e meat-free diet and really consider the idea of going plant-based.
Lower blood cholesterol levels:
Animal products like read meat, poultry, cheese and many more, contain lots of saturated fat, which increases the cholesterol levels, leading to a higher risk of heart disease and stroke. The last two are one of the main killers in the US.
Vegetarians have lower risk of heart disease and dying of it. According to research, people on a plant-based diet have lower cholesterol levels by 35%. Diets based on plants are rich in fiber, which can reduce blood cholesterol levels.
Also, cutting out meat from your diet may have positive effects on people using medications for high cholesterol.
Today, obesity rates are very high in the general public, but not in vegetarians. The Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics has published a study stating that meat eaters and vegetarians consume almost the same amount of calories, but the obesity rates are much higher in people who eat meat because they don`t consume enough fiber, beta carotene, magnesium of proteins from plants, and instead intake high amounts of fatty acids which are linked to heart disease.
Vegetarians eat lots of fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains and food low in fat, which results in healthy weight loss.
Reduced inflammation in the body:
Meat and dairy products, as well as every other highly processed food, increases the inflammation in the body within hours of consumption. The animal fat makes the blood vessels paralyzed and the lungs get inflamed.
The inflammation is actually an immune response of the body, against a perceived threat which, on the long run, leads to diabetes, heart disease, autoimmune diseases and cancer.
Vegetarian diet has a natural anti-inflammatory effect, because it`s rich in antioxidants and fiber. It helps the body lower the inflammatory triggers like saturated fat and endotoxins- the toxins which are released by bacteria found in animal products.
Reduce risk of type 2 diabetes:
According to research, vegetarian can help prevent and manage diabetes. High intake of animal protein is linked to a long-term risk of diabetes. Fat, nitrate preservatives and animal-based iron from animal products can damage the pancreatic cells, increase inflammation, cause weight gain and obstruct the function of insulin. All of this leads to increased risk of type 2 diabetes.
Avoid toxic food contaminants:
Animal products are filled with contaminants like antibiotics, hormones, pesticides and herbicides, which cause health problems.
High number of the meat from cows, pigs, chickens, turkeys and fish slaughtered in the US is contaminated with bacteria like E.coli, listeria campylobacter or many other dangerous types.
The contaminated meat can cause food poisoning, with symptoms like stomach cramps, or in worse cases- organ failure and even death.
According to CDC estimations, every year almost 1 in 6 Americans get sick, 128,000 of them are hospitalized, and 3,000 of them die from diseases related to food.
If you avoid eating meat, you lower the chances of getting infected by some harmful foodborne virus, bacteria or parasite. Instead, consume fresh, organic products.
Positive impact on the Planet:
Switching to vegetarian diet has numerous positive effects on the environment. At the moment, raising animals for food uses 30% of the entire land mass on Earth. In the United States, 70% of the grain is grown to fed animals in farms; this food can be given to people, instead.
Almost 80% of the deforested land in the Amazon is used as cattle pasture. For producing 1 pound of animal protein, it takes 12 times the land, 13 times the fossil fuel and 15 times the water, in comparison to producing 1 pound of soy protein.
If you switch to plant-based diet, with no eggs and dairy, you can save 50% more carbon emissions than driving an eco-car. Also, you will reduce the impact of climate change, pollution and rain forest destruction, save water as well as other natural resources.