More and more people are wondering each year: Why go vegan? Why go vegan for health? Why go vegan for animals?
This blog post is all about why you should consider going vegan! It will help you get some more information on the subject and hopefully motivate you to keep on looking into it.
There are a million reasons that all boil to ONE BIG ONE (see below).
But in this post I will give you just: 13 reasons why! 13 life-giving reasons why, in fact! Why go vegan? Here is why…
A million reasons or ONE BIG REASON
Our many reasons why you should consider going vegan boil down to ONE BIG ONE… wait for it… it is COMPASSION!!! COMPASSION toward animals, other people, our planet and yourself.
For many people this all may sound like an idealistic attitude that does not seem realistic.
Yes, we all struggle to get through our days. There are so many things we need to do. Nonetheless, I believe that it is totally worth it looking into these questions: Why go vegan? Is it hard to go vegan? How to go vegan?
At the end of the dark tunnel there is a light!! This light makes it all so much better. That is how I experienced my “vegan transformation”. And that is what I want to share with you. After reading this post you will be one step closer to your own transformation!
And now, let’s get to our 13 reasons why…
13 (life-changing) reasons why you should give veganism a try
Compassion for animals
Many people would probably consider themselves animal lovers. Most do not want to harm animals. And yet they go ahead and use animals in all sorts of harmful ways. People have to detach their love of animals from the way they chose to eat and use them. There is mental disharmony, mental dissociation. The opposite of “peace of mind”.
“Often, vegan advocates assume that a person’s defensiveness is the result of selfishness or apathy, when in fact it is much more likely the result of systematic and intensive social conditioning.”― Melanie Joy, Why We Love Dogs, Eat Pigs, and Wear Cows: An Introduction to Carnism
#1 Animals are sentient = they can feel
Anyone who has been able to observe animals for any length of time knows that they can be playful, sad, lonely, excited, happy, scared and much more. Most certainly animals can feel pain. They wince, howl, cry out. So yes, “animals are sentient” which basically means, they “can feel”.
Humans have decided that animals are inferior to humans and therefore are a free for all when it comes to hurting them, killing them, using them. Does that sound fair to you?
Vegans say: animals have an inherent value, we do not want to take advantage of them, torture, use or abuse them.
# 2 Animal torture- not just killing
There is always someone stating things like “we would not have developed the way we did as a species without eating or using animals” or “there are people who have no other options other than eating animals” etc.
All this may have a point, HOWEVER, we are now BEYOND that stage. There really is no biological need to consume animal flesh (meat), ovulation (eggs) or lactation (milk) products (more on that in other posts). Not only can humans survive without animal products: NOOOOO- they can actually THRIVE without them!
Also, our technology has also come so far now. We really don’t need to rely on animals for their hide, fur, wool or horse power.
A regular person with the ability to feel compassion and empathy would not be able to tolerate viewing footage from animal agriculture or slaughter houses. And that is exactly why – despite free speech and all – it is ILLEGAL to obtain footage from such animal operations!!! Say what???? They know that FAR LESS people could justify to themselves the ongoing participation in a system that not only kills innocent animals but also does so in a way that is incredibly cruel. TORTURE. HORROR. In real life! Not in a Stephen King novel!
Did you ever wonder why you almost never see any animals in that production system?? The amount that is being funneled through that system is HUGE- so why do we never see this? Operations are behind closed doors and walls without windows – far from the eye of the public.
What we don’t know can’t harm us? Can’t affect us? Can’t change us? They are counting on that!
“Knowing no animal has suffered or died for your enjoyment of a meal is PRICELESS!”Dr. Baiduc
#3 restore biodiversity
We are in the 6th mass extinction. Up to 137 species of plants, insects and animals are lost EVERY DAY. Factory farming takes up A LOT OF space and is one of the big contributors to this man-made disaster!
Compassion for PEOPLE
#4 People near animal operations
People who live near concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) suffer greatly. Due to severe pollution they are exposed to contaminated drinking water and many toxins. These people end up becoming ill, in many cases, seriously ill. Therefore people would rather not live there and with that the surrounding property values are low- which is an economic harm to these people who live there.
#5 People who work in the Slaughterhouses
Without the demand for meat we would not need these incredibly big factories of horror: the slaughterhouses. Read up about the workers and the working conditions. Everything keeps moving, death must go on. Even if the cow (that hangs upside down) has not died during the first attempt, the belt moves forward and she has to suffer the pain and horror a while longer. The workers swing their knives or chain saws and become numb to the blood, torture and death. They suffer from serious mental disturbance and even PTSD. It is often undocumented immigrants who feel like they have no other option who are working there. However, if there was more demand for plant-based alternatives- maybe those factories would need the workers. Those factories would not be houses of horror!
#6 Starving people around the world
A lot of agricultural products that are fed to animals in the US animal agricultural system are grown in third world countries and then shipped away from there in order to be fed to US animals who are grown for consumption. It takes TONS of plant-based products to feed animals. If these poorer nations were to keep their own crops it would significantly increase their food supply.
It takes an incredibly huge area to grow crops for livestock. The MAJORITY of deforestation is done for that reason: create space for livestock feed. Not to mention the amount of water that is needed for the livestock. Look into it: you could SAVE SO MUCH WATER just by reducing your dairy and meat consumption!
An important point is that it is extremely INEFFICIENT to convert animal feed into edible meat. Livestock require an exuberant amount of feed in order to produce the meat. And let’s not forget: Not every single gram of the animal will be eaten (we don’t eat the bones, hide, organs etc.).
Check out this organization, A well-fed worl, who is talking about “Plant-based solutions to global hunger”: Click here.
Compassion for Mother earth
#7 Fight climate change
Raising livestock is a huge contributor to world-wide greenhouse gas emissions. The experts are arguing about what extend this takes but most agree that is is of utmost importance to to reduce it as much as possible. Cows burp methane which is a very strong greenhouse gas. It is 25 times as potent when compared to CO2 (carbon dioxide) in trapping heat. That is scary!
#8 Reduce water consumption
Producing meat and dairy takes a surprising and shocking amount of water! Beef is the worst:
It takes about 1,850 GALLONS of water to make 1 pound of beef!!!! As this website points out… this is about 39 bathtubs filled. Say whaaaat????? (Check their article: What’s the beef with water)
#9 reduce water pollution
The animal feeding operations (CAFOs) wash away animal manure which contains contaminants, such as nitrogen, phosphorus, heavy metals, bacteria / pathogens, antibiotics and other drugs. These go straight into rivers and the marine ecosystem. as they have been able
The drinking water is therefore contaminated.
The marine ecosystem suffers greatly. And most often we don’t understand the implications and consequences until it is already too late.
Check out this article for more information: Burkholder J, et al. Impacts of waste from concentrated animal feeding operations on water quality. Environ Health Perspect. 2007 Feb
#10 decrease deforestation
65-70% of the Amazon deforestation (the lungs of our planet) is done in order to create space for animal agriculture. The vast majority cause of deforestation! We have to protect the rainforest, not cut it down!!! Read more about this here.
#11 more plant-based innovation
Did you ever wonder why there is so much more discussion about sustainable right now? We are finally waking up to the destruction and pollution. We need to save our home, our planet, our mother earth!!! The future of food is in innovative ways of producing alternatives that do not harm our planet. When more people reject animal products and demand plant-based alternatives, then there will be more innovation which in turn helps our planet!
Compassion for yourself & your loved ones
#12 less chronic illness
Not only do we not NEED to consume animal products, no we also do MUCH better and thrive when our diet consists of plants. The only diet that has been scientifically shown to REVERSE our number one killer: HEART DISEASE, is a WHOLE FOODS PLANT-BASED diet (without oils). Check out “How Not To Die From Heart Disease“.
80% of our chronic illness are either caused by or worsened by our diet and lifestyle and could either be prevented or improved by changing over to a healthy WHOLE FOODS PLANT-BASED diet. (Main illnesses that are affected: heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, stroke, kidney disease, colon cancer, prostate cancer).
Also check: “How Not To Die from Cancer“
#13 Peace of mind with every bite
When we know that we are NOT taking part in the cruelty and HORRORS of the animal industry or the destruction of our planet then we feel so much better. The joy of eating a meal that does not contain death, suffering and horror is so worth it. Truly: Peace of mind with every bite!
There are so many more reasons why one would go vegan. However, I know it is not always about how many reasons there are or how good the arguments are.
We are DEEPLY conditioned to accept the status quo, the “scheme of carnism” as Dr. Melanie Joy puts it. This is what our society has been doing and continues to be doing.
It is exciting to see that many people are asking questions, though. Why go vegan? Many reasons why…
This post was all about reasons to go vegan.
Let’s keep our eye on the compassion.
If you are feeling overwhelmed and don’t know what to do or where to start: don’t lose hope. I have been there and I feel your overwhelm and confusion. Don’t take any action yet if you don’t feel ready BUT do continue to read and learn as much as you can about it.
I want to be here to help you along the way. Read more about me here. Please, contact me with any questions.
PS: Are you willing to help me develop a course geared toward people who are interested in the vegan transformation but do not know where to start? If so, let’s schedule a zoom meeting so I can ask you a couple of questions and you can let me know what you would be looking for in such a course!