Why You Should Stop Eating Meat


Eat more veggies!

Sally Boese, Staff Writer

The term “vegetarian” has become increasingly popular recently, but there are many different categories that fall under this title, along with a variety of benefits and risks. Vegetarianism is actually a restrictive form of veganism, but are commonly confused for each other. Being vegan is excluding all animal products from your diet, including all meat, eggs, and dairy products. Vegetarian, on the other hand, is not so simple, because there are several different types. Most people who call themselves vegetarian don’t eat any red meat, but some still choose to consume fish and egg. This can be for a variety of reasons, including religion, health related benefits, and to protest animal cruelty.

Contrary to common belief, non- meat eaters still get the nutrients they need if they consume the right foods. Studies show that vegans actually get more protein because of the various other sources they consume, including  nuts, bread, vegetables, and beans. Although, you are eliminating important amino acids that come from mostly meat products, but they are attainable in other foods as well.

Because most fast foods are reliant on meat and dairy products, vegans live a healthier lifestyle due to the everyday foods they tend to stay away from. A study beginning in 1958 suggests that, on a vegan diet, women live 9.5 years longer, and men live 6.1 years longer. With this it also proved that vegans prepare more meals at home, which exposes them to less carbohydrates and saturated fats. If everyone were to become vegetarian, it would prevent 7.3 million deaths a year solely because of decrease in red meat consumption and increased vegetable consumption. Plus, the number of vegetable- borne diseases is significantly lower than that of meat, which is another reason some opt to switch to a plant- based diet.

Not only are vegetables good for our health, they also impact the environment in more ways than one. If everyone were to simply follow dietary recommendations, the economy would save $968.8 billion in health care and environmental benefits. Because of the high desire for meat, the environmental industry is being destroyed. Many species in the oceans have been endangered due to overfishing, and many forests are being cut down to provide land for cattle to roam. The food industry is responsible for 25% of all greenhouse emissions, 80% due to livestock production. This being true, if the demand for meat was lower, there would be less need for domestic breeding that pollutes our air.

I became vegetarian in August of 2017, and I don’t regret it, even though the people in my family think it was a poor decision. even though my options are restricted, I still get the nutrients I need. I don’t eat meat because I don’t believe in taking the life of another living being just because I’m hungry. Even though I may not have a large role in preventing animal cruelty, I still know that I am doing what I believe is right, and I benefit from that. Improving my health and improving the environment are very important to me because as long as we’re living on this planet, we might as well make it a safe place.