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To Meat or Not to Meat

I am in no sense a full vegan.  I love eggs, cheese and of course, ice cream, but I do see the merit behind living vegan.  The planet is important, it is our home, and the best way to combat some of the negative effects of consumerism, is to consume in moderation.  This is why I’ve been mindful in this new year to include vegan and vegetarian meals in my weekly planning.

Moderation creates balance and is key for almost all of life’s activities.  If we work out moderately, 30 minutes a day, 3 days a week, we see marked improvements in our physicality, including better sleep, relative weight loss, and increased energy.  Dr. Elise Bialylew, author of The Happiness Project tells us if we were to add just 10 minutes of meditation a day, we can greatly increase our immune system.  If we added just a bit of reading into our daily routine, The American Academy of Neurology says we can increase our brain function in the long term.  This can keep us sharper for longer, and slow cognitive decline well into our futures. 

If we eat with moderation, steak, chicken, turkey, pork, only a few times a week, we see marked improvements in greenhouse gas emissions.  According to a study published by Scientific Reports, if every person in the country lessened their consumption of meat by a quarter, we could save about 82 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions per year.  This doesn’t have to look like a lot.  It can be a gradual reduction in meat consumption, or even a minor fluctuation in your weekly meal plan.  Change it up!

Breakfast, for example, could look like rolled oats with some agave or pure maple syrup, or maybe a little nut milk.  Lunch could be a veggie and grain bowl, and dinner could be spaghetti squash and meatless meatballs.  Get creative!  There are so many resources out there for easily integratable recipes.  Take a page from Organic Krush, and have some fun trying to recreate some of your favorite recipes.  Order a vegan meal plan for more ideas and variation.

I love to cook, but I also love to eat out.  Moderation.  I often binge cooking shows for recipes to add to my repertoire, but eating out can be a great way to try combinations that don’t always jump out at me.  Adding a little vegan-ism to your routine can be extremely beneficial, while not feeling as restrictive as a permanent diet can feel, and you can get inspiration from anywhere.  According to Healthline, vegan diets can increase your energy, reduce the risks of heart disease, protect against certain cancers, lower blood sugar levels, improve kidney function and aid in weight loss.  So, you can go full, half, or even just in moderation and improve your life, as well as the life of our planet. 

by Catie Zimmerman

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