Why Do People Go Vegan?
Veganism is defined as the practice of abstinence from usage of animal products, particularly diet-related, and the philosophy of the rejection of animals as commodities. Here’s a look at why people support this form of lifestyle change. There are many reasons that a person may choose to become vegan, and their personal experiences will affect their degree of transition into veganism.
This post will discuss five reasons for going vegan:
- protection of animals
- benefits of veganism for the economy
- benefits for the environment
- variety in vegan food
- potential for weight loss
Reason One: Protection of Animals
One of the biggest reasons people become vegan is the thought that they can save animals’ lives. Even if it is just a single organism such as a pig, a cow, a chicken, a kangaroo, saving just one life is enough for vegans. Vegans often feel sympathetic for animals who are confined and abused in factory farms when they should be out, grazing on green pastures with others of their own kind.
These people understand the harm humans are doing to animals and that there are alternatives to milk and eggs. They believe that animals should be free of pain, suffering and fear, and that today’s farms show no mercy to animals.
Vegans do not want to support or contribute to the exploitation, suffering and murder of all these innocent animals. People are paid for the mutilation, torture and slaughter of animals when it does not even need to be a necessity, simply for the purpose of taste. There are many documentaries that depict the ruthless murder of animals for human consumption. Vegans understand the value of animal welfare and life, and transitioned to veganism simply to no longer support the abuse and murder of animals. Vegans also want to spread the truth to others that eating meat, poultry and dairy is not essential for human survival and the maintenance of health.
People also become vegan because of the economic benefits. Statistics show that the regular consumption of meat, dairy and eggs requires 18 times as much land: humans can produce 37,000 pounds of vegetables on one and a half acres, but only 375 pounds of meat on that same plot of land. The economic loss is apparent where the opportunity cost of producing meat over vegetables damages the economy because humans do not realise the versatility of vegetables and fruits. Other economic benefits that come with a vegan diet: it requires half as much carbon dioxide (co2), as well as 111th the amount of fossil fuels, 113th the amount of water and an eighteenth of the amount of land.
Reason Three: Benefits for the Environment
Another reason tied to the previous economic reason why people become vegan is the benefits for agriculture and the environment. As most people know, meat and dairy are a very ‘climate unfriendly’ food. A popular documentary ‘Cowspiracy’ explains the terrible nature of the consumption of non-vegetarian/vegan foods to our agriculture and the environment, in which pollution, in particular methane, is rampant.
Animal agriculture is especially detrimental to the ozone layer, because exorbitantly high levels of methane (especially from cows) is not only foul smelling but awful for the environment. One could even say that cows are another form of ‘cigarettes’, polluting the environment through the spreading of harmful and toxic gases in the atmosphere, subsequently damaging the ozone layer and increasing global temperatures.
Reason Four: Variety in Vegan Food
The thought of transitioning to veganism is usually met with apprehension because many people do not seem to realise the versatility and variety of vegetables and fruits. For example, a particular ‘high calorie high raw diet’ circulating around the Internet has been recognised for its healthiness. This particular diet predominantly runs on fruit, rice, corn, and bananas. Another ethical diet involves potatoes, rice, corn, fruit, quinoa and oats.
The two diets just mentioned are just a tiny representation of veganism. There are so many different ways to enjoy a healthy vegan diet. Even if a person has no personal guidance when trying out vegan diets, there is so much information available from all avenues of hospitality and cooking, from bakers to chefs to fine dining. There are vegan options for anything. Humans should be more understanding and accepting of veganism because there are so many potential combinations, mixtures and options for everything and for everyone.
Reason Five: Potential for Weight Loss
Another reason that some people choose veganism is the potential for weight loss. A healthy vegan diet means fewer saturated fats, oils, sugars and sodium are consumed, and so many individuals have the chance to lose weight. Not only are people losing weight and becoming healthier physically, but mentally as well, as vegans have better clarity, knowing they are lessening animal deaths. This lifestyle is generally much healthier, with healthier snacks, meals, lunches, dinners and even drinks. There are many healthy options that don’t feel like eating ‘diet’ food, and this is the final reason that many people switch to a vegan lifestyle.