Our family has chosen to eat a whole foods, plant based diet primarily for health reasons. We found ourselves feeling run down, sluggish, having achy joints, not being able to lose or maintain healthy weights. After years of listening to the paleo diets and heavy protein/low carb diets, we found ourselves in the same place with no change. We challenged ourselves to eat only plant foods, mostly fruits and veggies, for one week, to see how it went.
There are many celebrities who eat vegan (Ariana Grande, Ellen Page, Ellen DeGeneres, Ellie Goulding, Jason Mraz, Moby, Pamela Anderson, Paul McCartney, Prince, Russell Brand, Samuel Jackson, Sia, Sarah Silverman, Tobey McGuire) … and now Beyonce is joining team vegan!
What could we lose from eating lots of fresh fruit and veg for one week?
Isn’t this what the doctor is always requesting, for us to eat more colorful, plant based foods? We had a go and after 4 days my chronic knee pain completely went away. After a few weeks I lost 10 pounds. My energy level went up so much that I felt 10 years younger, no joke. I thought this was too good to be true. Why is eating a plant based diet so easy, yet so stigmatized by western society? I started sleeping better, my husband and I found it easier to put on muscle at the gym (easier than when we were lifting 2 hrs, every day of the week and eating gobs of animal protein). We have been eating a whole foods, plant based diet for over a year now and find it is the easiest, healthiest, most life promoting thing we have ever done.
Cancer Will Get You
The health benefits to eating a whole foods, plant based diet became apparent right away. In westernized countries that are able to afford to eat animal products in their diet there are high levels of diabetes, cancer and heart disease. We also see high levels of inflammatory diseases like MS and Rheumatoid Arthritis. Men and women entering their mid years are afraid that they will be diagnosed with breast or prostate cancer, the two leading cancers in areas that have high rates of these “diseases of affluence”. In poor countries that do not eat animal protein, people do not die of cancer, heart disease or diabetes. They eat plant foods and are more likely to die from a disease that we find easily curable with modern medicine. I was afraid of the prolonged and painful death sentence of cancer until I discovered the science behind how animal protein promotes cancer cell growth. Cancerous cells are a common occurrence in the body as our cells routinely divide and mistakes are commonly made in that process. It is only when the presence of animal protein in the body encourages cell division in these cells that the body is unable to maintain it’s efficient system of eliminating cancerous cells.
Do you support suffering?
As I’ve continued my health journey, I’ve come to see the compassionate side of eating “vegan” as well. It is difficult to be a rational thinker and dismiss the suffering that is supported when buying factory farmed animal flesh. Why do we eat pigs and not dogs? Why do we eat cows and not horses? Those animals all suffer at the same consciousness and desire to live equally as much. Why do we put some animals into categories where it is ok to keep them in horrid conditions and then slaughter them?
We are all vegans about most of the creatures in the world. Do you eat dog, horse, parrot, monkey, elephant? I take it a few animals further: pig, cow, chicken…
But we evolved to eat meat, we are able to digest it. Shouldn’t this be proof enough that we are justified in doing so? This argument works with a few other things like: we evolved to be violent creatures, shouldn’t this justify the wars we get ourselves into? Or: We evolved to be able to digest simple sugars, shouldn’t we be able to eat candy all day long? Eating meat may have given us an evolutionary advantage to avoid starving, but so long as this ability to process meat got us just far enough to reproduce, it’s negative effects later in life (cancer, heart disease) would not have mattered evolutionarily. In our modern era, there is no need to eat meat to survive and we have learned that eating animal protein drastically increases our chances of dying from a sudden heart attack or dying a prolong, painful death from cancer.
We have whole industries dedicated to curing cancer and combating heart disease. Our hospitals make over half of their profit on treating heart disease alone – no wonder they are not in a hurry to simply tell all their patients to change their lifestyle. Just because we can put something in our mouths and derive energy from it, doesn’t automatically mean it is what is best for the body’s long term health. We no longer have a reason to eat meat other than enjoyment, which when compared to the health effects, medical costs involved and animal suffering necessary for that enjoyment, it doesn’t make sense.
It is not my purpose to change your mind – only you can change your mind. Should you hear the vegan argument through the same logical lens that you use to evaluate religious claims, dogmatic claims, then I believe it becomes nearly impossible to justify why you need to consume other animals.
Or as Richard Dawkins puts it when he describes how carnism promotes speciation:
I would like everybody to be a vegetarian… In 100 or 200 years time, we may look back on the way we treated animals today as something like we today look back on the way our forefathers treated slaves.
Please hear these compelling arguments for eating a whole foods, plant based diet and perhaps you can change your mind. Think differently than our culture of carnism has indoctrinated you to think.