I like the idea of New Year’s intentions as opposed to resolutions. The dictionary definition of a resolution is “a firm decision to do or not to do something” and an intention is “a thing intended; an aim or plan”. An intention seems gentler and more doable. You aim to get there.
One of the best intentions you can adopt in 2016 is to follow a more plant-based diet. The obvious benefits of a plant-based diet are:
Chickpea and Cavatelli Soup
- Lower cholesterol
- Lower blood pressure
- Have better blood sugar
- Lower your chance of getting cancer
- Lose weight
- Be a healthier you
But there are just as important environmental reasons as well! With a plant-based diet you can:
- Reduce greenhouse gases – According to Assya Barrette of mindbodygreen.com, “Animal agriculture is estimated to produce more greenhouse gases than the whole of the transportation industry combined.” Methane gas is the second most prevalent greenhouse gas emitted in the US and cows and other grazing animals emit lots of methane.
- Reduce animal cruelty – millions of cattle and poultry are raised in overcrowded factory farms where animals are often given antibiotics, growth hormones and treated inhumanely. (Watch the movie Food, Inc. and you’ll definitely cut back your meat consumption!)
- Help save the Amazon, the Earth’s lungs – The Amazon is being deforested at an alarming rate, the majority of which is for animal agriculture.
Another benefit? Your grocery bill will definitely drop. Beef and chicken are expensive; beans and legumes are much cheaper! And there are lots of delicious and creative plant-based recipes on line, which even the most ardent meat eaters will enjoy!
Addiction to processed or refined foods and high fat animal products is real, but can be reversed like any habit after a period of time. An intention to eat less meat and more plant-based meals will have a huge impact on climate change and your health. Remember, what’s good for you is good for the earth, and what’s good for the earth is good for you.
What intentions have you set for 2016? Happy New Year!
For more green living tips, visit greenwithbetsy.com.
Information compiled from: “Why 2016 Is Your Year To Go Plant-Based”, Tracie Hines, “11 Great Reasons To Eat Less Meat (Even If You’re Not Ready To Go Vegan”, Assya Barrette, http://animals.howstuffworks.com/, www3.epa.gov.