By Abby Malone
Hello again everyone! There has been so much talk in the last few years about the perks of cutting (or limiting!) meat from one’s diet. I have been a pescatarian (i.e. the only kind of “meat” that I eat is seafood) for about two years now, and I have to say that I really love it. This is not to say that I do not have slip-ups; I definitely eat a little meat from time to time. However, I would say I am meatless about 98% of the time.
Even now, I get a ton of questions from my friends and family whenever I turn down eating meat for a meal. In the least preachy way possible, there are so many perks to eating meatless or even simply limiting meat consumption that I thought it might be helpful to share the perks of vegetarianism below:
1. It forces you to eat healthier.
At least for me, it did! Pre-veggie me did really not like most vegetables, except onions and the occasional peppers. Replacing what usually is the main caloric component of a meal really requires some creativity! In my case, that creativity was forcing myself to try vegetables in all kinds of new ways. Thus began my love affair with brussel sprouts…
2. Animal rights!
This is definitely the most controversial topic regarding vegetarianism, but is definitely worth looking into more if it interests you! In my case, I did some background on how animals in the meatpacking industry were treated, and it was pretty staggering. That is not to say all animals who are bred for consumption are treated poorly; many farms across the world use ethically sound methods for raising their livestock. Just gotta do some diggin!
3. The environmental impact.
This is what really sold me. As someone pretty passionate about the environment, it is pretty wild to hear just how much money and resources go into raising animals who are ultimately going to be eaten. Not to mention, these same animals release so much excess emission. Simply not eating meat for one day a year can actually do more for the environment than never driving a car! That is pretty crazy.
Hope this was helpful for anyone thinking about becoming a vegetarian or even someone who wants to limit their meat consumption. Even replacing one meal every now and then can be super helpful, and its so fun trying out new recipes!!