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: Celebrate National Vegan Day and Celebrate Good Health Too!

Celebrate National Vegan Day and Celebrate Good Health Too!

Call Center Director

Today is National Vegan Day, the first day of World Vegan Month, a month in celebration of the founding of the world's first Vegan Society on November 1, 1944. Veganism is not for everyone, and it can be a challenge! I was a happy ovo-lacto vegetarian until I developed lactose intolerance and had to give up all dairy. But I really came to appreciate the benefits of the vegan diet. But the only time I miss dairy is when there's pizza around. That heavenly smell! Pizza without cheese is not worth the effort.

 

More and more people are taking the vegan route these days, even though it's a hard step to take for meat-loving citizens of the United States. Our whole culture is built on the consumption of savory steaks, BBQ, hamburgers, chicken, pork, and fish. And bacon. Not to mention cheeses with such a wide variety of flavors and textures. Mac and cheese, ice cream, yoghurt, creamy desserts. How could someone give all this up?

 

When I was 21,I took the vegetarian route and never looked back. Many years later, even after leaving dairy behind, I have no regrets. Here's why:

1. When I was contemplating my vegetarian future, I imagined looking a cow in the eyes and asking myself if I could kill it. I could not. It's a personal choice, but one that was easy for me to make. I believed killing animals to eat was cruel and unnecessary, so no more meat/fish for me.

2. Rice, beans, nuts, and other grains are full of protein, and a balanced vegan diet assures my strength. There are interesting meat substitutes that are pretty tasty. Did you know that too much protein can cause gout and kidney issues?

3. There's much more fiber in plant based food. My cholesterol count is perfect, and I'm not at risk for diabetes, even though it runs in my family.

4. It's much cheaper to eat vegan. Meat is expensive. Vegetables can be pricey sometimes, but I'd rather pay $3 for a big old bunch of collard greens than the little bit of meat that would get me these days. Oh, and by the way, collards without pork products = YUM! Just add a little salt, olive oil, and smoke flavor, and voila! 

5. I still eat a nice selection of cookies, including Oreos. Coconut milk ice cream and sorbet are really good; here are some recipes. Some chocolate, coffee, and most wine and beer are vegan. Hurray!

6. There are lots of celebrities who have gone vegan. They're fancy people-it's a fancy diet! Therefore, I'm fancy!

7. Many restaurants have terrific vegan dishes. I avoid steak and seafood houses, although sometimes their salads are great!   

 

So, on National Vegan Day, give that vegan dish a try and indulge in all the meat-and-dairy-free flavors you've never considered before. Shifting away from meat products-even just a little bit-can be good for you and good for our earth. And it is plenty delicious too!

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