Today is EARTH DAY!!!! What better day to celebrate than to introduce Meatless Monday to those who have never heard of Meatless Monday and those who are looking to start making changes in their diet and just need a place to start!
What is Meatless Monday? It is an international movement to help people reduce their meat consumption by 15% to improve personal health and the health of the planet. You join the movement at the MeatlessMonday.com.
Why Monday? What a perfect place to start!! Right at the beginning of the week so you can set goals for the rest of the week regarding your health choices. Isn’t that the one positive about Monday? After a weekend of indulgence, don’t we all tend to pick ourselves up and do better “starting Monday!” Plus, let’s be honest. Meatless Wednesday just sounds ridiculous!
Why Meatless Monday?
For your health! Lowering your meat consumption will surprisingly increase your health. The Standard American Diet grossly over consumes meat! This over consumption has lead to a myriad of diseases. Lowering your meat consumption can lead to health benefits such as:
- Reduce heart disease
- Limit cancer risk
- Fight diabetes
- Curb Obesity
- Live longer
- Improve your diet
For your wallet! Eating less meat with cut your weekly budget. This is going to be especially helpful with the current prices of meat and dairy projected to rise thanks to the drought that we are facing throughout the U.S. Eating less meat will also cut your spending in health care. 70% of the health care spending is from preventable diseases such as diabetes, cancer, and heart disease.
For our planet!! This brings us back to Earth Day! You would be surprised what a big impact small changes make!
1. Preserving water sources
- It takes an estimated 1,000 gallons of water to produce one quarter pound of beef (100 times more than plants) This is a huge number considering that approximately 50% of the U.S. in under drought conditions.
- Water pollution from fertilizers and pesticides pollute waterways and threaten ecosystems. One third of the corn grown in the U.S. is used for cattle feed.
- Water pollution from the waste generated from the cows pollutes waterways as well. We are all familiar with fresh produce like spinach being blamed for e coli outbreaks when in fact runoff from cattle lots contaminate fields. GROSS!!!
2. Minimizing fossil fuel consumption
It takes approximately 20 times the amount of fossil fuel to produce beef than plants!
3. Helping to stop climate change
Whether you are for or against Global Warming, the fact is, there are definite impacts on the ozone from greenhouse gases produced by us. Who really knows how it is affecting our climate? That is obviously a debate that I will not be getting in to right here but if you are one that is conscious about the carbon footprint you are leaving behind or if you are concerned with Global Warming and reducing greenhouse gases, you may be surprised to find out that cattle produce more greenhouse gases than cars!
I know, I am picking on beef! But, I’ll spare you the details of raising chickens, pigs, etc. and save it for another post. 🙂
So, maybe you aren’t ready or maybe you aren’t convinced that going full out meatless is what is best for you. This is a perfect way for you to dip your toe in the water. You can start slow and build a nice repertoire of recipes! You can just see how your family would adjust to not having the meat as the center of the meal. Maybe going meatless on Monday’s will be change the way you eat forever and maybe it will change the way you eat on Monday. Any change is a good change!
Are you ready for Meatless Monday?