Raman: A Vegetarian Diet Has Benefits But It Can Be Complicated

Raman: A Vegetarian Diet Has Benefits But It Can Be Complicated

Vegetarianism has swept the United States, where nearly every restaurant has at least one vegetarian option on their menu and most grocery stores in major cities have multiple meat and dairy alternatives. For those unfamiliar with vegetarianism, vegetarianism is the dietary practice in which animal-derived foods are avoided. This includes eggs, milk and honey.

A more flexible diet is a vegetarian diet. With this lifestyle choice, individuals consume dairy products and sometimes eggs because eggs are not considered to be made from animal meat. term vegetarian It was coined in 1944 and can be traced back to ancient India and eastern Mediterranean societies. Although there is a history of vegetarianism in the United States, there has been only a recent influx of vegetarians in the past decade.

Undoubtedly, vegetarians have many benefits to the health of the individual as well as to the environment. Because of the phytochemicals and antioxidants found in most vegetables and fruits, a vegan diet is very beneficial. She is a vegetarian diet It can help prevent some types of cancer and type 2 diabetes.

These findings are not unusual – many individuals have claimed that a vegetarian diet has reduced the symptom severity of most of their health problems, especially those related to cardiovascular disease.

Second, vegetarians have a stretch Reduced environmental footprint than their meat-eating counterparts. The meat and dairy industries account for 14.5 percent of the world’s greenhouse gases each year. This is due to the methane gas emitted by livestock and the large amount of land uses required to raise them.

Given the ever-increasing population on Earth, one cannot expect this number to decline any time soon unless action is taken. India, which is one of the countries with the lowest consumption of red meat, is a country with one of the lightest environmental impacts per person.

In today’s society driven by social media, we constantly see celebrities and influencers preaching and promoting the vegan lifestyle. We also see many animal rights activists ashaming meat and dairy consumers of their decisions, which is a big reason why there is a relatively large amount of backlash against the vegan movement currently.

Unfortunately, not everyone has access to vegetarianism. Fresh produce, non-dairy milk, and meat alternatives are out of reach for many individuals, and rural communities do not have access to these food options at their local grocery stores. Many would argue that with adequate budget and meal preparation, this lifestyle can be achieved, but not everyone has the time to do it (especially large families that require both parents to work long hours).

Another criticism of the vegetarian movement is the lack of intersectionality found in much of the conversations of the major vegetarian organizations. In many cultures, meat is important, and sustainability is practiced. for example, Redskins respectful in their hunting practices. Hunting and fishing were done solely to protect and provide for their families and animal waste was kept at a minimum as they used most of the animals including their fur.

In addition, meat was not eaten on a regular basis but was eaten on special occasions. Many indigenous peoples today still practice safe hunting practices to preserve their culture, and thus many of the extreme conversations surrounding vegetarianism today are somewhat culturally insensitive.

After recognizing some of the advantages and disadvantages of the vegetative system, it is clear that the issue is not dichotomous. The environmental and health benefits of vegetarians are clear, but it is not realistic to force individuals to become vegetarians overnight.

In addition, many groups of people such as Hindu and Mediterranean communities already consume very little red meat (the type of meat with the highest environmental footprint).

Therefore, the best solution is to educate individuals about the benefits and risks of meat while making vegetarian choices more sustainable. This would not only require an effort from the general public, but government intervention as well. European Union”The farm to the crossroads“The plan is a powerful example of a reasonable and achievable shift toward making plant-based diets more accessible.

Avantika Raman is a College of Arts and Sciences with a major in Biology and a minor in Psychology and Statistics. Her column runs on alternate Thursdays.


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