The V to N of Vegan Benefits

Anybody who knows me may be aware for my love of acronym’s (only reason I get through exams) and am guilty of doing loserish stuff. Therefore, guilty I am today as I have taken the word ‘VEGAN’ and deconstructed it letter by letter so that I can pinpoint 5 specific benefits of eating more plants & less meat. Read on if you dare be a victim of my loser-like antics…

V is for….Veggies!

Sweet potato chips, grilled peppers, pumpkin soup….whooop! They are cheap, colourful and make you feel really good. Maybe you don’t think veg is tasty but if you like creativity and have a relatively open mind you can turn a bunch of veg into something exciting and wholesome.

Pretty much every day I make my oats slightly different. Hot, cold or I’ve even been known to top it with grated carrot, cinnamon & maple syrup to make a carrot cake style oatmeal.14614461_10153900081076828_915782365_o.jpg

The thing I am missing at breakfast time however, appears to be a friend to eat oats with. It takes two to mango!

Beautiful cafe’s of Sydney with such a range of vegan dishes you can combine… where have you bean all my life!?14599721_10153881712621828_1758196984_o

Day to day marketing and magazines focussing on protein being needed in big quantities (which research shows is not true). In reality, 97% of us (US stat) are deficient in fibre. Veg is full of fibre so can help you get into the 3% of the population who get enough of it.

This is one of my sweet potato korma dinner party favourites that always seems to have my guests going in for 2nd’s. Find the recipe here. No need to go bacon any hearts with your cooking!img_3521

E is for Energy

Eating more veg, fruit, beans and whole grains, means CARBS, yessss! This leads to increased slow-release energy levels.

Out of the 3 macro nutrients (carbohydrates, fats and protein), carbs are BY FAR the most effective source of energy. I’ve noticed my energy levels significantly increase since gradually moving over to a vegan diet. I’m now running 5k’s in a time I’d never have thought I was capable of and lifting weights above my head I could barely get off the ground last year.

My first sub 23 minutes 5k, wahey!Another one bites the crust 😉14527600_10153876435166828_1876582780_n-1

Although I don’t follow any specific diet ratio type thing, if you’re looking for structure, the 80:10:10 theory by Dr. Douglas Graham I believe is a great structure to roughly abide by.

My personal favourite Doctor is Dr Michael Greger who is behind Nutrition Facts website. His findings are based on great scientific research.

Upward dog on a paddle board. Suprisingly possible:img_6553

 

G is for Global Health

Our world is in a terrible way health wise. Soooo much of our $£$ is being spent on health care and whilst 1 billion people are obese, 1 billion people are starving. This situation is absolutely horrific but to an extent, we can get out of it.

Dr John Mc Dougall has amazing evidence to prove the health benefits of a plant based diet, which include;

  • Lower cancer rates
  • Decreased type 2 diabetes
  • A plant based diet has been shown to not just prevent but cure heart disease

I’m always happy to share my before and after turning vegan blood results too 🙂

Both my boyfriend Sam and I feel unbelievably good since eating more plants & less animals!10620562_10153538623681828_6616192026726932091_n

A is for Agriculture

If you’re in the 96% of the world that admit to ‘loving animals’ you might be interested in some stats on the effects of agriculture on our world:

 

Tortoises in El Chato, The Galapagos12193553_10153173556231828_4297844397743451238_n

  • Raising animals for food takes up 30% of our world’s land mass
  • Deforestation for agriculture accounts for 91% of Amazon destruction
  • 130% more animal than human waste is produced per day
  • 2.7 trillion animals (including dolphins, seals and turtles) are pulled from the sea each day. 40% of this is discarded as it is unwanted ‘by catch’.
  • Animal agriculture is responsible for more greenhouse emissions than all transport methods combined.

Playing with sea lions in the Galapagos.12115631_10153173529636828_2883020884422172553_n (1)

N is for Nature

Most of us love our world. We love travelling, meeting wildlife and seeing the beauty of untouched landscapes. I certainly do.  However, things are sadly changing with some facts below that illustrate this:

img_6552

  • With 3/4 of the world’s fisheries exploited and 40% of fish being caught each year are discarded, this may make you think twice when buying dahl or salmon (clue: your dahl is probably cheaper and will make you feel 10x more energetic after)
  • Methane is 86% more dangerous to global warming than CO2.
  • Livestock grazing is the number 1 cause of plant species going extinct.

Picture taken at Rendezvous island, Belize. Paradise!11924579_10153033279151828_1817719817_o

What Can We Do To Help?

  • Good news is, no koala-fications are necessary to help keep our nature wonderful.
  • Cutting down meat just once a week to start off with is a brilliant first step and eventually to one or two days a week is a goal to strive for and enable you to feel the real benefits of a majority plant based diet.
  • The most important thing I would recommend is to do your own reading, e.g. on Youtube/websites
    • Dr John Mc Dougall
    • Browse through the facebook page or website of http://www.nutritionfacts.org, run by Dr Neil Barnard
    • Dr Dean Ornish
    • Dr Michael Greger
  • Check out films such as:
    • Cowspiracy
      Earthlings
    • Forks over Knives
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