A growing number of spiritual seekers are adopting vegan and vegetarian diets, drawn by the ethical and environmental benefits of plant-based lifestyles. Here is their story.
by David Stone
for Assorted Ideas, Large and Small
The exact numbers of vegans are almost impossible to establish, but surveys have shown rapid growth. One suggested there had been a 40% increase in 2020, bringing the total to around 1.5 million. That is probably an overestimate, but certainly, more than 500,000 pledged to eat vegan as part of this year’s Veganuary.The Guardian – From Fringe to Mainstream
Veganism in daily life
For many people, the decision to ditch animal products is driven by a desire to “do no harm,” a familiar New Age commitment. They believe that all beings deserve compassion and that killing animals for food is morally wrong.
Others are motivated by the environmental impact of animal agriculture. Factory farming is a leading cause of climate change, deforestation, and water pollution. Going vegan is one of the most effective things you can do to reduce your ecological footprint.
Some, also, see plant-based diets as a way of connecting more deeply with the natural world. By eating foods that are in alignment with the seasons, they feel more connected to the rhythms of life.
Whatever the reason, it’s clear that veganism and vegetarianism are on the rise. More and more people are recognizing that there is a better way to eat, one that is kinder to animals, the planet and our bodies.
Some examples of easily available vegan foods are:
–Fruit: The variety is stunning, not just in nutrients, but in flavors, textures and ease in finding.
–Vegetables: Here the variety is even greater, the meal options almost endless in combinations or single preparations.
-Beans: Not just good for the heart but for the physical activity that goes with it as we saw in Blazing Saddles.
–Tofu: This soybean product, when used in foods, makes a good substitution for meat and is loaded with protein and other nutrients.
–Nuts: Not just for squirrels. I love them – in my hands for snacking, in pies and as an add-on for salad.
-Seeds: The essential ingredient in plant reproduction is necessarily loaded with nutrients, and many of them taste damn good.
–Plant kinds of milk: Soy, Almond, Rice, etc. are not really milk but healthy liquids derived from plant products, suiting vegetarian needs.
–Hummus: So popular, variations on the base go from chocolate to horseradish without wrecking the general idea.
What are the community advantages of veganism?
One of the best things about veganism is that it’s a community-based way of eating. There are online groups, meetups, and even entire cities devoted to vegan living. This sense of community can be very supportive, especially for people new to veganism.
The community also helps keep people accountable. When you’re surrounded by people who share your values, it’s easier to stick to your goals. Veganism is about more than just food; it’s a lifestyle that encompasses everything from the way we eat to the way we dress to the way we interact with the world.
In addition, the vegan community is often very activist-oriented. People in this community are frequently passionate about social and environmental justice, and they use their lifestyle to make a difference in the world. Whether it’s through protesting factory farms or campaigning for animal rights, vegans work at creating a better world for all beings.
Is veganism healthier than conventional diets?
There is a lot of debate about the health benefits of veganism. Some people claim that a vegan diet is inherently healthier than a conventional diet, while others argue that it can be unhealthy if not done correctly.
The truth is that any diet can be healthy or unhealthy, depending on the foods you eat. A well-rounded vegan diet is packed with nutrients, and it has been linked to lower rates of heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. It’s also full of antioxidants, which protect against cell damage.
However, it’s important to note that not all vegan foods are healthy. Processed vegan foods can be high in sugar, fat and sodium. So, it’s important to choose whole, unprocessed foods whenever possible.
When it comes to health, there is no one-size-fits-all answer. The best way to determine if veganism is right for you is trying it out and seeing how you feel. Many find that a vegan diet makes them energetic, healthier and more vibrant. Others find that its health benefits come with drawbacks. The important thing is being honest with yourself and listening to your body. If veganism isn’t right for you, that’s okay! There are plenty of other healthy diets out there.
But is a vegan more spiritual?
Veganism is often seen as a more spiritual way of living. This is because veganism is about more than just food; it’s a lifestyle that encompasses everything from the way we eat to the way we dress to the way we interact with the world.
For many people, veganism is a way to connect more deeply with the natural world. By eating foods that are in alignment with the seasons, they feel more connected to the rhythms of life. Whatever the reason, it’s clear that veganism and vegetarianism are on the rise. More and more people are recognizing that there is a better way to eat, one that is kinder to animals, the planet, and our bodies.
As veganism and vegetarianism become more popular, remember that there is no one right way to eat. Everyone has different needs, and what works for one person may not work for another. Be honest with yourself. Listen to your body. If veganism or vegetarianism is something you’re interested in, give it a try and see if it works for you.
You may be surprised at how good you feel! Or you might find it overrated and head out for the nearest burger joint. There is only one good way of findings out. So, go for it. Enjoy.
And buy this writer a coffee…
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