A recent study published in the journal Climatic Change says that meat-eaters are responsible for close to two times as many dietary greenhouse-gas emissions every day as vegetarians and about two and a half times as many as vegans. The study showed that the dietary greenhouse-gas emissions among meat-eaters were between 50- 54% higher than those of vegetarians and between 99-102% higher than those of vegans.
While climate change places a threat to the security of the food supply systems by- increasing temperatures, rain and more extreme weather events will all have an impact on crops and livestock, some individuals who are at a place of influence are taking steps to reduce any further spoilage to the environment. Bhumi Pednekar is one of them too.
The actress took it to her Instagram to share the update of her giving up on meat and following a vegetarian diet throughout the lockdown. “For many years I had the want to go vegetarian. But breaking habits are very tough,” she wrote on her journey of getting to this place. “My journey with Climate Warrior taught me a lot. It made me more compassionate towards other species and made me more humble. Eating meat just didn’t feel good anymore. So I took a decision in the lockdown and did what I was contemplating to do for a while now and one day I announced to the fam that I’m giving up non-vegetarian food,” she further added. Her sustainability initiative ‘climate warrior’, focuses on raising awareness of the ill-impacts of climate change on the earth.
Through this, she mobilizes individuals to contribute towards protecting the environment. “Today it’s been a few months and I feel good, guilt-free and physically strong,” she included in her statement. The United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has an estimate that the meat industry produces nearly one-fifth of the human-generated greenhouse gas emissions enhancing climate change worldwide — more than the entire transportation sector.
Here are some health benefits of going vegetarian
- A vegetarian diet is more helpful in preventing, treating, or reversing heart diseases and the risk of cancers.
- It can help you in keeping your weight in check, as unlike the meat-based diet, it is not high in saturated fats.
- The risk of developing a food-borne disease will be reduced.
- The body has more energy. As too much fat in your bloodstream means the arteries won’t open properly and your muscles won’t get enough oxygen, making you feel zapped. Hence, a switch to plant-based will give a boost to your energy levels.
- Your digestive system will work better.
Highly nutritious foods that you can include
You can include a variety of foods to get optimum protein and calcium in your diet.
Sources of protein include– soy, paneer, eggs, flax seeds, peanuts, sunflower seeds, chia seeds, legumes, whole grains and nuts.
Sources of calcium include– Ragi, sesame seeds, almonds, and chia seeds.
A lot of people are understanding the importance of going vegetarian and vegan, Bhumi Pednekar became another source of inspiration for having the change. Though climate change is one problem that needs immediate addressal, your health is no way secondary.
Choose wise, stay healthy.