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Your body, the planet and the animals will thank you for it Why go vegetarian? Better yet, why not go vegetarian? Former Surgeon General C. Everett Koop has said that 70 percent of all Americans are dying from diseases that are directly tied to their eating habits. Stacks of studies confirm that a diet full of fresh fruits and vegetables, grains and soy is your best bet for living a longer, healthier and more enjoyable life. At the same time, you're doing the planet a huge favor by helping to preserve natural resources and cutting down on pollution generated by animal agriculture. Plus, you may appreciate your wonderful meals even more knowing that no animals suffered along the way. There are literally hundreds of great reasons to switch to a plant-based diet; here are 22 of the best we've heard. 1 You'll live a lot longer. Vegetarians live about seven years longer, and vegans (who eat no animal products) about 15 years longer than meat eaters, according to a study from Loma Linda University. These findings are backed up by the China Health Project (the largest population study on diet and health to date), which found that Chinese people who eat the least amount of fat and animal products have the lowest risks of cancer, heart attack and other chronic degenerative diseases. And a British study that tracked 6,000 vegetarians and 5,000 meat eaters for 12 years found that vegetarians were 40 percent less likely to die from cancer during that time and 20 percent less likely to die from other diseases. 2 You'll save your heart. Cardiovascular disease is still the number one killer in the United States, and the standard American diet (SAD) that's laden with saturated fat and cholesterol from meat and dairy is largely to blame. Children as young as age 3 who are raised on fast food and junk food show early signs of heart disease, according to the Bogalusa Heart Study done at the Louisiana State University. Cardiovascular disease is found in one in nine women aged 45 to 64 and in one in three women over 65. Heart attacks are also deadlier to the fairer sex: 53 percent of women who have heart attacks die from them, compared with 47 percent of men. Today, the average American male eating a meat-based diet has a 50 percent chance of dying from heart disease. His risk drops to 15 percent if he cuts out meat; it goes to 4 percent if he cuts out meat, dairy and eggs. Partly responsible is the fact that fruits and vegetables are full of antioxidant nutrients that protect the heart and its arteries. Plus, produce contains no saturated fat or cholesterol. Incidentally, cholesterol levels for vegetarians are 14 percent lower than meat eaters. 3 You can put more money in your mutual fund. Replacing meat, chicken and fish with vegetables and fruits is estimated to cut food bills by an average of $4,000 a year. 4 You'll reduce your risk of cancer. A study in The International Journal of Cancer concluded that red meat is strongly associated with breast cancer. The National Cancer Institute says that women who eat meat every day are nearly four times
varied hues. the ammonia gases from urine. And this is just one farm. Vegetarians are also less likely to fall victim to weight-related disorders like heart disease. So cooking by color is a good way to ensure you re eating a variety of naturally occurring substances that boost immunity and prevent a range of illnesses. author of Vegan: The New Ethics of Eating (McBooks. 9 Your meals will taste delicious. founding chef of Greens restaurant in San Francisco and author of Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone (Broadway Books." says Deborah Madison. Giving up meat helps purge the body of toxins (pesticides.more likely to get breast cancer than those who don't. Studies done at the German Cancer Research Center in Heidelberg suggest that this is because vegetarians' immune systems are more effective in killing off tumor cells than meat eaters'. creates more waste than the entire city of Los Angeles. Iowa. Circle 4 Farms in Milford. Disease-fighting phytochemicals are responsible for giving produce their rich. When people begin formal detoxification programs. That's because diets that are higher in vegetable proteins are much lower in fat and calories than the SAD." says Erik Marcus. Each year.. chicken and fish tend to come in boring shades of brown and beige. "It's a wonderful thing to be able to finish a delicious meal. Studies have also found a plant-based diet helps protect against prostate. their first step is to replace meats and dairy products with fruits and vegetables and juices." says Chris Clark. "These contain phytochemicals that help us detox naturally. Utah. "It's an ever-changing parade of flavors and colors and textures and tastes. we keep the weight off up to seven years longer. By contrast. a substance that's rated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as one of the country's top 10 pollutants. which raises 2." 10 You'll help reduce waste and air pollution. 7 You'll give your body a spring cleaning. women who consume at least one serving of vegetables a day reduce their risk of breast cancer by 20 percent to 30 percent. the nation's factory farms. poison gases that emanate from manure lagoons.D. vegetarians are slimmer than meat eaters. knowing that no beings have suffered [to make it]. And that's not even counting the methane gas released by cows. medical director of The Raj. Everyone can enjoy them. Meat. 1997). colon and skin cancers. Each day. M. which specializes in detox programs. and when we diet. and exhaust from farm equipment used to raise feed for animals. environmental pollutants. an Ayurvedic healing center in Fairfield. 8 You'll make a strong political statement. pigs and poultry (which contributes to the greenhouse effect). preservatives) that overload our systems and cause illness. according to the Harvard Nurses Health Study. 6 You'll fit into your old jeans. 5 You'll add color to your plate. On average. 22 million animals are slaughtered to support the American appetite for meat. toxic chemicals from pesticides. "Vegetables are endlessly interesting to cook and a joy to eat. . but fruits and vegetables come in all colors of the rainbow.5 million pigs every year. collectively produce 2 billion tons of manure. stroke and diabetes. 1998). but vegetarians are more likely to think about cooking and eating vegetables.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimate that among Americans.11 Your bones will last longer.D. starts with the arteries leading to the back. It takes 15 pounds of feed to get one pound of meat. for non-vegetarian women.. one acre of land could produce 50. it's double that. approximately 5 percent of cows carry the lethal strain of E. According to the journal Soil and Water. All of which leads Michael Klaper. the CDC estimates. arsenic. 72 percent of all grain produced in the United States is fed to animals raised for slaughter. the body pulls calcium from bones. The average bone loss for a vegetarian woman at age 65 is 18 percent. in particular. which leads to nerves being pinched. vegetarians turn to dark green leafy vegetables. author of Pregnancy. to comment. and 30 percent of pigs slaughtered each year for food are infected with toxoplasmosis (caused by parasites). make the blood acidic. But if the grain were given directly to people. 1988). for instance." Eating a lot of vegetables necessarily means consuming fiber.. DDT) and heavy metals (mercury." Eating a plant-based diet keeps these arteries clear of cholesterol-causing blockages to help maintain a healthy back. Children and a Vegan Diet (Gentle World Inc. Meat contains no fiber. cadmium) that cannot be removed through cooking or freezing. According to the Center for Science in the Public Interest. People who eat . fish and dairy products.000 pounds of carrots or just 250 pounds of beef. Animal proteins. there'd be enough food to feed the entire planet. "Back pain appears to begin. Meat and dairy products are also laced with steroids and hormones." 15 You may get rid of your back problems. Excess protein interferes with the absorption and retention of calcium and actually prompts the body to excrete calcium.000 deaths. 13 You'll avoid toxic chemicals. lead. M. which pushes waste out of the body. The EPA estimates that nearly 95 percent of pesticide residue in our diet comes from meat. such as broccoli and legumes. laying the ground for the brittle bone disease osteoporosis. In addition. "The degeneration of disks." says Neil Barnard. So rather than rely on milk for calcium. M. Studies done at Harvard and Brigham Women's Hospital found that people who ate a high-fiber diet had a 42 percent lower risk of diverticulitis. and to balance that condition. Researchers attribute this to the consumption of excess protein--the average meat-eating American woman eats 144 percent over the recommended daily allowance. Fish. president of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine and author of Foods That Fight Pain (Harmony Books. Right now...000 pounds of potatoes. coli O157:H7 (which causes virulent diseases and death). 1998). not in the back. 16 You'll be more "regular. calorie for calorie. but in the arteries. which.D. 30. 14 You'll protect yourself from food-borne illnesses. are superior sources. there were approximately 80 million incidences of food-borne illness a year--resulting in 9. "Including animal products in your diet is like playing Russian roulette with your life. 70 percent to 90 percent of chickens contain the bacteria campy-lobacter (some strains of which are antibiotic-resistant).000 pounds of tomatoes. using land for animal agriculture is inefficient in terms of maximizing food production. the average man eats 175 percent more. 12 You'll help reduce famine. contain carcinogens (PCBs. 40. 25 percent of all chicken sold in the United States carries salmonella bacteria and. including milk.
Vegetarian cooking has never been so simple. but it contributes to rampant water pollution." says Christine Beard. cancer. weight gain. chances are they'll live a longer and healthier life. 21 You'll provide a great role model for your kids. "If you set a good example and feed your children good food. fatigue. health club and jacuzzi. Swimming pool. Even traditional fast food chains now offer salads. grains and legumes--especially soy--contain phytoestrogens that are believed to balance fluctuating hormones.500 gallons of water to produce one pound of beef. Sai Vishram Beach Resort * Located in Byndoor. "You're also providing a market for vegetarian products and making it more likely that they'll be available for the children. A 1997 study by the Senate Agriculture Committee found that 60 percent of American waterways were polluted. and the Food & Agriculture Organization reports that 11 of 15 of the world's major fishing grounds have become depleted. 20 You'll help protect the purity of water. a certified nutrition educator and author of Become a Vegetarian in 5 Easy Steps (McBooks Press. veggie burgers and soy yogurt. milk and cheeses. but just 25 gallons of water to produce a pound of wheat. Sun-n-Sand Shirdi Vegetarian Hotel * India's first vegetarian hotel to be given a 5-star rating. hot flashes. Not only is this wasteful. Close to Sai Baba's shrine. Plants. 39 percent of the oceans' fish species are overharvested. and others have added "veg-friendly" dishes to their menus." 22 Going vegetarian is very easy to do. depression and a diminished sex drive. mood swings. so vegetarian women tend to go through menopause with fewer complaints of sleep problems. Many more restaurants specializing in vegetarian food have opened. Aguada Holiday Resort * Exclusive vegetarian resort located next to the Victor Exotica beach resort. It takes 2. We spend between $60 billion to $120 billion annually to treat the heart disease. 1997). Bharat Hotel * Vegetarian Hotel with over 90 rooms. obesity. Because of our voracious appetite for fish. Supermarkets carry packaged convenience foods like tofu hot dogs. and the major reason is animal agriculture. and food poisoning that are byproducts of a diet heavy on animal products. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development lists nitrate pollution (from fertilizer and manure) as one of the most serious water-quality problems in Europe and the United States. A specialty resort that is completely vegetarian and does not serve alcohol. 18 You'll help to bring down the national debt. Ayurveda Retreat * (right/center photos courtesy: Ayurveda Retreat) Vegetarian retreat with a vegetarian spa & yoga center. . 19 You'll preserve our fish population. 17 You'll cool those hot flashes. veggie burritos and vegetarian pizza. hemorrhoids and spastic colon. There's greater availability of vegetarian options in mall and arena food courts. Karnataka (India).lower on the food chain also tend to have fewer incidences of constipation.
90 rooms. .com/vacationmap-india. Kerala The Paradise * Vegetarian hotel over looking the city of Mysore and the Chamundi hills. banquet halls. where a strong emphasis is placed on eating “pure” foods. www.The vegetarian Hotel * In the heart of the royal capital city of Thiruvananthapuram.vegetarianusa. Gujarat.Ariya Nivaas . the nation’s first five-star. Hotel Rajdhani * (left photo courtesy: Hotel Rajdhani) Vegetarian hotel in Hyderabad.html This week. India. Known as The Diamond City. in addition to ballrooms. India’s Bhagwati Banquets & Hotels announced that it would unveil The Bhagwati Hotels. especially at special events such as weddings. The luxury inn located in Surat. and a VIP club. will include 162 deluxe rooms and eight suites. Surat is one of the most densely populated cities in the world. multi-cuisine restaurant. all-vegetarian hotel in July. conference rooms. Hotel owners say the decision to open an entirely vegetarian hotel was made after seeing the increasing demand for plant-based foods.
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