Infographic: Go Meatless - Say No to Meat

This infographic entitled "Go Meatless - Say No to Meat" gives some sobering facts about the human health and environmental costs of raising animals for food.  It also points out a few health advantages of a plant-based (or vegan) diet.  Finally, it gives some great examples of plant foods that are rich in protein, iron and calcium - the three nutrients that people who are considering a vegetarian or vegan diet worry about the most.  Highlights include:

The impact of raising animals for food on the environment and human health:

✔  Meat is the primary reason for high cholesterol level in both men and women.  High cholesterol levels increase the risk for stroke, cardiovascular and other diseases.
✔  It requires at least 7 kg (about 15 pounds, 7 ounces) of grain to produce 1 kg (about 2 pounds, 3 ounces) of beef.
✔  Raising animals for food uses 30% of the earth's mass.
✔  More than 2/3rds of the land is consumed for growing fodder (i.e., feed) for livestock.
✔  Nearly about 50% of the water in the United States is used in raising farm animals.
✔  It requires 249 gallons of water to produce 4.15 pounds of potatoes whereas it requires 12,009 gallons of water to produce only one pound of beef.
✔  Cattle excretions pollute rivers and seas and are often responsible for cross-contamination of fruits and vegetables.
✔  Methane (produced by cattle) contributes to global warming 20 times more and faster than carbon-dioxide emissions.

The health benefits of whole-food plant-based (vegan) diets:

✔  Vegan diets are cholesterol free.
✔  Whole-food vegan diets are rich in calcium, iron, protein and other micronutrients.
✔  Healthy vegan diets reduce the risk of many chronic diseases like heart attack, stroke, diabetes and cancer.

Common plant-based sources of protein, iron and calcium include:

✔  Whole grains, nuts and seeds
✔  Nut and butters and milks
✔  Beans and lentils
✔  Vegetables, especially dark, leafy, green vegetables
✔  Fruits

Vegan Food Guide: Daily Plan for Healthy Living
Vegan Food Pyramid
Wondering About a Vegan Diet?

Infographic Source:  I Dream of Falafel

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