Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Why I'm Going Vegan for Earth Day




Earth Day is an annual, global event, and this year on April 22nd we're celebrating the Golden Anniversary of this occasion. Over a billion people participate each year, and we hope many more join in this time.





It's a virtual event, so you can play it safe and shelter at home as you review ways to reduce global warming.

My tip is to make a commitment to reuse, recycle, reduce, and repair, remake, refuse, remember, respect, and restore to live more sustainably. 

A special way I pledge to honor the earth is to reduce my carbon footprint even more than I have in the past. As part of my plan, I've already spoken to my grandson Noah to guest blog for me. I am thrilled and delighted he happily agreed. 


Here's his post now.



Why I’m Going Vegan for Earth Day




Thanks so much for taking the time to read my guest blog. My name is Noah White and I am one of Nancy’s very lucky grandchildren. 





In 2018, I graduated from Duke University with a degree in Environmental Science and Policy and I am now living in Oakland, CA where I am studying Sustainable Solutions at Presidio Graduate School.


While I’ll be going especially vegan for this upcoming Earth Day, it’s actually not the first time I’ve eaten on a strict vegan diet. 

In 2012, when I was training as a competitive runner, I read Scott Jurek’s Eat and Run: My Unlikely Journey to Ultramarathon Greatness. Scott, a highly accomplished runner, explained how he made a transition to a vegan diet that improved his overall health and well-being.  

My stint at veganism only lasted for a month in 2012. I've transitioned to a more plant focused eating plan since then.
           
When asked, I tell people that I am a “flexitarian.” Why? Because there’s simply no denying the environmental impact that raising animals for livestock has on the environment and as such, I feel obligated to minimize my consumption of animal products. 

However, realistically, I love going out for Pizza with friends or eating a roast chicken prepared by a loved one, so I stay flexible.
            
What kind of environmental impacts am I referring to? Well, lots actually. According to a report published by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, the livestock sector generates more greenhouse gas emissions as measured in CO2 equivalent – 18 percent – than transport. Yes. You read that right. If you went vegan, you would conserve more carbon emissions than if you gave up motorized transport entirely.

Greenhouse gas emissions aside, the land use impacts are hard to believe.
In fact, thirty percent of the earth’s entire land surface—a massive 70% of all agricultural land—is used for rearing farmed animals. 

Think of it this way. A third or 33% of the world’s lands suitable for growing crops and directly feeding humans, is used to produce feed for farmed animals and raise livestock.


Our overcrowded and infection-susceptible cities might just be a lot more resilient if we weren’t using so much land for livestock.

With this massive impact in mind, I won’t use any animal products on Earth Day.  And while this impact may be disheartening, I find it comforting to think that consuming less meat and animal products has such a large impact in helping the environment!

So, what will I be cooking? Well, breakfast will be sweet and rich in the form of hazelnut pancakes, using oat milk and hazelnut flour for an added twist. 


I plan on spending Earth Day isolated, in the sunshine, surrounded by greenery, breathing in lots of fresh air. 


However, when I stop for lunch, I’ll probably enjoy one of my go-to snacks. It's a hummus, cucumber, and avocado wrap; so simple, yet so delish. And while I normally enjoy cheese on this wrap, I’ll either forgo it or use some vegan cheese slices. 



At the end of the day, I’ll probably sit down to watch an episode of Planet Earth, with David Attenborough’s silky-smooth voice describing the marvelous natural splendor of our planet. 

For dinner I’ll be chowing down vegan Primavera sauce on homemade noodles I make with my newest favorite culinary device, a pasta maker. 


Happy Earth Day! And remember, a bit fewer animal products can really have a large positive impact for our global community.


πŸ‘Œ
Please comment below and share on social media with a link back to this post. I appreciate your comments and read every one.

In what ways can you treat the environment better this year?

Are you willing to eat more plant-based meals? What ideas do you have for accomplishing that?

From all reports the COVID-19 Pandemic has keep most of us home. It's reduced air pollution, by cutting down the usage of fossil fuel motorized vehicles. 

Can you image how healthy the planet, people, and animals would be, if we ate more plants and less animal products? After all, the livestock sector generates more greenhouse gas emissions as measured in CO2 equivalent – 18 percent – than transport. 


Stay Safe, Be Well, and Go Vegan for Earth Day!

This post has been shared at Beth Fish Reads Weekend Cooking

This post has been shared at #TFT

This post has been shared at midlife-share-love-party-112

This post has been shared at Little Things Thursday hosted by Tamar of Random-osity

22 comments:

  1. Like many things this spring, Earth Day will not be its usual celebration. Glad we can still remember to love mother earth. Happy Earth Day@

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    1. Thanks Carol for the visit and comment. Yes, things are sure different and yet spring has sprung. Happy Earth Day and be well.

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  2. Great post by your grandson and some interesting food ideas! I also like the looks of that vegan wrap!

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    1. Thanks Judee for the kind words. I know from reading your blog that you're staying safe and cooking breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Me too. Wish you continued health and enjoyment in every day.By the way readers, Judee's Blog is Gluten Free A-Z.

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  3. Hi Nancy - I don't think even Earth Day would tempt me to go vegan. I'm glad it's inspiring you though! I feel like we've had Earth Month lately as we all stay home and let our natural world breathe a sigh of relief.
    Thanks for linking up with us at MLSTL and I’ve shared on my SM 😊

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  4. PS (I should also have said "Hi Noah" - and how impressed I am that he wanted to share a post on your blog!)

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  5. Hi Nancy, I enjoyed meeting your grandson and it is comforting to know that the next generations are so interested in taking care of our planet. I thought being Vegan was quite strict but I would certainly be happy with some of the recipe suggestions such as the pasta PrimaVera and the wraps. Thanks for sharing at #MLSTL. x

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    1. Thanks Sue for the visit, comment, and hosting #MLSTL. We tried to show people how easy, delicious, healthy, and environmentally friendly it is swap out animal products and replace them with plant-based ones. Be safe, stay well, and wishing you good eating as you add a few new plant-based meals to your food lineup.

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  6. Thanks Leanne, especially for hosting #MLSTL. I appreciate the opportunity to share my blog posts and read the fabulous posts of the other participants. Stay safe, be well, and lead a colorful life!

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  7. Been vegetarian for 20 years so I'll have to find a different project for Earth Day, but I'm glad Noah's doing it, and I hope other people try. Even if you don't give up meat entirely, a week or month has a vegetarian or vegan can really open up a new culinary world!

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    1. Thanks Jasmine for the visit and comment. So happy you came to call. Wishing you a wonderful Earth Day.

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  8. What a lovely way to celebrate Earth Day. Thanks, Nancy, for sharing your grandson with us. Thank you Noah for helping us understand the consequences of our decisions. Take care and stay safe!

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    1. Thanks so much for the comment and visit. Have a beautiful Earth Day and stay safe and well. Hugs, Nan

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  9. What a super way to celebrate Earth Day. I consider myself "flexitarian" too -- we each quite a lot of vegetarian and vegan meals but meat isn't out of the picture.

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    1. Thanks for the comment and visit Beth. Be safe and stay well.

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  10. Thanks for sharing this post. How cool that your grandson was happy to write a blog post for you.

    I need to work a bit harder on including more vegetarian dishes in our routine. I can't imagine going vegan though.

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    1. Thanks Marg for the visit and comment. There are many good vegan recipes on the internet, and cookbooks galore. I like "The Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease Cookbook" by A. and J. Esselstyn and "31 Day Food Revolution" by O.Robbins for starters. It is fun to explore making new vegan dishes, and find those you enjoy.

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  11. What a great idea to have your grandson write a guest post! I think I could learn to eat vegan, but vegetarian or flexitarian are probably more likely for me. If it weren't for my husband, I would already have a mostly vegetarian diet, but he likes to have meat at least a few times a week. I have the cookbooks But I Could Never Go Vegan and The Plant-Powered Diet, and both have some great recipes!

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    1. Thanks Laurie for the visit, comment, and cookbook recommendations. Wishing you a beautiful spring and fun as you have a food adventure trying out new vegan recipes. By the way, you might consider making more mushroom dishes. That appeals to many meat eaters I know. Here's a link to a mushroom recipe roundup from this blog you might check out. https://www.colors4health.com/2019/10/hearty-healthy-vegan-mushroom-recipe.html

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    2. Good idea! My husband and I both love mushrooms and we have a big container of Baby Bellas in the fridge!

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  12. Like Noah, when I was young, I decided I wanted my diet to represent my values and for me that meant eating no bodies of animals, thus I became a vegetarian. Back in the 1970s, when I was 21, there wasn't much knowledge then about how eating animals hurts our planet. Nor was there the immense amount of scientific nutrition knowledge we have now that shows eating a 100% or mainly whole food, plant-based diet is the best strategy for reducing our risk to chronic disease. What I did know then, was that the killing of animals for food is not necessary for most people in this world, especially those of us living in the developed world. And not only was killing animals not necessary, but the act of raising animals for food is cruel and painful for the animals. I find it exciting that Noah at his young age has found at least 1 reason to go mostly vegan now, and this is to protect our planet. Probably within time, Noah, you will find the other 2 reasons meaningful to you as well, animal compassion and protecting your own health as you grow into middle age and beyond. I wonder if you have seen the fantastic film Cowspiracy which is all about the impact animal agricuture has on our planet. For those who say they could never go vegan, I invite you to keep learning more about plant-based eating. I have been a whole food, plant-based eater now for 7 years, and it is the best culinary decision I've ever made. For anyone wanting to learn how to cook plant-based, I invite you to check out my free YouTube channel, HAPPY VEGAN COUPLE where you will find cooking videos as well as video classes on how to eat a very healthy plant-based diet.

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    1. Thanks Denise for your comment. Glad you had an opportunity to express your reasons for being vegan. Be safe, stay well, and lead a colorful life.

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