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Meatless Monday: Happy World Vegetarian Day and Vegetarian Awareness Month!

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Meatless Monday: Happy World Vegetarian Day and Vegetarian Awareness Month!

Cut your meat consumption for World Vegetarian Day and Vegetarian Awareness Month.

If you’ve toyed with the idea of going vegetarian, perhaps October is the month to give it a shot, because October is Vegetarian Awareness Month! To kick off Vegetarian Awareness Month, October 1 is also World Vegetarian Day, which was founded by the North American Vegetarian Society (NAVS) way back in 1977. This non-profit organization’s two-pronged initiative includes providing support to its members, affiliates, and vegetarians in general, as well as educating the public of the benefits of vegetarianism. Why go meatless? Cutting out meat, even just one day a week for Meatless Monday, can have an extraordinary impact on the planet and our health.

  • You’ll live longer. According to news sources, recent research shows that men who eat a vegetarian diet reduce their mortality risk by up to 50 percent, and women by up to 30 percent. Further, a vegetarian diet has been shown to reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease, obesity, and diabetes.
  • You’ll reduce your carbon footprint. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations states, “livestock production is one of the major causes of the world's most pressing environmental problems, including global warming, land degradation, air and water pollution, and loss of biodiversity.” Less demand for meat means less production, thereby reducing its heavy environmental impact.
  • You’ll take a stand against animal cruelty. Most animals raised in factory farms live in deplorable conditions: they are confined to small cages, not allowed to exercise or socialize, and often sit in their own filth. Again, by reducing our meat consumption we also reduce the industry’s need to produce cheap meat fast and efficiently, thereby increasing the quality of life of livestock.
  • You’ll save money. The next time you go grocery shopping, check out the price per pound for lentils, and then check out the price per pound for any meat on the shelf. Enough said.
  • You could make money. As an added incentive to go meatless, NAVS is giving random cash prizes away to meat-eaters who pledge to go meatless for a day, a week, or for the whole month of October. So if the fact that you’re doing better for your body and the planet doesn’t convince you to go meatless, maybe the chance at $1,000 will.

The truth is, going meatless is also really easy. Health food stores and supermarkets are packed with vegetarian-friendly convenience foods, meat alternatives, seasonal fruits and veggies, and a bulk aisle of grains and legumes that will blow your mind. Plus, alive has hundreds of vegan and vegetarian recipes all just a click away. So take the pledge to cut your meat consumption. Not only will you feel physically better, but also you’ll feel better that your food choices are making a positive impact.

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