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Vegetarian

Does Being Vegetarian Actually Save Any Animals?

Does Being Vegetarian Actually Save Any Animals?

There are lots of reasons that people become vegetarians or vegans – health, sustainability, up-bringing, but by far the most common explanation given is a moral one, that the unnecessary suffering and killing of billions of animals per year is unethical.  It’s not a surprisingly conclusion, given the massive amount of animals slaughtered for food alone in the US.  In 2013, 8.1 billion animals died to feed Americans, and meat eaters will consume an average of 2,088 animals in their life-time[1].  Surely then, it stands to reason that abstaining from eating meat will save the lives and prevent the suffering of animals.  Whether this is true or not, however, is under some debate – and if it is true, just how many animals does vegetarianism actually save?

Calculating Saved Lives

There have been numerous studies and calculations discussing just how many animals are saved each year by a vegetarian diet – and the numbers vary wildly, from as little as 50 to as large as hundreds.  Noam Mohr, of the animal charity PETA, suggests that the average meat-eater in the US consumes 26.5 animals per year and that is made up of  of a cow,  of a pig,  of a turkey, and 25  chickens (which includes 1  allowance for eggs)[2].  On the other end of the scale, some argue that the average meat-eater consumes 406 animals per year, made up of 30 land animals, 225 fish, and 151 shellfish[3].  It is then assumed that a vegetarian, by abstaining from meat, saves the same amount of animals that a meat-eater kills. 

The Alternatives to a strict Vegetarian/Vegan Diet are Semi-Vegetarian or Flexitarian Diet

The Alternatives to a strict Vegetarian/Vegan Diet are Semi-Vegetarian or Flexitarian Diet

Whether becoming a vegetarian is a moral choice relating to the environment, a contentious choice over animal rights, or a simple desire to eat a in a healthier manner, it is not always easy to make the transition to a completely plant based diet after a lifetime of consuming animal products. Many people are choosing to start their transition with a flexitarian diet as they move toward vegetarianism; others are opting simply to be flexitarian. Many people are looking for a way to enjoy eating a healthier diet, one that allows them to feel good about themselves, their food choices and still feel satisfied with their meals. For some a flexitarian diet is one way of achieving all these goals. Flexitarians are people who favor a mostly vegetarian diet, but who will still occasionally eat meat. The health benefits of vegetarian and vegan diets are well touted and wonderful, but some people find the meals too restrictive, especially in the beginning.

A Fight for Health: The Commonalities of the Paleo, Vegan, Vegetarian, Slow Carb, and Flexitarian Diets

A Fight for Health: The Commonalities of the Paleo, Vegan, Vegetarian, Slow Carb, and Flexitarian Diets

Weight loss and health are big business these days, and with so many fad diets claiming to be ‘the one’ to help you meet, or even beat your goals, it is difficult to decide which ones to believe.  There is a group of diets, however, that are increasingly gaining in popularity.  Not only do they argue for a lifestyle change rather than a faddy quick fix but they all advocate similar eating patterns and for very similar reasons.

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