Going vegetarian, at least for one day a week, is becoming the “green” thing to do in many countries. A number of upscale restaurants in Israel recently began promoting Vegetarian Monday, an initiative to encourage meat-eaters to go vegetarian once a week in order to help combat climate change. Sir Paul McCartney has been promoting a similar program in Britain and Australia, and not long ago, officials in the Belgian city of Ghent, urged residents to eat only vegetarian foods on Thursdays.
Here in the U.S., the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health sponsors “Meatless Mondays” to help Americans eat healthier foods that are easier on the environment and animals too. America seems to be lagging a bit behind with the concept, however. Let’s do our part to save the planet by at least cutting back on meat. A dismal new report by the World Resources Institute indicates how important it is for everyone to reduce their meat consumption in order to help halt water pollution, climate change, and other environmental problems.
Research shows that worldwide per capita meat consumption is expected to rise by 14 percent by 2030. When you factor in population growth, the rise equates to an increase of about 53 percent in global meat consumption. The time is now for “Meatless Mondays” to become a worldwide phenomenon.
The Live Earth Global Warming Survival Handbook states that “refusing meat” is the “single most effective thing you can do to reduce your carbon footprint.” It takes significantly less water, land, grain, and other resources to produce a plant-based diet than a meat-based one, and each vegetarian saves more than 100 animals every year. And, according to a spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association, “people who follow more plant-based diets have better health outcomes—lower rates of chronic disease and lower rates of obesity. We all need to be moving more toward a plant-based diet.”
Indeed we do. Fortunately there’s no need to wait for a politician to officially designate a vegetarian day—just pick one day a week not to eat meat. When you have that mastered, try two. In no time, you’ll see how easy it to eat only vegetarian foods. You might even want to sign our “vegetarian for a month” petition here at Care2. Either way, for recipes and product suggestions, see www.VegCooking.com.
Addendum: A couple of people have also told me about the Global Meat Free Petition Movement’s petition for meat-free days in various countries. I added my name. I hope you’ll sign too!