Veganism is more than “just” a diet. It’s a lifestyle choice rooted in ethical principles centered around minimizing harm to all living beings (and the planet). 

This article delves into the top 3 reasons why people turn toward a plant-based lifestyle as follows: 

  • Animal welfare. Veganism is an ethical choice for many. Vegans believe that one person abstaining from the use and consumption of animal products is a small (but mighty) step toward compassion and justice toward all sentient beings.
  • Environmental conscientiousness. Raising animals for food and other products (think clothes, furniture, materials, etc.) is a drain on our planet’s resources and a huge player in the production of greenhouse gasses. Many choose a vegan lifestyle to mitigate their impact on the environment. 
  • Personal health. Our main focus will be on the ethical and environmental principles behind the choice to adopt a vegan lifestyle, but we will also delve into some of the reasons people make the shift for personal health 

Now you know the top 3 reasons why people choose a plant-based lifestyle. Let’s dive into each. 

Remember that even the smallest steps toward a vegan lifestyle can make a difference. If you’re not ready to go full vegan, give this article a read anyway. Maybe it’s your first step toward meatless Monday. Maybe it’s your last step toward transitioning to a fully vegan diet. Who knows! Either way. We are excited to share. 

A cow chewing grass.

Animal Rights and Welfare 

At the heart of veganism is a commitment to animal rights. 

True veganism means abstaining from using animal products in all aspects of life. This includes meat, dairy, eggs, leather, fur, and products tested on animals. Why? Because animals have inherent worth. They are not commodities to be used for our benefit. 

Ethical vegans view animals as sentient beings who deserve to be treated with compassion and justice. By abstaining from using animal products, each vegan takes a small (but powerful) step toward subduing the prevalence of animal agriculture. 

What is animal agriculture? It’s the industry concerned with raising animals for food and other products. What’s wrong with it? It’s overflowing with practices that subject animals to intolerable injustices. 

We won’t get into the gory details but there are PLENTY of resources online detailing the ways in which animal agriculture mistreats our furry friends. Let’s just say that this prevalent industry does not treat cows, chickens, goats, [inserts meat, dairy, leather, etc. producing animals here] as sentient beings. Billions of animals suffer yearly due to unjust treatment via animal agriculture. 

The rejection of ethical vegans of all things animal agriculture is a way to align actions with values. Ethical veganism is about making choices that reflect a commitment to compassion, justice, and a deep respect for all sentient beings. 

A child holding a blow-up model of earth.

Environmental Responsibility

Veganism is deeply connected to environmental responsibility. The production of animal products via animal agriculture is a major contributor to deforestation, water scarcity, and climate change. 

Animal agriculture requires a TON of land and water. This means chopping down trees and funneling water away from people and ecosystems that need it to survive. 

In addition, much of animal agriculture centers around the raising of cattle and sheep for milk, dairy, leather, etc.. These animals produce a relatively high amount of methane, a greenhouse gas. 

When we as humans choose to breed an exorbitant amount of cows and sheep for consumption and use, we are thus greatly contributing to the amount of greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere. Increased greenhouse gasses have been strongly linked to global climate change. You do the math. 

By choosing a plant-based diet, vegans help to reduce their carbon footprint. They also help to conserve water and reduce deforestation. All steps toward a healthier, happier planet. 

A woman taking a bite of a tomato.

Health Considerations and Benefits

While ethics and environmental considerations are often at the core of veganism, health is also a significant factor for many. 

A well-planned vegan diet can provide all the nutrients your body needs and can also lower your risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, and certain types of cancer. Many vegans also report increased energy and improved overall health.

If you are considering making the transition to a plant-based diet, it is important to note that veganism is not a magic bullet for health. Many vegans miss the mark and end up eating a poorly balanced diet, thereby damaging their health. 

It’s important to educate yourself on everything your specific body needs and, from there, make an informed decision about whether or not veganism is right for you. If you decide that it is, it is equally important to build a diet based on your body’s needs. 

It can be helpful to speak with a dietitian or nutritionist at the beginning of your transition to veganism. For now, though, check out our post on the Top 10 Nutrient-Rich Vegan Superfoods to learn a little bit more about how you can build a healthy meal plan based around plants. 

A woman holding two oranges.

Finding a Middle Ground 

Ok. So, we’ve thrown a ton of information your way about why choosing a vegan lifestyle can help you become a better steward of our planet and its inhabitants (as well as your own health). That being said, please remember that you are not a terrible person for consuming animal products. Far from it! 

Here at Tasteful Kitchen, we acknowledge that some bodies benefit from the consumption of meat and dairy. Committing to a fully plant-based lifestyle isn’t for everyone and that’s ok. 

Simply finding ways to reduce your “support” of animal agriculture can go further than you might think. Consider cutting animal products out of your diet once a week. Choose vegan leather. Raise your own chickens with kindness and love. Educate the people around you about the impacts of animal agriculture. You don’t have to go from zero to one hundred overnight (or even at all). Baby steps go a long way. 

To Wrap Things Up

Veganism is more than a diet. It’s a lifestyle choice rooted in ethical principles. Choosing veganism can have a profound impact. It can reduce animal suffering, combat climate change, and improve health. It’s a choice that aligns with a sustainable future for yourself and the planet. 

One response to “Why Veganism Matters – Ethic Principles Behind Choosing a Plant-Based Lifestyle”

  1. […] more? Check out our posts on Why Veganism Matters and Environmental […]

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