I turned vegan for one reason, I’m still vegan for a hundred

animal rights march in london 2017

For anyone that’s turned vegan there’s often a smoking gun that inspires the change.

For me it was health.

I watched Forks over Knives in early 2017 and was amazed to learn how meat and dairy consumption was linked to most of the chronic diseases that plague western society. Leading figures such as Dr Colin T. Campbell and Dr Michael Greger had been demonstrating for years how our biggest killers such as cancer and heart disease could not only be prevented, but also reversed with a whole food plant based diet.

After a diving deeper into the studied health benefits of a whole food plant based diet, I was sold.

‘Whole food plant based’ – that’s what I liked to refer to my diet in the early days. I was reluctant to call myself a vegan back then. This was a logical health decision based on science and the ‘vegan’ label carried too much additional baggage.

Although my Dad thought I was becoming ‘a hippie’, I assured him I wasn’t.

But quickly my motives developed.

Soon I was giving a shit about the environment. I learnt how the scale of our meat consumption was sending us towards a global food crisis due, in part, to the inefficiency of meat and dairy production and shock figures like the 2 acres of rainforest being cleared every second for animal agriculture.

Then came the dreaded ethics. The hippie stuff.

Not long after turning vegan my perspective on our relationship with animals changed. I questioned why we love cats and dogs but are happy to pay for terrified pigs and cows to go to the slaughter house. As I continued to thrive on my own plant based diet, I realised that slaughtering animals for food was completely unnecessary. 150 billion innocent animals are killed each year for us to eat and I couldn’t see a way that I would ever partake in that system again.

I can reflect now and say that while I turned vegan for selfish reasons of self preservation, it’s the ethics and environmental reasons that have given me cause to continue. I find it a beautiful coincidence that the healthiest diet for human health, may just be the best for the planet and all of its inhabitants too.

Sorry Dad.