Did you know that Veganism has been around since the early Greeks, long before Donald Watson coined the term Vegan in 1944? Over the years, the term “vegan” has flourished and become more of a trend, as there are according to the statics 1.6 million vegans in the world, with the average age of 42. Almost three in four vegans are women and most vegans are leaning towards more political reasons than religious ones.
The increase of vegan restaurants in the UAE and increase of industries shifting towards vegan products is a proof that people are picking up Veganism as a lifestyle in this region. As a result, individuals are probably following one of the seven most common diets mentioned below.
1. Whole-food vegan diet: Whole foods vegans tend to stick to unprocessed foods.
2. Raw-food vegan diet: Raw vegans eat all of their food raw.
3. 80/10/10: 80% of calories from carbs, up to 10% from protein & up to 10% from fats.
4. The starch solution: The starch solution focuses on cooked starches like potatoes, rice, oats & corn.
5. Raw till 4: Staying raw until 4pm & having a cooked dinner.
6. The thrive diet: Eating small meals daily to keep their blood sugar and energy level consistent.
7. Junk-food vegan diet: They regularly consume highly processed foods which are essentially made in science labs.
In today’s society, people are going on different diets in order to have a healthier lifestyle, among other reasons. Some of the top reasons people choose the vegan diet over other diets are:
1. Knocking out those calories
“After I started vegan dieting my body has been in a better shape and I feel much lighter,” said Rozie Gobel, a vegan. “At first it was hard to get used to the diet, as I loved beef and chicken and I almost gave up dieting at some point, but after losing my fats I am thankful I didn’t,” she added.
2. Concern about animals and animal welfare for ethical reasons
“Since I was young I couldn’t get myself to eat beef, chicken or any kind of food that has been made from the sacrifice of animals, even though my parents tried several times explaining that it is Halal I still felt that it was brutal and unfair to the animals,” stated Jumana Ahmad, a Muslim Egyptian.
3. Family/religious tradition
Ashwin Franco, a UAE Hindu resident said, “I have never tasted protein such as beef as my religion views the cow as a sacred being, and my family has been long following this tradition.”
4. Health reasons
“After I stopped eating beef and concentrated on eating vegetables and whole grains only, I realized that my skin has become healthier and I felt positive energy around me most of the time,” said Amina Khalid a student in American University in Sharjah.
“My blood pressure was always high and recently I was told by the doctors that my cholesterol level is very high. After my doctor’s visit, I decided to stop eating beef for a while and since then I have seen several advantageous changes in my mood and even my cholesterol levels are decreasing,” stated Adel Salah, a high cholesterol and blood pressure patient.
5. Environmental reasons
Increase in Water scarcity is one reason many go vegan.
Meat production requires a lot more resources to bring the end product to the dining table and it impacts our energy usage more than plants.
Maintaining a plant diet is thought to use around 20 times less land than someone who consumes meat.
Some studies find that vitamins like A, D, and K2 are not found in Vegetables. Vegetables like Spinach, Legumes like beans,lentils, peas, Seeds like Pumpkin seeds, and some sea plants and grains contain but are deficient in vitamins like Iron and B12. Thus, it is recommended that Vegans do regular check-ups and take some supplements if necessary.
In general, a vegan lifestyle is very beneficial to the well-being of humans, animals, and the planet. Are you willing to give Veganim a try?
Photo by: Benhammad | Dreamstime.com