Welcome To The Jody Kriss Vegan Blog
There are so many reasons to eat a vegan diet and this page is intended to share some of them. Among the reasons to eat a diet that excludes animal products are:
I. Eating animals and animal products is cruel,
II. Vegetables are healthier than animal products
III. A vegetable-based diet is far better for the environment
My reason for converting to a vegetarian and mostly-vegan diet are based on health as well as avoiding cruelty and to a lesser extent based on helping the environment. Based on my years of reading articles about vegan and vegetarian diets, I believe the evidence points towards a whole-foods, vegetable and grain-based diet being the healthiest diet for people.
It’s shocking to me that western medicine and American culture ignore what is so obvious – that sugar, meat and dairy are causing unprecedented increases in illnesses and weight gain compared to a generation or two ago. See the graph below from wikipedia:
Something dramatic has changed over the last two generations. See the graph below to see the prevalence of obesity in American children over a generation.
Childhood obesity more than tripled in less than two generations! What does evidence say about the causes?
Dr. Colin Campbell discusses the enormous impact of increased animal products in the American diet as compared to diets in other countries in his seminal work The China Study. Wikipedia summarizes The China Study’s conclusions as follows:
The China Study examines the relationship between the consumption of animal products(including dairy) and chronic illnesses such as coronary heart disease, diabetes, breast cancer, prostate cancer, and bowel cancer. The authors conclude that people who eat a whole-food, plant-based vegan diet—avoiding all animal products, including beef, pork, poultry, fish, eggs, cheese, and milk, and reducing their intake of processed foods and refined carbohydrates—will escape, reduce, or reverse the development of numerous diseases. They write that “eating foods that contain any cholesterol above 0 mg is unhealthy”.
The China Study looked at rates of disease in 65 different regions in China over a twenty-year period. The data in China was so unique for a few important reasons: 1. It covered an enormous population, 2. Over a long period of time, 3. In regional populations that were relatively immobile, 4. Had very distinct regional diets that virtually everyone in that region followed and 5. The participants were all genetically from the same race.
The findings are nothing short of incredible in showing that diet, specifically animal products, are tied to higher rates of many modern diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, hypertension and a vegan diet is linked to lower prevalence of those same Western diseases.
The world has begun to take notice and vegans are beginning to no longer be taken as lightweights that don’t get enough protein in their diets. More and more serious competitive athletes are adopting a vegan and/or vegetarian diet and succeeding in their sports. Even bodybuilding, where most athletes believe you have to eat seven large portions of animal protein per day, is seeing vegan athletes succeed. Athletes like Brendan Brazier and Frank Medrano are truly awe-inspiring and use a vegan diet to help their bodies recover more quickly from the grueling workouts they put their bodies through.
The health effects are only one aspect of why a vegan diet is important. Our next article will focus on the ethical treatment of animals.