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Veganism has been on the rise for a while now. Many celebrities have adopted a vegan lifestyle and some have even started promoting it. How come? 

The advantages of plant-based diets have been studied over several years. 

The most extensive study till date is probably theChina Study. It is often referred to as the “vegan bible”, as it makes a pretty strong case for a plant-based diet. 

For this study data was collected over the span of 20 years and compared plant-based diets with animal-based diets. The findings are quite astonishing and later inspired influential figures likeBill Clinton go vegan

We wanted to know: What are the actual benefits? 

1. A vegan diet is richer in certain nutrients

When we speak of a vegan diet, we should add “balanced vegan diet”. If someone eats just plain pasta all day long that's obviously not healthy. 

But generally plant-based diets tend to be healthier and more nutritious. As animal products fall away, they are usually replaced by more vegetables. 

If you compare a balanced vegan diet with the average American diet the difference is quite clear:

For instance, several studies have reported that vegan diets tend to provide more fiber, antioxidants and beneficial plant compounds. They also appear to be richer in potassium, magnesium, folate and vitamins A, C and E. 

2. A vegan is better for the environment 

One of the main arguments to go vegan/vegetarian is the environmental impact of meat. There are several books anddocumentariesthat have studied the disastrous effects of the meat industry. 

Let's look at the facts. 

  • Vegans have the smallest carbon footprint, generating a 41.7 percent smaller volume of greenhouse gases than meat-eaters do. 
  • A vegetarian diet requires two-and-a-half times less the amount of land needed to grow food, compared to a meat-based diet. 
  • According to one report, an estimated 70 percent of deforestation in the Amazon basin can be attributed to cattle ranching.
  • A vegetarian diet requires two-and-a-half times less the amount of land needed to grow food, compared to a meat-based diet.
  • About one-third of the world’s grain and 80 percent of the world’s soya is fed to the animals we rear for food.

These are just a few of the numbers...and they all speak the same language. As it turns out, the meat industry is a major contributor to climate change and many environmental problems. How poorly animals are often treated is another story altogether. 

3. Reduced Risk of Cancer

Eating too much meat - especially too much processed meat - can increase the risk for certain types of cancers, including colon cancer and esophageal cancer.

The American Institute For Cancer Researchpromotes a plant-based dietfor exactly this reason. 

On the official website it says: 

You can achieve a cancer-protective plate by following any of these healthful plant-based diets, from vegan to pescatarian to AICR’s New American Plate. One important principle to keep in mind for all these options – choose foods with minimal processing and little added sugar and fat.

4. Reduced Risk of Cardiovascular Disease

There is plenty of research indicating that a plant-based diet may reduce cardiovascular death risk.

This was also the conclusion by astudythat appeared in the Journal of the American Heart Association. It concludes: 

Diets higher in plant foods and lower in animal foods were associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular morbidity and mortality in a general population.

5. Reduced Risk of Diabetes

Another disease that can be improved or even completely reversed with a plant-based diet is diabetes. 

In 2009 the filmmakers of an independentdocumentary decided to do an experiment. They made six Americans with diabetes switch to a diet consisting entirely of vegan, organic, uncooked food in order to reverse disease without pharmaceutical medication.

By the end of 30 days were mindblowing. We don't want to spoil the movie for you, but let's say this: Ultimately almost all of the patients got off completely from their meds and improved their health. 

While the experiment included a pretty extreme diet plan, it clearly shows that lifestyle and diet changes DO have an impact. Sadly we are often told otherwise by doctors and the pharmaceutical industry. 

Go vegan for 30 days 

While going fully vegan might feel unrealistic, the main idea behind Veganuary is to inspire people and show them that plant-based doesn't mean eating carrots all day or starving yourself. Vegan food is tasty, healthy and amazingly versatile! 

By adding more vegan meals into your meal plan, you can contribute to your health and also reduce your carbon footprint. One positive side-effect of eating a balanced and natural vegan diet is weight loss. 

Many also choose to participate in Veganuary as part of an annual detox regimen or some sort of “spiritual cleanse”.

Whatever may be your motivation to go vegan (100% or partially), you´re likely to feel the difference! 

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