Why Go Animal Free?
Green issues are all over the headlines. Environmental awareness, recycling, carbon footprints, going organic…It’s hard to stay on top of the latest recommendations, or to know what we should be doing to lessen our impact on the global ecosystem. But one lifestyle change we can make to do our bit, is taking the decision to go ‘animal free’.
Cutting out animal products, or products tested on animals may not be as tricky as you think, and it can make you healthier and even save you money.
A Meat Free DietUsually the first thing we think about when we decide to stop using animal products, is cutting them out of our diet. Generally, that means becoming vegan or vegetarian. A vegetarian eats no meat or fish of any kind, getting all their protein instead from pulses, Soya type proteins, and dairy products. A vegan eats no animal products at all, which means no dairy – milk, cheese, butter – no eggs, and no manufactured products containing animal fats, or ingredients like gelatine.
If you’re a confirmed meat lover that may sound like a very hard thing to do but consider the impact on your diet. In one fell swoop you’ll be making a swingeing cut to your saturated fat and cholesterol intake.
We all know the five a day rule – being vegetarian makes it easy to stick to and you may find you lose weight once you switch to a meat free diet, as vegetables and pulses are far less calorific than meat.
Increasing your fruit and vegetable intake means much more fibre in your diet, and many fruits and veggies are high in cancer avoiding antioxidants, not to mention all the vitamins and minerals you could possibly want. It’s a sure fire way to keep your doctor happy.
There are other good reasons to consider going animal free. And you don’t have to love animals to want to go vegetarian. If third world poverty is a concern for you, not eating meat is a really good practical way of doing your bit. It takes a huge amount of grain to feed, say, one cow, the meat from which will sustain very few people, but the same amount of grain will feed literally dozens of people. Cutting out meat could help reduce livestock production to the benefit of those in the developing world who need rice or other grains to survive.
Animal Free ProductsIt’s not just a clear conscience you’ll have by choosing products that haven’t been tested on animals. Deciding not to buy leather or fur fashion items can save you money, and cruelty free make up is no more expensive than the leading brands.In the home, many of the cleaning products that avoid animal testing tend also to be the green, eco friendly items. The benefits of a switch to these types of cleaner, apart from the fact they’re biodegradable and not polluting the water supplies, is they’re made without strong bleaches and other chemicals. As instances of eczema and allergies continue to rise, particularly among children, it’s fair to say we have no real idea how our home environment is affected by the use of many and various chemicals interacting with each other, and it probably is a good idea to rely on them a little less.
Switching to an animal free lifestyle isn’t as complicated as it sounds and it certainly doesn’t mean a life of deprivation – it’s a journey of discovery to the wonderful tastes of a meat free diet, amazing modern fabric alternatives and incredibly effective products that won’t break the bank.