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Vegan: Harmful or Helpful?

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Vegan: Is it more harmful or helpful?

For those who do not know, a vegan is someone who does not consume animal products of any kind. Some examples are milk, cheese, meat, cream, butter, and egg.  Of course this lifestyle choice is not for everyone because it requires a lot of dedication. Things we never think about like, checking boxes and ingredients is something vegan’s do to make sure they are not consuming egg or more commonly, milk. Veganism has a lot of negative feelings towards it, along with many questions from non-vegans, so it’s time to learn the truth about this trending lifestyle.

“Why don’t you drink milk?”- Noah G

As a vegan, I can speak upon the community and say that we do not believe it is right to take something from another animal. It was specifically produced for that species of animal, so we would like to keep it that way. Another thing is, we do not the torture of animals, along with vegetarians, and the way that the dairy industry mass produces milk, and other goods is killing and torturing the animals.

“How difficult is shopping as a vegan?”- Aaron H

That’s an amazing question because it’s never really considered when people want to transition to veganism.  When you first transition, it is very difficult because you have to switch from your old habits to new ones. So the first trip to the grocery store is incredibly difficult, especially finding out your favorite foods are not vegan friendly! Of course, the next time you shop it becomes much easier because you find what works and what doesn’t. The next time after that and so on gets easier and easier, so before you know it, it becomes an unconscious action. My best advice is fruits, veggies and an almond milk or coconut milk of some sort.  You will quickly realize you want to try new vegan recipes and the almond or coconut milk will come in handy!

“I heard as a vegan, you don’t get all of the proper nutrients and vitamins. Is that true?”- Lily C

It is a common myth that we can only get proteins from animal meat, because you can obtain protein from vegan friendly foods such as beans and nuts! Two cups of kidney beans have 26 grams of protein which is about equivalent to a Big Mac which has 25 grams. You also might ask about the nine essential amino acids that our bodies need, but things like quinoa and buckwheat have all of the essential amino acids in them. Unfortunately, the only sad reality is the lack of Vitamin B12 for the vegan diet. According to recent studies, 92% of vegans are deficient in  Vitamin B12. Vitamin B12 is only found in animal products, but scientists have been able to recreate a supplement for it, which you can find at a local drug store..

The vegan lifestyle has taken the world by storm and even has inspired famous celebrities to join in. Even Celebrities such as Ellen DeGeneres, Miley Cyrus, Steve-O, and Jason Mraz have decided that eating a plant based diet was the best choice. Being vegan does not limit athletes or your athletic ability; hence many vegans have gone to the Olympics or play in professional sports. David Carter, a famous NFL defensive end never thought he would commit to a lifestyle until his wife hooked him onto it. From a recent PETA study, each vegan saves roughly 198 animals by not eating them or their byproducts. Overall, this is your life, you only get one, so how do you want to live it?

                                                                                                                                -Hannah Strahin

                                                                                                                Chief Writer for the Tonawanda Tribune

1 Comment

One Response to “Vegan: Harmful or Helpful?”

  1. cole miller on December 2nd, 2016 2:15 pm

    Great piece! Loved it!!


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Vegan: Harmful or Helpful?