Eating better for you and the environment


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Experts say the future is plant-based, but how well will this roll over with the billion-dollar butchering industry?  

Tiffany Persaud, Features & Lifestyle Editor

Plant-based eating is a trend for the uptight Manhattan girls who are actually not from New York. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Plant-based diets consist of moving fiber-enriched foods such as vegetables, whole grains and beans to the center of your plate. It is proven to have long-term benefits and supports overall well-being but isn’t as popular as other diets, such as the Mediterranean diet.  

This diet may appear to be malnourishing to the average eater at first, because who wants to eat like rabbits? No one expected to gain unnecessary pandemic weight either, which is why this diet began circulating post-quarantine.  

Coined by scientist Thomas Colin Campbell from the National Institutes of Health in 1980, the term “plant-based” is more inclusive than “vegetarian,” improving on a diet that doesn’t forbid the intake of all animal-derived products. This diet’s target audience is heavy meat and dairy consumers.  

This diet is often misconstrued by replacing meat with a bunch of highly processed meat substitutes or “vegan junk food.” AKA, the french fry diet. Potatoes are healthy, but not the fried ones from McDonald’s!  

Meat consumption is associated with an increased risk of conditions such pneumonia, diverticular disease, diabetes and several cancers. However skinless poultry and fish can still be good sources of protein. Furthermore, Harvard Medical School discovered that a consistent plant-based diet was associated with decreased risk and symptoms of COVID-19. 

Animal welfare and the morals surrounding the mass breeding and slaughtering of animals have been a large part of plant-based pros. Around eight billion animals, mostly chickens and cows, are slaughtered each year, and animal agriculture is responsible for up to 91 percent of Amazon rainforest destruction.  

The milk boycott is due to the plant-based diet which emphasizes the cons of cow’s milk, such as causing acne and lactose intolerance. So, even though it is slightly more expensive, middle- and upper-class households made the switch to almond and soy milk. Ordering regular milk in your drink at Starbucks is considered a sin, so avoid making penance by following the unwritten rules.  

Starbucks isn’t the only corporation peddling plant-based products. Fast-food chains, such as Burger King, have caught on to consumer wants and created the Impossible Whopper, a burger made with a soy-based patty.  

The chefs of and have created easy recipes for plant-based eaters. Once a recipe is in hand, Grocery shopping doesn’t have to be difficult since every chain carries the basic proteins: tofu, beans, lentils, chickpeas and quinoa. 

Making the switch can be tough at first, but it’s just dependent on the person’s desires and their health concerns. People have and will live normally with a “everything in moderation” diet.