The special report released this year by IPCC – Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change – underlined the great effect that reducing meat consumption would have on mitigating climate change. Meat consumption has a significant impact on global warming and meat production creates a lot of pollution since fossil fuel is employed in the process. Moreover, other factors have a negative impact, as, for instance, land and water consumption, effluent waste and animal methane. From a global point of view, meat production is responsible for large amounts of greenhouse gases emissions and it is also one of the cause of extinction crisis.
How to Reduce Meat Consumption
The contribution of each of us is important in the attempt to reduce global warming and, consequently, climate change. All of us can play an important role by changing our habits and our behavior in our everyday life. One of these habits regards our diets. More specifically, meat consumption. Therefore, here are five tips on how to reduce meat consumption:
- Meatless Monday: to start reducing your meat consumption, try to avoid eating meat once a week. Take it as a challenge which will allow you to try new recipes and to improve your cooking abilities;
- Reduce meat portions: if a whole day without meat looks too much for you or if you just want to make a difference by making an effort everyday, you could start reducing the amount of meat you usually use in your recipes. And, to make out for the amount of meat you are giving up on, add more vegetables to your dishes;
- Protein intake: when you try to reduce the amount of meat you eat, it is important to make sure that you get your proteins from other sources. Therefore, make sure to include in your diet a lot of vegetables, lentils, beans and almonds for example;
- Experiment with new cuisines: instead of thinking about this change in your diet as a process of reducing meat, think of it as a chance of adding variety to your meals. How? You could experiment with recipes of countries which are famous for their vegetarian dishes as, for instance, Mexico and India;
- Grains: another ingredient you could add to your diet to make up for the absence of meat are grains. Their are very versatile since you could opt for and experiment with all the varieties available on the market.
Beneficts of a Plant-based Diet
If being eco-friendly is not enough to motivate you to reduce your meat intake, then you should be aware of the other benefits that this change in your diet may bring you. A diet rich in vegetables is advantageous for your health. Many studies have proven that meat increases the risk of cancer and rises cholesterol levels. Moreover, eating less meat may help you in losing weight.