A vegan lifestyle is filled with variety and countless choices of delicious food. It only excludes the use of animal products. In terms of diet this means no meat, fish, dairy, eggs, honey or other animal derived ingredients. Other items avoided by vegans include fur, leather and wool as well as cosmetics personal care or household products that have been tested on animals, or that contain animal ingredients.
The many benefits of becoming vegan, include greater health, saving the lives of many animals and being much more environmentally friendly. It really is the lifestyle choice to make.
For the animals
64 BILLION land animals and 1-3 TRILLION water animals are killed for human consumption each year after lives of misery. The Australian dairy industry repeatedly impregnates female cows through artificial insemination, killing 700000 unwanted male calves a year in order to collect and sell the milk intended for them (like humans, cows can't lactate without having given birth). Similarly, male chicks in the egg industry are ground up alive at just a day old.
For the environment
The best thing you can do to help the environment and save water is to adopt a plant based diet. Humans use of 'livestock' is responsible for more greenhouse gas emissions than all transport put together and is a major source of water and land degradation.
The United Nations is calling for a global shift towards a vegan diet to maintain sustainability as the global population heads to 9.1 billion by 2050.
United Nations Environment Program (2010)
Read the online booklet "Eating Up The World" for more information on how animal agriculture impacts the environment.
For your health
A well balanced plant based diet is the healthiest of all, is suitable for all ages and can significantly lower health risks, such as heart disease, strokes, cancer, diabetes, obesity and high cholesterol.
"... vegan diets are healthful, nutritionally adequate and may provide health benefits in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases, and are appropriate for individuals during all stages of the life-cycle including pregnancy, lactation, infancy, childhood and adolescence and athletes."
The American Dietetic Association, July 2009