A survey conducted in the UK shows that more than 12 million people decided to eat less meat in 2019 and, as a result, each one of them saved the equivalent of $714. Now, more than a fifth of them are planning to reduce their consumption even further, or ditch meat completely, especially now that 44% of the people interviewed think a meat-free lifestyle is more affordable than ever before.
The research interviewed 2,000 adults and was commissioned by Linda McCartney Foods, a vegetarian brand founded by Paul McCartney's late wife.
They also found that the reason for 28% of these people changing their diets is that they are motivated by the expectation of saving money, while 40% are doing so to help the planet and 44% to improve their health.
All of these concerns are realistic. First, we might be reaching an irreversible and catastrophic moment for life on Earth, environmentally speaking. A leaked report from the UN in August 2019 says, among the measures needed to save the world, one thing is a major shift towards vegetarian and vegan diets. This is because livestock represents something between 14.5% and 18% of all human-induced greenhouse gas emissions. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), beef, pork, chicken, eggs, and dairy milk account for 78% of animal agriculture's emissions. Beef alone accounts for 41% of the emissions of this sector, while milk production represents 20% of the same emissions.
Additionally, studies show a relationship between the consumption of animal products (including eggs and dairy) and the main chronic diseases around the globe. The consumption of meat, for example, is related to cardiovascular diseases (heart disease and stroke being the leading causes of death globally), diabetes and cancer.
No matter what your reasons are, ditching animal products will help pretty much everyone: the planet, people, animals, yourself and your finances. Why not give it a try?