Veganism is the most strict form of vegetarianism, which completely excludes consumption of animal products. The main reason for this phenomenon is ethical, as vegans do not want animals to suffer and die because of the needs of humanity. Many representatives of the vegan movement strongly urge all people to abandon animal food and products based on animal raw materials. Imagine that their desire was suddenly fulfilled. Is this prospect really so bright?
invites you to find out what can happen to our world if everyone on the planet suddenly decides to become a vegan.
There will be a huge number of street farm animals
Unfortunately, freeing livestock and poultry is not as easy as it sounds. If some of them, say, sheep or pigs, can somehow be adapted to a free life, then with others (for example, with chickens) this is unlikely to work, because they are too different from their wild ancestors.
But even in the case of a successful adaptation to the wild life, many animals are unlikely to be full and healthy. There is no need to go far for examples – see how cows live in India (in the photo on the right): sacred animals often have to get food among the garbage, which can hardly be considered useful. But they end their lives not in a slaughterhouse, and, as a rule, only predatory animals and birds feed on their meat.
In general, the vast majority of pets are too dependent on humans and are unlikely to survive on their own. Therefore, to release animals to freedom is tantamount to condemning them to a slow death from starvation, diseases and predator attacks (however, in the wild, it is absolutely natural).
There is another way: the creation of reserves for farm animals. But this will require truly enormous costs, including human resources, and it is not entirely clear where to get the funds. Probably, there will be a large number of volunteers who want to devote themselves to caring for animals, but even the most undemanding of them need to live on something.
There will be serious economic problems.
Problems are absolutely inevitable, and it is likely that in the case of the transition of all mankind to vegan food and lifestyle, the economies of some countries simply face a collapse. Farms will be ruined, because not every one of them will be able to change the type of activity in the shortest possible time, for example, to switch to the cultivation of vegetables, fruits and cereals.
It is possible that the transition to a new lifestyle will be less painful if it is carried out gradually and in accordance with a well-thought-out plan. But who knows how many decades it will last? In the meantime, there are no fewer economic problems in the world, and residents of some countries, in principle, have no time to think about how to become vegans: they are happy with absolutely any kind of food, the main thing is that it should be.
There will be changes in the ecology of the planet
As the cattle population decreases, methane emissions to the atmosphere will significantly decrease. And the lands that used to graze cattle or grow animal feed were freed. In many cases, these lands were “conquered” from the forest in the past, so that trees can be planted on them again.
But it is possible that the land will again be occupied, because with the transition to vegetable food will have to grow a lot more vegetables and cereals. And here it should be noted that the cultivation of such food is impossible without the use of cruel measures against some animals. We are talking about the extermination of rodents – after all, how else to protect the crops from their raids? In addition, occupying land for agricultural land, people often destroy the natural habitat of some animals.
The state of public health will change
According to some studies, vegan nutrition reduces the risk of developing type II diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, and certain types of cancer. Also, a proper vegan diet contributes to weight loss, which is very noticeable in the photographs of doctor-gastroenterologist Angie Sadeghi, who has been a vegan for over 10 years.
But does this mean that all vegans are absolutely healthy people? As it turned out, this is not entirely true. In the case of an unbalanced diet, vegans may develop a deficiency of such vital substances as proteins, calcium, zinc, iron, vitamins D3 and B12, and diseases associated with them may also occur.
And again: as you can see, the rejection of food of animal origin does not always mean that a person will age more slowly than their peers. We compared the photo of the writer Gillian McKeith and restaurant critic Nigella Lawson. Both women are now 58 years old, but if Gillian is on a vegetable diet, Nigel does not deny herself any meat.
It is worth noting that some people only vegetable food is not suitable because of an allergy to soybeans, nuts, wheat and other products that make up a large part of the diet of vegans.
The nutrition of children, especially infants, whose food is mother’s milk or similar mixtures, deserves special attention. It is possible that some parents, wanting to grow a “true vegan”, will try to feed babies with vegetable “milk equivalent”. Unfortunately, similar incidents have already occurred, and some of them have ended tragically.
In any case, the growing body needs a sufficient amount of proteins and other substances for proper development, and parents should take care first and foremost about this, and only then instill in children certain opinions about proper nutrition.
People will try to make vegans and their pets.
This is already happening: in the photo you see a dog whose owner feeds her exclusively on vegan food (sweet potatoes, tofu, brown rice, chia seeds, vegetables and digestive enzymes). At the same time the woman assures that the dog loves such food. Internet users disagreed with her and argued that the daily mashed vegetables and seeds can cause pet allergies, diarrhea, bloating and other problems.
And this is not an isolated case, especially since ready-made vegan dog and cat food have long been on sale. But if a dog, like a person, belongs to omnivorous creatures and could in theory be a vegan without much harm to health (again, this is a controversial statement, since no one has conducted serious research on this topic), then the cat is a predator, which needs animal food. So forcing pets to vegan food may well be regarded as cruel treatment, which contradicts the very essence of veganism.
Today it is difficult to say whether mankind will ever refuse animal food. But be that as it may, each of us, regardless of our food preferences, can reduce the amount of cruelty on this planet. To do this, you need to be more careful about the nature, animals, people around us, and most importantly – to teach the kindness and tolerance of their children.