April 22-28 is Veg Week in America! Now in its fifth year, the week is a way to help you explore meet-free foods and the benefits of a vegetarian lifestyle. The week coincides with Earth Day on April 22.
Vegetarian diets have great health benefits including lower instances of heart disease, diabetes and obesity. If you’re worried about maintaining proper nutrition while on a vegetarian diet, the 7-day veg pledge website can help with recipes, menu planners and coupons. You might even find your grocery bill shrink a little without all the meat in your cart! For more information, request a free vegetarian starter guide from Compassion Over Killing. While seniors may look at vegetarian diets as “fad like,” more and more Americans are choosing to forgo meat for a more plant-based diet. In fact, a recent study from the University of Oxford found that the risk of hospitalization or death from heart disease is 32 percent lower in vegetarians than it is in those who eat meat. From the study:
“Heart disease is the single largest cause of death in developed countries, and is responsible for 65,000 deaths each year in the UK alone. The new findings, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, suggest that a vegetarian diet could significantly reduce people’s risk of heart disease. Most of the difference in risk is probably caused by effects on cholesterol and blood pressure, and shows the important role of diet in the prevention of heart disease.”
Furthermore, vegetarians typically have a lower body mass index (BMI) than their meat eating counterparts.
Going vegetarian can be healthy at any age. Consult your dietician or physician with questions before undergoing any radical change to diet and physical activity.