Cutting back on meat and eating more plant-based foods have a number of benefits; one such benefit may be weight reduction. Here are three benefits of eating less meat.4
1. Improve your health.
Meat is usually high in cholesterol and saturated fats. Processed meats such as lunch meat, bacon and sausage are also loaded with sodium and preservatives. This can all add up to bad news for your health. Eating less meat can help reduce your risk of heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, obesity and many cancers.1
2. Save your wallet.
Meatless meals are often cheaper because they’re based on simple beans and grains, which generally cost less than meat.2
3. Help the planet.
Meat production uses more fossil fuels than growing vegetables. Producing meat also requires a lot of water. It can take 1,800 gallons of water for just one pound of beef and 500 gallons for one pound of chicken.3 Switching to a vegetarian diet – even just one day a week – can make a big environmental impact.
Power up with Plants
Ready to do some plant-forward cooking? Get started with these tips.
- Make plants the star of your plate and experiment with a variety of colorful veggies.
- Move meat out of the spotlight. Include meat as a side dish or topping.
- Bulk up on healthy protein with beans, nuts, whole grains and tofu.
- Pump up your iron with beans and leafy greens.
- Boost your omega-3 fatty acids with eggs, walnuts,and flaxseed and canola oils.
- Try meat-free versions of your favorite meals – white bean chili, vegetarian pizza or meatless lasagna.
- Go meatless one day a week on #MeatlessMonday (or any day you choose).
1. American Heart Association. How does Plant-Forward (Plant-Based) Eating Benefit your Health? https://www.heart.org/en/healthy-living/healthy-eating/eat-smart/nutrition-basics/how- does-plant-forward-eating-benefit-your-health (accessed May 4, 2020). 2. WebMD. The Flexitarian Diet. https://www.webmd.com/diet/a-z/flexitarian_diet (last reviewed/updated February 18, 2019). 3. U.S. Department of the Interior. How much water does it take to grow a hamburger? https://water.usgs.gov/edu/activity-watercontent.html (accessed May 4, 2020). 4. Cigna