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Published January 11th 2013
Expand your tastebuds not your waist
Did you make a New Year's resolution to lose weight? How about to improve your health or the environment? A simple way to get started to is reduce the amount of meat in your diet. Meat Free Monday is a campaign to help improve the environment, and your health, by reducing the amount of meat that is consumed each week.
One of Meat Free Monday's most famous supporters is Sir Paul McCartney. Together with his daughters, he launched a non-profit in 2009 to promote sustainable and healthy food choices and since that time the cause has been taken up by many organisations internationally. Other prominent supporters include Sir Richard Branson and celebrity chef Maggie Beer.
The goal is simple. By reducing the amount of meat that is consumed we can:
help to reduce pollution- the global meat industry is a prime contributor to greenhouse emissions.
improve our health- incorporating more fruit and vegetables into your diet has significant health benefits.
support farmers to implement environmentally sustainable practices- the movement is not anti-farmers. Remember we have to get our veggies from somewhere too (hint, its a farm!).
If you want to give your health a kick and make a positive contribution to the environment, try to incorporate at least one meat free day into your week. If you need recipe inspiration, try a Vegetarian Black Bean Chili or one of the other delicious vegetarian recipes on sites like Recipe Yum.
You do get used to eating less meat (or even none at all) very quickly. In fact, you feel better fed because of the new variety you're getting. It's a great chance to try foods you otherwise wouldn't have. Mexican, Indian and all Asian cuisines offer a lot of great meat free choices.