Healthy eating should be a lifelong habit rather than something we do just once a week.  There are so many delicious foods that are vegan such as fruits, vegetables, cereals, oatmeal, rice, potatoes, black beans, lentils, raisins and whole wheat bread among many others.  Pasta, one of my favorite foods, is vegan.  Not only is healthy eating quite tasty, it also has many health benefits.  According to research, people who have a vegetarian diet or semi-vegetarian diet have a lower risk of cancer and cardiovascular disease.  They also have a reduced risk of developing diabetes.  Healthy eating enables type 2 diabetics to achieve hypoglycemic control.  Those who follow a vegetarian or semi-vegetarian diet take less medication for chronic conditions.

However, those who eat meat on a regular basis have a higher risk of getting cancer, heart disease as well as many other illnesses.  Many studies show that cutting down on red meat can help you live a longer and more active life.  In the south of France, people eat less meat and more plants.  Since they eat more leafy greens, they live a longer life that those who live in the north of France where they consume more meat.  In this study, about the French and their diets, healthy eating played the major role in helping people live longer rather than genetics.

World Vegan Day is not only about saving the lives of animals.  It is a day to educate the public about healthy eating habits thus saving many people from getting many preventable disease.  All you have to do is train your palate to eat fruits and vegetables, and you will simply love them.  One trick to make vegetables tastier is to add olive oil to them.

Following a vegan diet is not a recent trend.  During the 6th century B.C., vegetarianism was practiced in ancient Greece.  Pythagoras, a renowned Greek philosopher, was a vegetarian.  In the beautiful nation of India, vegetarianism is linked to Hinduism.  Animals, of many varieties, roam freely in India.  They are never hunted down or consumed as food by the Indian people.

In addition to having health benefits, vegetarianism can help save our planet.  Factory farms, where livestock is raised, have damaging effects on the environment such as air, water pollution, land degradation, climate change and loss of biodiversity.  According to the CDC, the animal waste, coming from the animals raised in factory farms, travels to the soil and water.

Not only do factory farms have adverse effects on the environment, they also have adverse and damaging effects on human health.  According to the FDA, 80 percent of antibiotics sold are used for livestock.  When people consume the meat that was treated with antibiotics they develop more resistant bacterial infections.  This takes its toll on the economy costing the US between $16.6 billion to $26 billion annually.

Accordion to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), some farm workers suffer from conditions such as acute and chronic lung disease and muscular-skeletal injuries as well as other diseases.  In the worst case scenario, humans can even catch infections transmitted from animals in factory farms.  These infections can spread to the public and even become a pandemic.

There are many reasons to incorporate healthy eating habits into our lives.  On World Vegan Day, enjoy natural foods such as pasta, rice, vegetables, fruits or your favorite vegan dish.  Show your solidarity by establishing healthy eating habits and help save the world.