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the benefits of eating cruciferous vegetables
Cruciferous vegetables are a group of vegetables that are named after their cross-shaped flowers. They include popular vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, and kale. These vegetables are not only delicious but also packed with essential nutrients that offer several health benefits. In this blog post, we will discuss some of the benefits of eating cruciferous vegetables.
High in nutrients
Cruciferous vegetables are a great source of several essential nutrients that are important for our overall health. They are rich in vitamins A, C, and K, as well as folate, calcium, and potassium. These vegetables are also high in fiber and low in calories, making them an excellent choice for those looking to maintain a healthy diet.
Studies have shown that cruciferous vegetables contain compounds such as sulforaphane and indole-3-carbinol, which have been linked to reducing the risk of certain types of cancer. These compounds are believed to work by reducing inflammation, preventing DNA damage, and promoting the body's natural detoxification processes.
Cruciferous vegetables may also help protect against heart disease. Research has found that these vegetables contain compounds that can lower cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of blood clots, both of which are important risk factors for heart disease.
Inflammation is a natural process that occurs in the body as a response to injury or infection. However, chronic inflammation has been linked to several health problems, including arthritis, heart disease, and cancer. Cruciferous vegetables are high in antioxidants, which help to reduce inflammation in the body.
The high fiber content of cruciferous vegetables can also promote good digestive health. Fiber is essential for maintaining regular bowel movements, preventing constipation, and reducing the risk of digestive disorders such as diverticulitis and inflammatory bowel disease.
In conclusion, cruciferous vegetables are a delicious and nutritious addition to any diet. With their high nutrient content, cancer-fighting properties, heart health benefits, anti-inflammatory properties, and positive effects on digestive health, there are plenty of reasons to include these vegetables in your meals. So the next time you're at the grocery store, be sure to stock up on some broccoli, cauliflower, or Brussels sprouts and reap the benefits of these fantastic vegetables.
Need some ideas on how to incorporate cruciferous vegetables into your diet? Drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org
vegetarian? you need to read this...
Like us, I’m sure all of you care about the state of animal agriculture and the abuse that happens within it. You want to prevent animals from suffering from miserable living conditions, unnecessary torture, and barbaric deaths. For 18 years, I was a vegetarian and believed that my food choice directly helped prevent animal suffering but the research I conducted into dairy and egg farming convinced me that I was actually contributing to the suffering of animals rather than preventing it. As a result, I became vegan in 2010 and I now know that I truly am not contributing to the misery of innocent animals.
Unlike vegetarianism, following a vegan lifestyle directly reduces the unnecessary suffering and slaughter of millions of animals each year. In order to show you that following a vegetarian lifestyle still contributes to animal suffering, I’ll explain how many animals are needlessly abused and slaughtered each year just to put dairy and eggs on your table.
Dairy farming causes billions of animals to suffer inhumane living conditions, regular abuse, and barbaric slaughter. Since dairy and egg farming is about profit, farmers wish to produce animal products as quickly and cheaply as possible. This leads to cramped living conditions, low-quality food, and high use of antibiotics to prevent infection since most animals have to stand in several inches of their own feces and that of other animals around them.
PETA (“The dairy industry”) states that dairy cows are artificially inseminated every year and have their calves taken away from them within a day of their birth. This causes severe distress to both mother and calf. Male calves are housed in cramped crates and fattened up to be slaughtered for veal, and female calves are raised to suffer the same fate as their mothers. Males are slaughtered after only a few months of life. Dairy cows are milked by machine at least twice a day and, due to the use of drugs to stimulate milk production, many cows suffer from mastitis, a painful infection of the udder. These growth hormones are banned in Europe and Canada due to the concerns for animal welfare and their negative effect on human health when ingested. 50 percent of dairy cows are lame due to standing on concrete floors due to their confinement. Cows naturally live to be 20 years old but dairy cows are usually slaughtered after five years due to their body’s inability to maintain the level of milk production demanded by the agricultural industry (“The dairy industry”). What about the claims that cattle are grass-fed? Surely, that means that the animals are taken better care of. Sadly, the term “grass-fed” is nothing but a marketing ploy according to the American Grassfed Association (“Other labels in meat packaging”). Forget any image that you may have of happy cows wandering the green pastures and grazing all day. Grass-fed cattle are still kept in the same unnatural, inhumane conditions as other farm animals; they’re simply fed grass instead of grain and even that claim is suspect because the USDA does not verify such claims and trusts each farm to self-report (“Other labels in meat packaging”).
The egg industry is, perhaps, even worse. PETA (“The egg industry”) highlights that over 300 million chickens are used in egg production each year, most of which only live for two years and are kept in horrific conditions. Hens usually have their beaks cut off to with a burning hot blade within hours of their birth. Pain relief is not provided and hens frequently are unable to eat and drink properly following this mutilation, which means that they suffer hunger and dehydration throughout their life. Battery hens are usually kept in groups of 10 in a cage no bigger than 18 by 24 inches. So called free-range chickens are no better off. Despite the image portrayed by the words, free range chickens are simply not kept in cages. They are still kept in crowded and cramped conditions. Hens are unable to open their wings and they’re forced to stand in each other’s feces (“The organic and ‘free range’ myth”). Many battery and free-range chickens die as a result and the dead body may remain in the cramped area for days. Egg production is stimulated with the manipulation of light and by using calorie-restricted feed. Although a chicken’s natural lifespan is ten years, most farmed hens typically die or are slaughtered after only two years due their body’s inability to maintain egg production at commercial levels. Female chicks are raised to produce more eggs while male chicks are killed shortly after hatching (“The egg industry”).
The USDA states that a staggering 10 billion land animals are slaughtered each year in this country (“Annual U.S. animal death stats”). Slaughterhouses are about maximizing profits so slaughter is often sloppy. Animals are meant to be rendered unconscious before slaughter but this does not happen often. Cows are usually fully conscious and afraid as they are strung upside down by a hind leg and have their throats slit. Chickens are beheaded by machinery, which often fails to sever the head completely, so chickens die drowning in their own blood, and live male chicks are thrown into grinders. Slaughterhouses operate on supply and demand and as long as the demand for meat continues, animal abuse and horrific slaughter conditions will continue. Of the 10 billion animals slaughtered each year, 39 million are dairy cows and male calves and 450 million are chickens and chicks (“Factory farms”). If vegetarians became vegan, we’d vastly reduce the number of these unnecessary horrific deaths.
Unlike vegetarianism, following a vegan lifestyle does directly reduce the unnecessary suffering and slaughter of millions of animals each year. With approximately 500 million animals slaughtered for dairy and egg production each year in the United States alone, we each can truly make a difference by choosing not to consume these products. With a wide variety of non-dairy milks and egg replacements being available at almost every supermarket these days, there’s no reason to perpetuate animal cruelty. I want to know that I prevented the misery and death of thousands of sentient beings throughout my lifetime. If you want the same, there’s one simple solution. Go vegan!
“Annual U.S. animal death stats.” https://animalclock.org/#section-stats Accessed 27 Jul. 2019.
“Factory farms”. https://awfw.org/factory-farms/ Accessed 27 Jul. 2019.
“Other labels in meat packaging”. PETA. https://www.peta.org/issues/animals-used-for-food/labels/ Accessed 5 Aug. 2019.
“The dairy industry.” PETA. https://www.peta.org/issues/animals-used-for-food/factory-farming/cows/dairy-industry/ Accessed 27 Jul. 2019.
“The egg industry”. PETA. https://www.peta.org/issues/animals-used-for-food/factory-farming/chickens/egg-industry/ Accessed 27 Jul. 2019.
“The organic and ‘free range’ myth”. PETA. https://www.peta.org/issues/animals-used-for-food/free-range-organic-meat-myths/ Accessed 5 Aug. 2019.
vegaventure hunt - will you win the grand prize worth $800?
Welcome to Veganuary and the Vegavenger Hunt! Organized by the Vegan Life Shop. Veganuary is a time when many people are trying veganism, but veganism is far more than a diet; it’s a lifestyle. The Vegavenger Hunt seeks to draw attention to veganism beyond food by encouraging people to visit multiple vegan business websites, explore what those businesses offer, and have a chance of winning a grand prize in the process.
We're vegan because we care about animals, our health, and the environment. We’re committed to the Earth, and we're glad you are too. There are many steps we can take towards a more plant-based or vegan lifestyle, but it can be confusing. We can help! Did you know that we offer vegan lifestyle coaching, as well as a vegan bed and breakfast? Check out the Plant-based Coaching page of our website for more details.
For this year's Vegavenger Hunt, we’re happy to offer a special discount of 10% off a stay for 2023. Mention this blog post when booking with us to receive your discount.
Did you know our favorite number is 22? You’ll need that number to enter the amazing Vegavenger Hunt! To enter, be sure to visit all the participating businesses and add up all those numbers. Then email the total number back to the address provided on The Vegan Life Shop website before noon eastern time on January 31, and you’ll be entered to win! Good luck!
Colin & Roy
new year resolutions?
Many of us make promises to ourselves that this year will be different from the last; we’ll finally shed that weight, we’ll increase our activity level, we’ll get out of debt, we’ll find a better job, or we’ll travel to that resort in an exotic location we’ve been dreaming about for decades. Enter the most famous animal of the new year – the Resolution!
The problem with resolutions is that although they’re well-intentioned, they’re rarely effective. They tend to be nebulous and wishy-washy ideas at best, and most resolutions have fallen by the wayside by mid-February, a mere six weeks into the year. Ask anyone who works in a gym or fitness setting – membership and facility use is booming in January, but by the end of February, it’s back to pre-holiday levels. Where did all those resolution-fueled folks go?
Why do resolutions tend to fail us? Firstly, they use an arbitrary date on the calendar to start making changes. We think, “I’ll start that next week, “ or, “I’ll start that on the first of the month.” The danger with this approach is that it’s super easy to get sidetracked and think, “Oh well, I missed that start date, so I’ll start again next week!” There’s no real deadline. Secondly, resolutions lack substance, detail, and accountability; they’re overly general.
So this year, we invite you to try something new. Instead of setting resolutions, let’s set goals! Goals are specific, detailed, have deadlines, and hold you accountable. SMART goals tend to be the best way to plan. SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time-bound.
Compare these two ideas:
Resolution = I’m going to lose weight!
SMART goal = I will lose 15lbs by the end of July 2023. I will do this by shedding half a pound a week by not exceeding 2000 calories a day and by exercising three times a week.
See the difference? The resolution is overly general, the SMART goal is specific, outlines how you’ll achieve realistically, and includes a specific deadline.
Another example might be:
Resolution = I will workout more!
SMART goal = I will keep a gym bag in my car so I can hit the gym on my way home from work on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays each week. I will undertake 20 minutes of resistance training and 20 minutes of cardio each time I go to the gym.
Being as specific as possible helps envision a plan that’s realistic for your life. Posting that goal on social media allows others to hold you accountable. “Hey, I saw your SMART goal on Facebook about working out more – that’s awesome! Did you hit the gym three days this week?” Gulp! Wow, so my friends and family now know what my plan is, and they’re going to help keep me honest and accountable.
Resolutions are a great idea, but that’s often all they turn out to be. Try turning that idea into a practical SMART goal, share it with friends and family, and you’re more likely to achieve it. Just don’t forget to write that goal about eating more plant-based foods this year, OK?
Colin & Roy