Why do I think it’s important for people to move towards a plant-based diet? I would actually say it’s akin to asking, “Why is it important for people to breathe air?” or “Why is it important for people to wear clothes in the wintertime?” Because to me, it makes sense.
There’s no reason to not move towards a plant-based diet. So it’s a hard question to answer because there’s so many ostensibly self-evident ways to answer that question.
One, we love animals.
It’s inconsistent to love animals and contribute to their suffering and their death. That’s the biggest paradox—how in our culture people love their dogs and they love their cats but they eat pigs and they eat chickens and they eat cows. That is mind boggling to me.
So the first reason is: if you love animals you shouldn’t be contributing to their suffering and death.
The second is that a plant-based diet heals you. We’ve seen with Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, with Dr. Gregor’s book How Not to Die, with the documentaries What the Health and Forks Over Knives. It doesn’t just make you a little healthier, it actually heals you. And it helps you live longer, live better, and avoid medicine.
Then there’s the environmental aspects of it. When you look at the impact of animal agriculture on the rainforest, 90 percent of deforestation in the rainforest is for animal agriculture. And then there’s antibiotic resistance, famine, zoonotic disease, ocean acidification… there are so many profound reasons for everyone to embrace a plant-based diet.