Veganism ‘Is A Way Of Life’

Being vegan simply means refraining from eating or using any animal products such as meat, dairy products and leather.
03 Feb 2019 09:00
Veganism ‘Is A Way Of Life’
Jeanette Rama

A 40-year-old Suva woman is promoting a vegan diet, saying it is good for one’s health and wellbeing.

Jeanette Rama, who is originally from Tavua in the Western Division, says veganism is a conscious choice because it means living a life of compassion towards all living beings, including animals.

She has been a vegetarian for two years and a vegan for more than a year now and says her health is at an all time peak at 40 years of age, thanks to the change in her life style.

Being vegan simply means refraining from eating or using any animal products such as meat, dairy products and leather.

“It is about practising a mindful lifestyle which includes knowing what you eat and what you wear on your body and your feet did not come from a place of suffering and torture to animals for our selfish needs.

“Physically, I feel more vibrant and full of energy at this age than I did in my 20s.

“My metabolism is great and I feel like I have defied the ageing process.”

After a phase of poor diet, alcoholism and overworking which ultimately led to failed relationships and overall ill health in her twenties, she decided it was time for change.

“Not only physically, it made me mentally unhealthy as well and eventually I made up my mind to make changes to my lifestyle starting with what I eat,” Ms Rama said.

“After years of trials and failed attempts to go meat and dairy free, I can now comfortably say that I will never go back to eating animal flesh or its byproducts again.”

She made suggestions on how to substitute meat or dairy products in one’s diet.

“If you are not getting enough calcium, protein and iron in your diet, you will find them in green leafy vegetables,” Ms Rama said.

“You can choose chickpeas, legumes, tofu and many other great options to imitate meat products.”

Meanwhile, professional nutritionist Vittoria Pasca said a healthy vegan diet is full of antioxidants, vitamins and dietary fibre that can strengthen the immune system and protect you from diseases.

“This type of diet is also much lower in total and saturated fat, and completely free from cholesterol which is only found in animal foods,” said Ms Pasca.

“It can therefore help prevent Non-Communicable Diseases as diets rich in cholesterol, saturated and animal fat are actually the main causes for heart disease, type 2 diabetes and some types of cancer such as colon, breast and prostate cancer.”

She added a vegan diet rich in dietary fibre and low in fat is also great for weight loss.

“However, one needs to keep in mind that a junk food vegan diet full of fried foods would not yield the same benefits,” Ms Pasca said.

Edited by Epineri Vula


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