Being vegan is a no brainer for me. I’m not saying it’s always easy, but the benefits far outweigh the cost. I first began introducing a vegan lifestyle after experiencing countless food allergies that were greatly interfering with my daily life. None of the allergies were animal product related, but I adopted a clean diet by cutting out animal products and processed foods. Since then my allergies have abated and I feel more lively and full of energy than ever. Simultaneously I had watched several documentaries relating to veganism. My first impulse to go vegan was from learning about the great environmental impact the meat and dairy industry has on our Earth and every living thing on it (including humans). The second impulse I had was from educating myself on just how detrimental to our health meat and dairy can be, and how our governments and big businesses have a history of telling us quite the opposite - it’s all a big money game to them. The third and final straw for me, was seeing all of the cruelty, pain, and torture that we inflict upon innocent creatures, just so we can have a snack that isn’t even good for us. Nothing I say on this matter will hit home enough like watching actual footage of this happening, so go educate yourself.
As a yogi, these three reasons all come together under the umbrella of Ahimsa, one of the five yamas of yoga. Ahimsa means non-harm and by living a vegan lifestyle, I am practicing non-harm to the planet, to my own body, and to the animals we should be protecting on this Earth. A vegan lifestyle is a win-win for me.
-Elissa Cretella Ranney