Berrysmith Foundation

Meat Free Monday

The Berrysmith Foundation is in the process of setting up a Meat Free Monday programme for New Zealand.  Meat Free Monday was started in the UK by Sir Paul, Mary and Stella in 2009.

It now has a following in several countries.  In the US and Australia the campaign has been called Meatless Mondays.

Meat Free Monday is a campaign to encourage the average Kiwi to try going meat free one day of the week.  Not too much of a sacrifice, especially as a good detox following a heavy weekend of eating, drinking and partying!

What is Meat Free Monday?

An international movement to help people reduce their meat consumption by 15% to improve personal health and the health of the planet.  It is a non-profit initiative of The Monday Campaigns, in association with the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

Why Meat Free?

Going meatless once a week can reduce your risk of chronic preventable conditions like cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes and obesity.  It can also help limit your carbon footprint and save precious resources like fresh water and fossil fuel.

Why Monday?

Multiple studies have shown that periodic health prompts lead to positive behavior change.  Monday is the beginning of the week, making it the perfect time to re-evaluate our choices and set our intentions for the coming days.  With a Meat Free Monday,  you have a scheduled, recurring reminder to start your week off on a nutritious note.  And if this Monday passes you by, next week is another opportunity to focus on health!

Key Benefits of Meat Free Monday

For Your Health

  • Reduce Heart Disease - Beans, peas, nuts and seeds contain little to no saturated fats.  Reducing saturated fats can help keep your cholesterol low, and cut risk of cardiovascular disease.
  • Limit Cancer Risk - Hundreds of studies suggest that diets high in fruits and vegetables can reduce cancer risk.  Red meat consumption is associated with colon cancer.
  • Fight Diabetes - Research suggests that plant-based diets - particularly those low in processed meat - can reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes.
  • Curb Obesity - People on low-meat or vegetarian diets have significantly lower body weight and body mass indices.  A plant-based diet is a great source of fibre (absent in animal products).  This makes you feel full with fewer calories, ie. lower calorie intake and less overeating.
  • Live Longer - Red and processed meat consumption is associated with increases in total mortality, cancer mortality and cardiovascular disease mortality.
  • Improve Your Diet - Consuming beans or peas results in higher intakes of fibre, protein, folate, zinc, iron and magnesium with lower intakes of saturated fat and total fat.

For Your Wallet

  • Cut Weekly Budget - Food prices continue to rise.  Current increases are especially sharp in packaged items and meat, which require extra expenses like feed and transportation.  Forgoing meat once a week is a great way to cut the weekly budget.
  • Curb Healthcare Spending - By reducing our risk for these conditions, we can curtail healthcare spending nationwide.

For Our Planet

  • Reduce Carbon Footprint - The UN estimates the meat industry generates nearly one-fifth of the man-made greenhouse gas emissions that accelerate climate change.
  • Minimise Water Usage - The water needs of livestock are huge, far above those of vegetables or grains.  An estimated 1,800 to 2,500 gallons of water goes into a single pound of beef.

Meat Free Mondays Website

Meat-free Monday Cookbook
Sir Paul McCartney

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