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My Secret to Guilt-Free Eating

The following is a guest post by animal welfare reporter and activist Deborah Kay Steinken.

When people ask me why I choose to live a vegan lifestyle, I explain the ethical, environmental, and health-related reasons that make me feel guilt-free.

Traditional western diets are the leading cause of cruelty to animals, which occurs at the hands of the meat, dairy, and egg industries. These industries slaughter billions of land animals each year. Choosing not to look at how a hamburger, a glass of milk, or an egg is produced makes one just as guilty as the people who are slaughtering the animals. Thankfully, there are thousands of people who are standing up for animals by adopting a vegan diet and showing their compassion, respect, and acceptance of their personal responsibility to all living beings.

Animals feel pain and fear death just as humans do. Animals on factory farms live a life of mental, emotional, and physical torture—they are separated from their mothers at birth, confined to small spaces, pumped full of hormones and drugs, mutilated without any pain relief, and violently slaughtered.

Vegans choose to eat foods that promote the health and wellness of animals, humans, and the Earth What we eat affects the air, water, oceans, and forests—rainforests are leveled to raise cattle, factory farms pollute rivers and lakes, overgrazing erodes fertile land, vast quantities of energy and water are wasted to raise animals for food, and drift nets used by the fishing industry turn acres of oceans into graveyards.

I believe that by being vegan, we can evolve and live our lives without negatively affecting our fellow inhabitants of the Earth; significantly reduce the risk of heart disease, cancer, and strokes; and live an ethical and nondestructive life.

What are your thoughts and experiences on living a vegan lifestyle? Please comment below.

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  • PJ says:

    Btw Deborah I just wanted to say that you are a beautiful person with a beautiful heart. I love your hair and makeup, and your little dog is adoreable too!

  • PJ says:

    I find it sad in a way because I know that in a practical sense, being a vegan doesn’t do any good. It makes me feel better about myself for sticking up for what I believe in but at the end of the day just as many animals will be killed and suffer horribly regardless of whether I’m a vegan or not.

  • samanthamora87 says:

    I got a sweet boy chihuahua back in october of 2010. As I’ve come to love him I’ve found myself stopping on the side of the road to help strays locate their owners. I’ve even gone door to door knocking with my chihuahua in tote and the missing done trying to find the dog or cats home! So it got me thinking….what’s the difference between my dog and a cow? Or my dog and a chicken? What if someone killed him and sold his legs and arms for meat? That made me sick to my stomach and I’ve quit eating meat and so has my husbad as a result! I don’t care if I have to live off bread for awhile til I figure out how to lead a vegan lifestyle, but I am never eating meat again.

  • Siobhan says:

    I find it very hard to eat well. My teenagers won’t give up eating any meat at all. So I have to cook meat most of the time. How do I get them to change just a little of their diet?

  • Siobhan says:

    I find it very hard to eat well. My teenagers won’t give up eating any meat at all. So I have to cook meat most of the time. How do I get them to change just a little of their diet?

  • haley says:

    i want to be vegan and try to get my family to be vegan or vegetarian but my mom yells at me fr it:(

  • Teresa Ingersoll says:

    Another GREAT and informative article by Debbie. THANK YOU for caring!!!!!

  • Ray says:

    I also feel exactly the same. It is truly a blessing and the greatest gift you can give to your self, the animals and the planet. Bigger than anything you could even imagine.

    Alot of people and my family of course in the beginning tend to think I was crazy and over cynical but they are slowly starting to see the truth behind the dangers of eating meats, dairy and fish. I am also educating my entire family about raw living and superfood’s as well. They seem to take an interest alot in the superfood’s which is fantastic.

    In my experience I have been teased but I can only shake my head at how ignorant we have become as a species..Do your homework people and then decide what kind of life you want to live. This is bigger than our individuality or being a vegan.

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