Why you should become one of many vegan seniors
If you had to guess how old this lady is, what would you say? 40? 50 at the most?
This is Annette Larkins, and in this picture she is a prime 70! Her secret? A raw vegan diet. Now I’m not expecting you to suddenly go raw-vegan overnight, but if you’re interested in looking and feeling your best, veganism is most definitely the way forward.
You may think you’re fit and healthy now, but with the worrying statistics about animal products readily available, why not do everything possible to keep yourself healthy. Not just or you, but for your friends and family too.
The top 3 causes of death among the elderly are heart disease, cancer, strokes and diabetes.
In fact, there’s some pretty worrying information among these American statistics:
- 610,000 people die yearly from heart disease in the USA, which is equal to 1 in 4 deaths
- 735,000 Americans will suffer from a heart attack every year year
- 9% of the total population has diabetes, notably, 29% of all seniors (65 and older) have the disease
- There were 234,051 deaths where diabetes was a significant contributing factor
And the best way of tackling these diseases?
Through your diet of course!
Did you know most disease are preventable if you consistently eat with a conscious mind? To be specific, a vegan diet can help to delay or completely prevent the onset of most chronic diseases.
Why go vegan?
Despite the stigma that veganism is hard, it’s possibly the easiest and most rewarding lifestyle out there. You get to enjoy an abundance of delicious and nutritious food, all while aiding your health as well as the environment.
You can still enjoy all your favourite foods if you’re vegan! Whether that’s biscuits, cheese, or just a good cup of tea.
As well as treating yourself to all the mouthwatering vegan treats out there, your body will thank you for it too.
Here’s some examples why:
- Longer life- Studies are increasingly showing that those who consume a vegan diet live 3 to 6 years longer than their meat-eating counterparts.
- Hormone consumption- Consuming some of the hormones given to animals have shown to cause tumour growth in humans and disrupts your natural hormone balances
- Fibre- A diet high in fibre (as vegan eating usually is) leads to healthier bowel movements, which brings decreased chances of bowl cancer.
- Reduced saturated fats- Dairy products and meats contain a large amount of saturated fats. By reducing the amount of saturated fats from your diet, you’ll improve your health and drastically lower your cholesterol.
We all want to do what’s best for our bodies, and the following diseases can all occur as a result of eating animal products. You may not suffer from them now, but why leave your future to luck? Take action now and prevent these awful diseases from occurring.
Vegan seniors are becoming a pretty common thing.
We’ve forever been told that we need to get our calcium to have strong bones and improve bone density. This becomes even more important the older we get. Especially as 75 million people across Europe, America and Japan now have the bone disease.
The thing is, we’re never really told that we shouldn’t be getting it from dairy.
Yes, cows milk is high in calcium, however, it’s actually doing more harm than good.
High consumption of dairy products has been linked with osteoporosis (AKA brittle bones). The proteins that make up cows milk is acidic, causing the bones to degrade and fracture over time.
Instead, try to get your calcium from other rich sources such as plant milk, soy milk, rice milk, collard greens and almonds. Additionally you can purchase fortified orange juice.
Heart disease and heart attacks
Heart disease is caused by the build up of fatty deposits in the arterial lining. The fatty deposits are made up of cholesterol and ultimately saturated fat.
Vegan diets have no cholesterol and very low saturated fat.
People have been known to reverse their heart disease by just changing to a vegan diet!
“A Cleveland Clinic surgeon, named Caldwell Esselstyn, used the same type of diet for severely ill heart patients. Some of the patients had been told they had less than a year to live. But of the 17 patients who stuck to the program, there was not a single cardiac event over the next 12 years! They were alive and well—and had reversed their disease.”
Eggs are the largest contributor to LDL cholesterol, along with butter, cheese, milk, pork and meat. Cutting these out and moving to a vegan diet will significantly cut your cholesterol levels.
I’m sure you’re like every other senior out there, you want to spend as much time with your friends, family and grandkids, right? I’m assuming you also want to get out there and make the most of your retirement!
Well, good news! Turning to a vegan diet will leave you more energised and empowered than ever before.
Many people complain of feeling tired and lethargic when eating a high fat and especially high saturated fat diet. It’s casually said that ‘fat sits on your brain’ leading you to feel sleepy and tired.
In fact, its just slowing your blood flow, reducing the oxygen flow to your brain and other muscles causing you to feel lethargic.
There’s massive amounts of fat in a typical Western diet so skip this on a vegan lifestyle and you’ll feel ready for the daily challenges.
Reduced cancer risk
Vegetarians alone are 40% less likely to develop any form of cancer in a Western society. Additionally, in Japan, women following Western diets are eight times more likely to develop breast cancer than those following a traditional plant-based diet.
Meat and dairy are known to be some of the highest carcinogens and contributors to the onset of cancer out there!
A few worrying stats:
- Daily meat consumption triples the chances of prostate enlargement
- Regular milk consumption doubles the risk
- Failure to consume vegetables regularly nearly quadruples the risk.
- High-fat diets also encourage the body’s production of oestrogen’s, in particular, estradiol. Increased levels of this sex hormone have been linked to breast cancer.
Cut out the bad stuff and start making the transition to a healthy, less cancerous diet!
Antioxidants, nutrients and vitamins
A vegan lifestyle is second to none at providing an abundance of nutrients, vitamins and antioxidants!
Antioxidants provide significant protection against cell damage, in fact, they’re known to be the best all-round protector of the body. Focusing on a plan-based diet, especially consuming a high number of fruit, will pack your body with the essential antioxidants.
Not only that, but with eating a high plant based diet, you’re able to get a number of nutrients such as potassium and magnesium.
Potassium has a wealth of benefits such as reduced chance of strokes, lower blood pressure as well as reduced anxiety and stress.
Paired with high magnesium levels, which provides a steady heart beat, improved immune system and maintains normal muscle, these nutrients will have your body kicking stronger than ever!
Finally, folate, the B vitamin is found mainly in vegetables and plant-based foods.
Now, we could write page after page on vitamins but remember this.
Folate is an incredibly important part of a healthy diet. Folate helps to repair cells, generate red and white blood cells and also metabolise amino acids.
Let’s just remember that this is only one of many vitamins. Imagine all the good you’ll be doing if you cut out the useless foods like meat and dairy and replace them with healthy plant-based foods!
Simple and Easy ways to become a Vegan:
- The best way to become and stay vegan is to educate yourself. Give Cowspiracy, Earthlings and Forks Over Knives a watch, and wonder why you didn’t go vegan years ago! Head over here for some more awesome vegan documentaries.
- Keep in mind the world you want to leave behind for your children and grandchildren. Veganism is the best way to reduce your environmental footprint.
- Join vegan support groups. You might feel like you’re the only vegan senior around at first, but don’t fear! There are more and more people taking the leap, and chatting to those similar to you will really help. Hint- there’s plenty of vegan support groups on Facebook!
- Find alternatives to your favourite foods. There’s no need to give up cake and chocolate, and depriving yourself might only lead to cravings of non-vegan foods.
- Get rid of all non-vegan foods in one go. Leaving that pack of chocolate biscuits in the back of your cupboard won’t help anybody! Donate all animal products to food banks or charities, and let your kitchen have a fresh start.
Now, this may all seem a bit overwhelming but there’s plenty of scientific research behind a vegan diet significantly aiding senior health.
If you’re wanting to change your diet, don’t worry, there’s still plenty of time! Not to mention, vegan meals are seriously delicious.
People are commonly able to extend their lifespan by simply changing their diets to a plant-based diet and exercising regularly.
What’s to say you cant too?
Get out there and make the changes today!