There are 101 reasons to adopt a plant-based diet or to go VEGAN as it is the most common expression at the moment when speaking of food safety. I would like to share my motivation for adopting this lifestyle.
From quite a young age I have been attracted by yoga and things connected with the Indian culture. I was only 15 when I started following hatha yoga classes and in the 60’s in Rome it was not so common and fashionable as it is today. During the course of practicing yoga I came to know that it is very important to adopt a right diet, based mainly on fruits, vegetables, and grains to be able to develop maximum flexibility, stability, and coolness in the body. I came to know that a proper vegetarian diet is also very important for clarity and calmness of mind. So, being vegetarian for a few decades now I discovered that not all vegetarians eat the same. There are those who eat eggs, those who sporadically eat fish and poultry, and those who give lot of importance to milk and dairy products as is the case of the traditional Indian yogis. Very confusing! For some time I was the cheese and milk type but quite soon realized that milk and dairy didn’t like me: my sinuses were constantly blocked, pain in the joints and a continuum of bronchitis and flus. So, from vegetarian I stepped into vegan for health reasons.
Another event, happened when I was still quite young that made me think twice about the choice of what I was having on my plate. One day, in the small village of my grandparents, I saw a nice little calf on a truck. I went near and started playing with it. Two people came out of the house in front, dragged the calf inside and the next moment the calf was on the ground agonizing in a bath of blood. This image is still very vivid in front of my eyes and has been the motivation of choosing not to eat meat ever again.
The situation now is very clear and everyone can easily know about the meat industry just researching a little bit on the Internet.
The China Study, a well-known book by T. Colin Campbell, exposes the connection between consumption of animal proteins especially dairy products, with the developing of severe illness such as cancer, osteoporosis and cardiovascular diseases. Forests and huge lands are destroyed for intense agriculture to feed animals for meat and dairy industry. The huge amount of water needed for such industry is drying up water resources. Mountains of organic waste on top of declining water resources doesn’t help the situation.
And finally, being part of the Brahma Kumaris community for the last 30 years, I now struggle with the fact that still there is no clear position about veganism. My request is for the Brahma Kumaris to promote this diet and lifestyle. Perhaps the only reason the BK’s still use dairy products is because of tradition, comfort and taste. We say the food influences the mind and so we avoid eating food prepared by non-yogis but what about the use, abuse, and exploitation behind the processing of milk? Aiming to become elevated, we may get a special concession if we were to adopt a vegan diet!