Why is plant-based living one of the most sustainable things you can do?


Why is plant-based living one of the most sustainable things you can do?

by: Nathan Crane


Plant-based sustainable living seems to have the answers to many of the life-threatening challenges we face as individuals.  After growing up on a Midwestern diet of meat and potatoes, school-food not fit for a prison, and fast-food so greasy and artery-clogging it would kill a horse,  I became ill, sluggish, addicted to sugar and grease and sick with viruses so constant that I was basically a walking pharmacy by the time I was 18.


But then I had an awakening; a desire to want to get healthy, and I dedicated the rest of my life to learning how to live with vibrancy and vitality.  Through years of research, experimentation, cleansing, and interviewing hundreds of the leading minds on health and healing, my internal compass finally guided me to a plant-based diet. 


I don’t call myself a vegan, I prefer plant-based, and here’s why; I believe in the power of honey and bee pollen to nourish and enrich the human body.  A true vegan won’t eat bee products.  With my experience in handling wild bees and harvesting honey with no suit or smoke and feeling their generosity and their love and appreciation for me receiving their honey without animosity and without being stung, the bees taught me they like to share their abundant life-giving resource with us, as long as we honor them, take care of them, don’t take too much always making sure they have enough for themselves.   One thing that’s important if you wish to eat honey is to make sure you buy local honey from organic or non-chemical beekeepers rather than factory beekeepers, as organic beekeepers actually care about the health of the bees and don’t feed them sugar-water and don’t rape the hives as many commercial “beeindustriers” do. 


The other thing I eat is eggs.  I have my own chickens, we feed them organic compost scraps and organic chicken food, and they live free range on our land here in Santa Fe.  I find home-grown organic eggs to be healthy, nutritious, and easy to keep as a self-sustaining food for the family.  Again, true vegans don’t eat eggs, so I don’t call myself a vegan, but if you are going to eat eggs, then I recommend they come from local, organic, free range farmers that you know personally or that you raise yourself.


The reality is that you can be a vegan, and be one of the most unhealthy people on the planet.  For example; Doritos, Cracker Jacks, Ketchup, Hershey’s Syrup, and Kool-Aid are all vegan products, yet their ingredients range from high amounts of processed sugar and carcinogenic cancer-causing food coloring, to genetically modified corn syrup and preservatives we can’t even pronounce.  So vegan is not necessarily indicative of health.  And it’s not necessarily indicative of sustainability either.  This is why I try to live a plant-based diet. 


On a plant-based diet, it’s really quite simple; the foundation of my diet is plants without meat of any kind.  And not just any plants, but fresh, organic, raw plants.  When I make a meal I almost always start with a huge handful of fresh spinach or kale as the base.  Then I might add some home cooked rice and beans (not the canned stuff) on top, followed by a couple of fresh eggs and top it with avocado.  As you can see with this meal, and nearly all of my meals, 80%+ of the ingredients consist of fresh, organic, healthy plants while 50%+ consist of raw plants.  No additives, fillers, chemicals, or preservatives are allowed or included in this meal.  This is one of the most important paths to true health and vitality.


The next level of plant-based sustainable eating is “sustainability.”  The root definition of sustainability means, “something that can continue indefinitely.”  Did you know that the average meal in America travels 1500+ miles to your dinner table?  Think about that, truckloads of lettuce, mangos, bananas, kale, broccoli, and oranges travel across the country, and even around the world, just to make it to our dinner tables.  That is not something that can continue forever.  If we simply change the way we eat from a global economy to a local economy, we will drastically reduce, and possibly even end the climate change issues we’re facing.  Eating locally, or at a minimum, within 100 miles of your house, drastically reduces the amount of greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere, and the amount of oil, gas, and fossil fuel usage it takes to transport your food.  It reduces the machines and technology needed for the delivery, and it supports your local economy by supporting your local farmers, your local stores, your local co-ops, and your local farmer’s markets.  


To live more sustainably and eat more sustainably, begin learning where your food comes from, and start buying larger percentages of your food grown within 100 miles or closer to your house.  It’s not an easy challenge, but it will positively change the future of clean air, water, and soil on the planet and will help your local economy, your local environment, and the planet as a whole. 


This process of plant-based sustainable eating has the power to unify all human beings as we come together to recognize, learn, and transform the way we eat, the way we live, and the way we treat each other and animals with compassion, love, and acceptance for all living beings.  When we live a plant-based sustainable lifestyle we show the rest of the world that we care about our bodies, our planet, and our humanity.  This is what I believe to be the path towards true liberation, health, and unification. 


This unification I speak of will be fully experienced by thousands of people in Santa Fe, NM during a 4-day transformational festival dedicated to unifying humanity, celebrating life, and leaving the land better than we found it.  With sustainability and health workshops and keynote presentations, more than 50 bands and musicians, dozens of yoga classes and indigenous ceremony, UNIFY FEST gives us a celebratory experience of what it’s like to enjoy life, uplift our spirits, and unite for the common good of our human race.  Join me at UNIFY FEST in Santa Fe.  www.UNIFYFEST.com




Nathan Crane is the Executive Producer of UNIFY FEST, a 4-day transformational festival in Santa Fe, NM dedicated to unifying humanity, celebrating life, plant-based living, and leaving the land better than we found it.  Visit www.UNIFYFEST.com for tickets to this revolutionary new festival.


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