Five Reasons to Try Vegetarian

While the popularity of vegetarianism is rapidly on the rise, there are some who still feel as though giving up meat would be too big of a sacrifice to make. However, there are so many benefits that come with a vegetarian diet, so here are five reasons to persuade you to give vegetarianism a try.

Vegetarian

Slow Down the Aging Process
A study recently published in the British Medical Journal discovered that vegetarians outlive meat eaters by up to six years, which is hardly surprising considering all of the nutrients that come with a plant-based diet. Not only are these rich in fiber, but they are alo high in antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients, all of which play individual roles in slowing down the aging process. In addition to this, a plant-based diet can also prevent, as well as reverse, certain chronic diseases, giving vegetarians a longer, and healthier, life.

Prevent the Three Biggest Killers
Heart disease is the number one killer out there, with cancer and strokes being the second and third, but a healthy, well-balanced vegetarian diet is able to protect the body from all three of these. In fact, doctors have even had success in unclogging arteries and reversing heart disease purely by prescribing a vegan diet.

Woman with ferret

Support the Environment
Countless studies have shown, and the United Nations has also confirmed, that eating meat is the reason behind some of the most serious environmental problems that we face today. For example, the meat industry is responsible for 40% more greenhouse gases than all of the cars, trucks and planes in the world combined, and are also linked to everything from land degradation to water pollution to climate change to loss of biodiversity.

Animal Welfare
While you may like to think that your meat has been raised on lush green pastures and happy farmyard homes, the reality is far from this, and if the general public really knew what happened in factory farms today, there would be many more vegetarians in the world. Animals that are commonly eaten, such as chickens and pigs, are actually known to be smarter than animals that are usually kept as pets, such as dogs and cats, so rather than supporting the abhorrent conditions that these creatures are kept in, give vegetarianism a try. It is believed that an individual who gives up meat is able to save around 100 animal lives each year, which is a good enough reason in itself for any true animal lover.

Woman standing on weighing scale

Weight Loss
More than two thirds of the general public are obese, but vegetarians on average tend to have a lower BMI, which is the measure of body fat, than meat eaters. Vegetarians are much less likely to be obese, and are significantly lighter than meat eaters, making vegetarianism the healthiest of weight loss diets.

As you can see, a vegetarian diet brings with it so many incredible benefits. Not only would you be making huge improvements to your own health, but you would also be supporting the world around you, so make 2017 the year in which you give vegetarianism a try.

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Know Your Lifetime Risk for Breast Cancer

While there are many different factors that play into your chance of developing breast cancer, it is possible to work out an idea of what your risk level may be like. While being at a high-risk level does not automatically mean that you are going to have to deal with breast cancer, this would still mean that you should take the precautions necessary to ensure that you are able to keep your body at its optimum health.

women with breast cancer awareness symbol
Risk Factors
Breast cancer risk factors can be separated into two general categories; personal and hereditary. Hereditary factors can be assessed by taking a look back at your family history, and learning about which family members have experienced breast and ovarian cancer, as well as other types of cancer, as this may then suggest that you have a hereditary risk. While genetic testing is available, these tests may not provide you with the results that you need, making it important to speak in depth with a genetic counselor first to fully understand the process and results. When it comes to the personal risk factors for breast cancer, these take into account a number of different things. Those who first got their period early in life, have not given birth or done so after the age of 35 or have experienced menopause after the age of 55, are all at a higher risk of developing breast cancer, as are those who are over the age of 50.

Working Out Your Risk Level
Even if you feel as though you may have quite a few of the risk factors mentioned above, this does not necessarily mean that you are at a high risk for breast cancer. There are online risk assessment tools that you can use, such as the Breast Cancer Risk Assessment Tool from the National Cancer Institute, but the most accurate way to assess your risk is by visiting a healthcare professional and talking through the different risk factors with them.

Women raising awareness of breast cancer
Average, Above-Average and High-Risk Levels
Once you have determined your breast cancer risk level, then you will be able to learn more about the best ways in which you should go about screening for cancer. Those that have an average risk are usually advised to undergo a mammogram each year between the ages of 45-55, and then every other year after the age of 55. Those that have an above-average risk will find it slightly trickier to work out what needs to be done, as you need to be careful not to over-treat the issue. For those that are at a high risk level, you will need to undergo a more intensive screening program, meaning not only annual mammograms, but also yearly MRI scans. There is also medication that can be taken to lower your risk of developing breast cancer, and, in the more extreme cases, preventative surgeries can be carried out.

Studies show that around one in eight women, which works out to about 12% of women, will develop an invasive form of breast cancer at some point in their lives. In order to catch this as early as possible, it is important to be fully aware of your risk levels for developing breast cancer, so that you can make sure that you are doing all that you can to screen for, and prevent it.

Is it Worth Buying Organic? OROGOLD Reviews

Rather than dying down after a few years, the hype around organic food is still steadily growing. Ten years ago, it would have been hard to find a good selection of organic produce in the shops, but now, not only are the shelves full of organic products, we are being actively encouraged to choose these over the regular varieties. ORO GOLD tries to help you understand whether it makes sense to buy organic.

Fresh red and yellow capcicums

What Exactly is Organic Food?
Before the growth of industrial-scale farming, organic food would have just been called ‘food’. It is generally assumed that organic food has been grown without the use of any chemicals, but this is not exactly true. Instead, organic produce is grown with a minimal use of chemicals, with farmers still having access to a small selection of pesticides. In comparison, non-organic produce is repeatedly sprayed with many toxic chemicals, which work their way into the plant, ending up in your body.

Does Organic Food Cost More?
You will generally find that organic food costs more, often being 10% – 100% more expensive than the alternatives. The reason for this is because organic foods are much more labor intensive to grow, and can often result in smaller yields. The high price of organic products is usually what steers many people away, which, for some items that do not contain a high level of pesticide residue, is absolutely fine. However, certain products soak up much more of the toxic chemicals, meaning that by prioritizing the organic products that you buy, you will be able to keep your ingestion of these chemicals to a minimum.

Fruits and Vegetables
The most common fruits and vegetables that contain high levels of pesticide residue are celery, apples, carrots and lettuce. Any non-organic products that have been made with these ingredients, such as apple juice or carrot cake, would also contain the same chemicals. To keep your shopping simple, opt for organic varieties when you plan on eating the outside as well as the inside of a fruit or vegetable, and choose non-organic for the rest.

Cheese and ham on a chopping board.

Meat and Dairy
The term ‘organic’ applies to meat and animal products as well as to fruit and vegetables. In this case, non-organic meat production involves injecting antibiotics into the animals, which end up in your body when you eat the animal products. The growth hormone that is commonly given to cows has been linked, on numerous occasions, to the development of certain cancer cells in women. When it comes to meat and dairy, it is usually best to buy organic whenever possible.

Imported Organic Foods
If a product with an organic label has been made in another country, be sure to do some research before trusting in that label. Many countries, such as China, export common organic products, including tea and tinned tomatoes. However, their standards are much lower when it comes to organic rules and regulations. If you are unsure, it is best to stick to a variety that is made as locally as possible.

Organic food has been proven to have many more health benefits than non-organic, so in many cases, it really is worth buying. However, keep in mind that these still do contain some level of chemicals, so be sure to thoroughly wash all fresh produce before cooking or eating.