What with Vegetarianism and Veganism being the hot new thing in the world of environmentalism and health, you may feel pressured to go along with the trend. And while there are dozens upon dozens of benefits of cutting out animal products from your diet, the foods that we have been trained to eat over the years may prove to be difficult to cut from your diet. So, rather than trying to go cold turkey and going about vegetarianism in an unhealthy and unsatisfying way, have you ever thought about taking the “reducetarian” route?

A term coined by Brian Kateman, a Reducetarian is somebody who purposefully and deliberately reduces his or her consumption of meat. In doing so, each Reducetarian will be making a move towards a greater and greener planet, without having to fully compromise their cravings. With that being said, the whole notion of Reducetarianism is that it is a starting off point and a way for people to slowly work their way towards a more plant-based lifestyle. The Reducetarian concept is that a reduction of meat intake should be celebrated! There is no point in judging one person or another for their diet, but instead, we should be applauding the little efforts that each person makes on their individual journey of reducing their animal product intake. As the Reducetarian Foundation puts it, eating less meat overall still leads to a net positive.

And what makes the Reducetarian movement even more positive? The health benefits attached to it!

By just cutting out red meat, your body’s pH levels will balance out, bloating will decrease, you will notice improvements in your skin, you will reduce your risk for cancer and disease, and you will help the environment.

While eating meat seems like something natural, it’s important to recognize that the production of meat is overwhelming our ecosystem is one of the biggest causes of environmental destruction. Here are a few shocking statistics regarding animal agriculture:
• At least 51% of greenhouse gases are caused solely by animal agriculture.
• If every American skipped one meal of chicken per week, environmental effects would be like taking 500,000 cars off the road
• One football field of tropical rainforest is destroyed every 6 seconds to produce the equivalent of 257 hamburgers
• One acre of land can produce either 20lbs of meat or 365lbs of soybeans
• 16kg of grain can feed 20 people, or 1kg of beef (which then feeds 2 people)

So, any way you look at it, there is no denying that animal agriculture has been making a huge impact on the environmental status of planet earth. But the good news? You can help. We’re not saying to just drop everything and go vegan if you don’t want to. We aren’t even suggesting you jump right into vegetarianism. But think about it. Just skipping ONE chicken based meal per day has an impact. Opting for a vegetarian burrito over a hamburger makes a difference. Though you are only one person, you are one person who can make a difference. So sign up here to pledge yourself to the Reducetarian challenge.