Have you recently adopted a plant-based diet? You’re not alone! Jay Z and Beyoncé have taken on the 22 Day Challenge. That’s a commitment to 22 days of no animal products – but why 22? Apparently, it takes 21 days to break a habit, or so Jay writes on his website. But why take on the challenge? Well, the benefits of a plant-based diet include:
- Preventing cancer
- Lowering cholesterol levels
- Reducing risk of heart disease
- Decreasing blood pressure
- Preventing and even reversing diabetes
- Lowering incidences of kidney stones
- Decreasing asthma attacks
and the benefits go on, just watch Forks Over Knives to see how going plant-based can impact your life in incredible ways. Who doesn’t want all that?!
I think it’s great that the couple is participating in the challenge. Not only is it spreading awareness of a plant-based diet, it will hopefully teach them that a diet without animal products is healthy, tasty, and diverse. As a vegan, I have never felt that I was missing out on any good food. Once upon a time, all I wanted was pizza. Well, I can still eat pizza – I just have it cheeseless, or with vegan cheese. I’m not missing out on anything.
There’s been a lot of comments about them “going vegan.” For the vast majority of vegans, being “vegan” is more than simply no longer eating animal products. While I basically agree with this, I am not going to criticize anyone for wanting to reduce or eliminate animal products from their diet, no matter how temporary it is. Being vegan is about being compassionate, and as I extend my compassion to nonhuman animals, I must also do so for people. Most of us vegans were raised omnivores. Some find it easy to transition, others do not. I cannot judge someone’s journey. So I am supportive of Jay Z and Beyoncé’s decision to participate in the challenge: I truly hope they continue their diet after the 22 days and ultimately adopt a vegan lifestyle.
If you are on a journey toward veganism, I’d recommend signing up for a challenge. It’s an awesome way to transition: you’ll be motivated, you’ll have support, and most importantly, you’ll be accountable. I say this with personal experience: I decided to go vegan on my own (transitioning from a vegetarian, or an excuse-itarian if you prefer) and failed fairly soon after. A big part of that was that I didn’t have support and I didn’t have the knowledge I have now. But I wanted to give myself another chance. I heard of the PCRM challenge and immediately signed up. Once I entered my email address, I had motivation – and responsibility. I kicked off the New Year with a promise to myself and I have been vegan ever since. Here’s the link to the PCRM Vegan Kickstart. My advice would be sign up for both! Click here for the 22 Days Nutrition challenge website. With 22 Days, you’ll receive an incredible vegan meal recipe every day. PCRM will also provide recipes, and also useful articles with advice and tips. And I guess this would be a good time to say that I recently founded a Facebook page for people who are going plant-based. We’re administered by full-fledged vegans (me and another) and a couple who are somewhere along the spectrum. Check us out and join the discussions!
Have you done a vegan challenge? Would you? Let me know in the comments!