Before I start, let me say, that not eating meat one day a week isn’t so crazy! I bet there are plenty of days that you do it, when you are cramming for something and all you eat is a left over piece of cheese pizza and a poptart.
(side note, I hope days like that are not common for anyone)
Meat, though delicious, is actually pretty inefficient in terms of land use, carbon emissions and nutrients.
The United Nations estimated in 2006 that meat makes up one fifth of the world’s man made greenhouse gas emissions. Specifically, methane, which is far more potent of a greenhouse gas than CO2. Every year, we increase the amount of mouths to feed, which increases the amount of feed we need. Though a lot of countries consume smaller portions of meat, first world countries like the United States make up for it pretty well, when the average American eats over 130 pounds of meat a year. That’s about 1/3 pound of meat a day.
And when we’re comparing vegetables (which we should have a lot of) and meat, it’s pretty clear which is the best for us on an individual scale, as well.
This is the nutrition facts for a pound of beef, from fatsecret.com and
this is the nutrition in a pound of cauliflower, also from fatsecret.com
Cauliflower has a lot more of the important things we need: high potassium, vitamins A and C, high iron, low cholesterol and sodium, as well as low in carbohydrates. It’s also high in fiber and low in sugar. Plus, if you grate it up, cook it in olive oil on the stove top with a lot of spices, it makes an awesome dinner.
Meat should be a complement to vegetables, and vegetables should make up the majority of what you eat. Think about reducing the amount of meat once a week, and upping your vegetables instead!