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Meatless Monday: Why Meatless Monday?

We can go meatless any day? Why Monday?

by Alexander Quebec

Propaganda poster for WWI (The one without the Nazis)

For the longest time, the only meatless days we were used to in America where during Lent, when many Catholics would forgo meat every Friday leading up to Easter. Of course, without these meatless days, we would have never have gotten the Filet-o-fish, one of McDonald’s most underappreciated sandwiches.

Meatless Monday might sound like something some bored suburban housewives would conjure up, but the truth is that the Day has been around a lot longer than we think.

During the first world war, when the Allied countries had taken arms against the Central Powers of Germany, Austria-Hungary and Turkey; President Woodrow Wilson urged Americans to go easy on select food items, one of them being meat. One Monday going meatless, plus one meatless meal per day would help alleviate food shortages and ensure that both the troops overseas and the people at home had enough food to carry on. There was even a motto around it too “Food will help us win the war”. This campaign would again be carried out during the Second World war.

Flash forward to 2003, The Center For A Liveable Future at John Hopkins Bloomberg School fo Public Health endorsed the campaign not for a war effort, but as a means to promote sustainable, healthy eating habits that come with a meatless diet which would result in lowered heart problems and lowered blood pressure for example. In addition, a meatless diet has been shown to counter the effects of climate change as it typically takes more resources to care for livestock than it does for crops.

Want to kick start a new tradition, especially with that Instant Pot that’s probably collecting dust in your kitchen? Try this recipe (Swiss Chard and Lentils Soup), it’s one of my favorites.

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