Actress Kate Mara wasn’t really on my radar until I saw her in House of Cards and instantly developed a huge girl crush on her. I especially loved when her character, gusty reporter Zoe Barnes, sits down (on the floor of her apartment) to write a big story, surrounded by copious notes, her laptop, and a pot of coffee—there’s just something cool about sitting on the floor whilst working like a boss, no?
Anyway, Zoe Barnes asides, Mara herself is a role model—especially when it comes to her animal activism. The outspoken vegan isn’t afraid to spread the good news about the benefits of going vegan—and those benefits are many. Long-time animal lover Mara cites three main reasons for adhering to this healthy lifestyle.
In addition to practicing dance and going running, Mara stays healthy and glowing by following a plant-based diet rich in fruit and veggies. While the site of a grim factory farm may have turned the actress away from meat, her interest in nutrition helped spark her commitment to veganism. After Mara worked with nutritionist Kimberly Snyder of the Beauty Detox Solution, fruits, veggies, green smoothies, and gluten-free foods became staples in the actress’ diet, and she reports that she’s never felt better:
“People always assume if you’re vegetarian you can just live on cheese and meanwhile cheese is awful for your body even if it tastes so good. […] Being vegan has been so good for me. I’ve never felt better.”
Mara’s position on the health benefits of veganism extends beyond her personal welfare, however. While promoting Meatless Monday, she noted that “eating meat just isn’t good for us; studies link eating so much meat to some of our nation’s biggest killers, including heart disease, diabetes, obesity, and certain types of cancer.”
For Mara, a vegan lifestyle is more than a ticket to a healthy body and good looks, however. The actress finds the cruelty imposed on farm animals simply unacceptable. After driving past “miles upon miles of chicken coops” on a family road trip nearly a decade ago, Mara realized “what a horrific life these animals were leading.”
As Mara told PETA, she is sympathetic to the fact than many American have yet to transition to a vegan diet. “I recognize that a large majority of meat and dairy consumers are unaware of the horrific process these animals endure in order for them to eat these products. I was a meat eater for a long time, and I would have made different choices in my diet if I had known the facts about factory farming. I now feel it’s my moral obligation, and I’m very passionate about educating people on making better, more humane choices when it comes to the food we eat.”
Fortunately, Mara and her sister Rooney are embodiments of this lifestyle and serve as examples for many.
Increasingly, we’re becoming aware of the toll that factory farming takes on the environment. Livestock farming is the number one leading cause of global warming, contributing 65% of nitrous oxide and 35% of methane emissions. Indeed, abstaining from animal products is one very important way to fight climate change.
Mara is wise to this. She recently narrated an HSUS video about factory farming and the benefits of adopting a plant-based lifestyle. In addition to causing pollution, she explains, factory farms put small farmers out of business, which impacts our socioeconomic environment in the process. “Every time we sit down to eat, we have a choice. By choosing more meat-free meals, we’re saying ‘yes’ to better health, ‘yes’ to a better environment, and ‘yes’ to better treatment of animals.”
And we say “yes” to Kate Mara!
What are your biggest reasons for going vegan?
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Photos: Wikimedia Commons, HSUS