This holiday season, make a positive impact on the planet by choosing a vegan meal. Choosing to eat vegan or reduce your consumption of animal products can significantly benefit the environment. For example, just 100 grams of beef produces approximately 55.12 pounds of CO2 equivalents, and other meats have similar effects. If everyone transitioned to a plant-based diet, food-related emissions could decrease by up to 68% in just 15 years, helping combat global warming. A plant-based diet can promote better health by reducing the risk of heart disease. So, this season, treat yourself to a delicious and environmentally-friendly meal while caring for our beautiful home.

 

Annie stood in the greenhouse, teeming with life. Her eyes sparkled as she gazed at the first signs of a remarkable transformation. Three weeks earlier, tiny, inconspicuous spores had gracefully floated down and delicately landed on a dark, loamy surface, brimming with the essential nutrients they needed for their mission. With an almost mystical determination, each spore began to unleash its power, sending out delicate strands known as mycelium, surreptitiously weaving a mysterious and enchanting web beneath the surface. Like skilled wizards, each worked tirelessly beneath the dirt, creating an intricate network. Slowly but surely, a new crop of mushrooms was born.

Annie smiled as she witnessed the first caps pushing up from the ground. This was the exact moment she had been waiting for. She had carefully nurtured this crop, ensuring they would be ready just in time for the grand celebration of the annual Gathering holiday. Her anticipation grew as she counted the number of caps and saw that there would be an abundance for the Mushroom Wellington, the delectable centerpiece of this year’s feast.

Satisfied with her work in the greenhouse, Annie closed the door behind her and made her way to the navigation room. Inside, her husband, LJ, was coordinating a rendezvous with several other arks. It was the third year since the great flood had submerged the Earth, leaving the survivors to build a new existence on arks. Annie and LJ had become citizens of this global community, living amongst thousands of giant boats that housed the world’s plants, animals, and even precious dirt.

As they worked to ensure the survival of their community, Annie couldn’t help but reflect on the enormity of the challenges they had overcome. The Earth’s unremitting rain, a consequence of unchecked global warming, had brought about immeasurable loss. Billions had perished in the catastrophic flood. Yet here they were, among the lucky few who had found refuge on the arks. Adjusting to ark life meant no longer eating meat, treating fresh water as a precious resource, growing food to feed themselves and animals, for clothing, generating energy, and maintaining the arks. Every part of a plant grown was used, none of it wasted.

“You look happy, Annie,” LJ observed.

She laughed softly. “Yes, I am. These mushroom crops represent a delicious addition to our feast. Mushrooms may not replace meat entirely, but they’re high in fiber and packed with essential vitamins and minerals like selenium, zinc, and numerous B vitamins. They offer antioxidants and have shown anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer effects.”

LJ nodded. “You’ve done well, Annie. People will be grateful for your hard work. What else is on the menu?”

“Glad you asked. The chefs put a lot of thought into creating a delicious and nutritious meal.  It includes:

Roasted Brussels Sprouts an easy and delicious way to add some color and flavor to the feast.

Garlic Green Beans with almond slivers par-boiled and sauteed with garlic, vegan butter, and almond slivers.

Chopped tomato, cucumber, and kale salad is a great dish with kale, cherry tomatoes, and cucumber dressed with a simple vinaigrette.

Ginger Quinoa Bowl is gluten-free and has satisfying, high-protein, nutrient-dense vegetables.

For Dessert, a Mixed Berry Crumble that includes colorful blueberries, raspberries, and apples sweetened with coconut sugar and honey for natural sweetness.”

LJ’s stomach growled. “That menu is making me hungry. It’s tasty and has all the essential minerals and vitamins for our well-being. Since we no longer have traditional healthcare, relying on the ‘food is medicine’ philosophy is vital. Our doctors and nurses are big proponents of the positive impact of whole, natural foods on our overall health.”

Annie nodded, a sense of gratitude in her voice. “Absolutely. Our ark life diet of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins has helped prevent chronic illnesses, fortified our resilience, and contributed to our long-term health.”

“It’s too bad we had to learn the hard way through the loss of Earth that a whole food plant-based diet offers many health benefits, including reduced heart disease, lower body weight, increased energy, and decreased greenhouse gas emissions. However, what we know now about not eating animals raised for slaughter will benefit future generations. “

 

 

The Food for the Ark story is a fictional tale that depicts the devastating consequences of global warming. Although it may not always be technically accurate, it vividly portrays the impact of melting polar ice caps and rising sea levels. The story follows the journey of Annie, LJ, and other survivors who now only have themselves to rely on while navigating a world that has been forever changed by climate change. They must also work together to clean up the polluted seas and create a sustainable way of life for future generations.

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