If you don’t know Rebecca Cappelli and the amazing work that she does, then you should check out Let Us Be Heroes and Animal Allies.
Rebecca is a big advocate for the vegan lifestyle and educating people on why it is so important and why, if we want to create change, this is the way to do so. She is one of Singapore’s most knowledgeable advocates on the subject and so of course we had to speak to her:
For those who might find the idea of going vegan straight away near impossible, what advice would you give them?
It’s funny because 99% of us vegans said we would never be vegan. Yet here we are. It’s important that we all learn about the impact of what we eat and purchase on our health, our home planet and our values. I have yet to meet someone who is hungry when watching a slaughter video. What does it tell us about ourselves? We are in denial of who we are as a species, behaving like omnivores despite the fact that it’s making us sick and destroying our planet.
So the first thing to ask yourself is why you want to change your diet. Is it for the environment, for your health, out of compassion (maybe all of the above)? Empowering yourself with knowledge is the driver that will make you look at your decisions and take steps. The best way to transition is your own way: that means some people, like me, change overnight, while some others take steps. I recommend looking at your breakfast and improving it as a plant-based version, with plant-based milks, fruits, stir-fry veggie noodles, or avocado toast. Then when you’ve nailed down your breakfast you can look at your lunch and dinner.
Remember pizza, pasta, tacos, burrito, dumplings, burgers- whatever comfort food you enjoy, there is a healthier kinder version of it. Don’t be scared of missing out, you won’t.
If you only go vegan once a week, does it truly have an impact? Or do you have to cut out all animal products to really make a difference to the environment/meat and dairy industry?
The UN just issued a report from IPCC stating we have 12 years to mitigate catastrophic climate change. We are killing over a billion of land animals every single week, and trillions of fish and sea animals every year, for foods we don’t need and that are making us sick in return.
Does it sound like being plant-based once a week is a sound decision? Or do we need to be brave and take bigger steps?
We can’t ignore the fact that raising animals for food is a leading cause of environmental destruction, climate change, water pollution and wildlife extinction, and that this is the one thing we all have immediate control over, contrary to moving towards renewable energy.
Advocating for change one day a week is a good start if it is followed immediately by other steps, but we need to be cautious about being complacent and condoning reckless behavior the other 6 days of the week. Moderation has no place in that context: is it acceptable to kill or destroy the planet in moderation? Of course not. We need to get over ourselves and embrace change as a natural part of our evolution.
What’s one very easy thing that any aspiring vegan could do for their diet immediately?
Swap all dairy milks for nut, oat, rice, or non-gmo soy milks. Look at your breakfast, and see how you can find recipes you really enjoy. As for cheese, I think going cold turkey is best for getting rid of the addiction. The good news is there are some great nut cheeses out there or that you can make in your own kitchen.
Another easy thing to do is to stop fueling the demand for products like leather, wool, fur. It’s about doing the least harm with our buying power.
Rebecca Cappelli is premiering her new documentary Let Us Be Heroes (trailer here) on YouTube on the 11th of November, 2018!