LA Casts Meatless Monday in Healthy Leading Role

November 12th, 2012

California’s city of A-list celebrities and lux-living now has another claim to fame. On Friday, October 24th, Los Angeles became the largest city in the U.S. to sign a Meatless Monday resolution. The official declaration, unanimously approved by LA’s City Council, announces that the city is embracing Meatless Mondays for the health of its citizens and the planet.

Councilwoman Jan Perry, who introduced the motion with Councilman Ed Reyes, noted that high-meat diets have been linked to health issues like heart disease and some cancers:

“We can reduce saturated fats and reduce the risk of heart disease by 19%. While this is a symbolic gesture, it is asking people to think about the food choices they make. Eating less meat can reverse some of our nation’s most common illnesses.”

Councilman Ed Reyes agreed that health is a prime reason for the resolution, noting that one of his own sons has been diagnosed with diabetes. Many restaurants in the Los Angeles area have already joined the Meatless Monday movement, but Reyes hopes that this weekly reminder for citizens to choose nutritious, environmentally-sustainable options can lead to larger change:

“The issue is, how does a local municipality engage in this and how do we create change? If we do it one plate at time, one meal, one day, we are ratcheting down the impact on our environment. We start with one day a week and then, who knows, maybe we can change our habits for a lifetime.”

The resolution follows LA’s recently adopted “good food” agenda, which aims to support local, sustainable food choices, introduce healthier food options and reduce the growing obesity epidemic in South Los Angeles. LA’s Meatless Monday resolution follows other cities across the U.S., including Washington, D.C., San Francisco, CA and Durham-Raleigh, NC. The movement has also expanded internationally, with 24 Meatless Monday countries around the globe. To start Meatless Monday in your city, download our free Community Toolkit.