NYC Health + Hospitals―the largest municipal hospital and healthcare system in the United States―recently launched Meatless Mondays at all 11 of its public acute-care hospitals. This initiative comes after vegan Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams called on all hospitals to sign on to the Meatless Monday pledge, an international campaign focused on improving the health of both individuals and the planet. Promoted with the slogan “Power Up With Plants,” Meatless Mondays will offer a selection of vegetarian meals, including fully vegan dishes such as black bean soup, three bean chili, beefless strips, rice and beans, fruit, and hummus. “We want to empower our patients to live their healthiest lives by introducing them to healthier foods that they may choose once they’re discharged,” Mitchell Katz, MD, President and Chief Executive Officer of NYC Health + Hospitals, said. “The Meatless Mondays initiative is consistent with this mission and fits with our new Plant-Based Lifestyle Medicine Program at NYC Health + Hospitals Bellevue, developed to provide intensive support for outpatients who wish to adopt healthy lifestyle changes.” On the first day of the program last Monday, 1,500 patients at the 11 hospitals opted for a meat-free meal—a number that is expected to grow. NYC Health + Hospitals also plans to introduce additional vegan menu offerings for patients throughout the week.

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