About five per cent of the UK population consider themselves to be vegetarian, according to the National Diet and Nutrition Survey. That’s about 3 million people, with women more likely to call themselves vegetarian than men. The figure for vegans is smaller – consumer surveys suggest they make up about one per cent of the UK population.
People choose to follow vegetarian and vegan diets for a variety of social, religious, lifestyle, moral, environmental and health reasons.
Why be a Vegetarian?
Firstly, let me state that vegetarianism isn’t for everyone. If you are fanatically devoted to meat, you might not be interested. If you already eat healthy, or you’re not interested in your health, you might not be interested. However, if you want to make changes to your lifestyle, perhaps lose weight, reduce your cholestrol, get leaner, save money, save the slaugherting of animals or support non violence in the world. Here are some reasons others have chosen to do it:
I really enjoyed the reasons presented by Zen Habits which he resourced from Goveggie.com amongst other sources, plus a few of my own. See if you can see yours in there too.
Cut the fat. While meat provides a lot of protein, it also provides a ton of fat — especially saturated fat. Which means that by cutting out meat, you’ll be cutting out a lot of bad fat, and replacing it with things that are probably not only lower in fat, but that contain some good fats.
This greatly reduces your risk of heart disease, and in fact numerous studies have shown that
vegetarians tend to have a lower risk of heart disease, as well as hypertension, diabetes, cancer and other diseases.
Less food poisoning. Food poisoning gets millions of people each year — and many of them from meat, which is a good breeding ground for harmful bacteria, especially if not stored, prepared or cooked exactly right. I find this incredibly useful at festivals,
eating out and when dealing with leftovers.
Cut out meat and you lower your risk of food poisoning.[more href=”http://www.lisabarwise.com/lean-start/”]To learn more reasons, find out more in the Healthy Vegetarian Handbook[/more] [more href=”http://www.lisabarwise.com/12-frequently-asked-questions-about-being-a-vegetarian/”]Learn more from my 12 Frequently Asked Questions about being a Vegetarian[/more]