I had the opportunity to discuss the fascinating new report that was released by Faunalytics last week about current and former vegetarians and vegans on KFI AM 640 yesterday with Mark Thompson and Elizabeth Espinosa. You can listen to the interview here: JH on KFI
And here is more info on this important study:
They polled over 11K adults in the United States to find out about how many current vegans and vegetarians there are as well as how many former vegans and vegetarians.
- 2% of U.S. adults are current vegetarians or vegans
- 10% are former vegetarians or vegans
- 88% have never been vegetarian nor vegan
Interestingly, a 2012 Gallup poll found that 5% of U.S. adults are vegetarians and 2% are vegans: http://bit.ly/1yBOeOk
Interesting facts the HRC gathered:
- 65% of the former veg’s transitioned quickly to a veg diet.
- A majority of the former veg’s were only veg for less than a year (1/3 were veg for less than 3 months).
- Most former veg’s went vegan for health as the primary reason.
- 63% of those who reverted back did so because they didn’t like the social pressure of being different.
- 43% of ex-veg’s found it difficult to be “pure” with their diet
- 37% of former veg’s are interested in going back to a veg diet.
My recommendations to reduce recidivism (giving up) in vegans and vegetarians:
1. Transition incrementally if you are considering going veg and haven’t yet. One step, one meal, one bite at a time.
2. Build and nourish a solid support system. Engage the veg community by becoming members of organizations, local meet-ups, events, lectures, conferences, social media networks (like here on pages like mine and other veg groups), and spend time with likeminded people.
3. Consistently educate your self on veganism…learn about the health benefits, but also the other crucial benefits towards animals, the planet, and society. Read books, watch movies…there is so much information out there now. Indulge and make it a priority. Knowledge is power.
4. Stay healthy. Minimize junk vegan foods and focus on whole food, plant-based foods. Eat according to my pyramid and plate and emphasize foods in my notable nutrient chart:
Pyramid and Plate: http://bit.ly/177tOQz
Notable Nutrient Sources Chart: http://bit.ly/1pmm0xZ
And make sure to have a reliable source of vitamin B12: http://bit.ly/1f9ebMP
5. Don’t be so hard on yourself or aim for perfection. There is no such thing as perfect and having the all-or-nothing approach is stressful and not amenable to sustainability. Ride it out for the long run and be compassionate to yourself. Enjoy the journey…