Study: Most Vegetarians and Vegans Are Going Through A Phase

Life & Love | Gerren Keith Gaynor | 12/05/2014 | 11:30 AM EST

Researchers discover that 84 percent of vegetarians and vegans eventually go back to eating meat

If you’re thinking that most people who go vegetarian or vegan are going through a phase, chances are you’re probably right.

New data released by the Humane Research Council and Harris International revealed that  84 percent of vegetarians and vegans eventually go back to eating meat. Additionally, 53 percent of them call it quits after one year and 30 percent of them within three months.



Though vegetarianism and veganism have grown ever popular among Hollywood stars and musicians (i.e. Tia Mowry, Chaka Khan, Brandy), and now becoming the diet of choice for countless Americans, it appears sticking to one’s convictions proves to be harder than expected.

Surveying a representative sample of more than 11,000 adults in the United States, researchers of the study found that 2 percent of them were currently vegetarians or vegans, 10 percent were formerly meat-free and 88 percent had never dabbled in plant-based eating.


The researchers, who described the findings as “disappointing,” investigated what factors may have contributed to the 10 percent of former veggie-eaters to decided to return to a meat diet. They found that a majority of them lacked social support, vegetarian-themed group activities and didn't like sticking out from their friends. Not to mention, much research determines that research one typically eats what their friends eat. Other reasons for hanging up their vegetarian or vegan lifestyles are having trouble with animal-based cravings and the difficulty of completely changing one’s eating habits cold turkey.

For those who truly want to embark on the road to vegetarian or vegan diets, we recommended that you take your time. Making such a lifestyle change is serious, particularly because your health is involved. Rather than switching your diet overnight, try to incorporate more vegetarian or vegan meals into your life without giving up meat altogether. If you need a few months to get your feet wet, so to speak, do so.

Also, if you choose to go vegetarian or vegan be sure that you’re doing it for the right reasons and that you’ve probably did your research to ensure that you’re getting all the nutrients you need from a non-meat diet. Additionally, consult your doctor so that you will have a professional guide on proper nutrition.

 (Photo: Kevin Kozicki/Image Source/Corbis)

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