Dec 7, 2018

Vegetarian and Kangatarian

A study by the US Humane Research Council revealed that 84 percent of modern-day vegetarians gave up their new diet less than a year after they started. The participants included 11,000 vegetarians, former vegetarians, and non-vegetarians in the United States. According to the study, 88 percent of Americans above age 17 have never gone vegetarian, 10 percent are former vegetarians, and 2 percent are vegetarians. However, only one in five vegetarians stay that way with the rest returning to eating meat. Of that figure, one-third dumped the vegetarian diet after three months while the rest got rid of it in less than a year. One-third of vegetarians said they started eating meat after they got into a relationship with someone who ate meat. Others went back to meat due to health, financial, or social reasons. All former vegetarians ate less meat than they did before they became vegetarians.

A new group of vegetarians has popped up in Australia. They are kangatarians, vegetarians who only eat kangaroo meat. Kangatarians usually stop eating meat for ethical reasons. Ethical vegetarians do not like the way that animals are reared and slaughtered on farms. Australia has an abundance of wild kangaroos and since they are not reared on farms, these vegetarians have no qualms about eating them. Kangatarians further justify their consumption of kangaroo meat by claiming that kangaroos are greener for the environment since they do not produce as much ozone-destroying methane as cattle and sheep raised on farms.

Vegetarians can receive all the vitamins and minerals they need from a plant-based diet except vitamin B12, which is available in meat, fish, eggs, and dairy. Vegetarians could get this vitamin from vitamin-enriched cereals and supplements, but it is not usually enough. Vitamin B12 deficiency can trigger the excessive production of homocysteine, leading to depression, fatigue, weakness, nausea, constipation, anemia, heart disease, and stroke. The people at most risk are vegans who do not consume any kind of meat or animal product. However, regular vegetarians are also at risk of developing vitamin B12 deficiency. Another study revealed that 92 percent of vegans and 67 percent of lacto-ovo vegetarians suffer from B12 deficiency.

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