The shocking health statistics of vegetarians… 79



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We look at our family and friends who are vegetarian and we often think of fit and extremely healthy people with the “my body is my temple” attitude. But, new research suggests that these people are actually more prone to mental health disorders and are often unhappier, posing the question – how healthy really are these people?

The Alere Wellness Index shows vegetarians drink and smoke less and are more physically active than people with balanced diets. However, the index found they are also more likely to have depression and anxiety disorders, according to the Index made up of scores for nutrition, fitness, smoking, alcohol, psychological wellbeing, body mass and medical conditions.

According to the New Daily, Dr John Lang, who developed the wellness index for preventive healthcare company Alere, says the adoption of a vegetarian diet can sometimes follow the onset of mental disorders.

“So the diet isn’t the cause but rather the symptom. If you think of people that are committed to being a vegetarian it’s a fairly significant commitment and it picks up people at the fringe of the obsessive-compulsive spectrum.”

The study, which is based on 50,000 surveys a year conducted by Roy Morgan Research, also shows vegetarians are less optimistic about the future, with 28 per cent more likely to suffer panic attacks and anxiety disorders.

They are also 18 per cent more likely to suffer from depression than the general population.

So when it comes down to statistics like this, we have to ask ourselves, and our vegetarian friends – is it really worth it?

Where is the line between the importance of physical health and mental health? What matters more? Today tell us, what do you think? Have you seen these statistics indicated in real life? 



Starts at 60 Writers

The Starts at 60 writers team seek out interesting topics and write them especially for you.

  1. I can’t imagine meals without meat! I have the occassional no meat meal meal depending on what I feel like but we don’t have those carnivour teeth for no reason. If were not meant to eat meat we would not want it !! But we all have our likes and likes and if you don’t like meat then it should be your choice

    1 REPLY
    • Er Libbi I’m sorry but we do not have carnivore teeth!!! Only lions and tigers and dogs and cats can actually rip their prey to bits and eat it! Man cannot do that!!! Man has to cook their prey – they cannot eat it raw!!!

  2. I know someone who is 100 and has been told that he will probably live up to 120, he is vegetarian… Please get your facts right

    5 REPLY
    • Did you read the story???
      It did say that their physical health is better. But their mental health is not. And it doesn’t refer to ALL vegetarians, just a percentage.
      My grand father lived to 109 and ate meat at least twice a day every day of his life.

    • Your grandfather would have lived in a time when there was no preservatives or additives in food. I also think genes have a lot to do with it.

    • Apparently genes dont have anything to do with but I do agree about the preservatives and additives and processed foods

    • A lot of young/new vegetarians just cut out meat without understanding that the need to use a vege based protein is important for good health

  3. I’m a happy, healthy committed vegetarian, so maybe their study does not apply to everyone who makes the choice to leave meat out of their diet.

  4. As the article states a vegetarian diet is not the cause but a symptom so for the people who suffer those health issues a change of diet will make no difference.

  5. A friend of mine who became vegetarian also became noticeably more negative, more irritable, and lost her sense of humour.

    2 REPLY
    • I would think that your friend actually became more disheartened by his/her friends who could not see that eating meat was wrong.

  6. Not sure about this one I have to say. I know vegans as well as vegetarians and I don’t see any mental health problems, any ‘body is my temple’. They also drink alcohol. They have chosen not to eat mets and I’m the cases of the vegans, dairy or fish for humanitarian reasons not because it’s some fad.

  7. I think the article is drawing conclusions where none needs to be drawn. Reminds me of one of those “if you eat -insert food- you’ll get cancer” articles that pop up regularly. The author needs to get out and about and earn his salary doing serious research.

  8. Maybe we are too obsessed with diets instead of concentrating on what is important. A balance of life. We are like sheep and follow peers and trends too easily.

  9. I believe the diet isn’t the cause but rather the symptom. People having mental health problems are more likely to go looking for solutions in their diet or meditation and other more spiritual pursuits.
    I believe that if the population as a whole became vegetarian then the population would be healthier. I’m not a vegetarian.

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