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UR DEBATE: 5 Reasons to NOT Go VEGAN

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UR DEBATE: 5 Reasons to NOT Go VEGAN

Written by Anna G. 

Full disclaimer: I am an omnivore. So I was curious to read the UR article, All Things Considered: 5 Benefits of Going Vegan. I grew up in the Midwest where I’m pretty sure cheese has its own section on the MyPlate diagram. So in the interest of making sure potential vegans out there understand the drawbacks of such a drastic lifestyle change, I am writing a rebuttal to Ms. Blomquist’s article.

I’m sure this article will inspire outrage and protests from my thin, hungry friends out there, but luckily, no one can throw red paint on me from a computer. (Just kidding, PETA folks would never do anything that crazy!!) Here are my 5 Reasons to NOT Go Vegan:

1. You may be missing vital nutrients in your diet. 
It’s a fact most people don’t eat enough vegetables each day. However, a diet consisting mainly of vegetables means you often lack a number of vitamins and minerals, some of which are found only in animal products. So yes, yes, I get that vegan diets are often healthier than the average omnivore diet, but I’d also like to combat the frequent response of going vegan to solve any number of health problems. Eliminating meat and dairy doesn’t automatically make you healthier.
2. You’ll be expected to live an entirely healthy lifestyle.
When people hear the word “vegan,” it conjures up images of granola eating, yoga, and other annoyingly healthy habits. It doesn’t matter if you actually meditate each morning or ride your bike to work – once you tell people you are vegan it’s pretty much what you’re expected to do. After all, being vegan is “healthy,” so you can’t very well spend your lunch break stuffing your face full of Oreos. Because unless you live in San Francisco, the likelihood of being the only vegan someone knows is high, which means you now represent all vegans. So even if you’re not a crunchy health nut and just want to abstain certain kinds of food, you have now been indoctrinated into an entire culture.
 
3. Being vegan doesn’t make you skinny.
Building off the point above, abstaining from animal products isn’t enough to make you shed pounds. Despite the inability to eat butter, lard, and all the other wonderful fattening products available to us in a first world country, there are still vegan cakes, cookies, and donuts out there, filled with their “butter substitute” and soy milk. Calories are calories, people – have you learned nothing from The Biggest Loser? The only way to lose weight is to follow the formula: calories burned > calories eaten. Vegan food still needs to taste good to get people to eat it, and like everything else, if it tastes indulgent, it probably is. The fact is, they may be rare, but fat vegans do exist.
 
4. Animal products are in practically everything.
Many people change their diets for health or political or practical reasons. But most of those changes are small tweaks, like “I don’t eat red meat” or “I can’t drink milk because I’m lactose intolerant.” Whatever your reason for going vegan, I don’t think anyone can argue against the fact that it’s extreme. And when you jump off that cliff and commit to using no animal products, you’ll find it’s a pretty sizable hassle to do so. Animal products are not only in a ton of food products you’d never even think to look in, but also in regular stuff so much so that your days will be filled with researching what is acceptable to use as a vegan and what is not.
5. Eating with others is a pain (for them).
Sure, eating wheat grass and kale may be so enlightened and trendy, but you know who hates it? Your friends! (unless they’re all vegan as well). Why? Because eating with you is a pain! Most restaurants use some form of animal product in their food, and unless your friends are culinary geniuses, I’m guessing they don’t know how to cook without using any butter, cream, sugar, eggs, or a whole host of other “off limits” ingredients. So eating with you becomes an exercise in reading food labels and catering to your dietary needs. Which sucks, frankly. So when your friends start begging off on dinner plans with you, you’ll know why.
Are you for a Vegan lifestyle, or are you a hardcore omnivore? We’d love to hear your thoughts on the matter! Tweet us or comment below with your thoughts!
Anna G. is a San Francisco resident and regular user of sarcasm. She enjoys movies, sleeping, and pretending she’s still 20 so she can surf the Internet all day with little guilt. You can find her complaining about the latest Hollywood releases on her blog, Snarky Movie Reviews, or like her page on Facebook. (Yes, some people still use Facebook.)

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