Is there a typical vegetarian profile? Are they a unique group of people that share the same characteristics?
Approximately nine million Americans,(or 4 percent of the population), call themselves vegetarians. Here's what we know from the small amount of research that's been done so far.
One observational study published in the British Medical Journal says 'yes.' It found that children with a high IQ were more likely to become vegetarians later in life.
"Higher IQ at age ten years was associated with an increased likelihood of being vegetarian at age 30."
They also found that vegetarians were more likely to be female, with a better education and higher occupation than non-vegetarians. The results below from another two surveys seem to back this up.
|Percent of Respondents||Occupation|
|40 percent||Professional or managerial|
|24 percent||Blue-collar workers|
|9 percent||Clerical or sales positions|
71 percent are women
29 percent are men
The median age of all vegetarians is thirty-five.
Vegetarianism does not appear to be a fad. In fact, eight years was the median length of time that study participants had been vegetarians.
For most vegetarians, vegetarianism is more than what not to eat: It's an ideology of how life should be lived.
|Percent of Respondents||Reason(s) for Converting|
|67 percent||Concerned with animal suffering|
|38 percent||Motivated by considerations of health|
|17 percent||Religious reasons|
|12 percent||Distaste for meat|
|7 percent||Personal growth|
|5 percent||Concern about world hunger|
|3 percent||Economic reasons|
From this same survey group, 38 percent were motivated solely by ethical and social concerns, 19 percent for health reasons, and 43 percent for a combination of reasons.
In a population-based study in British Columbia (BC), the survey results show vegetarians appear to be more health conscious than non-vegetarians.
We need a lot more research to draw any definitive conclusions about the typical vegetarian profile. The one thing we are sure about is people switch to a vegetarian diet for a number of different reasons. How about you? Share your own reasons for becoming a vegetarian below.
Everyone has a story to tell. What made you switch to a vegetarian diet? Not a vegetarian yet, but thinking about it? Tell us why.
Click below to read the profiles and stories shared by other vegetarians.
I Turned Vegetarian for a Month. Here’s What Happened
If there were a distinction between a good yogi and a bad one, I would most probably fall into the latter category. After all, I am a wine-drinking, meat-eating …
I am vegan now.
I read a lot about animal suffering, while extracting milk, honey and wool, so I feel great pain and I decided to be a vegan. I also read a lot about milk …
a brief history...
My wife and I became vegans when we were in our early 30's after reading "Diet for a new America". Nearly 30 years later we are still vegans. Originally …
'I am a Pesca-vegetarian because of 2 reasons'
1) i woke up with a nightmare of a bloody penguin pecking on me and chickens being slaughtered live in front of me with blood flying all over 2) A pesca-vegetarian …
I am just converting to Vegetarian, for Health reasons mainly, and I love animals and want help earth
Hi, my name is Kim Heflin. I have MS, among other diseases. I hate taking all the meds they give me. I was raised a big meat eater mainly fish, family …
many reasons, most of the above.
I dreamed i was being shot at and i was outraged , then i noticed i was a RABBIT. I stayed 2 weeks with some vege. friends and found their diet perfectly …
The death of animals is unnecessary.
I am 14, and I persuaded my family to let me stop eating meat around six months ago. I have always had a distaste for meat, and have not eaten red meats …
I cannot eat meat anymore
I am 49 years old, I have always struggled with eating meat. I hated the idea of animals suffering. I am ashamed to say that the notion of killing them …
I am vegan because of health reasons and love animals
Thanks to a vegan diet I could get rid of an illness. Moreover, I always loved animals but thought I needed to eat them. Thanks to my illness I discovered …
Vegetarianism (and later, veganism) for me started about 10 years ago when I was in undergrad. I had been an anti-death penalty advocate since I was 16, …
Compassion in Action
I am committed to the concept of compassion and becoming a vegetarian was a definitive way to fulfill my desire to live more compassionately. I was …
I began to live a vegetarian lifestyle because of religious reasons, concern for animals and overall health..
I became a vegetarian about five years ago; I was motivated by religious/spiritual reasons, overall health benefits and a concern for animals. Through …
I'm a vegetarian because i believe animals should have the right to live and to be happy as we do.
I became Vegetarian at the age of 11, and I am from a very traditional Hispanic family were eating meat is just the norm. most of my family just thought …
This will probably be an incredibly over simplified version of my vegetarian journey but I will attempt to make it somewhat interesting. As a small …
It comes naturally...
I fall in the first group ... animal suffering. If you ask me if I ever miss the taste of meat, no. The desire for it is no more lingering. For me, it …
I blame Disney.
I am now almost thirty and have been a Vegetarian since first grade. I never really liked meat as a small child. My parents always had to force me to eat …
I am a vegetarian/vegan purely for health reasons
For people like me and former President Clinton, we are vegan for health reasons. Sometimes I fall off the wagon. But as the Swami said, it is the goal. …
I still recall the meals just after I learned where meat came from. I was only 3 or 4 years old; I shoved the food around my plate and refused to eat. …
a healthy diet
I'd like a healthier diet and think that a vegetarian diet might help.
animal agriculture is the main cause of pollution
Animal agriculture is not only unethical, but it also wastes tons of water, causes land depletion, ocean dead zones, releases green house emissions, etc. …
I have became a vegetarian a lot younger than people. In grade 7 I had an amazing teacher, and she opened our eyes to some of the atrocious offences of …
I'm a vegan and have been a vegetarian for about three years because I am concerned about carbon emissions, pollution, and my own health
It's been scientifically proven that veganism reduces one's carbon footprint from 3.3 (omnivore) to 1.3 (vegan). It saves animals from being raised in …
I became a vegetarian due to animal's pain.
I love animals. Just love them. One year when I was 4 I was looking out the window at wild turkeys. My mom was making turkey. The thought of eating one …
Jennifer L Bedford and Susan I Barr, Diets and selected lifestyle practices of self-defined adult vegetarians from a population-based sample suggest they are more health conscious
16th Annual Consumer Attitudes About Nutrition, United Soybean Board, 2009
Reed mangels, Virginia Messina, Mark Messina, The Dietitia Guide to Vegetarian Diets 3E
John Lawrence Hill, The case for vegetarianism: philosophy for a small planet
Pratiyogita Darpan, Feb 2007
Marjaana Lindeman and Minna Sirelius, "Food choice ideologies: the modern manifestations of normative and humanist views of the world," Department of Psychology, University of Helsinki
Chia seeds are becoming popular with vegetarians mainly because it's the best source of Omega-3 ALA. But Chia has much more to offer. It's also high in vegetarian protein, fiber, vitamins and minerals.
Switching to a vegetarian diet doesn't necessarily mean that you'll lose weight. In fact, during my first six months as a vegetarian I actually gained ten pounds. Since then, I've lost the weight, and kept it off by following these vegetarian weight loss tips:
It's no coincidence that the same vegetarian foods that we need to stay healthy, also keep our skin youthful and beautiful. In fact, the right vegetarian diet can keep your skin moisturized, radiant, and wrinkle free.
Thanks for visiting! I created this website to help both aspiring and experienced vegetarians.
As a seasoned vegetarian (over 15 years) and a Board Certified, Holistic Health Coach, I have a passion and mission
to help people with their health and happiness.
Feel free to contact me, or share your comments below. Enjoy!
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