When Veganism and Vegetarianism Cross the Line
By Sora Hwang
When people hear someone is a vegan or vegetarian, there is an amount of respect for his or her decisions and self-control. Whether the person has chosen this dieting routine based on animal rights or simply personal preference, very few people look down on veganism and vegetarianism.
This almost noble air about these dieting habits make it an easy mask to hide behind when offered something to eat. People typically do not question what a vegan or vegetarian can or cannot eat. They simply nod and wait for the next dish. Unfortunately, this rising trend in this day and age is no longer just about saving animals, but about losing weight.
Choosing to be a vegan or vegetarian gives someone more control over what he or she consumes. As an eating habit that is highly acceptable in society today, people turn to it as an excuse for what they can and cannot eat. This may eventually lead to an eating disorder.
Vegetarians are also more prone to partake in binge eating. Because they are so knowledgeable on what their bodies need, they may not feel as much guilt overeating on the things that they believe are healthy. From Time Magazine to Psychology Today, binge eating has been found to be more common in vegetarians and vegans.
As a socially accepted and parentally approved way, teenagers are able to use veganism and vegetarianism as excuses for what could be very unhealthy eating habits. Despite students’ claims to stand up for animals, conducted research shows that this is a secondary thought when teenagers turn to this lifestyle.
Don’t get us wrong – we still admire vegans and vegetarians. We wish we had even the slightest ounce of self-control they have, but there is a thick line between masking an eating disorder and eating healthily with this dieting habit.