Living on the veg: Should we all go vegan?
Brett Ryder By Chelsea Whyte I FLUNKED out of veganism the first time because I wasn’t getting the vitamins and micronutrients I needed. I was out of balance. I went to the doctor feeling lethargic and vaguely unwell and was told I had two options: give up being vegan or start taking large amounts of nutritional supplements. I chose meat and dairy. The quantities of pills I had to take irritated my stomach and I wasn’t willing to tough it out. That was two years ago and I’d been vegan for three. Then veganism exploded into the mainstream. Celebrities from Natalie Portman and Serena Williams to Formula 1 driver Lewis Hamilton have all declared themselves to be vegan. At first I figured I had done my trial and knew where I stood. But I’ve looked into the environmental and health impacts again, and am having second thoughts. Vegans made up just 1 per cent of the US population in 2014. Three years on, an additional 16 million Americans – 5 per cent of the nation – had joined the club. In the UK, their numbers are smaller but also growing. A 2016 poll suggests that just over 1 per cent of Britons never eat meat or animal products. According to the UK Vegan Society, that’s a more than threefold increase in 10 years. The trend is hippest among 15 to 34-year-olds. Stores and restaurants have jumped on the bandwagon with “plant-powered” menus, vegan supermarket shelves and vegan farmers’ markets. In short,