However long your vegan journey has been so far, you will undoubtedly hear one or more of the following questions and phrases. Therefore it is important that you have some good comebacks & facts in your aresenal for such an occasion. Here are 10 annoying things that vegans hear all the time.
1. “I respect your diet, you should respect mine!”
Thank you ever so much for respecting my diet: a diet of peace & equality, of non-cruelty to all living beings. Unfortunately, on this occasion, I cannot respect your diet as it involves the enslavement of animals & bloody sacrifice of sentient beings.
Fact: Over a billion farm animals are killed each year in slaughterhouses in the UK.
2. “I could never go vegan, it’s too restrictive!”
Do you know in some ways I wish you were right! I’ve actually put on weight since going vegan. Probably has something to do with all the vegan cakes, doughnuts, cheese, burgers and chocolate that are on offer. If only it were restrictive!
Fact: a new survey estimated that 7% of the UK population are now vegan, which is a 700% increase in just two years.
3. “But where do you get your protein from?”
The same place your food gets their protein from and the same place elephants, rhinos and hippos get their protein. Thanks for worrying about me though, I do understand your concern as the lack-of-protein epidemic is right up there with obesity, heart disease and diabetes as the biggest killers.
Fact: Patrik Baboumian is a vegan bodybuilder and was formly Germany’s strongest man. He has broken many world records including yoke walking, front hold and beer keg lifting.
4. “I only eat ethical meat where the animal has been humanely slaughtered”
Ethical meat? I haven’t heard of that before…it must be a new thing. You see up until now there has been no such thing as “humane” slaughter of an animal, because if something does not want to die then how can it be humane to kill it?
Fact: Since 2009, Animal Aid has filmed secretly inside fourteen British slaughterhouses and found evidence of lawbreaking in thirteen of them. The problems are serious and widespread. Their films revealed animals being kicked, slapped, stamped on, and picked up by fleeces and ears and thrown into stunning pens.
5. “I don’t eat much meat meat, only chicken, fish, the occassional bit of…”
Woah, wait a sec…you do realise you are talking to a vegan don’t you? If you told me you only ate the toenail of a chicken it would offend me. So before you carry on with your list of meats that you eat, please remember that what you call meat, I call deceased animals. And yes, despite what you have heard, a fish is an animal!
Fact: A study of catch data published in 2006 in the journal Science grimly predicted that if fishing rates continue apace, all the world’s fisheries will have collapsed by the year 2048 (National Geographic)
6. “Don’t you miss bacon though!”
Ah yes, you are right. This magnificent, healthy vegan journey that I have embarked on should come to an abrupt end because of a thinly cut piece of red flesh that is so bad for you even the World Health Organisation has said that it might as well be a cigarette for how much harm it does to your body.
Fact: as well as processed meat being ranked alongside cigarettes as a class 1 carcinogen, other studies conclude that eating more than 50g of processed meat a day could increase the risk of dying from heart disease by 24% and getting diabetes by 32%.
7. “I like my meat too much to go vegan”
Firstly it’s not “your meat”, and if you love it so much have you ever tried it raw and unseasoned?
Fact: livestock and their byproducts account for 51% of all worldwide greenhouse gas emissions.
8. “Plants have feelings too”
You do come across as the sort of person who can’t sleep at night through worry of the suffering that plants go through as they are harvested. Personally I have not seen any real evidence to suggest that plants feel pain, but if it’s the one thing that’s stopping you giving up meat, then I would happily sit and watch a video of an apple harvest with you if you would sit and watch a little documentary called Earthlings with me?
Fact: Earthlings was released in 2005 and has been one of the most powerful documentaries ever for converting people to veganism. It shows the truth about the treatment of animals involved in farming practices. You can watch it for free here (warning: graphic imagery of the inside slaughterhouses)
9. “But what if you were stuck on a desert island and all there was was a pig to eat?”
I do see your point, this is the sort of scenario that seems to happen all the time to people. I guess being a vegan and someone with even the tiniest bit of common sense, I would eat the food that the pig has been eating for the whole time on this desert island.
Fact: humans have the bodies of a vegetarian species – our risk of disease is increased by eating animal products (Viva)
10. “We have the teeth of carnivores, designed to rip through meat”
Before we get into this, can we just compare our teeth to that of your cat…a known carnivore.
Fact: we can no longer hide behind excuses such as the above to not go vegan. Our bodies not only survive but THRIVE on a wholefood plant-based diet. This means we can give our bodies all the right fuel to lead a healthy life, we can save animals and possibly save the planet – if it’s not already too late.