Is Veganuary a good idea or not?

I’m really torn on this one.  Going vegetarian when I was 19, I toyed with being a vegan many times over the years.  Eventually though I found that all the pasta, bread, rice and dairy was doing me no good at all.  I’ve apologised to fish before eating them.  Felt guilty about going back to eating meat.  Bought numerous vegetarian and vegan cookbooks, some of which I still treasure.

It’s a good idea

Veganuary is a good idea if it gets people to try new things and cook more at home.  If it leads to a healthier lifestyle.  People who pay care and attention to what they eat will often also make more of a effort to exercise, drink more water and care about their environment.  Intensive animal farming does leave a lot to be desired and if we know the truth behind getting cheap meat and dairy on our plates it often puts us off of our dinner.

It’s a bad idea

Veganuary is a bad idea though if we end up with an unbalanced diet.  It is a bad idea if we end up eating a lot of processed carbs and fats.  It will be a bad idea if as a result more people developing insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes and obesity.  The effects of this could end up bankrupting the NHS – see post.

Joanna Blythman, writing in the Grocer, thinks that it is a very bad idea as:

“In effect, it’s a top-down attempt by a small, unrepresentative, dogmatic global elite to mould public agriculture policy.”

She points to the danger that fewer animals on the land could mean poorer soil quality and ultimately poorer nutrition for all of us.

Nope.  I have no answers.  There are very good arguments on both sides of the debate.

What do you think?

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