What is Reducetarianism, and why is it on the rise?
Reducetarianism refers to the practice of reducing the amount of meat and animal products that a person eats. It is becoming more and more popular as it is less of a commitment than veganism, but can still help to make a positive impact on the planet as well as one’s individual health.
What Kind of Foods Can Reducetarians Eat?
Reducetarians eat a very varied diet that may still contain some meat and dairy, but they usually try to refrain from these as much as possible. One way to reduce dairy intake is to replace dairy cheeses with vegan cheese, and there are plenty of delicious vegan versions of dairy favourites to tempt the taste buds.
Many people say things like “I could never be a vegan because I like bacon too much”.
Following a reducetarian diet allows people to go some of the way toward veganism, but still allow themselves the odd bacon roll as a treat.
Are There Health Benefits?
Whether or not there are health benefits will depend on the individual concerned and how they choose to approach the reducetarian diet. The vast scope of different foods that can be consumed when following this diet means that there is simply no ‘one-size-fits-all’ answer to that question.
Many people begin to eat more fruit when they embrace reducetarianism and this can lead to an uptick in the vitamins and minerals that they are taking into their body. This can obviously have health benefits, as can eating less fatty meat. Many meats contain additives and preservatives and not consuming as many of these on a regular basis is also considered to be good for you.
If the reducetarian is mainly eating organic fruits and vegetables, they will be avoiding exposure to many of the pesticides that are used on non-organic fruits and vegetables.
What do Vegans Think of Reducetarianism?
Some vegans see reducetarianism as a half-hearted nod to their lifestyle and, to an extent, it is. This doesn’t mean it is bad or unworthy, it is just a slightly different route but in the same general direction. The thing to remember is that it still makes a difference to the environment, even if it is not the full commitment of a vegan lifestyle.
Many people dip their toes in the water of a reducetarian diet to see whether they think they would be able to graduate to a full vegan diet later. Some people who start out as reducetarians end up realising that they don’t actually miss animal products as much as they had imagined they would. And so, they realise that they can indeed adopt a vegan lifestyle.
Motivations for a Reducetarian Diet
Most people following the Reducetarian diet have their own motivations for doing so. Some want to lower their environmental footprint, some want to eat healthier, some object to factory farming methods on cruelty grounds and want to opt out of supporting that as far as possible. There are a multitude of reasons, but they share the general aim of making the world a slightly better place, if they can.
Would you consider trying a reducetarian diet?
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