Is it bad to be vegetarian?

In this brief guide, we will answer the query, “Is it bad to be vegetarian?” and will discuss some risks of being a vegetarian.

Is it bad to be vegetarian?

Not really, it is more about your beliefs than it is about good and bad. The health benefits of vegetarianism are undeniable. A plant-based diet has regularly been shown to be healthier and thinner than a meat-based diet, according to studies. If that’s not enough, they also have a decreased chance of heart disease and some malignancies, as well as type 2 diabetes.

Some vegetarians, or vegans, may not be in good health, though. In the end, it’s what you put on your plate that matters. Generally speaking, plant-based diets are rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, and legumes, although this isn’t always true. As an alternative to meat, you may eat a large portion of pasta or bread.

Vegetarians should avoid highly processed meals, such as refined carbohydrates, which may wreak havoc on the health advantages of being meat-free if consumed daily. Eating a vegan diet might put you at a greater risk of disease than a well-balanced diet that includes meat and dairy.

Downsides to eating a plant-based diet

Stroke risk

More than 48,000 men and women without a history of heart disease or stroke were studied by British researchers for roughly 18 years. In comparison to meat-eaters, vegetarians had a 13% reduced chance of developing heart disease. In contrast, meat-eaters had a 20% increased risk of stroke. This meant that every 1,000 persons had an additional three strokes during ten years.

Liz Weinandy, a licensed dietician at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, cautions that this research should be taken with a grain of salt.

Because the research was an observational study, there was no evidence of causation. Also, she points out that the study was conducted in the United Kingdom, where vegetarianism is likely to be more prevalent than in other countries. A vegetarian diet may not lessen the risk of stroke for everyone, and more research is needed, she adds.

Brain health

Another scientist has warned that a “choline crisis” might result from the rise in vegetarianism. Choline is an essential ingredient for a variety of bodily processes, including the functioning of the brain. A deficiency in the human body means that meat and poultry are the best sources.

Weinandy argues that vegetarian diets are “certainly lower in choline.” “Those who include eggs in their diet will find that eating a couple of them a week helps to enhance consumption.” Women of reproductive age, in particular, should think about taking a vegan supplement. she explains since it indicates an independent business has independently checked the components and quantities on the label.

Hair loss

So, does becoming meat-free cause hair loss? According to a recent study, a poor diet that lacks protein may be a contributing factor. Iron, vitamin B, and zinc—all of which are necessary for healthy hair growth—can be found in meat.

Sun explains that although iron may be found in foods like dry beans and dark green, leafy vegetables, a strictly vegetarian diet makes it more difficult to absorb iron. He claims, however, that supplementation is simple. Iron is essential for vegetarians and vegans; thus, they must take extra precautions. Supplements should only be necessary if they aren’t already present. Learn more about the connection between a poor diet and hair thinning. 

Mood problems

Vegetarian and vegan diets have been linked to an increased risk of depression. These findings are contradictory. Several studies have concluded that becoming vegetarian enhances one’s mood, whereas others have found the reverse effect. Postpartum depression was indicated by 80% of new moms in a survey of 400 women. The use of a vegetarian diet was shown to increase the risk of depression.

Vegans exhibited lower levels of anxiety and stress than meat-eaters in another study, which compared vegetarians, vegans, and omnivores.

Other studies have shown that vegetarians are more likely to suffer from mental health issues, although on average, these issues were present before they began eating a vegetarian diet. As a result, the researchers stress that they discovered no relationship between the two conditions.

The best way to guarantee that your vegetarian diet is healthy is to avoid the most frequent errors people make.

Keep it balanced

The key to a healthy diet is moderation. It’s usually a good idea to consume as much fresh, natural food as possible, and to avoid as much processed food as you can.

Don’t forget the protein

It’s not enough to just eliminate meat from your diet to become a vegetarian. A plant-based protein source like tofu, tempeh, or lentils may be substituted for meat-based protein in recipes. There are so many unexpected sources of plant-based protein that it is possible to achieve your daily protein requirements without eating any meat.

Other FAQs about Vegetarian that you may be interested in.

Is it healthy to be vegetarian while pregnant?


In this brief guide, we answered the query, “Is it bad to be vegetarian?” and discussed some risks of being a vegetarian.


Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.