Veganism: What is it? Is it worth it?

Emily Kaplan, Staff Writer

Veganism is a diet that has been sweeping the nation recently. There has been a 600% global rise in veganism over the last three years. And Grubhub users chose vegan foods 19% more in the first half of 2017 than they did in the first half of 2016. 


Someone who is vegan chooses not to eat animals or any of their products, such as eggs, dairy, etc. Veganism is such an enticing diet because it lowers the risk of heart disease, can help you lose weight, lowers blood sugar levels, improves kidney function, reduce pain from arthritis, protect against certain cancers and is rich in nutrients, according to “Medical News Today.”  Alas, it doesn’t work out so well for everyone. 


I decided to try it out at the beginning of January. It started okay, but I noticed a change in my physical and mental health on just around the third day. I was more irritable, lethargic and generally unhappy. I thought this may have just been “withdrawal” symptoms from my usual diet consisting of a lot of dairy, but as these symptoms continued and all I got was hungrier, none of the positive effects such as “increased energy” and “a better mood,” seemed to occur. Eventually, the diet couldn’t keep up with my lifestyle and I became so lightheaded I had to sit down. I stopped after that and my opinion on veganism continues to remain neutral.


For some people, I imagine the diet’s great, but for me, and most likely many others, it just doesn’t work as well. I tried my best to still intake a healthy amount of protein and calories, but I guess I wasn’t able to do this. I basically was eating rice 24/7 because I just didn’t have the time or ability to make a “fancy” vegan meal. One can make quick and easy vegan meals, I just didn’t acquire that skill set to do so. After two weeks, I swapped out cashew cheese for the real deal so I could have my energy back. 


Evidently, veganism can be amazing for one person, but horrible for someone else. It all depends on your personal opinions and history. Do I personally think veganism is worth it? Yes, it is better for the environment and some people’s health. Do I think it works for me? No, but that it no way means it’s not going to work for other people. And some other people I know such as Saffron Combs has a neutral opinion about it, “I see nothing wrong with people that want to be vegan, but I personally see no point in doing it.” As ninth-grader Ryan Alexander, a bit more passionate about this issue than me, put it, “I would literally [rather] die” than try to be vegan.