First there were vegans and vegetarians, then flexitarians (people who eat meat sometimes), and now there’s the Vegan Before 6pm diet. Is it just another way of compromising with your lifestyle to custom-fit veganism to your needs?
The Vegan Before 6:00pm (VB6) diet, developed by Mark Bittman, is about eating animal-free ingredients and foods throughout the day until six in the evenings, after which you can eat whatever you like. Fancy heading to dinner with friends for a steak or cheesy pasta dish? Go right ahead! The rules of the diet completely allow it.
The whole point is to find the right balance and celebrities have been jumping on the trend. Matthew McConaughey and Beyoncé are two famous examples of the diet’s followers. However, there are cons associated with this diet. Here are some of them:
- 1. You’re Not Really Vegan, Are You?
You can’t really call yourself vegan if you are on this diet because you are still going to be eating animal products on a daily basis (or whenever you desire them). Yes, it can be a good thing that the diet is focused on moderation and compromise, but should there ever be a compromise with veganism? You’re either 100% vegan or not, but the VB6 diet doesn’t make such stark differences.
- 2. You Risk Overeating
If you know you can eat anything you want after 6pm in the day, this could cause you to eat well during the day and then allow yourself to overeat from that time onwards. This is a danger, not just with animal products, but with the consumption of fatty or unhealthy foods that can throw your healthy diet into the opposing category. Even though the diet maintains that you can choose your hours (you don't have to be rigidly stuck to 6pm specifically), whatever hour you choose to relax your 'diet curfew' could cause you to overeat during that time.
- 3. Are You Really Decreasing Animal Suffering?
Some people who appreciate the VB6 diet are likely to say it’s a positive thing that the diet encourages less consumption of animal products, but again, this is not a guarantee because you are still contributing to animal suffering and greenhouse gases by continuing to eat animal products. This is also not good for your health or the environment. Taking the example of eating one burger for dinner, check out these stats:
- Making one quarter-pounder burger emits 6.5 pounds of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.
- To make just three ounces of beef (which is approximately the amount used in a quarter-pounder burger), up to 338 gallons of water will be used!
- Eating a burger daily could increase your cancer risk.
*Image courtesy Flickr Creative Commons