'More Over-60's Than Ever Are Going Vegan' Says Report

While the movement is usually associated with younger people, an article by The Telegraph says an increasing number of older people are opting to ditch animal products - and experiencing the health benefits of doing so
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An increasing number of seniors are ditching animal products, according to a report by The Telegraph (Photo: Adobe. Do not use without permission)

An increasing number of people over the age of 60 are going vegan, according to a report by The Telegraph.

The newspaper cites multiple examples of older vegans, including a 74-year grandmother, a 64-year-old hotel worker, and a 56-year-old entrepreneur.

While the article cites 'animal cruelty in farming practices' as a motivating factor in ditching animal products, it largely focuses on the health benefits of doing so including potential weight loss, increased energy levels, and improved digestion among others.

Vegan health benefits

"It seems that a vegan diet could not only reduce the rise of diabetes, as part of a weight-loss plan, it could also help with renal problems," Dr. Frank Miskelly, a Consultant Physician in elderly care at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, told The Telegraph.

"The high-protein diets associated with meat-eaters can put a strain on the kidneys. Weight loss can also help with metabolic syndrome, the very Western disease associated with obesity, high-blood pressure and high cholesterol.

"If you picture a middle-aged man who did no exercise, that would typically be the kind of person who would suffer from metabolic syndrome. There's a lot of anecdotal evidence for the health benefits of veganism, but I’d like to see more studies into it – and on older people, specifically."

Young vegans

This report follows multiple polls and market research reviews showing that in general, younger people are more likely to go vegan than older ones - with poll data released last year, showing how young people driving the charge towards veggie and vegan diets.

Almost 8 million British residents - around 12 percent of the population - identify as vegan, vegetarian, or pescatarian according to research by Harris Interactive for food trade journal The Grocer. The 12 percent breaks down into six percent vegetarian, four percent pescetarian, and two percent vegan.

In addition, a further one in four is set to cut their meat intake over the next year, says the survey. According to the data, 18-44-year-olds are the most likely to have stopped eating animals.

Harris Head of Research, Lucia Juliano said: "It isn't surprising that young consumers are thinking about changing their ways. But the over-55s aren't so concerned - 80 per cent of them plan to make no change."