A curious thing is happening of late across the interwebs, a social phenomenon as prolific as the cinnamon challenge – some people seem to be coming to their senses. Specifically I mean some vegans, and by coming to their senses, I mean they’re leaving veganism. More and more video confessionals from both prominent and less-prominent vegan pundits are surfacing within the last year with the title, or some variation of, “Why I’m No Longer Vegan”. It appears to be a growing trend as hundreds, possibly thousands of vegans, citing unresolvable health issues, return to eating animal products.
Tue, 19 Feb 2019 18:43 UTC
For the most part, the decisions being made to return to animal foods don’t seem like easy ones. The videos are usually long, very humble and often heartbreaking, as these individuals confess their miracle diets don’t seem to be providing the glowing health and abundance they’re promised to. But it’s not just that they’re changing their diets. These videos have an apologetic air, confessing to the flock that they’re no longer a believer, no longer drinking the Koolaid, leaving the compound to go back to the sadistic animal killing masses. Alas, the first step towards truth, rather than a blissful and cathartic moment, is often a difficult one, as reality hits you like a ton of bricks and the old coping mechanisms, like avoidance and denial, no longer provide the solace they once did.
World champion parkour/freerunner athlete Tim Sheiff is the latest to be making waves in this fashion across our collective consciousness. Sheiff left his athletic career to pursue vegan activism full-time, starting a clothing company called ETHCS as well as a popular vegan YouTube channel. But late last year, he posted a video confessing to turning to eggs and salmon to try and address health issues he was experiencing. This came after a long line of attempted interventions (including switching from raw to cooked veganism, urine drinking for two years and a 35-day water fast) to try to get on top of his ailing health.
At first, Sheiff approached his return to meat as a temporary measure. But now, months later, he’s no longer vegan.
While many of the comments Sheiff received were supportive, much of the response was quick and vitriolic. An endless stream of response videos have appeared, calling him unethical, a flip-flopper that he was never really vegan in the first place. Sheiff is a traitor, betraying not only his fans and the vegan community, but the animals themselves (‘why don’t you apologize to the animals?’ he was repeatedly asked, as well as being maligned for prioritizing his own health over animal welfare, since that’s just ‘toxic white ableism’ which has nothing to do with real veganism. I kid you not). Many offered an endless stream of health advice, steps that could be taken to avoid leaving veganism, others insisted he wasn’t doing veganism ‘right’ (anyone pointing out their inevitable failing health on a vegan diet is invariably accused of ‘doing it wrong’). They blamed his fast, blamed the cooked food, the raw food, too much fat, not enough fat, not supplementing correctly – anything to avoid facing the truth that their fallen brother provides yet another glaring billboard for – humans aren’t built to be vegans.
The argument goes that, since veganism is a perfect diet, anyone experiencing health consequences isn’t practicing the perfect diet correctly. It’s eerily reminiscent of the diet dictocrats behind government mandated eating guidelines, telling the millions of adherents that the reason they’re fat and sick is because they’re not following the guidelines properly, not because there’s anything inherently wrong with the guidelines (impossible!).
But the road back to a sensible diet is a difficult one. When one has built their entire identity on an ideology, built a following and, in many cases, a livelihood, around a dietary dogma, a simple diet change, which should be rather undramatic and personal, becomes a wholesale shift in identity. Tim is no longer “Tim the vegan”, he’s just “Tim”, and with that he’ll probably lose friends, fans and revenue. In fact, he was unceremoniously dropped as director of the clothing company he started after admitting he was no longer vegan. After all, you can’t have a company called ETHCS with a director who is an unabashed unethical animal murderer.
As is often the case with vegans turning back to animal foods, Sheiff said the difference in health was palpable right away. In a video of an interesting conversation between ex-vegans on YouTube, Casey of Vegetable Police and Bobby from Bobby’s Perspective, Casey talks about the overall calm, clarity and strength he felt one day into switching to carnivore from veganism. In the same video, Bobby described eating salmon roe after years of veganism as a holy experience; an ‘awakening of the third eye’, seeing white light and feeling that his brain was rewiring. This describes the experience of a seriously malnourished individual finally getting the nutrition they need. It’s not that it’s instant healing, it’s that the body is communicating though a blissful experience that what the no-longer-vegan is doing right now is really, really good for them! Do it again!
The cognitive dissonance necessary to maintain a vegan lifestyle is truly astronomical. The vegan pundits put on the air of having perfect health, yet all the while they’re falling apart. They look for any excuse as to why their health is failing, anything to avoid admitting their ideology is false. But whether it’s a bald-faced lie or they’re lying to themselves (as well as others) is neither here nor there. The vegan diet is a lie. It’s not sustainable, evidenced by this latest mass exodus.
Interestingly, the same hate and vitriol is not seen on videos titled “Why I’m No Longer Keto”. No outrage, few accusations of “you didn’t do it right,” or ex-communications from communities. That’s because the ketogenic diet is just that – a diet. Yet vegans often say that veganism isn’t just a diet. They’re right about this. It’s a twisted ideological framework, a religion that holds the false belief that it’s possible to end suffering; that of the animals, the planet and the individual. As is typical of liberal ideologies, vegans are attempting to step in as white knights to end the suffering of a marginalized group without having been asked or any clear understanding of how this could be accomplished. But, to paraphrase Bobby from the above linked video, “Close your eyes to suffering and you create more suffering… There’s always suffering involved [in life]. If you don’t want to live by the rules of nature, then you will suffer. It’s just that simple.”
But it seems, for some, there’s something seductive about the vegan ideology. That there could be a simple answer to save your health, the animals and the planet all rolled into one easy answer is attractive in its simplicity. And while this is going on on the micro-level, the corporate elite are pushing veganism hard from the top. There is nary a mainstream media outlet that has not run a headline in the last few weeks declaring the necessity for the world to go vegan to save the planet and our health. It’s interesting that the media have all but dropped the animal rights narrative in their pushing of veganism, separating themselves from the fanatical vegan crowd, the PETAs and Animal Liberation Fronts. The masses need to be gently coerced into adopting a twisted ideology, and the face of radical activism is distasteful to the average citizen.
The vegan putsch marches on.
Much of what appears in the headlines comes from various “studies” put out by agenda-driven groups declaring the vital necessity of changing one’s diet to save the planet. Never mind the fact that animal agriculture can be regenerative and, even as it stands, only accounts for 3.9% of “greenhouse gasses”. Even by their own climate change narrative, meat-eating should be of very little concern in the grand scheme of things, yet it’s pushed as the most important step anyone can take to reduce their impact on the earth.
The latest headlines all focus on the most recent “study” to crawl out from under a rock – “Food in the Anthropocene: the EAT-Lancet Commission on healthy diets from sustainable food systems.” Don’t let the pretentious sounding title fool you. What’s inside is one-sidedvegan propaganda, preaching an anti-livestock, anti-meat agenda and presenting a false narrative about ‘scientific consensus’ (Note: Whenever someone is telling you there’s a consensus in science, get out your BS-meter because they’re lying. Science isn’t a popularity contest). It’s not difficult to generate a ‘consensus’ when over 80% of those involved in the study are heavy promoters of veganism.
In a must-read EFA News article by Frédéric Leroy and Martin Cohen unassumingly named “The EAT-Lancet Commission’s controversial campaign,” the authors detail the twisted web of who’s actually behind the Commission’s report. From the article:
Will 2019 be remembered as the year of the EAT-Lancet intervention, arguing for a planetary shift to a so-called “plant-based” diet? Isn’t it remarkable how meat, symbolizing health and vitality since millennia, is now often depicted as detrimental to our bodies, the animals, and the planet? Why exactly is the minoritarian discourse of vegetarianism and veganism currently all over themedia? This widespread representation of meat as intrinsically harmful is worrying, to the point that some academics, health professionals, and expert committees are now expressing concern that it will add to malnutrition in wealthy countries, and sometimes even act as a cover or trigger fordisordered eating. As a rising societal trend, “plant-based” lifestyles have of course a complex raison d’être and display heterogeneity among their mostly well-intentioned adherents. Nonetheless, the main discourses look remarkably script-based and some of the soundbites are coming from well-respected actors.
Rather than go into detail on the article, I’ll provide a spoiler. The EAT-Lancet Commission is a bunch of toady academics and billionaires who believe they have the right to shift all us ‘useless eaters’ to a plant-based diet. The ‘science’ invents “calculations… based on weak and confounded epidemiological associations that do not allow for causal claims.” Billionaire Gunhild Stordalen, the Clintons, Saudi Prince Khaled bin Alwaleed, industrialists Stephan Schmidheiny and Maurice Strong, the Lindisfarne group, the World Resources Institute, Stockholm Environment Institute, the Beijer Institute, the World Economic Forum, the World Bank, the International Institute for Sustainable Development, the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, the WWF, the Barilla Centre for Food and Nutrition – all are somehow tied in to the EAT-Lancet Commission and its scheming to get the planetary population to adopt an eating disorder. These are the billionaires and policy shapers trying to tell you and everyone else on the planet what to eat (while they hypocritically do whatever they want). “Influencing nutritional labelling and dietary guidelines, 30-day diet challenges, taxing meat, and… removing meat from restaurant menus,” all of these are part of the mandate for the anti-meat agenda pushers.
And it’s not just that they’re trying to tell you. They want to force you to change your diet. From p.34 of the EAT-Lancet Commission report:
…However, the scale of change to the food system is unlikely to be successful if left to the individual or the whim of consumer choice. This change requires reframing at the population and systemic level. By contrast, hard policy interventions include laws, fiscal measures, subsidies and penalties, trade reconfiguration, and other economic and structural measures. These interventions alter conditions in which the whole population exists.
Rather terrifying, no? It’s one thing to manipulate people into choosing to ruin their health, but forcing them to do so is a whole new level of evil.
The truth, as inconvenient as it may be, is that human beings need nutrients and those nutrients need to come from animals. Plants can make up a part of the diet, but the majority, if not the entirety, of nutrition needs to be coming from animal sources. That’s how we’re built, as cruel as that may seem. While the elites are trying to force the population into veganism through policy changes and fiscal measures, using the mainstream media to coerce you through guilt over your planet-killing existence, the people at the bottom of the pyramid are finding out the hard way that the vegan diet simply doesn’t work. While the militant vegans will tell you that your failing health is the price you must pay for saving the animals and the planet, at least some of the plebes aren’t buying it, which is the sane and rightful response to such a radical proposition. And thankfully the message is spreading, as more and more “Why I’m No Longer Vegan” videos and articles pop up across the internet. If the message from these lowly YouTubers at the bottom can proliferate wide enough, a pushback against the corporate vegan agenda may just be in the cards.
Doug DiPasquale is a Holistic Nutritionist, Paleo enthusiast and health journalist living in Toronto, Canada. He’s a regular contributor for SOTT.net, Dot Connector Magazine, the Huffington Post Canada, The Food Network Canada and has contributed to many other blogs and online publications. He’s passionate about the food we eat, exposing the lies and faulty thinking of the “food police” and informing the public about how to eat real food, ie. replacing that wheatgrass shot with bacon.