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Prevalence and psychopathology of vegetarians and vegans - Results from a representative survey in Germany.
Sci Rep. 2020 04 22; 10(1):6840.SR

Abstract

The aim of the study was to investigate the prevalence of, and attitudes toward, vegetarianism and veganism. We also assessed the association between vegetarianism/veganism and eating disorder, depressive, and somatic symptoms. A cross-sectional questionnaire survey in adults in Germany that was representative in terms of age, gender, and educational level was carried out. Data from 2449 adults (53.5% females) were included. Mean age was 49.6 (SD 17.1) years. A total of 5.4% of participants reported following a vegetarian or vegan diet. While the majority of participants agreed that vegetarian diets are healthy and harmless (56.1%), only 34.8% believed this to be true of vegan diets. The majority of participants also believed that a vegetarian (58.7%) or vegan (74.7%) diet can lead to nutritional deficiency. Female gender, younger age, higher education, lower body mass index (BMI), and higher depressive and eating disorder symptoms were found to be associated with vegetarianism/veganism. We did not find increased physical complaints in the group of vegetarians/vegans. Our results point toward a moderate prevalence of vegetarianism/veganism among the general population. Our findings suggest that health care professionals should keep eating disorder pathology, affective status in mind when dealing with individuals who choose a vegetarian/vegan dietary pattern.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Toronto General Hospital, University Health Network, Toronto, Canada. Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada.Toronto General Hospital, University Health Network, Toronto, Canada.Department of Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy, Hannover Medical School, Hannover, Germany.Department of Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy, University Medical Center Mainz, Mainz, Germany. Integrated Research and Treatment Center AdiposityDiseases, Behavioral Medicine Research Unit, Department of Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy, University of Leipzig Medical Center, Leipzig, Germany.Institute for Nutritional Medicine, Else Kroener-Fresenius-Centre for Nutritional Medicine, School of Medicine, Klinikum rechts der Isar, Technical University of Munich, Munich, Germany.Integrated Research and Treatment Center AdiposityDiseases, Behavioral Medicine Research Unit, Department of Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy, University of Leipzig Medical Center, Leipzig, Germany.Department of Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy, Hannover Medical School, Hannover, Germany. dezwaan.martina@mh-hannover.de.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article

Language

eng

PubMed ID

32321977

Citation

Paslakis, Georgios, et al. "Prevalence and Psychopathology of Vegetarians and Vegans - Results From a Representative Survey in Germany." Scientific Reports, vol. 10, no. 1, 2020, p. 6840.
Paslakis G, Richardson C, Nöhre M, et al. Prevalence and psychopathology of vegetarians and vegans - Results from a representative survey in Germany. Sci Rep. 2020;10(1):6840.
Paslakis, G., Richardson, C., Nöhre, M., Brähler, E., Holzapfel, C., Hilbert, A., & de Zwaan, M. (2020). Prevalence and psychopathology of vegetarians and vegans - Results from a representative survey in Germany. Scientific Reports, 10(1), 6840. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-63910-y
Paslakis G, et al. Prevalence and Psychopathology of Vegetarians and Vegans - Results From a Representative Survey in Germany. Sci Rep. 2020 04 22;10(1):6840. PubMed PMID: 32321977.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Prevalence and psychopathology of vegetarians and vegans - Results from a representative survey in Germany. AU - Paslakis,Georgios, AU - Richardson,Candice, AU - Nöhre,Mariel, AU - Brähler,Elmar, AU - Holzapfel,Christina, AU - Hilbert,Anja, AU - de Zwaan,Martina, Y1 - 2020/04/22/ PY - 2020/03/01/received PY - 2020/04/08/accepted PY - 2020/4/24/entrez PY - 2020/4/24/pubmed PY - 2020/11/25/medline SP - 6840 EP - 6840 JF - Scientific reports JO - Sci Rep VL - 10 IS - 1 N2 - The aim of the study was to investigate the prevalence of, and attitudes toward, vegetarianism and veganism. We also assessed the association between vegetarianism/veganism and eating disorder, depressive, and somatic symptoms. A cross-sectional questionnaire survey in adults in Germany that was representative in terms of age, gender, and educational level was carried out. Data from 2449 adults (53.5% females) were included. Mean age was 49.6 (SD 17.1) years. A total of 5.4% of participants reported following a vegetarian or vegan diet. While the majority of participants agreed that vegetarian diets are healthy and harmless (56.1%), only 34.8% believed this to be true of vegan diets. The majority of participants also believed that a vegetarian (58.7%) or vegan (74.7%) diet can lead to nutritional deficiency. Female gender, younger age, higher education, lower body mass index (BMI), and higher depressive and eating disorder symptoms were found to be associated with vegetarianism/veganism. We did not find increased physical complaints in the group of vegetarians/vegans. Our results point toward a moderate prevalence of vegetarianism/veganism among the general population. Our findings suggest that health care professionals should keep eating disorder pathology, affective status in mind when dealing with individuals who choose a vegetarian/vegan dietary pattern. SN - 2045-2322 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/32321977/Prevalence_and_psychopathology_of_vegetarians_and_vegans___Results_from_a_representative_survey_in_Germany_ L2 - https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-63910-y DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -