Fish sticks or carrot sticks? Chicken nuggets or soy-veggie bites? Steak or salad?
Many teens are choosing 'Option #2', going vegetarian and saying good-bye to meat, poultry, and fish. In 2005, independent market research firm Harris Interactive polled teens ages 8 to 18, concluding that up to 3 percent are vegetarians, a number increasing every year.
The Palo Alto Medical Foundation lists the benefits to be had from ditching meat from your diet. Eating responsibly will have "a decreased risk of heart disease as you grow older, lower blood pressure, decreased risk for some types of cancer, and lower chance of diabetes and obesity."
Many disagree - claiming that these restrictive diets will only end up damaging the teen's growing body.
"Vegan [and vegetarian] diets often lead to serious deficiencies of vitamins, minerals, fatty acids and amino acids," says Kaayla Daniel, clinical nutritionist.
Humans' jaws are created to handle an omnivore diet - yet the choice to eat meat is a personal one, with more and more teens taking taking their diets into consideration and heading into vegetarian-land.
Are any of you guys vegetarians? Do you consider it a health improvement or hazard to take meat off the menu?
(great cartoon found at Bob Thaves' site)