NEW YORK – Talk about your fruits and nuts!
Radical vegans — who avoid any product that comes from animals — are now buzzing about the evils of honey.
They claim its production uses the labor of oppressed worker bees, according to a Time magazine report on the growing numbers of American vegetarians.
And kiss a carnivore? Never. The survey revealed that 29 percent of committed vegetarians would refuse to kiss someone who just wolfed down a meal containing meat.
The poll showed that 10 million Americans consider themselves vegetarians, while an additional 20 million people have flirted with a meatless diet.
But is it healthier? The jury is still out.
"Vegetarians don't live longer, they just look older," said South Dakota cattle rancher Jody Brown. "If animals weren't meant to be eaten, then why are they made out of meat?"
The argument between meat-eaters and vegetarians is really a matter of apples and oranges. The American Dietetic Association has said that appropriate vegetarian-meal planning can be healthful.
Driving this tofu-fueled revolution are the young.
"Kids today are the first generation to live in a culture where vegetarianism is common, where it is publicly promoted on health and ecological grounds," said Paul Rozin of the University of Pennsylvania.
But low-protein, meatless diets can have a negative impact on bones and cause increased prostate cancer rates, experts warn.