Diet Isn’t A Personal Choice

I’m Mike and today why diet isn’t just a personal choice despite how personal it feels we are going to look at some research into why this is the case and we’re also going to look at a common statement that occurs when vegans talk to omnivores and that is I respect your vegan diet so you should respect my personal dietary choices which usually involve animals and their products in particular we’re going to look at if this is a fair request and why it never ends in okay I respect your diet now grab my hand let’s go to the barbecue now let’s get right into the idea of personal choice a personal choice by definition for all intents and purposes only affects you and does not drastically affect other people punching somebody in the face is not your own isolated personal choice as this vegan sidekick comment illustrates eating animals is a very different than the classic personal choices we have like choosing clothes and what this is really saying is that a true personal choice does not have a victim from the perspective of farmed animals it really is as simple as that and on a fundamental level every single food purchase that you make ripples out into the world I’m not talking about some crazy butterfly effect I’m just talking about supply and demand you might not be able to go back in time and stop that baby cow from being slaughtered if you decide to not eat veal on the spot but the collective effect of our choices as consumers shapes the supply chain and eventually determines how many vegetable farms there are how many slaughterhouses there are how many animals are killed and more now before we touch on the research of how your diet affects your surroundings I want to look a little bit about vegans being asked to respect omnivore diet I want to preface this by saying not respecting somebody’s choices dietary or otherwise does not mean that you don’t respect them as a person there are plenty of people that are not vegan that I love and respect I’m just not overflowing with respect for their dietary choices like how you might respect your aunt but not respect your aunt’s fashion choices that neon yellow crocheted Fedora might have not been the best choice auntie but you saw many a more qualities kind of like when you have a friend and you’re like I love you but you’re dating that guy seriously I would go as far as to say that there is some decisions that everybody you know made that you don’t respect whether you respect that person or not and you might not even know what that decision is am i right so respecting choices and respecting people not synonymous okay that being said let’s look at why asking a vegan to respect your diet is not necessarily fair first and foremost respecting a vegan diet is really easy not eating animals and their byproducts is not going against any ethical code that you have you’re not like you are breaking my dietary commandment number five thou shalt shout kill animals you’re being unethical no but in fact vegans for virtually everyone are eating within their ethics the ethics of loving animals but as obvious as it sounds eating animals and the products is completely against the ethics of vegans so is it reasonable to ask somebody to respect something that is against their ethics I think in comparison that would have made sense to me back when I was an omnivore would be the question could you respect somebody’s dietary choice to eat a dog like a pet dog and that for medians is the equivalent to eating any other farmed animal so hopefully that gives you an understanding as to why vegans can’t respect your choice to eat farm damn and this perspective extends right into animal products as well if you’re asking a vegan to respect your choice to drink milk that vegan might be thinking about how 97% of calves are separated from their mothers within 24 hours of being born so you’re asking them to respect that separation and other things that happen in the milk production process and another point asking a vegan to respect your diet is very close to asking them to support it and interestingly from a psychological perspective I have a lot of people coming up to me asking me I’ll eat meat every once in a while that’s totally fine right or like cheese isn’t that bad correct asking me to give them the vegan stamp of approval to eat animal products like the ultimate justification is a a okay from a vegan and I’m sorry I just Kim not give that and moving on all of this does go beyond the animals many people believe that since their dietary choices appear separate that they do not have an effect on other people but we only have one planet and I’m not saying that vegans have no impact but the single largest decision that you can do to reduce your carbon footprint water footprint and land use is to either kill yourself move to a rural part of Kenya and forego all modern luxuries or you know go vegan not only is animal agriculture responsible for more Amazon destruction species extinction more dead zone creation and agricultural water usage than any other source but it also eats up one-third of our ice-free land on planet Earth and is a leading source of greenhouse gas emissions on par with all of humanity’s transportation combined and the kicker animal agriculture is solely supported by this personal choice to purchase animal products and with the realization that animal products are not required for health as the position of the largest group of dieticians on earth says it becomes difficult to stay silent about this and to put this on an individual scale as this study estimates your personal choice to eat a meat rich diet will limit two and a half times as much dietary co2 as a vegan diet does meaning if you are the kind of person that gets at all a little disrespectful about somebody’s vehicle choice when they are driving a Hummer or other gas guzzling car then hopefully you can understand why vegans can’t respect the choice to eat animals and animal products on environmental reasons alone imagine just for a second if somebody asks you to respect their choice to litter to maybe throw some plastic into a river well once again animal agriculture is one of the leading causes of groundwater pollution and of those images of pieces of plastic killing animals bothers you because you care about wildlife again as this study mentions quote animal product consumption by humans is likely the leading cause of modern species extinction since it is not only the major driver of deforestation but also a principal driver of land Asian pollution climate change overfishing sedimentation of coastal areas facilitation of invasions by alien species and loss of wild carnivores and wild herbivores who and if you get mad about any of those environmental offenses but do not get mad when somebody eats a steak or another animal product then you’re just not being true to the facts alright moving on quickly let’s go through another less cited reason that our diet affects other people and that is the societal healthcare impact I have an entire video on this but the gist of it is not the in populations have such lower incidences of many diseases that it would drastically reduce the burden of healthcare on our society a very simple example according to the CDC one-third of people in the US have high blood pressure and it costs us about 46 billion dollars a year but when looking at large population studies on vegans we can see that they have about a sixty to seventy-five percent lower incidence of high blood pressure than their neighbors so if those numbers held true nationwide adoption of a vegan diet in the US which save about twenty eight to thirty five billion dollars a year and when you add the other major diseases that vegans have a lower incidence of the result would be massive there would be way less of a burden on society in terms of health care if we made the personal choice to not eat animal products so in the end well what you put on your plate and some of you might feel like a personal choice similar to picking out the color of your t-shirt in actuality it is the very opposite may be the least personal choice you make when it comes to animals and it becomes even less personal when you add the impact you have on the health care system and especially the environment furthermore well your dietary respect as an omnivore is appreciated it is not an equal exchange to ask a vegan to respect what they believe to be unethical alright that’s it for today feel free to like the video and comment down below if I missed any of those ripple effects that go out into the world from your dietary choices and don’t forget to subscribe if you haven’t already and thank you for watching you [Music]


  1. Reducing is definitely better than high consumption. Its how I (accidentally) started my path to veganism, hopefully it will lead other people there as well Dairy is horrific I don't see the difference between drinking a glass of milk and eating a piece of beef. Dairy is potentially more cruel. If people thought more about their consumption they wouldn't do it anymore.

  2. 0:50 I like how the guy killing the pig is still not wearing pants.

  3. Plants, according to professor Jack C Schultz, in the Division of Plant Sciences at the University of Missouri in Columbia, "are just very slow animals". This is not a misunderstanding of basic biology and Schultz has spent four decades investigating the life of plants using time lapse technology so we can see the processes at a time scale that is comprehensible to the human brain.
    Plants fight for territory, seek out food, evade predators, trap prey, communicate with each other, interact with other animals like bees and even plan for future events. They are as alive as any animal, and – like animals – they exhibit behaviour.

    Maybe all "VEGANS" should now starve to death..😂🤣

  4. You're sooooo right!!!!

  5. Please make a video on: Cannabis, best veggie on earth??

  6. I like how the ads before mikes vegan video promote meat.

  7. Contemplating on this vid, "personan choices" hardly exist.
    Every product you purchase, either food of non-food, has consequences for others.
    Apart from veganism, we're doing a lot of stuff we can't justify on a daily basis.

  8. I have gotten the "I don't eat as much meat at I used to" speech a few times. Why in the hell is that supposed to be impressive? My entire family is meat eaters, I have learned to live with it. I don't judge them for it, and I expect them to accept my choice. I don't ever want to get into a conversation with anyone about diet. The most clever thing most of "them" can come up with is the question about protein. I don't know why nobody is capable of worrying about anything else. Maybe when they ask that, I can ask them where they get some random vitamin from. Like I'll pick K or one most people don't really think about. (unless they're on medication, of course). I just try to not talk when the subject comes up, as much as possible. If you don't contribute much, they usually find a new topic to discuss. It works for me. But I think talking at people doesn't endear them to your cause. I know right wingers think that works, because that's all they ever do, but they also have turned me against their side, almost completely. Why? Because you don't endear anyone by screaming in their face. But I'm rude to people about smoking, so I do it a little, too. But nobody's food habit inflicts on me and leaves me feeling like I've got the flu the entire rest of the day, so it's slightly different.

  9. I argue the same thing constantly. 😀

  10. When you said diet choice is not a personal choice, the 1st thing I thought of was healthcare. In America, we spend $50 billion a year on heart surgery…imagine how much money we could save if people stopped eating meat? (And that's heart surgery alone…that doesn't account for heart meds, strokes, alzhimers, diabetes, and as you mentiobed, high blood pressure). We spend more on healthcare than we do on the military…imagine how much out of pocket costs and costs on health insurance we could save !!

  11. doesn't every PURCHASE you make shapes the earth at large? such as the choice of clothes you buy (cotton, made in Bangladesh, child labor…etc)
    Some decisions are also limited on things like budget and availability, I get that local made clothes might be hard but at least you can shop at thrift shop for previously purchased clothes (and other things)

  12. Actually I like your videos, although I am not a vegan, but this is one of your bad videos. Since we eat animals since we exist, it has nothing to do with choice. It was a need and it is a need for survival. So pls make all the Africans vegans, the problem is that they have no choice they would not survive in they area of living.
    And in fact you would be not here if we would have chosen 100,000 years ago to be vegan. Our species would not have involved to make a choice because we would be still mammals.
    I agree that a vegan diet is the best and also have the least impact on our environment, but then all Americans should use the same amount of energy that the Europeans. Did you know that they use four times more energy than the Europeans because of their cars usage of electricity etc.? If they cut down on this, that would have a great effect on our earth.
    I have to say, the vegans have the choice to be vegan. If we would all be vegan because it would be our preferred diet, we would not have this discussion here. And why are vegans the minority then?

  13. Hi! I like enjoy watching your videos and the research you do. I'm wondering where you stand on pet food. I love my pets but have an issue with feedomg them vegetables and feeding them meat and starving them. I buy them pet food, but I wish we could let them roam and eat mice and stuff. I'm so confused on this and have never heard anyone speak on this.

  14. Very interesting! I'm newer to your channel. Are you single? I'm 32. 😉

  15. lol good video 💚

  16. It is not a personal choice because food has such a social element. Food is connected to Culture, to family, and other people. Until vegans develop a social food culture they will not be able to be large. There needs to be vegan norms that families will just assume. Example: growing up every meal had: 1. Meat, 1 Veggie, 1 carb. The mean was: A piece of chicken, beef, pork, meat loaf, etc. We need to create culture of vegan food so this social need is fulfilled.

  17. Also, how can you make a choice when you are not informed about the consequences of that choice? It's not really a 'choice,' it's just mind control. If you can't even watch how the 'products' are made, then you shouldn't be allowed to consume them. I have decided that if I ever wish to go back to meat I'll first have to watch Earthlings from start to finish (I would rather have all my fingernails extracted one by one.)

  18. 1:30 oh my gosh i feel so smart i said the same thing when someone told me not eating meat just leads to more eat for everyone else!!!!

  19. You're officially my fav YouTuber ever!!!

  20. This whole video is unethical B.S.

  21. Next you'll say abortion IS a personal choice, I will eat steaks until the ozone layer completely disappears as long as vegans apply this double standard.

  22. I have found that the justifications/reasoning comments have been incessant from my family and others. It's something that has not diminished over time.

    Look "I could be, I only eat a little" doesn't really matter to me.

  23. Standing Ovation

  24. I'm a vegetarian borderline vegan. Blue Diamond Almond milk is the best tasting. I eat the same cheese from a manifacturer that claims they practice human farming practices using various small farms for theirp products. They say the cows are grass fed. I want to become a 100% vegan though and am working my way towards that goal.

  25. maybe we should just start respecting each other as human beings before asking others to respect the labels we attach to ourselves.

  26. Thanks! Another great video to help us explain arguments to non vegans 💁🏽‍♂️

  27. Why do you make me so angry? Is it all of the lies? Yeah. Of course. I'm not reviewing this video. Also ad hominem.

  28. 1:53 fuckme. Not respecting a person's choices is the same as not respecting the person, because what are you without your choices?

  29. 2:09 trivial vs meaningful. "You're ugly" vs "you're a sociopath child abuser who's deluding themselves into thinking they're a good human". Funniest part: that last thing, I just pulled it from your videos. Lol.

  30. 2:37 you're a hypocrite.

  31. 2:43 I assume you're going to say something about just serving the vegan a different thing or them asking for a different thing, so what I will say is that's a gross (in both ways) simplification.

  32. The thing is (that I find most annoying) that some fanatical meat eaters do in fact look at you like you killed their mother if you say your vegetarian/vegan… Btw, for me eating dogs wouldn't be a problem, I actually have little to no sympathy for dogs or cats, dogs often maul their owners or others while cats kill for sport (at least this is in their nature but still). I don't like meat either way, waiting for the day I can call myself (at least) a vegetarian – family makes it impossible because they apparently know everything…

  33. Love this guy!

  34. I respect you for being jewish ,soo you shold also respect me for being a Nazi!

  35. The thumbnail is golden.

  36. It also sucks having to smell the rotting vat of burger fat behind every fast food joint

  37. Nailed it.

  38. 2:15 what's wrong with that guy

  39. One of your best videos! Punchy; lots of bite-size parts; and a tick more passionate than your other videos (as if that could be possible).

  40. mind blown

  41. Also there’s another way it affects humans world hunger. We have bred so many animals that in order to feed them we take away food from the poor that’s why so many people are poor and starving because people demand so much meat aka breeding more farmed animals that need to be fed.

  42. Not all Vegans feel this way. Some Vegans are just Dietary Vegans for the Health Benefits and could care less about the Animals…. They still wear Animal Products and Health/Beauty Products that were tested on Animals.

  43. I was dozing off for a bit until I heard "invasion by alien species"

  44. Happy Earth Day!!

  45. Usually I like the leaves, but here they sometimes made it look like you had cat ears. Good points tho Mike! 😀

  46. It's funny how people immediately say "I only eat very little meat and if I do it's organic" as soon as they find out you are vegan. It literally happens to me every time! I think they know it's wrong but they still do it smh. And I know that none of them just eats organic grass fed beef or "free range" eggs. They wanna make themselves feel better about eating animals but are just pure ignorant to the fact how many animals they kill… How do I cope with such people? I find it really frustrating…

  47. I tell my family and friends that they have to get off my back and I will stay off off theirs… it's not so much about respect but more a way of preventing the inevitable discussion that will ruin every dinner party.

  48. Stupid argument from the start. It is a personal choice. The animal may not think so but it is the person who chooses to kill the animal so personal choice plain and simple.

  49. I've always felt this way, but I didn't have enough intelligence to articulate it like you, Mic. Way to go, your channel needs to be more popular!

  50. Amen to everything you say Mic!

  51. That can extend to what pet food that you feed your dog or cat,there is vegan pet food available !

    In my case,it sort of will or won't be a personal choice, meaning that if I didn't meet a nice vegan woman I may not go vegan,it is,what influences a person to go vegan in the first place !

    I mean,she respected me more for giving that Big Mac meal a miss 2 Wednesdays ago & just making myself up a salad for lunch.

    When in a marriage with a Vegan, she will want to be by your side a bit more than if you were an omnivore.

  52. there are personal choices that do and don't affect lives around you,in this country you have the right to offend and be offended,I became vegan for health choices,not politics.

  53. Is abortion a personal choice?

  54. This really becomes an issue when it comes to dating… It's quite painful I'd say when that person thinks you're against them as a whole because you choose to do better? It hurts to see someone you believe in, just refuses to do the right thing, even though you could even cook for them and know so much there's no more health related doubt in their minds. You feel like it doesn't have a future then, honestly.

  55. So I don't agree with this, but hear me out: I'm an American living in Egypt semi-longterm. In Islam, eating meat is seen as a sacred duty of man, as "God put animals on this Earth for humans to use and consume" (not a direct quote). When I tell people that I don't eat meat, they do get offended, like I'm not fulfilling my duty as a human by not consuming meat. In their eyes, it's not only ethical, but mandatory by their religion to eat meat. Some believe this more than others (probably as a justification for their own meat consumption), and vegetarianism and veganism does exist here, but it is highly opposite to the majority view.

    Not to mention that holiday where each family is supposed to slaughter a lamb in sacrifice, as Abraham was going to do with his son all those years ago. (Eid Al-Adha)

  56. The visual vegans against 'fat' meat eaters/ body shaming in your title slides are pathetic and typical of vegan bs propaganda

  57. Dude, you speak to my soul. You’ve quickly become my FAVORITE YouTuber!

  58. This is one of my favorite videos you've done. Thanks!

  59. .. wow your meaning of personal choice does not make sense? So your making people not have responsibility?

  60. Agreed by what you say about Vegan people not respecting meat diet. But why should meat eaters respect vegan diet? If you agree that nobody needs to respect other diets than their own, then it's just. But otherwise, it's hypocrisy.


  62. Personal choices can have a victim.

    Example: If I were to point a gun at someone and shoot them in the face, that would still be my personal choice. No matter how wrong it is. I personally choose to shoot said person.

    Take this back to eating meat. While it is most definitely wrong to eat meat that is not to say it is not a personal choice. A person goes to the shop and they personally choose to buy said meat thus personally choosing to support the killing of animals.

  63. Wow. You nailed it!!

  64. Hmmmmm, I’d like to go vegan, 2/3 out of my meals are vegan, but my parents make meals with meat, and I don’t want to hurt my relationship with my mom because I won’t eat what she serves.

  65. vegans are collectivist scum

  66. Another delusional proclamation of "choice" is the oh so common " I am eating what works for me" in terms of weight loss and health. This is so resoundingly stupid I have to count to ten before responding. We have all evolved to be frugivore/herbivore/ starchivore. If you eat a WFPB diet you are going to react the same way as 99.9999 % of us. The 0.00001 % that are allergic to grains or any vegetable or tuber may excuse themselves. The rest of us are IDENTICAL in the way our body reacts to these foods we've evolved to live on. The " I thrive in beef, bacon , eggs and coconut oil" are so far gone I just bite my lip and move on. So stupid you just hope they don't procreate.

  67. I respect your choice not to own slaves, so respect my choice to own slaves! Geez!

  68. It's like respecting someone's choice of being a serial killer, a rapist, an abuser, corrupt, you name it. It's just wrong. People are too selfish.

  69. I was told the other day "god made animals for us to eat" "animals eat other animals". Needless to say, I lost my shit.

  70. Third world war will be vegans vs non vegans. Haven't you noticed this is a global issue that affects everybody?

  71. Great video. I can relate to the frustration of people trying to minimize their consumption and seeking a seal of approval from a vegan. It's irritating because their seeking approval is in itself an admission of the fact that going vegan is the ethical choice. Their guilt and insecurity speaks volumes and they expect us to coddle them and tell them there 'still okay' when really they are and always have been accountable to their choices

  72. This reminds me of ants. One ant will start to move into someplace and another may follow, if enough ants follow soon the whole colony has moved in. Some ants don't want to move in so they start to take food out and bring it back to the original home if enough ants bring food back the other ants will follow and the place will be abandoned.

  73. I love all your videos… This one is the best yet 😆

  74. Kudos. 👏👏👏. What can I say but bravo, best wishes and thanks.

  75. Can't get enough of Mic the vegan.

  76. Effects of Dietary "Personal Choice":
    1) Killing of Animals
    2) Treatment of Animals
    3) Over use and destruction of the environment–our only place to live.
    4) Societal impact of health care costs.

  77. I disagree on not supporting people who consume animal products only occasionally. Any reduction will ripple to less animals exploited in the future. And who knows, flexitarian is a testing phase many people need to adjust to being fully vegan.

  78. Ohhh, my mother does that to me "I only eat meat when I go out, which isn't often" and then she's confused when I say that she really can't if she wants to be vegan, because a part-time vegan doesn't exist.

  79. Yes. I think this same argument could be made for a pro-life stance too. It's not a personal choice if somebody else dies when you make it.

  80. It’s “for all intents and purposes,” not “for all intensive purposes,” despite the fact that all your purposes may be intensive. 😉

  81. I wrote this before, but I am asking you if you could respond to this video:


  82. Very well said. Excellent presentation. In Neurolinguistic Programming (NLP,) the behavioral and identity levels (logical levels) are completely separate. Many people confuse them. Judging a behavior is not judging a person.

  83. Diet isn't a personal choice, ignorance is!

  84. Your diet is indeed solely your choice, but if you literally choose over someone's life or death, it's not a personal one.

  85. Amazing video!!!! Thank you for talking about the impact on the health industry. I would love to see more people talking about that.

  86. why is this not in english

  87. You vegam getting mental in just few months of being vegan ,God give us anynimals to fed us

  88. You know what people in the south sudan (africa) eat? A goat meat. 3 times a day. Because they have no choice. If all Europe and America would turn vegan it still wouldn't be enough. It's China who is responsible for most of the plastic in the ocean. Do you think that's going to change?

  89. I confess that I became a vegan for health reasons primarily but also realized that the environment would benefit greatly if more people became vegans. The ethical implications were not of the greatest concern to me, although I wasn't blind to them. However, Mic's videos, particularly this one, have made this aspect much clearer.

  90. i just wish there was a ban on dairy, as a lacto intolerant vegan i cant go in certain cities without getting Dairy smuggled in my food.
    fucking ass holes giving me cramps!

  91. Honestly, a carnist asking us to respect their dietary choices is like a serial killer asking people to respect their murder sprees.

  92. Asking to vegans respect from meat eaters, is like nazis asking respect from humanity for killing people. same thing. yes. No, i am not saying a group of humans is inferior to animals, i am saying we all share this planet, and violence cannot be tolerated. We are all equal, animals, trees, humans. When that simple thing gets through our head, another planet we will end up having.

  93. 3:18
    Me screaming to my phone: YES! YES I COULD! AND I LOVE DOGS!!
    Tbh I'm completely ok with people being vegan and everything else. Do what you want. We humans don't have to take it personal and getting angry over the CHOICES of others is going to harm more than help. It's exactly this, that makes me not want to become vegan. Everything I know about the vegan community so far is horrible. Partially because of how you guys talk about others. I just think it's really rude and as much as I would like to help I don't really want to be a part of a group that seemingly hates on everyone else. I mean, there are so many people I know of different religions and they too respect the choice of others' to believe in other things. Athiests and Christians can get along no problemo and respect the choice of the other to think in a different way. So why can't you?

  94. You know, Mic, at 52 I started on a plant based diet because of health. Not moral or ethical reasons. BP, sugar and cholesterol all high with a one in three chance of having a heart attack or stroke. I lost 25 lbs, and nothing changed. WTF? My doctor actually stated "I think we should start blaming your parents". So diet vs. genetics is my last option before turning to pharmaceuticals and finding out what else could be wrong. Three weeks so far on my whole food diet (no SOS) and I feel I've made the adjustment very well. No aches, no pains and I'm peeing like I'm 20 again! Next checkup in a month and a half. We'll see then the true effects, and I'll post the changes. Now, although health concerns were the catalyst, the facts/arguments you present have swayed my beliefs and made me question my morals when it comes to an omnivorous diet. Even if my tests come back unchanged, I truly believe I cannot go back to the way I was eating. You've taught me to embrace my own actions and consider how the choices I make affect the planet as a whole. It's still early in my journey, but I cannot ignore your validations of a vegan lifestyle, and have gained much clarity towards exactly why people do not eat animals or their byproducts. Although I am still reconciling what I have been taught vs. what I have now learned, I truly thank you for the enlightenment and forcing me to gauge my actions as a responsible, compassionate human being. Again, thank you. Cheers!

  95. How can you respect people who, knowing you are vegan STILL discuss cooking and eating meat in front of you. They have totally just disrespected you!!

  96. clothing isn't a personal choice either (as it will cause an immediate reaction in all viewing you): if you wear short shorts with your banana pointing towards the pocket or wear a gaping cleavage revealing top it's not innocuous.

    Joker suit for a business meeting or a toga in your work is generally only good for halloween.

    You can not only attract attention to yourself but also tangibly affect other people with your clothes. Like wear a bulletproof vest and a face mask in a public building – good luck convincing others that it's just your personal choice.

  97. vegan cheese isn't so bad tho riiiight?

  98. So outlaw animal products?

  99. Yes! Thank you Mic! We SHOULD be eating our pets! Finally, they'll get to do something useful besides lay around all day using up my A/C. And we should be able to make slippers out of their fur. I'd have a closet full of slippers by now.

  100. You are a dream

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