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New study shows nearly 80% of Gen Z shares this one dietary habit — and it's growing in popularity

Research supports their choices.

Research supports their choices.

Photo Credit: iStock

Studies continue to reveal that Gen Z is more concerned about the effects of human-driven pollution than older generations. 

Not only are younger people more concerned, but they are also more willing to take action to help address the problem. One new study has shown that 79% of the Gen Z population chooses to go meatless at least once a week, while 65% say they want a more plant-forward diet.

There is a significant link between livestock farming, particularly factory farming, and the continued overheating of our planet. One widely cited study says that animal agriculture accounts for 16.5% of all human-caused planet-overheating gases, similar to the total output from all global transportation.

Animal agriculture also accounts for 65% of the world's nitrous oxide pollution. Nitrous oxide has heat-trapping capabilities almost 300 times as severe as carbon dioxide. 

And as plant-forward diets become more fashionable for young people, there is a growing awareness that you don't have to cut out meat entirely to make positive steps toward more environmentally conscious choices. "Flexitarian" diets are now becoming more popular than full-on vegetarian or vegan diets.

The research supports these choices. One study showed that if the biggest meat-eaters in the United Kingdom simply switched to low-meat diets, the overall impact would be equivalent to taking 8 million gas-powered cars off the road.

At least one group, however, seems to have little interest in flexitarian diets. Men aged 50 to 65, a group that makes up less than 12% of the total population, are responsible for half of the total beef consumption in the United States — a choice that has devastating consequences for their health and the health of our planet. 

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