On the Austrian Vegetarian Study
Researchers at the Medical University of Graz, in Austria, recently published a study that included an analysis of vegetarian diets (available in PDF here). Lots of European papers (and a few in the U.S. as well) are reporting on the study with titles like, "Vegetarians are 'less healthy' and have a poorer quality of life than meat-eaters". Frequent D&O reader and my husband, JH, responds to the study:
. . . It's worth noting that this study has some pretty significant limitations: it only followed 330 vegetarians, all of them Austrian, and apparently didn't attain a representative sample, as over 75% of the subjects for the study were women.
An independent meta-analysis published in the peer-reviewed journal Public Health Nutrition in 2012 concluded that "vegetarian diets have not shown any adverse effects on health" though they do note that "restrictive and monotonous vegetarian diets may result in nutrient deficiencies with deleterious effects on health." So, vegetarians do of course have to be smart about what they eat. But then, so does everyone else.