Talk:Veganism/Archive 4

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Davis section

A little while back, User:Viriditas changed the "ethical criticisms" section from:

Steven Davis, professor of animal science at Oregon State University, claims that the number of wild animals killed in crop production is greater than those killed in ruminant-pasture production and therefore eating meat causes less harm to animals than a vegan diet.

To a previous version:

Steven Davis, professor of animal science at Oregon State University, argues that the number of wild animals killed in crop production is greater than those killed in ruminant-pasture production. Whenever a tractor goes through a field to plow, disc, cultivate, apply fertilizer and/or pesticide, and harvest, animals are killed. Davis gives a small sampling of field animals in the U. S. that are threatened by intensive crop production, such as: opossum, rock dove, house sparrow, European starling, black rat, Norway rat, house mouse, Chukar, grey partridge, ring-necked pheasant, wild turkey, cottontail rabbit, gray-tailed vole, and numerous species of amphibians. In one small example, an alfalfa harvest caused a 50% decline in the gray-tailed vole population. According to Davis, if all of the cropland in the U. S. were used to produce crops for a vegan diet, it is estimated that around 1.8 billion animals would be killed annually.

with the edit summary "Restoring Davis' argument. Please stop removing it." I think I was the one who changed it to the first version with the intent of making the entire article more concise. I believe the longer version of this section is unnecessary; particularly the giant list of animal species, the specific actions done by tractors, and the uber-detailing of Davis' argument. I propose reverting to the more concise version that doesn't have all the fluffing up of Davis' position, yet still retains the essential force of his argument. If readers want the full details, they can read the cited articles. KellenT 11:32, 29 May 2007 (UTC)

I don't particularly like the long lists of the abilities of tractors or the various and sundry species threatened by these multi-capable tractors. I think the rest of the information is interesting and useful, though. I'd propose eliminating the "field sample" sentence and condensing the bit about tractors to read something like "Animals are killed when a tractor is used in a field". Ultimately, it's not a big deal - as you note, interested parties can read the cited articles. Cheers, Skinwalker 12:55, 29 May 2007 (UTC)
I find that sentence completely redundant with "wild animals killed in crop production." Previously, I believe this section about Davis was even longer and the rebuttal bit by Mathenny was longer as well; the extended bits didn't really do a better job of communicating the fact that (a) Davis asserts that veganism is not necessarily more ethical due # of deaths based on his calculations (b) other people think Davis is miscalculating and that veganism (or whatever) still comes out on top of standard meat eating. If we detail Davis' specific numerical claims, we end up having to put in Matheny's specific numerical counterclaims and we get into obsessing over this one exchange of articles rather than getting to the point of the respective articles and giving them relative weight to the entire article we're writing. Kind of like how the cattleman's study section got out of hand because there was a tiny little media frenzy and the section here covered (a) misreported statement (b) angry response 1, 2, 3 (c) corrected statement; in the end the whole section was removed because the point of the statements (both by cattleman's author and responders) was "vegans should make sure they and their children get their vitamins." KellenT 18:19, 29 May 2007 (UTC)
Meh, you're probably right. This article is in good shape currently, and I'd hate to have it degenerate into angry number-tossing yet again. I endorse your version. Cheers, Skinwalker 22:29, 29 May 2007 (UTC)
I disagree. Davis' argument requires at least some of these examples, and the conclusion is essential to quantify the problem; Kellen's version removed it. And, I don't see it as "fluffed" up any more than the rest of this article. Let's face it, testimonials by Carl Lewis sourced to a vegetarian book aren't exactly neutral, and I can find dozens of other problems with the article. I'm surprised we are talking about removing scientific data published in peer-review journals. I can see that the entire criticism section has now been buried in the article, so the casual reader will not be able to find it. I also see this as a pretext to splitting the sections off of this article and then claiming that we can find the criticism on the related pages, but not this one. I've seen it done before. Finallly, I do not see a redundancy but the description of an argument that represents a valid criticism of the Vegan philsophy. Due to this repeated removal of criticism, I intend to restore a separate criticism section to this article with the best sources I can find, and if that section gets too large, I'll split it off to Criticism of Veganism or some such title. I hope that solves the problem. —Viriditas | Talk 01:09, 30 May 2007 (UTC)
  1. Please do not add a separate "criticisms" section or create a separate "criticisms" article; what we should have is an article with integrated subjects. The existing criticisms have not been buried; they have been moved to their relevant sections -- the davis crit to the section on resources, the jarvis bit to the "ethics" section. Please also see Wikipedia:Criticism#Criticism_in_a_.22Criticism.22_section on this point.
  2. As for the Carl Lewis bit, I totally agree. I have been working through the article slowly (if you have it on your watchlist, you'll see that) and adding cited material for each and every statement. The bits to do are to clean up is the (awful) "health" section, and the bottom half of the "resources" section.
  3. I agree that Davis' criticism is a valid angle from which one might want to examine veganism. However, I disagree that the specifics are actually essential to his argument. His point is "vegans think they're harming fewer animals but they're wrong." This is what my version concisely communicates.
KellenT 01:48, 30 May 2007 (UTC)
Integrated subjects are wonderful on their own, but criticism articles exist on their own as well. Please peruse Category:Criticisms for a brief sample of philosophical criticism. There will always be overlap between a criticism section and generalized subject headings. Regarding Davis, have you read the two articles cited: Davis, 2001, Proceedings of the Third Congress of the European Society for Agricultural and Food Ethics and Davis, 2003, Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics? And just so you are aware of the situation, I am also responsible for including Matheny's rebuttal. I don't recall if you were editing the article at the time, so you may not understand that I attempted to present both sides fairly. In any case, a new criticism article is perfectly acceptable, and if it is created, a new, separate section entitled "Criticism of Veganism" written in summary style and with a link to the main article, will be added to Veganism. This will, I hope, solve the problem of editors repeatedly hiding, burying, and removing criticism of this subject. Your "version" removes important aspects of Davis' argument, fails to quantify his conclusion, and robs it of its full meaning. If you had read the papers, you would have realized that it is already in a generalized form. What you are proposing is actually a violation of guidelines concerning qualifying and quantifying information, which is essential for good, encyclopedic style. And this is an encyclopedia first and foremost, not an advertisement or platform for philosophical, religious, and political beliefs. Now, with that said, let me also congratulate you on your work. I upgraded the article rating from "Start" to "B-Class" mostly due to your hard work. I think it is important to recognize that you (and others of course) are responsible for improving this article. —Viriditas | Talk 03:10, 30 May 2007 (UTC)
Yes, I have read the submission to Environmental Ethics as reproduced here. I don't understand what "important aspects" of his argument you think I'm removing. The specific species threatened by intensive agriculture aren't important to his general point that some animals are threatened, his specific calculations themselves aren't important to his general point that more animals are killed in intensive crop production (according to him) than in pasture-based production. Can you clarify what I'm missing here? I do realize that his argument is presented in summary form; that's how it's supposed to be. KellenT 03:19, 30 May 2007 (UTC)
WP:MOS recommends using "accurate measurements whenever possible" and using "specific information".[1] And, the particularly important introductory material that you also propose removing is sourced to the Proceedings of the Third Congress of the European Society for Agricultural and Food Ethics, not to EE. I think it is necessary to represent Davis' argument with the accurate specifics of "how" and "how many". Direct blockquotes can be used as well, although I thought my version was preferable to taking up so much space. If you would like me to quote Davis directly, I will do so. —Viriditas | Talk 03:41, 30 May 2007 (UTC)
If the "particularly important introductary material" is this:
Whenever a tractor goes through a field to plow, disc, cultivate, apply fertilizer and/or pesticide, and harvest, animals are killed.
I strongly disagree that it's important. In fact, I would say that it's blazingly obvious, and also that it's included in a much less pedantic way in the first version. However, having re-read the Davis piece, I realize that we've misrepresented his argument here. A better way to phrase it might be:
Steven Davis, professor of animal science at Oregon State University, claims that up to 450 million more wild animals would be killed if all US cropland was converted to producing vegan food than if half was converted to ruminant-pasture production and the other half used for crop production, and therefore that eating meat in this case would cause less harm than eating a vegan diet.
Would this be a more acceptable version? It includes the greater of the numbers that Davis presents, and is more precise as to his argument than even the original version of the paragraph. KellenT 17:15, 30 May 2007 (UTC)
I think what you consider "obvious" may be based on your own personal beliefs. We need to to remain true to arguments by presenting them clearly and without bias. I have no objection to generalizing the list of field animals to let's say, birds, mammals, and amphibians, as long as we reduce the other obvious lists in the article, like 'Notable animal products include meat, poultry, seafood, eggs, dairy products, honey, fur, leather, wool, and silk. Common animal by-products include gelatin, lanolin, rennet, whey, beeswax and shellac." We can also reduce the obvious statement from The American Dietetic Association and Dietitians of Canada regarding "well-planned vegan and other types of vegetarian diets", which states that they "are appropriate for all stages of the life cycle, including during pregnancy, lactation, infancy, childhood, and adolescence. Vegetarian diets offer a number of nutritional benefits, including lower levels of saturated fat, cholesterol, and animal protein as well as higher levels of carbohydrates, fiber, magnesium, potassium, folate, and antioxidants such as vitamins C and E and phytochemicals. Vegetarians have been reported to have lower body mass indices than nonvegetarians, as well as lower rates of death from ischemic heart disease; vegetarians also show lower blood cholesterol levels; lower blood pressure; and lower rates of hypertension, type 2 diabetes, and prostate and colon cancer." Davis' example is important ("alfalfa harvest caused a 50% decline in the gray-tailed vole population) and his conclusion is essential: "According to Davis, if all of the cropland in the U. S. were used to produce crops for a vegan diet, it is estimated that around 1.8 billion animals would be killed annually." It is important to summarize Davis' position accurately with numbers. I don't understand why you keep trying to remove it when the rest of the article represents facts and figures to illustrate points in every single section, like "Polls have variously reported vegans to be between 0.2%[3] and 1.3%[5] of the US population, and between 0.25%[4] and 0.4%[6] of the UK population...A 2002 Time/CNN poll found that 4% of American adults consider themselves vegetarians, and 5% of self-described vegetarians consider themselves vegans.[3] This suggests that 0.2% of American adults are vegans. Also in 2002, the UK Food Standards Agency reported that 5% of respondents self-identified as vegetarian or vegan. Though 29% of that 5% said they avoided "all animal products" only 5% reported avoiding dairy.[4] Based on these figures, approximately 0.25% of the UK population follow a vegan diet. In 2005, The Times estimated there were 250,000 vegans in Britain, which suggests around 0.4% of the UK population is vegan..." So, if you want to remove the information from Davis' argument because you feel it is too long, we can remove the information about Vegan animal products, diets, and other statistics. —Viriditas | Talk 02:49, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

Somebody else feel free to jump in here. Obviously Viriditas and I have differing opinions on how this should be approached, so hearing from other editors is probably the only way this will get resolved. KellenT 05:12, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

Is comparing modern crop production with pasture ruminants valid? For example, isn't most beef now in the US corn-fed beef? I guess I should read up on the source here. -- Madeleine 22:57, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
For that matter, is this notable? Is this a classic criticism of veganism? Or is this one guy, publishing one paper, that argues with one particular motivation for veganism (it is aimed to address Tom Regan's book, A Case for Animal Rights)? If this is a widespread criticism of veganism, it needs to have a broader base than this one paper and not mention Davis; if it is not widespread I believe it needs to be removed, wikipedia can't turn into a list of every argument ever made against particular version of a general topic. Madeleine 23:14, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
His webpage is here. This "one guy" is more qualified to discuss this issue than any other source in the article. You haven't shown that Davis has any "particular motivation for veganism". And, small, specialized topics (criticism of veganism) do not necessarily need to have a "broader base", nor could they have one. Your arguments for removing a criticism of veganism by a published, academic expert in animal science does not appear to be supported. —Viriditas | Talk
I'd suggest reading both the above linked davis piece and the matheny rebuttal. Basically Davis is proposing a theoretical system of agriculture and does some calculations from which he suggests this system might do less harm than a vegan diet. Matheny replies that Davis miscalculated, distorts "harm," and notes that in any case Davis' system is a completely different from the current US system, as you point out. KellenT 23:14, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
The Davis piece
The Matheny defense KellenT 23:17, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
It's not an extremely widespread criticism, but it is the only attack I've read on the idea that eating vegan causes less harm to animals. It's also part of an attack made on "vegan hypocricy" in which the attacker illustrates that animals die during plant harvests; this is supposed to indict the idea that vegans never harm animals. Few vegans would take that position, I suspect, but the attack exists nonetheless; I recall seeing posters in which someone had made this attack on campus back when I was at university. KellenT 02:24, 2 June 2007 (UTC)
Okay, I see this information (including the Matheny rebuttal) was added a long time ago by Viriditas (16 Dec 2005). RexNL reduced the size a lot as part of a general clean-up Sep 2-3 2006. Viriditas restores it back to the full version on 22 Dec 2006. Jan 14 2007, Kellen takes it back to the concise form. May 24 2007, Viriditas adds it back in. Kellen takes it to the talk page.
I don't find the defense for including this material convincing. This isn't like a statement from government associations, this was an opinion piece, written in the first person, I'm suspicious about whether it got much scientific peer review on the claims made, and it has a plausible rebuttal. ISI Web of Knowledge only found one article citing it. Steven L. Davis does not appear to be a well known person. While the argument is interesting, perhaps we should dismiss it as being both a very minority opinion and very questionable whether his analysis was done correctly. I think if it deserves mention at all (and the argument is just as applicable to Vegetarianism), it is only to give some sense of balance to the article, but I believe giving it this much attention is giving the issue undue weight. -- Madeleine 02:54, 2 June 2007 (UTC)
You didn't address the issue under discussion, instead preferring to dismiss it out of hand. Davis was responding to vegan claims; he was not presenting an opinion piece, nor are your "suspicions" borne out by any evidence. The publisher, the Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics, explicitly states its scope: The Journal "welcomes articles on ethical issues confronting agriculture, food production and environmental concerns. The goal of this journal is to create a forum for discussion of moral issues arising from actual or projected social policies in regard to a wide range of questions. Among these are ethical questions concerning the responsibilities of agricultural producers, the assessment of technological changes affecting farm populations, the utilization of farmland and other resources, the deployment of intensive agriculture, the modification of ecosystems, animal welfare, the professional responsibilities of agrologists, veterinarians, or food scientists, the use of biotechnology, the safety, availability, and affordability of food. The journal will publish scientific articles that are relevant to ethical issues, as well as relevant philosophical papers. In addition to substantial papers, the journal will also publish brief discussion pieces." I wrote and included the "plausible rebuttal" to present balance, not to choose sides. Perhaps you don't understand that what you consider plausible or not is irrelevant. You are also misunderstanding the WP:UNDUE weight clause. The defense of veganism as justified by the "least harm" principle is the minority position. —Viriditas | Talk 21:55, 2 June 2007 (UTC)
What is plausible or not is relevant. To quote Carl Sagan here, "extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence". The claim that a vegan diet kills more animals is somewhat extraordinary, and I'm finding the "proof" pretty weak. This isn't like a scientific journal article.
  • It's written in the first person. Eg. "As I was thinking about the vegan conclusion, I remembered my childhood on the farm ..."
  • I looks like a flawed analysis to me. His calculations are made on a per-area basis with the assumption that an equivalent area of land would be used for either diet.
  • It makes some outlandish proposals, like eating elephants or large draft horses.
This article is one guy's essay, it's obviously falling into the "philosophical" rather than "scientific" side of the fence. That is why I don't think it got the sort of scientific peer review I'd need to accept this extraordinary conclusion (that vegan diets kill more animals) as worth mentioning. Sure, I characterized it as an opinion piece, but you can call it a part of the "discussion of moral issues". Either way, it's one guy's questionable analysis.
That said, the material can be included, but I think it could be done without reference to this paper and its extraordinary conclusion. Could say something like "Crop production itself can kill many animals, as intensive cultivation of fields with tractors and machinery kills many animals living within." Leave out the claim that more animals are killed one way or the other unless we have more evidence for it? -- Madeleine 22:51, 2 June 2007 (UTC)
1)Davis' claims don't meet the criteria for "extraordinary"; he's responding to Regan's defense of veganism which vegan proponents use. The extraordinary claim, in this case is that the vegan diet causes less harm. 2)The style of the paper is not in dispute, and I showed that it meets the scope of the peer-reviewed journal. 3) Your repeated dismissals of Davis' paper as "implausible", "flawed", etc. is your opinion. 4) It is a philosophical essay that addresses the philosophical implications of Regan's claims in terms of the philosophy of veganism. In other words, it's entirely topical, relevant, and acceptable. This is on par with other claims made by vegans, such as their position that "animals have their own interests and therefore it is not ethical for humans to use animals in any way they see fit", etc. Nor is this any different from legal theorist Gary L. Francione's argument that "sentience in animals is sufficient to grant them moral consideration and that adopting veganism should be regarded as the "baseline" action taken by people concerned with animal rights." If you are looking for extraordinary claims, please look no further than these. —Viriditas | Talk 23:02, 2 June 2007 (UTC)
The mere presence of a paper in an academic journal doesn't make its claims scientifically strong, especially when that journal has a large focus of philosophy and moral discussion. A scientific claim that "more animals are killed with the vegan diet" is very different from any ethical claims advocating veganism, it is a claim of fact and I do not see that this one has sufficient evidence. But you know what? I'm just giving my opinion here, and you're giving yours. It'll take others to form a consensus. -- Madeleine 23:13, 2 June 2007 (UTC)
I'm familiar with the standards of evidence, thank you, and I never claimed what you stated above. There is a second link to Davis' rebuttal of Regan's least harm principle, published at the Proceedings of the Third Congress of the European Society for Agricultural and Food Ethics. I can also quote supporters of Davis' ideas in reliable secondary sources, people like Sally Fallon and others. —Viriditas | Talk 23:25, 2 June 2007 (UTC)
Okay; will you accept Davis' argument as a mainly theoretical/philosophical one? If so, I think we should present Tom Regan's argument in the "ethics" section, then we can present the Davis/Matheny double-punch as an attack/rebuttal. As a philosophical argument, Davis' intention is to present a theoretical situation in which the "least harm" principle might lead to a non-vegan conclusion. I assert again (as above) that the specific numbers and species he mentions aren't particularly important to the 'meat' of his argument. KellenT 23:59, 2 June 2007 (UTC)
I support including Regan's argument, and I'm surprised it's not already in the article. Quantification, such as numbers and species (species can be condensed), are important to Davis' argument and his qualifications (degrees in Ruminant Nutrition, Nutrition, Animal Science, and interest in bioethics[2]) support his topical expertise. —Viriditas | Talk 00:09, 3 June 2007 (UTC)
Just noticed something in those specifics ... "In one small example, an alfalfa harvest caused a 50% decline in the gray-tailed vole population." -- isn't alfalfa used to feed animals, in general not used as a crop for human consumption? I just thought that was interesting. -- Madeleine 00:46, 3 June 2007 (UTC)
Read the article on alfalfa. Are you saying that animals like horses should not be fed? I don't see how the example alters the point; crop production harms animals. The question is whether or not it causes less harm than ruminant-pasture production. The eutrophication potential, aquatic toxicity potential, and water use effect potential from crops like soybeans hasn't even been addressed. —Viriditas | Talk 03:47, 3 June 2007 (UTC)
I just thought it was a bad example to be using, at least for the encyclopedia summary of the argument. You seem to know a lot about this, so -- what about the food-production-per-area issue? Is there an answer for that? -- Madeleine 04:22, 3 June 2007 (UTC)
What kind of answer are you looking for? Both arguments should be expanded, which is why I recommend developing a Criticism of veganism article. —Viriditas | Talk 21:48, 3 June 2007 (UTC)
As a comment on the argument, this ignores the increase in "pest" species that has been caused by large-scale crop agriculture. Only focusing on the animals that have been harmed by this process ignores the animals such as mice, rats, aphids, caterpillars and weevils that have benefited from agriculture. TimVickers 18:37, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
The premise, is that large-scale, American crop production systems kill "millions of animals of the field every year to provide products used in vegan diets." Davis et al. do not show how mice, rats, and weevils benefit. On the contrary, the numbers available to animal and agricultural science shows that they die in numbers close to 50%. What sources are you using? —Viriditas | Talk 20:34, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
I'm making the point that the pests such as the Boll weevil and the Colorado potato beetle benefit from monoculture, as vast tracts of land are used to grow their food. This allows their populations to grow past natural levels, thus becoming pests. TimVickers 23:25, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
So are you saying that more animals benefit from monoculture, and we should allow the pest population to proliferate? Aren't pests invasive, and don't they displace other species, thereby lowering the overall biodiversity? So what is gained? You are saying two species benefit, while Davis, Edge, Johnson, Polloard and Helton, Tew, Macdonald and Rands show otherwise. Davis lists more than a dozen species that are killed during field activities. You raise a number of interesting questions that exceed the scope of this argument, which primarily concerns itself with veganism. How do vegans deal with the concept of pests? And if they deal with pests like any other farmer (which I assume that they do based on what they consider "as far as is possible and practical") then isn't your point moot? Can we assume that vegans would deal with pests in the same way (but with different methods) that non-vegans would? And again, what sources are you using? Please give me an example of a vegan farm that manages pests such as boll weevil's and beetles. —Viriditas | Talk 23:43, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
The point is that you get different answers if you count total numbers of species - where monoculture will reduce diversity - or look at total numbers of animals, where the negative effects of monoculture on some species are balanced by the positive effects on other species, which we call pests. TimVickers 17:30, 5 June 2007 (UTC)
Neither Davis nor Matheney discuss pests. What study are you referring to? Davis does mention in passing that his mixed pasture/ruminant food production model would result in a "habitat for many species of animals and insects". The studies discussed above primarily concern the number of field animals that are killed to produce food crops for humans. —Viriditas | Talk 19:14, 5 June 2007 (UTC)
Never mind. As you don't seem to be getting the point I am trying to make, I'm going to stop my attempts to find different ways of explaining it. TimVickers 17:50, 6 June 2007 (UTC)
I think I got your point the first time around. But, I'm trying to apply it to this topic. Care to help? —Viriditas | Talk 07:05, 7 June 2007 (UTC)
Monocultures are generally not helpful to the diversity that a healthy ecosystem has always been defined by. Large numbers of prey species may be killed as pests during production or in the actual harvests, but it is predator species that are worse affected, as they recover population more slowly. This leads to infestations of pests in subsequent generations. The practices of organic farming tend to reduce the impact on predator species (even if they don't reduce harvesting casualties), and are important to a vegan lifestyle that does not want continued and growing dependency on chemical pest reduction. Organic farming has come under attack as being also unsustainable as a standalone requirement, leading to a local-food movement ( has details on why local is important). Harvesting ruminants is generally done from feedlots, so that even if the entire rest of the lifespan were pasture-based grazing, there will almost always be some grain used in the large-scale production of meat products. Many animals are fed for much of their lives on harvested crops, and the rules of bioconcentration that make meat so nutritious demand that about ten times as much food is used than the meat that results. This same rule applies to hormones and medications applied to animals through medicated feeds ( has a biased, humourous perspective on this!). I have a hard time imagining that more animals are killed to directly produce food for any/all people than to produce food for animals to feed carnivorous people. I've tried to quickly find some citations more publicly acceptable than "I remember this from 8th grade science class", and found that Canada has 6,695,886,000 livestock animals (total all species) which require feed, and of this, 94,238,000 head of beef cattle (doesn't include dairy cows that will probably end up beefed) which EACH require .736 tonnes of grain and 3.434 tonnes of roughage annually (, all to produce something like 1/2 tonne per cow. I challenge even the most gluttonous, hardcore vegan to eat .736 tonnes of (ANY/ALL) food in one year (and ignore the additional roughage, though many seem to think this is what vegans eat anyway) and have the same requirements as a single cow. Cows freegrazing probably have less cultivated feed requirements, but I am unconvinced that they are a more efficient or less harmful method of human sustenance than direct food consumption. ( 19:22, 28 June 2007 (UTC))

Jarvis criticism

I would like to remove this "criticism of vegetarianism" from the article:

Other critics have questioned the validity of the ethical claims put forward by vegans, stating that "the belief that all life is sacred can lead to absurdities such as allowing mosquitoes to spread malaria, or vipers to run loose on one's premises."[1]

Not many vegans or vegetarians ever argue that "all life is sacred" and it seems to me that the entire Jarvis attack on what he calls "ideologic vegetarianism" is based upon misunderstanding or conflation and that his critique is not really relevant to veganism, but possibly only to something like Jainism (I don't know if even that would be accurate). KellenT 21:16, 29 May 2007 (UTC)

It seems like you would like to remove all criticism of veganism from this article. This tells me that the only solution is to create Criticism of Veganism and add a subsection summary on this page. I don't see any other alternative. —Viriditas | Talk 02:55, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
I am not interested in removing "all criticisms" but this particular argument is attacking a straw man. KellenT 05:09, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
The criticism seems to pertain to veganism in the context of the Seventh-day Adventist Church (SDA), which as you know, is the most studied vegetarian group. Jarvis appears to be a former SDA:
"Most people who categorize vegetarians identify at least five different kinds...vegans, no animal foods...the "health foodist" may turn to veganism. In my opinion, it is at this point that vegetarianism becomes hazardous, especially for children...A 2-month-old boy died because his mother, following the invalid recommendation for colic in Adelle Davis's Let's Have Healthy Children, overdosed him with potassium. In a television interview, the mother said that, as she became increasingly estranged toward conventional medicine, she had adopted vegetarianism and then veganism...Despite the record longevity now enjoyed by people in the developed nations, vegetarian zealots within the church caught up in the doomsday hysteria of the 1990s have decided that the time has come to give up all animal foods and are fervidly preaching veganism...A continual problem for SDAs who espouse the "back to Eden" ideology is the absence of a non-animal food source of vitamin B12. A vegetarian Registered Dietitian who wrote a column for a church periodical asked me if I thought vegans could derive vitamin B12 from organic vegetables that were unwashed before ingestion. I opined that it would be better to eat animal foods than fecal residues. She agreed...The data suggest that most SDAs are reasonable in their approach to vegetarianism. In the 1970s, the SDAHS revealed that only one percent were vegans...
Viriditas | Talk
Huh, interesting. It makes a lot more sense in the SDA context. Perhaps his criticism would fit better in the section regarding religous veganism. KellenT 01:36, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
In looking in to this a bit more, I can find suggestions that Jarvis is SDA, but I think in order to include his criticism, we'll need to include a SDA (and other religous groups) reason for veganism, since that's what he's attacking. We have references to religous groups sometimes being vegan, but not any of their arguments for veganism from scripture/whatever. KellenT 22:46, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
This is all established criticism. I couldn't help notice that someone has removed all references to religion in the current article. Don't worry, it will be added back in. Traditional religious justification for becoming a pure vegatarian, including Jainism, Buddhism, Hinduism, and Seventh-Day Adventists is easy to source, as are other influences from groups like the straight-edge music scene. I can even give you a quote: "...for many individuals, vegetarianism and veganism may displace an established religion in that they feature their own forms of conversion, revealed experience, and mores." (Contemporary American Religion) —Viriditas | Talk 22:24, 2 June 2007 (UTC)

Criticisms clearinghouse

Some "criticisms of veganism." Can basically be broken down as arguments against each of the "motivations." My comments in italics.


  • "Vegans don't have a balanced diet" or "vegans can't get enough of vitamin/mineral X" Dealt with in the "health effects" section
  • Lindsay Allen comments. See cattlemen's section above for the full text. Summary: eat a "well planned" diet. Dealt with in "health effects" section
  • "Vegan diet harms children" 2 cases: (1) vitamin deficiency is dealt with in "vegan pregnancies" (2) cases where vegan parents basically starved their children are not currently included in article; this generally not due to veganism but to non-feeding, still possibly deserves mention


  • Steven Davis crit. Basically attacks premise that a vegan diet causes less harm than a theoretical diet including meat. Included in article, haggling about wording above.


  • William Jarvis crit attacking idea that vegans think "all life is sacred." I contend this is a strawman, but this is currently included in the article.
  • Standard responses to "animal rights" or "animal welfare" ideas; animals have no ethical standing, eating animals is natural, etc Not currently included in article.

If there are other major criticisms, please add them here so they can be included. KellenT 05:34, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

I've reverted repetition of the criticisms. The paragraph on possible deficiency already contained the information repeated 2 or more times below the graph'. Abe Froman 22:43, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
Perhaps you haven't understood the structure of the article. The para under "health effects" is an intro summary paragraph of the "specific nutrients" subsection below. KellenT 23:13, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
  • Hypocrisy; vegans don't actually eliminate all animal products. This criticism isn't actually advanced, but it is responded to by vegan outreach quote in 'animal products' section. KellenT 23:23, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

Sorry, but this doesn't even begin to address Criticism of veganism. Try Ecologist; Oct2001, Vol. 31 Issue 8, p20, 4p for starters. Furthermore, Dr. Lindsay Allen's [3] statements about vegan diets harming children were reported by a variety of reliable secondary sources, and represent her scientific research findings concerning 500 schoolchildren in rural Kenya. Essentially, Lindsay concluded that "animal-source foods should not be withheld from children, pregnant or lactating women." Dr. Frankie Phillips of the British Dietetic Association agreed with her findings, but Tom Sanders, head of research at the department of nutrition and dietetics at King's College, London, merely recommended caution. A related study by the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition found that 30% of UK vegans were "severely deficient" in vitamin B12. I can keep going like this. —Viriditas | Talk 22:45, 2 June 2007 (UTC)

If you'll read the discussion of Allen's statements above, you'll see that she was originally misquoted that her statement was essentially "vegans must supplement for b12." I encourage you to add cited sources here so we can formulate more complete criticisms in the article. Also other aspects of attack on the idea of veganism would be interesting. KellenT 00:11, 3 June 2007 (UTC)
I read the discussion and don't see why it was removed. I also don't characterize dietary study results and related criticisms as "attacks". —Viriditas | Talk 03:38, 3 June 2007 (UTC)
I was using the word "attack" in a philosophical sense; Davis' article, e.g. is an attack on the concept of "least harm implies veganism"; I also wasn't referring to Allen, but inviting addition of other 'attacks' not included above. As for Allen, her comments about veganism were removed as per Talk:Veganism/Archive08#pregnancies_section_cleanup. In any case, I explicitly mentioned Allen in the above list. What I was looking for in this section were other avenues of criticism/attack/whateveryouwanttocallit that we haven't mentioned at all. KellenT 19:10, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
The thing is, "attacks" shouldn't be in the article: this isn't the place for them. What we are dealing with are criticisms of veganism. Davis's position, as an example, is based on Regan's conclusion which favors a vegan diet - he's not attacking anything or anyone; neither was Allen. I think viewing criticism as an "attack" is very problematic. —Viriditas | Talk 20:29, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
You've misunderstood again; 'attack' in the way I am using it does not imply any negatives, it only implies that someone is critically examining an issue from a particular angle. But anyway. Got any additional criticisms to add to the list? KellenT 20:52, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
I haven't misunderstood anything. None of these criticisms can be described as an attack, which in the context you are using it refers to strong, adverse criticism. Your description of the critics above does not appear accurate. You describe criticism by Davis as "basically attacks premise that a vegan diet causes less harm than a theoretical diet including meat" when in fact he accepts the premise and goes from there. I'm reading Davis's article again and don't see any attacks. Here are his conclusions: 1)"Vegan diets are not bloodless diets. Millions of animals of the field die every year to provide products used in vegan diets. 2) Several alternative food production models exist that may kill fewer animals than the vegan model. 3) More research is needed to obtain accurate estimations of the number of field animals killed in different crop production systems. 4) Humans may be morally obligated to consume a diet from plant based plus pasture-forage-ruminant systems." None of these can be construed as attacks. —Viriditas | Talk 21:01, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
Example: Davis is attacking Regan's premise that 'least harm' necessarily implies a vegan diet. This is using 'attack' in a philosophical (or, hell, a computer security) sense. It doesn't mean Davis has to hate Regan or veganism; his paper is still an attack on this conclusion. How about you list these other criticisms here, or put them in the main article, and if it requires a new article, so be it. KellenT 21:00, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
But he's not. Quoting Matheny: "In his article, "Least Harm," Steven Davis (2003) accepts the common moral intuition that we should cause the least harm (the “least harm principle”) but challenges the empirical claim that vegetarian diets do in fact cause the least harm." —Viriditas | Talk 21:03, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
Uh, exactly. The way in which he's attacking Regan's conclusion is through his by "challeng[ing] the empirical claim that vegetarian diets do in fact cause the least harm." KellenT 21:06, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
Oh, I said "premise" above. Perhpas that caused some confusion. Should be "conclusion." KellenT 21:06, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
Kellen, sorry but I think using the word 'attack' is a bit prejudicial. I suggest you use 'criticizing', 'disputing', 'challenging'. To qualify as 'attacking', in this context, I would expect to see a very serious effort being made to refute every single point of the opponent. Being criticial is not the same as attacking. And, using a word like 'attacking' does not help bridge the gap. Lsi john 21:13, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
Davis disputes the premise that veganism kills less animals. Attack, dispute, debate, disagree, whatever. Why are we caring about this? I'm sorry, it really looks like this is sidetracking the conversation by nitpicking on Kellen's choice of words (words that are not actually in the article itself). Madeleine 21:25, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
Nope. He doesn't even do that. He says, "several alternative food production models exist that may kill fewer animals than the vegan model." Davis is using and supporting Regan's least harm argument, but reaching a different conclusion. I'm really tired of the us vs. them mentality you and others are promoting. —Viriditas | Talk 21:32, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
He questions it? Does this make you happy? And why are you persistently conflating "Regan's least harm principle" with "Regan's conclusion that a vegan diet satisfies the LHP" (the latter is what Davis is attacking disputing "questioning", which is what I believe I wrote). You seem reluctant to compromise on anything anyone says, right down to their choice of words on a damn talk page. -- Madeleine 21:49, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
Davis questions the validity of Regan's conclusion that the vegan diet would cause the least harm to animals, and proposes that humans may be morally obligated to consume a mixed diet of vegetables and animal products. Davis doesn't attack vegans, veganism, or the LHP; he only shows that the vegan diet may not cause the least harm. On the other hand, Matheny (not an animal scientist like Davis, but an ecomonist) does attack Davis's argument, mostly with vigorous handwaving. —Viriditas | Talk 22:05, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

Please add additional criticisms! Thanks. KellenT 21:37, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

You already noted the childhood issue, and it's sort of covered already within the nutrition section, maybe the pregnancy section could get expanded to cover "pregnancy and childhood"? or even "pregnancy, childhood, and adolescence"? That is, assuming these all have the same nutritional cautions / recommended supplements. It's good to address these things, I suspect this is a major cause for concern for a lot of people. Madeleine 01:03, 5 June 2007 (UTC)


we need something like this:

The Vegan Six Food Groups

kel len, judging by the above dialogue (and our recent editing conflicts), you seem to aggressively control this article, are you vegan?

"sufficient amounts of all the essential nutrients" required for human health are easily obtained from the following vegan food groups
1. whole grains and potatoes: 2 - 4 (4oz) servings daily
2. Legumes: 1 - 2 (3-4oz) servings daily
3. Green: 1 - 2 (4oz) servings daily for water-soluble vitamins, and Yellow vegetables: 1 or 2 (4oz) servings every other day for fat-soluble vitamins
4. nuts and seeds: 1 - 3 (1oz) servings daily
5. Fruits: 3 - 6 servings daily.
6. Vitamin B12 and trace mineral foods: a.) root vegetables (such as carrots, beets, turnips), b.) mushrooms, c.) sea vegetables. 1 serving of each a.), b.), and c.) three times weekly

and a reliable source of B12 [see below]

this information comes from the book: Vegan Nutrition: Pure and Simple by Michael Klaper M.D. published by gentle world, inc. maui, HI 1998 vegans eat a larger variety of foods than our omni-friends, i think its important that people understand what vegans are supposed to eat. its also important that people dont think vegans are calcium deficient. the china study is sufficient proof of the fact that good vegans get all the calcium they need. we need something in there backing that scientific evidence. maybe we can talk about protein-induced hypocalciurea and dairy? i wanted to add this: "Numerous medical studies have shown that the intake of calcium on a vegan diet is entirely adequate." Following the vegan food groups , "an average of 800 to 1200 milligrams of calcium is easy to obtain" according to the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, "the true calcium defieiency on a vegan diet has never been reported" according to Dr. Michael Klaper of the book Vegan Nutrition Pure and Simple. Good sources of calcium include collards, kale (1 cup of either of these greens, cooked, has approximately the same usable calcium as milk), broccoli, mustard greens, swiss chard, chick peas, lentils, green peas, brazil nuts, almonds, peanuts, sunflower seeds, seasame tahini, pumpkin seeds, oats, tofu, "leafy green vegetables, watercress, and dried fruit. will somebody use this information for the page since i'm obviously not editing correctly. (starfish2)

I have been 'aggressively' referencing the article and as I am often tied to the computer for other reasons, also watch this article. I am vegan. You were reverted mainly because you (a) blanked sections, which is common of vandals (b) later added a large chunk of poorly formatted text to the article, which is common of people with good intentions, but without an understanding of how wikipedia works. Also, if you are Michael Klaper, you should know that referencing your own work can be construed as a conflict of interest. I'm not sure why you blanked out the calcium bit, as it is referenced (click the little number, read the cited article). Also, please please use the preview button so you can work out the kinks in your comments/posts before they are shown to the rest of the world. I've fixed your broken </ref>, so your comments should show up now. KellenT 07:17, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

thank you for helping me with my comments. no, i'm not dr. michael klaper. my name is genevieve and i live in california, if you have not heard of his research please look it up. like dr. ornish, dr. klaper has been a major contributor to vegan nutrition research. (by the way, you do not need to take supplements or fish oil for omega fatty acids. walnuts, flaxseeds, and hempseeds have the omega 3s 6s and 9s the human body needs for optimum health) anyway, the point is, that the above information belongs, properly cited, on the veganism page. thats all i'm fighting for. (Starfish2 07:36, 31 May 2007 (UTC))

Okay, well you don't have to fight for anything, you have to discuss and persuade other editors that your changes are beneficial if they don't appear to be at first. I have not read Klaper's book, but including his "food pyramid" smacks to me violating wikipedia is not an indiscriminate collection of information (specifically the "instruction manuals" section). In any case, our references already cite several vegan nutrition guides, provided by the Vegan Society, among others. KellenT 07:46, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
Simplifying nutritional requirements into a set of food groups can be done many ways, it feels to me that lists like this oversimplify nutrition in a manner that necessarily reflects a particular POV. That is not to say the list isn't healthy -- I am saying that there are a lot of lists out there that are healthy, it's not like any single list exists as a scientific fact. If these are included, the list should be particularly notable (eg. BRAT diet) and/or arise from more general sources like government agencies (eg. the American food guide pyramid), and I don't think this one meets that criteria. If this isn't notable then, as Kellen says, it is an indiscriminate inclusion of information. -- Madeleine 23:12, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

reference 63 about the bone breakage in vegetarians compared to non-vegetarians is not a viable reference, because vegetarians and vegans have very different nutrient intake, AND the link is not verifiable. not even from a biological research facility library. it costs money to view the reference, making it unavailable to the public, therefore inappropriate for this article. the comment on calcium needs to be removed. its questionable, and against all the evidence I've investigated about vegans and calcium.

There is a PubMed link and a DOI. Its major conclusion is that "fracture risk was similar for meat eaters, fish eaters and vegetarians. The higher fracture risk in the vegans appeared to be a consequence of their considerably lower mean calcium intake." Therefore its most certainly appropriate as a reference. If your contrary evidence is published an peer reviewed, then perhaps you could refer us to it, otherwise its not relevent per WP:NOR. Rockpocket 18:46, 26 June 2007 (UTC)

Health effects-from userpage

I believe the health effects section in the veganism article is discriminatory toward vegans, and what you wrote seem to go against Wikipedia's WP:NPOV policy. It has been proven you can be a healthy vegan with B12 deficiency the only issue, so I have reverted your edits, I feel on Wikipedia the most factual information should be displayed your edit[4] to health effects on veganism was not and more anti-vegan bias--Migospia☆ 20:25, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

Oh please. (a) I'm vegan. (b) The material cited is from vegan advocacy organizations. KellenT 22:30, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

You cited out of context is what I am trying to say, because many vegan websites say the only health concern is B12--Migospia☆ 23:32, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

Gah, keep it in one place. Also from my userpage:
You need to go back and re-read their pages on health then. Also reread the ADA position on vegetarian diets where they outline other potential deficiencies. B12 is the only thing vegans can't get, but vegans are also more likely to get other deficiencies than other vegetarians or omnivores. KellenT 23:41, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
KellenT 23:43, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
That is what I am telling you to re-read what you citing and at least try to write it in a different way other your POV and attacking vegans, then saying how I am blaking a lot of information--Migospia☆ 23:55, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
You did blank a large section of the article. You marked the edit as minor, and left an edit summary which read: "Way too biased, and mostly not true." I have read the sources. In fact, I've read all of the online sources cited in this article. The sources for what you blanked, as I mention above are the Vegan Society, Vegan Outreach, and the American Dietetic Association. None of these organizations are biased against veganism. KellenT 00:02, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
No but what you put into this article is, just like all diets you have to plan, but vegans are not at more risk of being or have dysfunctional kids as you are trying to put it, the only risk is the B12 deficiency, you are trying to confuse vegan nutrition with normal nutrition there is plenty of vegan foods that contain what you are saying vegans lack just like other vegetarian and meat eating foods, but B12 is one thing that most vegan foods lack unless they are fortified, which that is why I am saying it is biased--Migospia☆ 00:26, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
Vegans have been shown to have (a) lower B12 levels (b) lower calcium levels and (c) because vegans dont' eat traditionally vitamin d fortified foods, are more susceptible to having D deficiency. Most of these things come by way of the ADA or, which is run by Vegan Outreach. Yes, there are vegan foods that have these things, which is why the article mentions fortified foods as a source for these nutrients. KellenT 00:35, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
This edit is unacceptable -- I am amazed you would mark such a massive deletion as minor! I don't see what's wrong with the material deleted. The general criticism seems to be your personal feeling that covering this material at all is somehow anti-vegan bias. I do not agree. These nutrition concerns are a major aspect of the vegan diet, deleting the material sure looks to me like an insecure suppression any information that remotely resembles common concern with or criticisms of veganism. The material is relevant to an encyclopedia, because someone unfamiliar with veganism will want to know "how does this diet compare? is it unhealthy? does it miss vital nutrients? can vegans be healthy?" These are well understood and well referenced, these are legitimate health concerns, these are notable, these should be covered. Because this article notes vegan sources for these nutrients I feel it is being done in a neutral manner, I did not see them as anti-vegan. If you have specific criticism of specific sentences, please discuss that, but I strongly disagree with the "minor" wholesale deletion of the section. Madeleine 00:36, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
I strongly concur with Madeleine's comments, this is excellent material well referenced from, if anything, a pro-vegen source. I'm completely baffled at how this can be anything but useful information for the encyclopaedia's readers. Rockpocket 01:01, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

I agree it is very unacceptable!! I am just baffled right now for a lot of reasons one is that there does not seem to be a lot of postitive wikipedian editors to the vegan article because Kellens edits were in there a while althouh I am not the only one to revert it. If you are talking about my edit being minor it was cleary because I undid Kellens edits back to someone elses, which has been done and seems to be what is known. And just for apparent massive deletion there can be harmful, vandalism and nonesense edits editors make to artciles which are long and need removal of, personally attacking vegans in the veganism article and mentioning and basic risk frorm what I am aware does not belong on a Wikipedian article.--Migospia☆ 00:44, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

I was talking about your edit deleting all that material. You should have discussed it first. You can discuss it now. I have added my opinion. I disagree with the wholesale deletion of these sections. -- Madeleine 00:55, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
Well, Mig, what it's going to come down to are reliable sources and verifiability (please read these links, if you haven't already). The ADA and Vegan Society references are reliable sources, are verifiable, and the article discusses their content in a neutral manner. If you can find reliable sources that document your assertions, we can talk about how to include them in the article. Otherwise, what you're doing is little more than soapboxing at best, and POV-pushing at worst. Take a look at the talk archives of this page - it is a good example of how to build consensus - read the links I cited, and go find some sources. Cheers, Skinwalker 00:38, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
Ok, I just did a controversial edit and I wanted to put it here so you would know. The reasoning is it seemed to me that the first two sentences contradicted themselves - but I may have read it wrong so please feel free to revert.danielfolsom 00:52, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
Looks like a good edit to me. Madeleine 00:57, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

Should this be renamed to "Health Concerns"? The positive health effects seem to be covered elsewhere. Maybe move them to be here, or maybe rename this section? Madeleine 01:01, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

In my view, the "health effects" section and the "health" section from "motivations" should be merged. I haven't referenced anything in the motivations->health section, though so i was leaving the merge until after I had time to do that (or until some other spry editor got to it first). Perhaps this would stop the constant blanking by people, but I suspect they'd just blank what they perceive to be attacking veganism regardless of the source of that material. KellenT 01:26, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
Cool, so you had thoughts along these lines. A merge sounds best, but I admit I probably won't help make it happen. (Referencing is hard work! I got halfway through Genetics and then got bored.) For now I'll rename it, if only to make it a more accurate title, you can switch it back later. Madeleine 01:35, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

I've removed the tags added by Migospia. There is no rational justification provided by this user. —Viriditas | Talk 22:50, 2 June 2007 (UTC)

Disputed Tag

In the health effects section, B12 deficiency is repeated 3 times. Ditto for most of the other alleged effects. This is POV pushing at its most insidious. Make the claim, and move on. Repeating it three times is a pathetic and bald attemp to marginalize a subgroup. Abe Froman 04:07, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

The first section lists those things one may be deficient in. The second section uses B12 as an example, since there are clear academic studies which demonstrate its requirement and strong, clear advice from Vegan groups. The third mentions its implication in vegan pregnancies. I fail to see how this is anything other than useful content.
You say "alleged effects", but the sources are either primary academic studies or pro-vegan websites. I'm not quite sure which POV you think is being pushed, but it certainly doesn't appear to be an anti-vegan one. If you have reliable sources that dispute this material, then by all means provide them and we can work them in, but I don't see any. Adding a POV tag because you' don't believe the evidence personally is not a valid use of it. Rockpocket 04:24, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
POV takes many forms, one of which is incessant repetition. Read through the health effects section for a primer. What gain is there from repeating the same claims 2-4 times? Other than POV, I do not see any. Abe Froman 04:33, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
I don't believe it does repeat the same information. It perhaps could be copyedited to get the same points across more concisely, certainly, and if you can do that without the loss of information then please do so. However, I removed the only absolute redundancy I could find (only for it to be reverted by your colleague Migospia, which is bizarre, since she as she appears to want the whole thing deleted but replaces it when I delete something? Go figure.)
Regarding the suggestion that "as well as any other diet" be added, is it the case that those with other diets are as at as great risk of such deficiencies? I'd be interested in a source for that, please. Rockpocket 04:38, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

I want to reiterate that the opening paragraph in which these things are first mentioned IS A SUMMARY PARAGRAPH FOR THE FOLLOWING ONES. This is why there are multiple mentions of the same issue. The wikipedia formatting may not make this entirely clear, but that is how it was written. KellenT 07:23, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

Yes, that was how I read it. However, summary style intros aren't absolutely required for subsections of articles, and if other editors have concerns about repetition, then editing down the summary that might be a way to address it. Rockpocket 07:27, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

"with poorly planned diets"

This change of:

Vegans are potentially at risk for being deficient in nutrients ...


However, Vegans with poorly planned diets are at a risk for being deficient in nutrients ...

is misleading. The point of the first form is that vegans are at a higher risk of these deficiencies than non-vegans based upon their dietary choices. You could perhaps characterize them as having "poorly planned diets," but making this characterization marginalizes the facts that vegans are more likely to have low B12 and calcium intake, for example. Perhaps a wording like:

However, vegans are at a greater risk than vegetarians or omnivores for being deficient in nutrients ...

would be more appropriate since it's a comparison rather than flatly stating 'all vegans' are at risk. I'm not sure if this would satisfy the concerns of the editors who changed it or not. KellenT 16:41, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

A poorly planned diet is a prerequisite for these deficiencies. The deficiency does not necessarily include Veganism at all. Maintaining the link between poorly planned diet and the deficiency is contextually necessary. Abe Froman 16:44, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
Yes, a poorly planned diet is the cause, but vegans, due to their dietary restrictions, are at a much higher risk of having some particular deficiencies. The higher risk for these particular deficiencies follows from the vegan restriction, this is not just about generic poor diet planning. In other words, this does necessarily include veganism. Although I wasn't unhappy with the previous caveat, the alternate wording Kellen has proposed to avoid flatly stating "all vegans" are at risk sounds reasonable to me. If people insist on mentioning planning, maybe something can be said that says both at the same time like "vegans are at greater risk for being deficient in some particular nutrients and need to pay special attention to these when planning their diets" -- Madeleine 17:46, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

intro changes

A chunk of changes to the intro were recently made. I'm okay with the changes to the third sentence, but since "vegan" redirects to this page, it seems to me the sentence defining the term should be in the intro. Also, quoting the vegan society was a compromise from a few months back, that seems to have kept the intro fairly stable; removing the source for the quote, while it's a little less unweildy, doesn't make this as clear and I suspect will result in further disagreement about the intro, particularly from new contributors. KellenT 22:37, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

Do any other editors care to weigh in on this? Lsi john responds in the next section down. KellenT 18:36, 3 June 2007 (UTC)
Anybody? KellenT 20:57, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

Changes to Health sections

I disagree with your changes to Health. One of the reasons for choosing veganism is health. Presumably, that would be 'health benefits'. Though there could be a 'health' category, and then 'health benefits' & 'health concerns' as sub categories. .. then even deeper sub-categories under 'concerns' for each concern. I actually started with that, but deleted it as too cumbersome. Lsi john 00:21, 2 June 2007 (UTC)

I think you might have put this reply in the wrong place. Feel free to move it and my response if that's the case. My changes were just to put everything under a common "health" header; "benefits" and "concerns" are sub-sections of this. I didn't make any textual changes. KellenT 00:31, 2 June 2007 (UTC)
I was referring to your edit-comment about removing the benefits section entirely.

"slight reorganization so everything is under "health". it would be better for there not to be a "benefits" section imho, and for most of that section to be removed or properly cited"

The lead says 'perceived benefits of health' is one of the considerations for being a vegan. Therefore, a section regarding health benefits is most appropriate. Whether you or I believe there are any benefits isn't relevant. If there are sources which say that there are benefits, then 'health benefits' is an appropriate title for a section.
(For the record) I believe there are health benefits. Lsi john 02:00, 2 June 2007 (UTC)
Jaha! In general my position is that having distinct pro- and anti- sections in an article is a bad thing, and having 'benefits' and 'concerns' sections in 'health' are similar to this. I think we can clearly state all information regarding vegan health without relying on making them into pro- or anti- type sections as these sections tend to attract trolling and charges of POV. That's what I meant when I made that statement. The ADA position, vegan society, and vegan outreach all do a fairly NPOV survey of vegan health issues. KellenT 02:19, 2 June 2007 (UTC)
NPOV doesn't mean that every statement is neutral, nor every section. NPOV means that every significant view is presented fairly and without bias. e.g.: (you pick the NPOV one):
  1. Dr. Helman, PhD, said that vegans should take vitamin supplements.
  2. Dr. Helman, PhD, after three malpractice lawsuits, a divorce, and two drunk driving convictions, said that vegans should take vitamin supplements.
  3. Dr. Helman, PhD, best-selling author, winner of 3 nobel awards and personal physician to 3 former presidents, said that vegans should take vitamin supplements.
If 'health benefits' is part of the material, it can legitimately be a section title.
Similarly, if there are health risks, (which is a section), there would presumably be the alternate health benefits.
Anyway, I've given my view, and why. Lsi john 02:26, 2 June 2007 (UTC)
To be clear: I'm not charging that having distinct sections violates NPOV. What I'm saying is that these distinct sections are magnets for newbies and trolls and that it's possible to write a health section without relying on what amount to pro- and anti- sections. I don't think we have exactly that in the article right now, but we have definitely had that in the past. I personally favor an integrated approach, that is all. KellenT 02:31, 2 June 2007 (UTC)
Write your article for the reader, not for the trolls. When you go to a website to read a review of a new car you are thinking about buying, do you want it all rolled into one, or would you prefer pro's and con's listed separately? I'm an analyst, so I want them listed in detail and separated, alphabetized and chronological, with multicolored index tabs. But there are other personality types who will see it differently. A good article will find a way that works for everyone. You'll never stop trolls. Write with your reader in mind. Lsi john 02:43, 2 June 2007 (UTC)
This is precisely why I want a stand alone criticism section. —Viriditas | Talk 20:54, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
A separate section for criticism is often a good idea. Which, by the way, is why I supported separate Health Benefits and a Health Concerns/Risks sections (above). Lsi john 21:05, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

My Changes

I practice WP:BRD. be Bold, get Reverted, Discuss.

Until two days ago, I had no idea that veganism existed. (Well sort of). I knew it existed, but not really.

I'm going to be blunt, because thats how I tend to be sometimes.

The Lead was not well written and appeared to be a compromise which included things that, quite frankly, didn't need to be there. I read it, I re-wrote it, I read it again, I re-wrote it again.. and ultimately, I believe it still says everything that it said before, but in a much clearer way.

The first sentence combined what veganism IS with WHY people choose it. That was confusing and not well written. Tell the readers what it is and then tell them why. Putting the 'why' inside the 'what it is' is POV. It gently leads the reader to a desired view. Therefore, I reworded the first paragraph.

This is an article about veganism, not vegan. Whether or not vegan redirects here isn't really relevant. The article title isn't: veganism and vegans. People looking for vegan, and ending up at veganism, will figure it out. Cluttering up the lead, in order to explain a redirect, is unnecessary and redundant. Besides the fact that the definition for vegan should be obvious. Therefore, I moved the defintion to the definition section.

I added a third paragraph about health. That seemed to be a major part of this article and deserved a paragraph in the lead. I'm not tied to the words I put in the paragraph, but it seemed to be an appropriate paragraph for the lead of this article.

Also, we don't need to justify our sources. If we have to 'build up' the value of a source, by citing it in the lead, then I question whether or not we're making a POV statement. All our sources should be reliable.

I also combined the two HEALTH sections. Having them spread out like that, was.. well.. odd.

Thats my contribution for now.

Peace in God. Lsi john 23:40, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

Ok, now that I've probably pissed off everyone, and had my cup of coffee, I'll change hats.

There is some good stuff in this article. There is a lot of potential here for it to be a good article.

But there is a bit of work that needs to be done first. So I suggest, and request that everyone start working together on compromise. There is room for everyone's opinion (as long as there are facts to back it up).

You have a good start here, don't get hung up in POV on any issue.

And try to keep in mind that people will be reading this article. Filling it full of statistics and facts doesn't make it readable. Its not required that you 'exactly' cite a source, as long as you 'get it right' and don't twist the meaning. Notice that I didnt put any sources in the new paragraph in the lead. Because I took that information from the article, where it's already sourced.

If someone wishes to, they can tack some sourcing to it, but as long as the original sources remain in the article below, then the material is sourced and verifiable.

Lsi john 23:53, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

When you say: "If we have to 'build up' the value of a source, by citing it in the lead, question whether or not we're making a POV statement." I think you're referring to the reliance upon the Vegan Society quote. The fact of the matter is that the Vegan Society originally created the word veganism and defined its meaning, so it's pretty authoritative. If you had some other concern, can you clarify it? KellenT 23:59, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
My specific concern was in the aparent need to say that the Vegan Society was the source. Either they are a reliable source, or they arent. If they aren't then we shouldn't be citing them. If they are, then simply cite them and be done. It's unnecessary to say who said it. That is an attempt to 'build credibility' for the statement, and is unnecessary. The readers will 'assume' that the statement is credible, simply because we make it. Lsi john 02:06, 2 June 2007 (UTC)
Oh, and in answer to an implied question; there were two health sections because the one in "motivations" had been there for a long time, then a "health criticism" section was created, which was then edited to be more NPOV and provide direct health-related info. The "health motivations" section has remained basically unedited, and as such is a collection of random junk that people have dropped into the article. They should have been merged, as you have done. I suggested this multiple times above, but was waiting to edit down the motivations section. KellenT 00:15, 2 June 2007 (UTC)
Sometimes it just takes a fresh face, to kick things forward. Lsi john 02:06, 2 June 2007 (UTC)

BSE section

I've removed the BSE section from "health benefits." It read:

There are also claims that industry livestock feeding practices pose health threats to human consumers. According to Dr. Michael Greger [5] in a January 2004 lecture at MIT (which is the basis for Whistleblower, a 2007 documentary film by Jeff Bellamar) each year more than one million tons of animal excrement are fed back to farm animals raised for human consumption to lower the feed costs. He also says that up to 10% of blood from killed animals is mixed into some cattle feed, and up to 30% of some poultry feed is made up of the blood. Bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), commonly known as mad cow disease, is believed to be caused by cows being fed with contaminated meat and bone meal, a high-protein substance obtained from the remnants of butchered animals, including cows and sheep. In most parts of the developed world, such remnants are no longer allowed in feed for ruminant animals, and the World Health Organization recommends a complete ban on ruminant-to-ruminant feeding, but the practice persists in a few countries.[2]

My reason for removing it is that it doesn't specifically say anything regarding veganism (although whoever added it is implying that vegans aren't subject to this threat). Also, the "citation" for Greger is just a link to the top page of his website, which provides little information. Perhaps WHO ban is relevant to the BSE article, but it doesn't appear to have much relevance here. KellenT 23:36, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

As it is currently worded, I agree. However, I can also see how it could tie into a 'reason' for being vegan. I suspect that the animal rights folks will see the deletion as improper. Since I don't really know anything at all about the specifics of this subject, I don't currently have the knowledge to work that into a statement about "health concerns about blood in animal feed" .. which lead to the choice of veganism. And, any such statement would need to be citable, or it would be original research.
That is one of the things I referred to above... a list of facts and details.. that simply don't tie in well to the article. Lsi john 00:06, 2 June 2007 (UTC)

Post here

Can you please show me the specific source that says being a vegan there are more at risk?--Migospia †♥ 04:40, 3 June 2007 (UTC) Are all of these active topics? This talk page seems to long and some may need to be archived.--Migospia †♥ 04:41, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

Two issues. Firstly I don't believe the article says vegans are more at risk [than non-vegans], it says vegans (with poorly planned diets) are at risk, the relative levels of risk are not discussed. That notwithstanding, and even though I know nothing about veganism, it didn't take me long to find a number of examples in the literature:
  • "... vegans are more likely to be at risk of cobalamin deficiency" (Waldmann et al. 2003. Homocysteine and cobalamin status in German vegans. Public Health Nutrition: 7(3), 467–472.
  • "...In Western countries... the risk of vitamin B-12 deficiency for vegans may be greater." The American Dietetic Association. 1993. Vegetarian diets. Journal of the American Dietetic Association, Volume 93, Number 11.
  • "[In a recent study] 58 percent of strict vegans and 34 percent of moderate vegans had a vitamin B12 deficiency, based on the concentration of vitamin B12 in their blood {this is higher than the average for omnivores}. They also had high concentrations of homocysteine [which] can be caused by a vitamin B12 deficiency...Vegans should strive for an adequate vitamin B12 intake, both to prevent vitamin B12 deficiency and to reduce risk of heart disease." R Mangels. 2006. Scientific Update, Vegetarian Journal Issue 3.
Having addressed this, could your now please remove your unjustified tagging of this section? Rockpocket 06:14, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

But it is tagged right and not unjustified, it says: an editor is concerned that statements of fact in this article may be misleading, I think someone better fix this section because it is misleading: The position of the American Dietetic Association is that "appropriately planned" vegan diets "are healthful, nutritionally adequate, and provide health benefits in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases."[44] However, vegans with poorly planned diets are at a risk for being deficient in nutrients such as vitamin B12,[51] vitamin D,[52] calcium,[53][52] iodine[54] and omega-3 fatty acids.[55] These deficiencies can have potentially serious consequences, including anemia,[56] rickets[57] and cretinism[58] in children, and osteomalacia[57] and hyperthyroidism[58] in adults.

I mean why is it even there and why under Specific nutrients, shouldn't there be something - there instead? It makes way more since and is not misleading nor confusing if done right. Also what is this: Precautions-Main article: Vegan nutrition, there is nothing written there or anything. You know people say you are nice and you seem like you can be, but the tone, wording and authority you use when speaking with me makes me a bit nervous and upset.--Migospia †♥ 19:51, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

Also that is not to be considered an insult or personal attack so please don't turn it around and make it seem that way I am just expressing my concerts from where I am coming from and how it all comes across because maybe you don't mean to come of so hurtful all the time--Migospia †♥ 19:53, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

I certainly don't mean to be hurtful and I'm sorry if you feel that way, but I no other editor here has expressed concerns about my "tone, wording and authority." Moreover, when I did attempt to communicate with you on friendly terms, you completely ignored me and continued edit-warring, therefore - as an administrator attempting to deal with 3RR issues - I had little choice but to take a more authoritative tone.
Lets put that to one side at the moment, and discuss what you have actually said above. You asked for a "specific source that says being a vegan there are more at risk" presumably because that was what you considered to be misleading. I provided that and, naturally enough, asked if you would remove the template, since it is no longer justified (i.e. the thing you considered to be misleading is now verified). You then replied and said it is misleading, then quoted back the same sentence which has just been verified. I'm not sure what more you want to be convinced that this content is suitable. You ask "why is it even there". Well, its there because its relevent and its verifiable. You then suggest we use another source [6]. Well, that is interesting, but it appears to me to be an image of some vegetables, its hardly rich in information. What exactly would you like to use that source to say?
I could be wrong, but It appears to me that you don't believe that vegans are at risk of deficiencies, and therefore you don't think it should be noted. Is that correct? Or perhaps you do believe they are at risk, but don't think it is significant enough to be noted? It would really help if you could tell us exactly what your issue is with this sourced content and exactly what you would like to see in its place. Rockpocket 00:00, 5 June 2007 (UTC)

Yes I asked for what is says specifically and what is wrote is nothing like that but I know vegans are at higher risk for B12 deficiency, but the others? And yes you are wrong, vegans are at risk but so are vegetarians and meat eaters so I don't know why single vegans out I mean in the meat or food article does it state all of what could go wrong if you don't eat right?
But if other editors feel it is needed can it be at least listed under something other than specific nutrients and also be worded differently and why mention so many diseases you can get. -Maybe something like this under Precautions:
The position of the American Dietetic Association is that appropriately planned vegan diets, "are healthful, nutritionally adequate, and provide health benefits in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases." However, with poorly planned diets are at a risk for being deficient in nutrients such as vitamin B12, and in some rare cases vitamin D, calcium, iodine, and omega-3 fatty acids. These deficiencies can have potentially serious consequences.
And something that explains the official vegan food pyramid like - so it could explain how you won't deficient if you follow the pyramid it makes me sense and creates less fear, but if others still feel they need the risks then at least word it differently and put under precautions or some title like that and put the pyrmaid picture and explanation under Specific nutrients or Vegan Food Pyramid. I hope that all makes sense!--Migospia †♥ 00:22, 5 June 2007 (UTC)

I don't know if vegans are at a risk of the other deficiencies, though I'm guessing the sources referenced with each one indicates that. However, its important to note that it does not say vegans are at a higher risk than omnivores, just that they are at a risk. If you can find sourced, verifiable data that says meat eating is a risk factor for certain deficiencies, then by all means add it to the appropriate page. Because something is lacking in another page, does not mean that we should remove information for here to "balance it up". Wikipedia isn't a competition: editing one article and not another is not because anyone wishes to "single vegans out".
That said, your suggestions sound reasonable, so I would be interested to see what proposals you have for an alternative version. Why don't you draft how you would like to see the section here on the talkpage (with appropriate sources) and we can all discuss it. I'm sure we can all come to some agreement on a version that addresses your concerns about overstating the issues, yet doesn't appear to ignore it altogether. The once it has general agreement, we can move it over to the article. That way we can work constructively together and avoid some of the revert-warring that has been going on. Rockpocket 00:55, 5 June 2007 (UTC)


I have requested that CyrilleDunant not revert your article tag, as it is generally considered bad form to revert another editor's article content tag, provided that editor is still a registered and active editor and able to revert it themselves.

For your part, I request that you please refrain from talking about personal attacks here in the article discussion. What may seem like a personal attack to you, could simply be another editor's frustration with communication issues and vice versa. Complaining about personal attacks just distracts from the discussion and derails progress.

What I would like to know is, under what circumstances you would consider removing your {{misleading}} tag?

Specifically what content do you find objectionable and what changes would you require in order to find it acceptable?

Thank you. Lsi john 20:20, 4 June 2007 (UTC)


Revert warring over an article tag is very unproductive and clearly demonstrates the level of frustration here in this article. There are several ways this can be resolved. Using revert, the resolution will be a protected article and one or more blocked users.

I recommend trying to find out the answer to my questions (above), and if that does not work, then pursuing other methods of dispute resolution.

Lsi john 20:25, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

Tag warring is a form of edit warring, and is not appropriate. —Viriditas | Talk 20:42, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

arghh, I am trying to be nice about this and I have no idea how to respond to anything you say! And again I did NOT pesoonally attack ANYONE so PLEASE don't say I did, and like above I said the content I found misleading and as well some changes that I think should be made, but I did not attack anyone--Migospia †♥ 00:04, 5 June 2007 (UTC)

Migospia, please read Lsi john's comment above more carefully, then consider your response again. I think you may have misunderstood his meaning. Rockpocket 00:58, 5 June 2007 (UTC)

Vegan cuisine

I think it is very important to expand this section. The article should mention notable physicians and nutrition experts like John A. McDougall, M.D. who teach "better health" through vegetarian and vegan cuisine. —Viriditas | Talk 21:18, 4 June 2007 (UTC)


Lsi John, why would it be POV to name the Times as the source? SlimVirgin (talk) 23:15, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

I would counter with the question: What value or additional information about the information is added by providing Times?
To me, I see it as a way to enhance the 'value' (or increase the quality) of the information, rather than actually adding information for the user. I believe all our sources are either WP:RS or we can't use them. Therefore, to my way of thinking, its all or nothing. Either we say where every source was used, or we say none of them.
Though I will concede that sometimes it may be necessary to cite the source in the article, if there is something the user should know. For example, if the 'Times' was a sponsor of 'veganism' then this might be appropriate: The Times, a supporter of veganism, cited that 280,000 vegans lived in Europe.
But in this particular case, I didn't see where it added any information or value to the bare fact of the survey.
(it also did not fit with the rest of the surveys/estimates in that paragraph, where none of the others specifically identified the 'source'.
Lsi john 23:36, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
And, SV, as I said to you previously. If there is a consensus to leave it, I will gladly self-revert. To me, WP:BRD is only trumped by Bold / Discuss / Consensus / Self-Revert. Lsi john 23:39, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
The point of it is that it's an estimate, so it's worth saying whose estimate. If it were the Vegan Society it might be less credible, because they're motivated to report the higher end. If it's the Times, there is no motive to do that. But my question remains: how could it be POV to include the information? SlimVirgin (talk) 23:41, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
I'm trying to answer, really I am ;) heh. Do we know how they estimated? Do we know if it was a scientific estimate or a simple guess? (I really haven't read the source at this point).
That doesn't matter. We have a source, and we cite it. That's all we do. SlimVirgin (talk) 23:56, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
As you point out, by citing the 'Times', it gives some extra credibility to the 'fact', which also tends to overshadow the word 'estimate', which said that its not a fact, but a guess/estimate. The 'Times' may or not be a better guesser/estimator than someone else, but I'm not convinced that they are in the survey/estimating business sufficient to make them a 100% credible and completely reliable source, which is 'implied' by naming them in the article as the source. Any reader who wants to know 'who' said it, can click on the [1] and see the source.
I think you're getting different issues mixed up here. We just cite reliable sources. The only fact we care about is "The Times estimated that ..." SlimVirgin (talk) 23:56, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
My opinion, (worth nothing on the gold exchange), was (and is) that no additional value was added by identifying the 'times' in the text. Its just my opinion. If someone can tell me what the reader learns, from 'Times' in the article, that they don't know without it, then I might change my mind. Adding 'credibility' to the estimate, is a form of POV, because it somehow suggests 'enhancement' of the quality of the information. And, as before, either we use WP:RS, or we don't.
Lsi john 23:51, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
If we say that it's been estimated that 250,000 vegans live in Europe, our readers should be able to take on faith that it is a true statement. If we feel that we 'need' to specify 'Times' as the source, then I submit that there is a fundamental problem with our whole system. Lsi john 23:56, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
Lsi john, I don't see the attribution giving extra credibility, but just the opposite. That it is the Times estimating the number of vegans and not a rigorous scientific study, tells me that the estimate probably isn't very accurate. We should not take anything on faith, or assume that something is true. That's the entire reason we make the attribution clear. —Viriditas | Talk 23:59, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
When adding sources (information) to our articles, we apply some standard of notability. That standard may vary, depending on what we are saying, but never the less, we apply some standard.
I believe that applies to how we word the sourcing, as well as were we put the sourced material. The remainder of the sources in that paragraph were unnamed. There is nothing 'notable' about a Times survey/estimate. The estimate itself is notable, and can be included. The Times part, isn't notable. Anyone could have done the survey, and as long as it was a reliable source and relevant to our article, we could (and would) include it. Deeper in the article, where we are being wordy, if someone feels it is important to include 'Times', I'd have less of an objection. In the lead, were we are being brief and giving an overview, 'Times' adds no value and is not notable.
Thats about as many ways as I can say it. I remain unconvinced, as it seems do you. I've no axe to grind here. I made the edit I believed needed to be made and we discussed it. With only 3 people in the discussion, its not exactly a consensus, but you've already reverted me, so its moot anyway.
Peace. Lsi john 00:13, 5 June 2007 (UTC)
Yes, the initial standard of notability for evaluating sources is based on authority, accuracy, and currency. We do not apply that same standard to the content. The estimate itself is notable for quantifying the number of adherents that practice veganism. I too, would like to see better sources used for statistics, but sometimes you have to go with what you have, and right now, it is acceptable. We can always improve it by replacing it with a better source. —Viriditas | Talk 00:20, 5 June 2007 (UTC)

(outdent):The Times not as reliable as a science journal? I would take issue with this simplistic statement; This is the longest established independant newspaper in the world, an (English) Establishment pillar, and previously an instrument of legislative, governmental and society change (and resistance). Unless it was part of an editorial then any claim by The Times is very likely to be sourced from the scientific journals it has been poorly compared to, and written by the author of the quoted report. Very often it is by The Times that scientific theory and discoveries are taken from the closed world of the scientists and into the wider community. The Times has standards of references and citing, and editorial excellence, that this encyclopedia should aspire to. LessHeard vanU 21:32, 9 June 2007 (UTC)

Lsi john, please see Wikipedia:Avoid weasel words. —Viriditas | Talk 23:46, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
I'm familar with the page. I don't see any weasel words in play here. Lsi john 23:53, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
Please read it again. It has been estimated is a weasel statement. "The key to improving weasel words in articles name a source for the opinion..." —Viriditas | Talk 23:55, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
Viriditas, reverting me, after I offered to self-revert, is a form of edit warring. We are discussing this, and there was no need to revert immediately. Assume Good Faith, my friend. If I am not true to my word, you can always revert me later.
If you object to 'it has been estimated', then say "One estimate says...". For all the reasons above, I disagree with using 'Times' in the article. Lsi john 00:04, 5 June 2007 (UTC)
I restored it. So far, there hasn't been any edit warring. Your argument for removing attribution is at odds with citation and style guidelines. And, I don't see how naming the source gives it any credibility. If anything, it is exactly the opposite. How accurate is an estimate by the Times going to be, anyway? No, the way to go about this is to track down the statistics. If you can find competing sources, by all means, choose the most reliable one. At this point, this is all we have, and unless we have a source that disputes this estimate, there is no issue to discuss. —Viriditas | Talk 00:09, 5 June 2007 (UTC)

I don't particularly care one way or the other if we mention the Times or not, but is there any guideline in the manual of style or WP:CITE that talks about this situation? My cursory glance at the MOS didn't turn up anything, but I don't usually muck about with stylistic matters. Nevermind, "it has been estimated" is weasel-wordish, I suppose that's our style guideline. Cheers, Skinwalker 00:20, 5 June 2007 (UTC)

Skinwalker, I threw in 'its been stated', but I'm not hooked on the wording. I already acknowledged and suggested better wording as: "One estimate says ...".

Also, I'm not exactly sure what Viriditas meant on my talk page, but it seems that Viriditas may see 'Times' as lessening/or enhancing the value/quality of the estimate. This would, in fact, be POV. Nobody yet has stated 'why' it is necessary to include 'Times' in the statement, or what 'significant value' is added to the article by its presence.

And, as I said above, we're going in circles at this point. I only posted due to the post on my talkpage which seemed to suggest POV, though I'm not completely clear.

At this point, it got far more air-time than it needed. I reverted, SV asked for my reasons. I gave them. They were questioned, and I defended them. Either I made a good case or I didnt. Time to move on. Lsi john 00:26, 5 June 2007 (UTC)

Lsi john, see WP:NPOV, particularly Attributing and substantiating biased statements. Proper attribution is to supposed to help solve POV problems. There's also a section on Attribute facts in Wikipedia:Guidelines for controversial articles and similar policies in MLA, APA, and other style guides. The general rule is that proper attribution is required when asserting facts. —Viriditas | Talk 00:39, 5 June 2007 (UTC)
I didn't realize we were substantiating a biased statement. I thought it was a simple plain old every day run of the mill estimate. *wiki-smile* Peace in God. Lsi john 06:20, 5 June 2007 (UTC)
If that were true, Lsi john, then why did you initially remove it from the article with the edit summary, NPOV. simply state the fact, no need to define the source in the article. [7]. There's no need to play games. You thought it was POV, and that's exactly why we attribute, not the other way around. —Viriditas | Talk 06:42, 5 June 2007 (UTC)
Viriditas, the guideline you cite, is for taking biased statements and 'substantiating' them in order to compensate for POV.
For clarity: I have never considered the estimate to be a biased statement that needs to be substantiated. And, I think that substantiating such a statement, which isn't biased in itself, leads to creating a biased statement. In my opinion, when I read it, having 'Times' in the statement made it biased, removing 'Times' removed the bias.
Your reference to 'playing games' displays an unfortunate lack of good faith. I'm sorry you have perceived me as playing games. I feel I have been very consistent in this discussion. I accept that I have been unable to successfully communicate my meaning to you, as you have also been unable to understand me. That does not equate to game playing on either side.
Perhaps you missed the part where I said that I have no axe to grind here, and my offer to self-revert. The only interest that I have in this article, is from the perspective of wanting wikipedia to have good, accurate, NPOV, and readable articles.
Lsi john 18:05, 5 June 2007 (UTC)
Then, back to the original question posed by SlimVirgin and now repeated by me. How is it POV to include the source? You answer with, "substantiating such a statement, which isn't biased in itself, leads to creating a biased statement". How is this true? Could you show me an example in another article? The fact is, the NPOV policy states the opposite, and all the descendent policies and guidelines recommend attribution whenever possible. Style guides such as the MLA also recommend formal attribution. So, can you give me an existing policy, guideline, example, or style guide that supports your belief? —Viriditas | Talk 19:18, 5 June 2007 (UTC)
Thank you. Your concerns have been noted. As the source citation has been re-added, this discussion has become a discussion for discussion sake. I have no interest in pursuing it further. Lsi john 19:22, 5 June 2007 (UTC)

Health section

The whole health section is littered with weasel words: the vegan diet is never compared to recommended diets but with such monstrosities as the Standard American Diet or diets "rich in proteins". Which essentially amounts to saying "the vegan diet is not so unhealthy as some other diets" but phrasing it in such a way as to make it seem like a more healthy than usual diet.

also, some of the references do not concern vegan diet, but diets low in proteins, which would make for quasi-vegetarian diets, perhaps, but not vegan.CyrilleDunant 06:00, 5 June 2007 (UTC)

True, the whole "benefits" section needs a brutal editing. Please do so at your earliest convenience. =) KellenT 06:05, 5 June 2007 (UTC)
Well, brutal I shall be -- we will still have the history :) CyrilleDunant 06:09, 5 June 2007 (UTC)
I reverted a change you made to the first sentence, making it contrast veganism with diets "rich in proteins". I think this mischaracterizes the study referenced, which observed a negative health correlation with animal protein but a positive correlation with plant protein. I've seen some claims that too much protein is bad for you (and a lot of back and forth regarding Atkins diet), but this study wasn't addressing that... so that's what I was trying to avoid. I hadn't read what you wrote here, your edit makes more sense now. Maybe we can use what you wrote but reword it with some of the least controversial bad aspects of the SAD that the study mentions? (high fat, low fiber, low in green vegetables ?) Madeleine 17:55, 5 June 2007 (UTC)

Resources section

The Resources and the environment section makes the invalid assumption that any land suitable for animal farming is also suited for crop production. Some farm animals such as sheep and goats can graze in areas where crop production would be impractical.(Kirtai 18:44, 8 June 2007 (UTC))

Which statement(s) in that section do you think reflects this assumption? Doctormatt 20:30, 8 June 2007 (UTC)
The one I noticed was "Additionally, an animal-based diet is far less land, water and energy efficient than a vegan diet." which asserts that crops are always the most efficient use of land for food production, instead of merely more efficient for normally cultivatable land (Kirtai 08:22, 9 June 2007 (UTC))

Vegan Food Pyramid

I think there should be a little section on the Vegan Food Pyramid with a picture/diagram under health from sources from:

That explains what we should eat a day as I was trying to say earlier, like there is Food guide pyramid, any thoughts agree/disagreements on this?--Migospia 02:25, 9 June 2007 (UTC)

These images are probably all copyrighted but I think I disagree with general idea -- a food pyramid implies some sort of medical/health recommendation being made by wikipedia. If people do like the idea, I'd also like to point out the ADA's "A new food guide for North American vegetarians", which has a less artsy pyramid and also a "rainbow" ... possibly more informative for the labeling of calcium rich foods, and presumably NPOV, but contains vegetarian (non-vegan) foods and is also copyrighted material. Madeleine 03:03, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
I am not saying we have to use these images, just the idea of explaining recommended vegan health nutrients in a food pyramid idea, because I think a lot of people can relate to that, and the main problem with your link is that it's for vegetarians not vegans, and we don't have to copy the copyrighted material just take the information needed in the way the average food guide pyramid, like how all articles are made. But just to understand what you don't like about the idea is that it is a health recommendation?--Migospia 03:22, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
It's not a strong concern, but a food pyramid does seem to imply a recommended eating pattern (eg lots of grains). If we adapt the ADA (make our own version but remove nonvegan elements), we could place a caption like "the american dietary association recommends a modified food pyramid for vegans" to make it clear that it's the ADA's recommendation and not wikipedia's, and link to their food guide. Madeleine 03:54, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
Well adding not very useful non-free images is not a very good idea unlessa absolutely necessary (in this case, the fair use argument would be tenuous). CyrilleDunant 06:44, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
Again I am not talking about adding not very useful non-free images, just the talking about the vegan pymarid with a diagram to help vegas and non vegans understand, I am shocked that is not on here already, I mean we even have a section tellin people the risk of being vegan and not even the vegan pymarid on the vegan article?--Migospia 07:07, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
If you feel concerned, why don't you draw one? If your image is not very-well finished, it might well be that another wikipedian will create a new one from the template you have provided, if the template is free to use.CyrilleDunant 07:33, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
I wasn't speaking in pure hypotheticals. If you check my userpage, you'll see that I've already made a fair number of images for wikipedia. But I'm finding it very irritating when you act "shocked" that it's not here already, please respect that it's a fair amount of work to make images and while you may think this image is important, others haven't felt the lack of a "food pyramid" was a critical deficit in this article. After all, other dietary articles do not have custom food pyramids -- eg Vegetarianism and Atkins Nutritional Approach. I don't think it was an issue until you brought it up just now. Madeleine 15:43, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
Fine find it very irritating, how do you think I feel? And I am not just talking about the image read what I wrote again pease before you jump to conclusions and find things irritating. And it may not have been an issue or not but the vegan article still needs a lot of work and a section like this can help, we may not even need a picture to explain the nutrients, please re-read what I wrote.--Migospia 21:07, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
Image:Vegan_food_pyramid.svg -- Madeleine 23:58, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
*sigh* Guess that was a waste of my time. Ah well. -- Madeleine 08:16, 15 June 2007 (UTC)
Not a waste of time. I just added the image both to the Veganism article and the vegan nutrition article. Since nobody that participated in this discussion has thanked you for doing this, I will. Thanks Madeleine, the image looks awesome. mako (talkcontribs) 13:25, 15 June 2007 (UTC)

Also are all of these open topics/debates, maybe we can archive what is not--Migospia 02:27, 9 June 2007 (UTC)


What is exactly the problem with a version that is clear, and in accordance with the source? Namely, vegans with poorly planned diets are at risk of several deficiencies. This is a fact (or at least extensively sourced) Why not put it? And since when is anemia not a severe condition? CyrilleDunant 06:44, 9 June 2007 (UTC)

That was the problem it was tagged somebody moved it, it is not clear at all and misleading. And anemia is not consider a serious diseases, maybe aplastic anemia is which is not the same thing, but according to doctors it is not serious/severe enough, maybe some that have it may think it is but that and the way the paragraph is written is POV and we try to stay away from turning Wikipedia into POV articles.--Migospia 07:03, 9 June 2007 (UTC)

I believe the sentence you find misleading does not mean what you think it means... From you comments, it might be that you are not a native speaker, but please, try to explain in which way the sentence incriminated could mean something different than what it actually means?CyrilleDunant 07:30, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
I think rickets (and cretinism) are widely defined as serious conditions, e.g.:
  • "Rickets is a serious condition and steps to prevent it are very important" [8]
  • "It is a serious condition and one that we know how to prevent." [9]
  • "A deficiency of vitamin D causes rickets, a serious condition that can cause skeletal abnormalities and failure to thrive." [10]
  • "Cretinism causes very serious retardation of physical and mental development" [11]
  • " A lack of the nutrient causes various disorders, from stunted growth to cretinism, a most serious condition." [12]
Rockpocket 07:22, 9 June 2007 (UTC)

Again almost anybody can make almost any disorder *serious*--Migospia 21:11, 9 June 2007 (UTC)

Some of the sources above aren't reliable for veganism e.g. Islamonline. SlimVirgin (talk) 21:15, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
This sounds awfully nitpicky to me, why does it matter? Are you saying cretinism isn't serious? It's not like these references were for use in the article itself, they were only being used to illustrate that generally people consider these conditions "serious". Madeleine 21:21, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
Why does it matter that we use reliable sources? Are you serious? SlimVirgin (talk) 21:27, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
I am "serious" that I think it's nitpicking and sidetracking the discussion to criticize one of a list of sources merely gathered on a discussion page to reflect how "serious" a condition is perceived to be ("severely stunted physical and mental growth" ... sounds "serious" to me!). Cretinism is serious and I find the argument Phoeba makes questioning whether any vegan ever actually got it much more valid. Because of that argument, I agree with removing hypothetical consequences of deficiencies which lack evidence of actually occurring in practicing vegans. Madeleine 21:37, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
True enough, I simply did a quick google search and pulled a range of hits. My aim was to indicate that it is widely described as such. The other sources are from doctors, an encyclopaedia, educational programmes. One would expect those to be reliable enough (combined with the rather obvious common sense appreciation that something that can cause significant physical and/or mental retardation is not trivial). As per Madeline, I don't quite see what the problem is here. The seriousness of a disease is not in any way a criticism of veganism. Rockpocket 21:23, 9 June 2007 (UTC)

Even in the Wikiepdia article, they are not stated serious--Migospia 21:25, 9 June 2007 (UTC)

(two edit conflicts) I think the problem with this section is that it doesn't stick closely to what the sources say. For example, one of them, Steven Walsh says that iodine can be low in a British vegan's diet because there are low levels of iodine in British soil, and therefore in plants grown in that soil. There's no mention of this in the section, which makes a leap from low-iodine to diseases which can be caused by it. The result is a section that implies that vegans may end up with cretinism and rickets, when it's well-known that the average vegan is healthier than the average meat-eater, in the West anyway (not necessarily elsewhere). (Do we have an example of a single vegan who developed cretinism or rickets because of it?) I think we need to be careful to write a section that truly reflects medical concerns, not one that looks like a scare story.
I commented out the disputed sentence in the meantime:
"These deficiencies can have potential consequences, including anemia,[3] rickets[4] and cretinism[5] in children, and osteomalacia[4] and hyperthyroidism[5] in adults."
  1. ^ Why I Am Not a Vegetarian By Dr. William T. Jarvis
  2. ^ "WHO Consultation on Public Health Issues Related to BSE and the Emergence of a New Variant of Creutzfeld-Jakob Disease" (PDF). Weekly Epidemiological Record. 71 (15): 4. 1996-04-12. Retrieved 2007-03-27. All countries should ban the use of ruminant tissues in ruminant feed.
  3. ^ "What every vegan should know about vitamin B12". Vegan Society. Retrieved 2007-02-22. Vitamin B12, whether in supplements, fortified foods, or animal products, comes from micro-organisms.
  4. ^ a b "Vegans and Vitamin D". Vegan Society. Retrieved 2007-02-22.
  5. ^ a b Steven Walsh. "Nutrition: Iodine". Vegan Society. Retrieved 2007-02-23.
Namely, vegans with poorly planned diets are at risk of several deficiencies. Um, yes, anyone with a poorly planned diet could have a deficiency. Pointing this out for vegans especially is a horrible NPOV statement. This is like saying that teen drivers who fall asleep at the wheel could get in a crash., which is obvious, as it could happen to anyone who falls asleep while they're driving. We shouldn't have this on the page for the sole purpose that we'd have to point out the obvious all over the place if we did. What's next, warning that someone could die if they stop breathing? -- Phoeba WrightOBJECTION! 21:35, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
Exactly right. The medical information on the vegan society pages is there to ensure optimal health. It's not there because vegans are walking around with rickets and cretinism. If there are genuine recorded cases of vegans coming down with serious illness because of their veganism, let's find medical sources or mainstream newspapers who say that explicitly. It's kind of silly to imply that vegans are going to get seriously ill because they don't eat burgers full of saturated fat, antibiotics, and growth hormones. SlimVirgin (talk) 21:40, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
Again I agee--Migospia 21:51, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
I think limiting the article to observed consequences of deficiencies in vegans is reasonable. Saying vegans are at higher risk for some deficiencies is sensible (as there is evidence for it, and it is a diet planning concern for vegans), but simply extrapolating these deficiencies into their most serious medical consequences does seem unjustifiably alarmist if there are no observed cases of these consequences occurring in vegans. Madeleine 21:46, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
A little research suggests veganism is a significant risk factor for rickets:
  • "Vegan and macrobiotic diets have led to the return of rickets in Britain, according to experts." [13]
  • Groups with an "increased risk for rickets ... includes infants who are on macro-, biotic and strict vegan diets, which exclude dairy products" Pediatrics in Review. 2000;21:296-302.
Rockpocket 00:55, 10 June 2007 (UTC)
It sounds like something that should be mentioned, the Rickets article itself mentions vegans, I guess the issue seems to be a lack of fortified milk. Which is kind of funny, because it's not like milk would normally provide vitamin D... it's just become the established method of supplementation, which is unfortunate for vegans. Then there's this whole issues of D3 vs. D2...
Instead of inserting a oneliner in the intro, maybe it deserves more specific mention in a childhood nutrition section ... I've been wondering if we could expand the pregnancy to something broader like "pregnancy, childhood and adolescence". Then, within the section we could say "Because milk is rich in calcium and commonly supplemented with vitamin D, lack of milk consumption can lead to calcium and vitamin D deficiency. These vitamins are critical for bone growth, so growing children are especially vulnerable to calcium and vitamin D deficiency and consequently have a higher risk of developing the bone disease Rickets. However, fortified soymilk provides these nutrients, as it is supplemented with calcium as well as vitamins A and D."? Then again, this seems to preclude mentioning it in the main/adult section... just brainstorming here I guess. -- Madeleine 21:16, 10 June 2007 (UTC)

Section Break

Migospia- are there any sources you can provide that says they're not serious? Or perhaps if you find something that says they're only serious by a condition (like "only serious if left untreated") - in the latter's case we could add "potentially" to the line. --danielfolsom 21:33, 9 June 2007 (UTC)

For example you say "but according to doctors it is not serious/severe enough [to be described as serious]" - but do you have a source for that? Or is it just something you heard. --danielfolsom 21:34, 9 June 2007 (UTC)

Actually though- I think I'm agreeing with Migospia here - serious seems like a weird word for an encyclopedia - even HIV doesn't use the word, but since none of the concerned diseases use the words in their respected articles - perhaps we should view that as a precedent.--danielfolsom 21:39, 9 June 2007 (UTC)

Which word/words? SlimVirgin (talk) 21:41, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
Sorry - I was refering to "serious" - which based on what Migospia says above is the problem--danielfolsom 21:43, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
Okay. I don't feel that word is the issue. I think we need to find reliable sources that tell us vegans actually do come down with these diseases if they have poorly-managed diets. Because otherwise it's like saying, as was argued above, that teenage motorists may die if they fall asleep at the wheel. SlimVirgin (talk) 21:45, 9 June 2007 (UTC)

Yes thank you that is what I am saying!--Migospia 21:49, 9 June 2007 (UTC)

I thought there was a reliable source - what are those above?--danielfolsom 21:59, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
Wait - it seems like everyone's agreeing - what's the conflict here?--danielfolsom 22:02, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
If vegans are not at significant risk of those diseases, whether they are serious or not is a moot point. I made this point to Migospia, but she chose to continue to contest the "seriousness" if the diseases, rather than whether the diseases themselves are relevent. Rockpocket 22:40, 9 June 2007 (UTC)

Yes and I did as we disscused it, but also I did concern whether they should be there or not Talk:Veganism#Post_here

Indeed, but you never went ahead and proposed an alternative as was asked in the discussion above. Also, you will note I never reverted your edit after we discussed it. I was not agreeing that your edit was correct or preferable, simply that it addressed the grammatical error that I had corrected in the first place. Rockpocket 23:06, 9 June 2007 (UTC)

Wow! Yes I did I actually proposed three alternatives on this talk page and one on yours! If you were not agreeing why did you say: Yes, you can. If you wish to do that then go ahead.--Migospia 23:10, 9 June 2007 (UTC)

Because you had addressed the grammatical error that I had reverted. I was not interested in edit-warring over content, much preferring to discuss the matter here. "you can" and "if you wish to do that" does not indicate I agree with the content of your edit, simply that it was no longer grammatically incorrect. If you have three alternatives to significant improve the article, why don't you make those edits, instead of revert warring over whether a disease is "serious" or not? Rockpocket 23:31, 9 June 2007 (UTC)

That is what you don't seem to understand I did make one of my alternative edits and I did not edit war so please stop it--Migospia 23:44, 9 June 2007 (UTC)

Ok, still kinda confused - but from what I'm reading it seems like Migospia is saying there's such a low chance of them that it shouldn't be mentioned. I think that they should be listed - and the only alternative that I can think of would be saying "are at a low chance for consequences" - but that's probably npov and it sounds bad. Even if there is a low chance - having any chance at all is worth mentioning - because if one of those diseases can stem from veganism than that is a fact about veganism, and facts about veganism should go into the article about veganism. I don't think that either "potential" or "serious" should be used in the phrasing - potential is implied with "can have consequences" - it's uneccesary. We would only use potential if we said "Veganism does have potential consequences". Serious, based on the lack of use in most of the articles, is seemingly an unencyclopedic term - so that shouldn't be used either. --danielfolsom 23:38, 9 June 2007 (UTC)
Slim virgin - it's different then saying that "Teen drivers who fall asleep at the wheel may crash" - because falling asleep at the wheel has nothing to do with the driver being a teen, and the sources taht are currently listed in the comment prove that the diseases can be caused by veganism".--danielfolsom 23:41, 9 June 2007 (UTC)

No see these diseases can't be caused by veganism, but specific deficiencies can lead to these diseases, and what I am saying is yes but we already stated that if you have a good diet there is no need to worry I mean if you miss these deficiencies no matter what diet you are on vegetarian or meat eater, the only deficiencies vegans have more of is B12 since there are a lot of vegan foods with the other supposidly missing nutrients--Migospia 23:51, 9 June 2007 (UTC)

What is important here is whether being vegan puts one at an increased risk if these diseases or not. That is the case with B12, as Migospia says, but I've yet to see any reliable sources that says that is the case with rickets and cretinism. What was being disputed by Migospia was whether these diseases (the consequences of a deficiency) are serious (I think its now pretty clear that they are). However, and I could be wrong here, but what I think Migospia would like to dispute is whether or not these diseases are relevent to the article, since vegans are no more at risk than omnivores. Am I right? Now, I don't know why Migospia was so concered with an issue that appears to be entirely beside the point, but since everyone appears to agree it is now beside the point, perhaps we can move on and focus on more relevent issues. Rockpocket 00:27, 10 June 2007 (UTC)

International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis ref

Viriditas, I think you got it right here. The flaw of course being that feeding excess grain to a cow in your backyard is not the equivalent to production of any sort. Vert et Noirtalk 05:04, 10 June 2007 (UTC)

I'm really unsure, because I'm not the original author of this material, and I don't know exactly what that editor was trying to convey: the original editor was IdleGuy [14]. I hope he will step in here and try to clarify a few things. —Viriditas | Talk 06:13, 10 June 2007 (UTC)

Poorly Managed Diets

Per this[15] edit summary, I am not confused. Take a look at the following two sentences:

"Due to health risks associated with the reduced levels of some vitamins and minerals in a poorly-managed vegan diet (B12, D, calcium and iodine), vegans are encouraged to take supplements and monitor their diet."


"A poorly-managed diet, however can lead to various deficiencies, e.g. B12, D, calcium and iodine."

The first states that there are health risks associated with the reduced levels of various nutrients in a poorly managed vegan diet. It is grammatically correct, and gives potential vegans proper advice: take supplements and monitor your diet. The preceding section in the lede discusses vegan and vegetarian diets, and this sentence differentiates between the two. The second sentence states that any poorly managed diet can lead to deficiencies, and does not differentiate between vegan, vegetarian, or any other diet for that matter. It is grammatically incorrect and awkward, though I suppose this can be fixed. It does not mention dietary supplements or dietary monitoring. Of these two, the first is clearly the better choice to conclude the lede. Cheers, Skinwalker 12:52, 14 June 2007 (UTC)

This is a Vegan article so people won't be thinking of vegetarianism or any other diet. And the second sentence does not state that any poorly managed diet (although true this is a Vegan article) but "A" (vegan) one, since this is a vegan article. The first one is too over analytical and it would make better and clearer sense to use the second. If you think readers can't acknowledge that the sentence is talking about vegans.... (although they are reading a vegan article) it could say instead:

"Due to health risks associated with the reduced levels of some vitamins and minerals in a poorly-managed diet (B12, D, calcium and iodine), vegans are encouraged to take supplements."

How about that sentance it makes more sense--Migospia 13:09, 14 June 2007 (UTC)

Sounds better to me. Bob98133 13:46, 14 June 2007 (UTC)
This is not an improvement. The issue is that an unplanned vegan diet has an increased risk, when compared an omnivorous diet, of deficiency in calcium, etc, and that it has an almost 100% chance of B12 deficiency over a long period of time. Downplaying this does a disservice to all readers, and especially to any vegans looking here for objective information. KellenT 01:57, 17 June 2007 (UTC)


  • Migospia, I have to add that it's an increased risk for cancer if pills are popped and it decreases only when B12 comes from diet, as per the source "According to the researchers, individuals who said they used multivitamins, and whose blood showed traces of these nutrients, had a 139 percent increased relative risk of developing pancreatic cancer. Just in case you missed it.Idleguy 03:01, 15 June 2007 (UTC)
Idleguy, I have no idea what you are saying, what is talk about cancer?--Migospia 03:18, 16 June 2007 (UTC)
  • In this diff you changed the words from "increased" risk to "decreased" risk which is exactly opposite of what the source says about pancreatic cancer and B12. --Idleguy 07:56, 16 June 2007 (UTC)
Only to go the the reference--Migospia 08:07, 16 June 2007 (UTC)
Idleguy, it feels to me like including this statement is very misleading, since it is likely non-B12 components of the multivitamin which are causing this effect -- even if the statement is technically accurate, it is misleading to the readers, they are going to interpret this as saying "pill forms of B12 are bad" and I'm not aware of any evidence that B12 itself in pill form is problematic. On the other hand, beta-carotene has been implicated as bad-in-pill-form by a couple other studies, so this is a potential cause of the effect (although I think, if this is real, it would need to be much more well-understood before being included in wikipedia). Between the misinterpretation this statement is going to get and the amount of back and forth going on in the research world trying to pin down the effect, I would argue against including this statement. Madeleine 08:10, 15 June 2007 (UTC)
The caveat on the B12 in pill form needs to be said because a vegan diet results in deficiency of the vitamin and the article suggests/urges that they get B12 from supplements which are recently being found to have adverse effects. It is beside the point whether it's the non-B12 components or any other reason that results in such side effects. An informed decision is always better just like a patient should ideally be informed on the side effects and contraindications when resorting to a particular medication. Idleguy 07:56, 16 June 2007 (UTC)
Fine. I have rewritten it instead. Madeleine 21:24, 17 June 2007 (UTC)
The B12 claim is already in the article, and cited. Repeating it three times, which I just removed, is POV pushing. Abe Froman 21:35, 17 June 2007 (UTC)
Abe Froman, I have reverted your edits due to what appears to be misleading edit summaries. Your edit summaries claimed to be removing only duplicate information, however the reference count went from 107 down to 86. Clearly you removed more than duplicate material.
Your edits removed large quantities of material and when I searched for deficiency after you were finished, the word was not found. Therefore my conclusion is that you removed more than just duplicate material. Lsi john 22:00, 17 June 2007 (UTC)

(outdent) Abe Froman, I have tried to address your B12 concerns. I have reworked the concerns section and I broke out the individual vitamins/nutrients into separate subsections.

At this point, it seems to be fairly balanced to me. I believe that the B12 cautions are significant enough to justify the amount of print they got. Personally, I don't see it as a negative to Veganism, but simply an important concern which should be considered along with a healthy vegan diet.

Lsi john 00:07, 18 June 2007 (UTC)

To wit:

The American Dietetic Association has said that "appropriately planned vegetarian diets are healthful, nutritionally adequate, and provide health benefits in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases."[1] Poorly planned diets, however, increase the risk of deficiency in nutrients such as vitamin B12,[2] vitamin D,[3] calcium,[4] [3] iodine[5] and omega-3 fatty acids.[6] These deficiencies have potential consequences, including anemia,[7] rickets[8] and cretinism[9] in children, and osteomalacia[8] and hyperthyroidism[9] in adults.

Thereafter, Calcium, Iodine, and B12 are repeated several times as "concerns". This is concern trolling. Repetitious statements of "concerns" is a not so subtle violation of NPOV. Wikipedia is not an unstructured list of information, medical studies, and old wives' tales. The place for these alleged "concerns" is inline refs to the paragraph printed above. I have placed the NPOV tag in this section until this change is made. Abe Froman 00:13, 18 June 2007 (UTC)

  • Its interesting that you find someone who has no POV toward veganism to be writing as concern trolling.
It is not uncommon for a summary paragraph to then be expanded into subsequent paragraphs which provide more detail. And, quite honestly, I don't understand your concern. From what I've read, the B12 concern is cited in numerous places and is a serious concern to be kept in mind by vegans.
What POV do you feel that it represents? I take vitamin supplements, and I'm not a vegan. Why do you feel that listing valid concerns is POV?
Would you prefer that someone read this article, with no B12 concerns, and then get sick because they didn't know? Lsi john 00:35, 18 June 2007 (UTC)
First: If you wish to publish Medical advice, Wikipedia may not be your best soapbox. Secondly, I have moved the B12, Calcium, and Iodine "concern" links to the main paragraph. The American Dietetic Society says it all in the introduction. Since Wikipedia is not an unstructured list of information, these repetitous "concern" sections damage the article. Abe Froman 00:39, 18 June 2007 (UTC)

Abe, you're the one pushing pov, by deleting valid concerns. I'm done here for a while. I just spent two hours working on that to make it NPOV and accurate ,and you delete it in 10 seconds to suit your POV. You are not editing in good faith. You clearly have no desire to discuss and I have no desire to play your revert game. Peace be with you sir. Lsi john 00:53, 18 June 2007 (UTC)


Why do the demographics only cover the UK and the USA? Is there no information available about veganism in other countries? -Malkinann 13:08, 16 June 2007 (UTC)

If you can find any, please add it. Even the US numbers aren't all that good. The UK dietary study data is probably the best but unfortunately the questions weren't very clear so determining vegans from them isn't straightforward. KellenT 01:53, 17 June 2007 (UTC)
I will do a massive database search later tonight and try to find some more stats. —Viriditas | Talk 04:30, 18 June 2007 (UTC)
Any luck? KellenT 20:49, 21 June 2007 (UTC)


Migospia, I have not seen any recommendations that went so far as to specify 'bacteria or non animal' supplements. I'll take your word that some exist. However, we can't make the claim and imply that 'only' those supplements have been recommended.

I realize that animal supplements would violate veganism, but that is Original Research. Adding your wording 'restricts' what is being said, and does not accurately reflect the entire array of recommendations being cited.

I have compromised and added a secondary sentence, but I believe it detracts from the article with extra words. I believe your extra wording is a bit POV'ish. Lsi john 00:13, 18 June 2007 (UTC)

And, on a personal note, reverting me cost you 1RR today for this article.. if you had brought it up here in talk first, I'd have been more than happy to work with you, without you needing to revert me. Lsi john 00:15, 18 June 2007 (UTC)

The important part, in the context of the recommendation, is that supplements be taken. It is the 'health concern' that is being addressed. It is really of secondary importance that they be vegan-acceptable supplements. Adding the vegan-pov perspective of the type of supplements muddies the sentence, and thats where I think it crosses into pov-ish. By definition, vegans will choose vegan-acceptable supplements. Its not necessary to add that into the sentence. Lsi john 00:18, 18 June 2007 (UTC)

I did not add any extra wording I just undid you version of removing it and I do not know how it would but but I cited a source.--Migospia 00:25, 18 June 2007 (UTC)
According to the American Dietetic Society, Other than B12, a properly planned vegan diet provides good nutrition. Of course, that is efficiently hidden by these manifold health "concern" edits. Abe Froman 00:23, 18 June 2007 (UTC)
Hmm Abe I see your point it should be changed. It says:

The American Dietetic Association has said that "appropriately planned vegetarian diets are healthful, nutritionally adequate, and provide health benefits in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases

But does not go any further, but yet

Poorly planned diets, however, increase the risk of deficiency

Goes futher....a bit too far making it not NPOV this needs to be chaged--Migospia 00:28, 18 June 2007 (UTC)

Argh. now we have two discussions going on in this section and it's going to be confusing.

  • Folks, first of all, it is a CONCERNS SECTION. By definition a concerns section has concerns. It isn't about why to 'not' be a vegan. It is about things vegans should be aware of.
Secondly, NPOV does not mean that every sentence is made in a neutral fashion. NPOV means that every significant viewpoint is presented fairly and that the overall article provides an NPOV.
For example: which of these is NPOV?
  1. Dr Watson recommends wearing tennis shoes when playing golf.
  2. Dr Watson, PhD and MD of podiatry, chief of surgery at Watkins hospital, winner of 17 academic medals of excellence, and humanitarian of the year, recommends wearing tennis shoes when playing golf.
  3. Dr Watson, recently arrested for drunk driving, divorced, and accused of beating his wife, in a coffee stained memo, recommended wearing tennis shoes when playing golf.

Lsi john 00:46, 18 June 2007 (UTC)

Next, Migospia, your link, that you just provided, does not say what you are quoting it to say. It 'recommends supplements' period. It goes on to say that 'vegan supplements' are available. But you have combined two different sentences (that is original research). Lsi john 00:46, 18 June 2007 (UTC)

Read my someone change sentance I quoted it John and yes read the link I sourced it does talk about yourr concern--Migospia 01:00, 18 June 2007 (UTC)

Someone has to change

Why is the Precautions longer than the Benefits section, why can't someeone expand the Benefits and American Dietetic Association section?--Migospia 00:48, 18 June 2007 (UTC)

Moved fom section supp

Hmm Abe I see your point it should be changed. It says:

The American Dietetic Association has said that "appropriately planned vegetarian diets are healthful, nutritionally adequate, and provide health benefits in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases

But does not go any further, but yet

Poorly planned diets, however, increase the risk of deficiency

Goes futher....a bit too far making it not NPOV this needs to be chaged--Migospia 00:28, 18 June 2007 (UTC)

Hon, NPOV doesn't mean equal words.

It means every significant viewpoint gets expressed fairly and without bias. And, personally, I think it is a bit silly to believe that 'cautions' are the same as 'anti-vegan'. Cautions are cautions. There are cautions when driving a car, but I wouldn't say that 'be careful when driving on ice' is the same as 'driving a car is bad and dangerous, never do it!'.

Also, I actually looked at the sizes of the two sections when I was finished, and they were very close to the same size. Which isn't bad, considering the extra space required for sub-sections, and the one or two pro-vegan statements inside the concerns section.

I have no opinion on veganism. That makes me neutral. I'm not a vegan, but that doesn't make me anti-vegan. I'd never even heard of veganism until this article. The fact that I eat meat doesn't mean I'm anti-vegan; it means I eat meat. Period. I also eat vegetables, and there are occasions when my entire meal is salad.

Hiding and deleting legitimate concerns, is shameful and bad faith editing. The concerns exist.. So What, Big Deal, Who Cares. They exist, so they should be represented. In fact B12 concerns exist in numerous places, on numerous websites, and are a significant concern for vegans. Reducing that representation in this article is wrong and it could put someone's health at risk. It probably won't, but it could.

Even more importantly, the article could be considered POV pro-vegan because there isn't ANY section which is actually AGAINST veganism. There are concerns, but concerns are not ANTI-vegan.

And, that is why I have concluded that Abe is so far POV that it's not worth bothering to edit here for a while. He is seeing neutral material as POV. If I were anti-vegan, I'd fight him. But I'm not. I care about good articles. I care about NPOV. But I don't care enough about any particular article to get in a fight with Abe about it. What he is doing, by deleting relevant and sourced material, is making wikipedia an unreliable resource.Lsi john 01:21, 18 June 2007 (UTC)

I know what NPOV means...dude, it does not matter the size but the content and both the Precautions and the Benefits sections needs to be changed. Fix the Precautions so it won't come off misleading as it is as well futher the first sentance in it, and include more in the Benefits. That is all I am saying why are you aganist it? Since you apprently "care about good articles", and I never rsaid you were anti-vegan--Migospia 01:36, 18 June 2007 (UTC)
Migospia, at this point, I'd have to revert Abe to get back the proper text and citations. I have no desire to edit war with him. And, he'd clearly prefer to edit war than discuss, since that is what he has done twice now.
It also seems that there is a misunderstanding that 'concerns' somehow equates to 'criticism'. It is not the same. At a casual read, I don't see that this article has ANY criticism of veganism at all. We are kidding ourselves if we think that legitimate health concerns (which can be solved with supplements) are somehow a criticism of veganism. That is simply absurd.
I'm told to wear a construction HARD HAT in many areas where I work. It is out of a safety concern that I wear the hard hat. I certainly don't consider it an anti-construction concept. I certainly don't stay at home, rather than go to work and wear a hard hat. Its a safety 'concern' that can be solved by wearing a hard hat. period. Nothing more. Nothing less.
If concerns about B12 deficiency are POV, where is the material which says there are NO concerns about B12 deficiency? That would be the Opposite POV. But instead, the answer is to erase/delete/revert the legitimate information and bury it as a host of references in a single paragraph.
And, most importantly of all, many if the concerns about B12 come straight off the vegan society website. Are they pov? That makes it almost funny. Lsi john 03:47, 18 June 2007 (UTC)
You don't seem get it. Revert not only Abe but your edits you made while in your edit war with Abe, before the war and addition/removal of text--Migospia 07:56, 19 June 2007 (UTC)
Well a proposal - is here

Here is what should happen...

I don't want to edit war either and am not sure what edits you or Abe want, but here is what I would like:

  • RV back to Madprime's edit 20:46, June 17, 2007[16]

before your edit war with Abe

  • The benefits section gets an increase in valid factual information and expand on the sentance benefits in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases....

Is that okay for everyone?--Migospia 04:41, 18 June 2007 (UTC)

I actually corrected some factual inaccuracies that were in the older version and I'd prefer to edit going-forward from that corrected version. As for adding 'benefits' in the 'cautions' section, that seems a bit odd. Benefits belong up in the 'health benefits' section. It seems that you are trying to mask the concerns with benefits. What would you say if someone suggested putting 'concerns' in the 'benefits' section? Lsi john 04:57, 18 June 2007 (UTC)
Well from what I what you did not so Madprime's version is the best. If the benefits section gets increased with the added prevention and treatment of certain diseases, then we don't need to add it to the precautions section. But I don't see your question--Migospia 05:12, 18 June 2007 (UTC)
You know what? I think evidence for most dietary things is weak. That's why I weakened the wording on the B12 reduction in cancer -- it's an association, that's weak evidence especially when just a report on a single study. And I made it clear how many non-B12 explanations could explain the correlation of multivitamins with increased cancer (including one on irregular supplementation possibly causing it, which came from the article itself) -- the current version seems to imply B12 pills are causing a problem and researchers don't know the mechanism, but it is deeper than that, it could be explained by behavior correlations! Have adult vegans been observed to have health problems as a result of B12 deficiency? Are the statements about neurological problems merely an inference from the observations of lowered blood level, with most cases of pernicious anemia actually caused by B12 malabsorption rather than a vegan diet? At the same time, I think dietary benefits evidence is also weak and based on correlations. I would like all these health claims, which are based on correlation studies and blood test comparisons (rather than manifestation of clinical problems), to be a lot more circumspect in their claims, in both the benefits and cautions section. Both sides. Madeleine 07:25, 18 June 2007 (UTC)
And I appreciate your concerns. The fact is, that all those studies exist and they reflect a viewpoint. Our concerns about their validity or accuracy really don't allow us to ignore views that are documented (especially on the vegan society website). They also don't justify taking an entire 4-5 paragraphs and crunching them into 1 tiny paragraph full of footnote citaions. The way the article reads now... there are tons of benefits. oh and a tiny casual mention of concerns.. Removing all that information and tagging the sources to a tiny paragraph, is absurd and very poor editing. Lsi john 13:34, 18 June 2007 (UTC)
I'm sorry, I should have said... I also find deleting the concerns material unacceptable and POV, I think we need to be discussing here how to trim both sections down. I completely agree with you here, I've reverted to your version (although I didn't want to get involved in revert wars, and I disagree with the changes you made to my wording).
Below, Viriditas has quoted the conclusion of one study which supports my feelings on this... "veganism does not appear to result in either dramatic protection or increased risk when compared with other vegetarian diets". That's the core scientific viewpoint here I feel wikipedia should reflect. My concern is that these sections are a factoid dumps for the bickering between non-neutral factions. (An easy trap to fall into on wikipedia -- people, including me, are reluctant to delete things that are technically true, even when they don't belong.) We can discuss here hopefully how to trim both sections down into a summary that reflects the reality -- that there are neither significant benefits nor risks associated with vegan diets. --Madeleine 14:11, 18 June 2007 (UTC)
Actually he made 2 edits. in order to maintain 1RR, you'll need to self-revert (for documentation), and then edit my archive version and save it. And, thanks. I think discussion is much better than revert wars.
My edits were designed to help accomodate his objections, due to his previous massive deletion (which I reverted before I started editing.) I'm open to suggestions about the content. I was simply re-writing what was there, in a bit more ordered fashion, and making sure that the citations actually fit the text being cited. Lsi john 14:15, 18 June 2007 (UTC)
Never mind. on the revert suggestion. It appears you did that already. My bad. Lsi john 14:17, 18 June 2007 (UTC)

Life expectancy

It might be interesting to add information related to life expectancy to the article. "Don't ditch low-fat dairy or fish rich in omega-3s: In a German study comparing vegetarians, vegans (who eat no dairy or eggs), and moderate vegetarians (who eat fish), the moderates lived longest--and vegans the shortest." (Prevention; May2007, Vol. 59 Issue 5, p56-56) Prevention doesn't list the study in question, but I think this is one of them: "Being a vegan was associated with a higher mortality risk (1.59; 95% CI, 0.98-2.59) than being a lacto-ovo vegetarian (1.08; 95% CI, 0.86-1.34), when compared with nonvegetarians with moderate meat/fish consumption, accounting for all other variables (data not shown).[17]Viriditas | Talk 09:28, 18 June 2007 (UTC)

There is also a slight, unexplained "excess of cancer mortality" among vegans according to Fraser, Gary E. (2003) Diet, Life Expectancy, and Chronic Disease: Studies of Seventh-Day Adventists and Other Vegetarians. Oxford University Press.[18] Author concludes that "veganism does not appear to result in either dramatic protection or increased risk when compared with other vegetarian diets". —Viriditas | Talk 10:19, 18 June 2007 (UTC)

Discussion for latest version

Migospia, I do not know how to explain this any better. REVERT is not necessary. Discuss it.

What are your specific objections to the current version? Lsi john 02:44, 19 June 2007 (UTC)

. Lsi john

. Lsi john Why have you made the edit you have made to veganism and engaging in edit warring again?--Migospia 02:47, 19 June 2007 (UTC)

  • I made the edits to try to improve the article. Please indicate exactly what you dont like, and what you'd like to change. It just might be that I like your idea and agree with you. But until you say what's wrong with the current version, I won't know. Lsi john 02:49, 19 June 2007 (UTC)

No please undo them because they harm the article after ALL what was discussed on earlier and you still made those edits?--Migospia 02:56, 19 June 2007 (UTC)

  • I'm really confused here. You were editing with me when I made those 21+ edits. You edited in the middle. You didn't object while I was editing. Now you want to revert and won't say why?
Exactly what do you think I changed? Basically all I did was re-arrange. What do you think is harmful now? Lsi john 03:00, 19 June 2007 (UTC)
Have you even looked at the article and read this version? Its almost all the same words. Just arranged in a clearer order. Lsi john 03:02, 19 June 2007 (UTC)
Have you even looked? And you keep edit warring and reverting close to 3RR, I wish you would not make such edits without talk, that is why the talk pages are here...--Migospia 07:53, 19 June 2007 (UTC)

Vitamin B12 section

There are far to many references in this section. Someone needs to decide which are the best and jettison the rest. David D. (Talk) 07:28, 19 June 2007 (UTC)

Why does it matter if there are multiple references? B12 is a significant concern. It deserves a significant amount of article space, in proportion to the number of secondary sources that reference it. First you remove citations, and then people remove the coverage, and then, suddenly there are absolutely no concerns or health issues at all. haha ;) *sigh*
In reality, this should be one of the easiest articles to write on wikipedia. You folks would absolutely fall apart if someone came in here who was truly anti-vegan and started adding anti-vegan information to this article.
I'm going to take a break from this article for a while. It's amazing what people will find to fight about. Peace all.. Lsi john 07:36, 19 June 2007 (UTC)
Pardon, was this aimed at my comment or am I missing something here? I am neither vegan or anti-vegan. You seem to be painting this in a rather black and white fashion. With respect to my comment above, there is one sentence that has six references to back it up. How is this not overkill? How is the reader served by throwing every reference available at them rather than a selection of the best? Two or three, at most should be sufficient and will best serve the reader. David D. (Talk) 07:44, 19 June 2007 (UTC)
Sorry David. I have slept 3 hours in the past 36 and I'm worn out trying to explain 3RR to Migospia. I meant no offense and overreacted. I'm exhausted (no excuse). Normally I'd agree, that one or two references is sufficient. In this case, I disagree, at least until the article is stablized. With so many re-writes and revisions, the article is having difficulty sticking to cited sources. With massive deletions of entire sections, (in the name of pov-trolling) I'm worn out trying to keep up. My sarcasm was not directed at you, but was due to my frustration in general. This should be one of the easiest articles to write, and it has consumed more of my time than almost any other single article I've worked on. I, too, am neither vegan nor anti-vegan. Lsi john 12:20, 19 June 2007 (UTC)


Ok, so no one thinks I'm crazy, I'd like to start off by saying that a lot of work needs to be done on this article - there are some horrendous sections that really need to be worked on. That being said, assuming the changes are made, I think this article should absolutely be promoted to a good artcie - and then soon after that featured. The informatinos that is cited here is exceptional, I mean there are 108 citations, and I think if you guys can hold off pov from both sides thus cleansing the article, then it should really be noted.--danielfolsom 16:48, 19 June 2007 (UTC)


Ok, here are a few sources you guys might be interested in, some are good some are crap, but you never know. Some are positive and some are negative, in no particular order --danielfolsom17:03, 19 June 2007 (UTC):

  1. [19] - I added this into the article, but not well
  2. [20]
  3. [21] - for globalizing the demographics section
  4. [22]
  5. [23]


The quote in the 'Specific Nutrients' section Lindsay Allen, of the US Agricultural Research Service, came out against the diet in 2005, saying, "There have been sufficient studies clearly showing that when women avoid all animal foods, their babies are born small, they grow very slowly and they are developmentally retarded, possibly permanently". She especially targeted parents who allow children on the diet, "There's absolutely no question that it's unethical for parents to bring up their children as strict vegans." In retaliation, Kostana Azmi, the chief executive officer of the Vegan Society in the UK, said: "The vegan diet can provide you with more energy, nutrition, and is bursting with goodness." seems out of place. Also, it is far too verbosely discussed - we don't need all of that, just a summary really.-Localzuk(talk) 17:56, 19 June 2007 (UTC)

I believe if you refer up 1 section. you'll see that it just got added. We need to have an entire section dedicated to Criticizm, which does not yet exist. Rather than shortening it .. it should probably be re-written as a paragraph in Encyclopediaezze and just reference the source. Lsi john 18:07, 19 June 2007 (UTC)
Well I agree it needs moving, but not to a criticism section as they're bad m'kay. It is more a general comment regarding nutritional problems, so would be better positioned in a summary of the 'precautions' section, after culling it a bit.-Localzuk(talk) 18:12, 19 June 2007 (UTC)
Agreed on the section name, in general. Perhaps breaking it up into different appropriate areas. (or culling.. whichever works best). Lsi john 18:25, 19 June 2007 (UTC)
Ahh ok, I didn't realize people had gotten back so quickly. Yeah, I mean - I've already stated this but I just want to emphasize - what I wrote was not meant as a final version. I completely found the source by accident (I was trying to globalize the Demographics section and somehow ...), but I just wanted to add it in there and let it be fooled around with - it should def. not be the entire discussion and any quote used should be mixed into the text, it shouldn't just be randomly brought up like it is now. I figured the place to put it (based on what the article was already) was in the nutritional/health section - since Allen is talking about how children don't get the nutritients they need, but I could care less whether it was in a criticism section or not. Before I found the source and while I was trying to globalize, I found a lot of anti-vegan sources, so there must be something big out there - some of what I found is in the above section for more info. --danielfolsom 18:45, 19 June 2007 (UTC)
The study that Lindsay Allen cited was "partially supported by the National Cattleman's Beef Association" and invloved studying 544 children who "had been raised on diets chiefly consisting of starchy, low-nutrition corn and bean staples lacking these micronutrients. This meant they were already malnourished.". The study was essentially researching the effects of "improving" the diets of malnourished children, not, in any way, typical vegans. Also, please see previous discussion on the matter: Talk:Veganism/Archive05#Prof._Allen.27s_Study_and_a_Reminder - 06:32, 20 June 2007 (UTC)
Ahh ok - I wasn't aware of that - however, I wouldn't say we should just leave it out for two reasons. 1)Regardless of what her study was - a high ranking official said "Veganism doesn't work" - and we should include that. and 2) Only two or three editors voted delete, and now it would seem the article has more attention.--danielfolsom 12:12, 20 June 2007 (UTC)
Allen admited that she was mis-quoted and that the story "hyped" her concern. She did not say "Veganism doesn't work". She said "Veganism doesn't work if...". The story being quoted failed to mention the "if", so it doesn't seem like a very acurate source. I suggest reading the links to various retorts to the story on the talk archive page I linked back to, particularly this one. 14:57, 20 June 2007 (UTC)
I searched "Lindsay Allen Us [whatever her title is] veganism misquoted" and got pretty much nothing, and the link you provided only says "she's wrong". If you can find a reliable source that says she doesn't believe that veganism is bad then obviously my position will change my position - but just because you can rebute a claim doesn't mean the claim should be included. Wikipedia is not a debate. And while I'm not for or against veganism - this page does seem to have a npov problem that needs to be fixed - and the npov problem has resulted from people taking anti-veganism claims and saying "That's not right" - and then using that as grounds to remove them--danielfolsom 17:33, 20 June 2007 (UTC)

This was previously removed per: Talk:Veganism/Archive08#pregnancies_section_cleanup. Please see this article in which:

In a written response to a member of the vegan website, however, Allen said her quotes to various news sources were taken out of context.
"The news reporter 'hyped' my concern about vegan diets for pregnant/lactating mothers and infants/children by not adding the sentence I was emphatic they keep in," she wrote, "namely that vegan diets were unethical UNLESS those who practiced them were well-informed about how to add back the missing nutrients through supplements or fortified foods."

So there we are. Essentially she said: "withholding vital nutrients from a child is unethical," which no one would disagree with. The Vegan society said something similar with respect to so-called vegan parents who were charged with child abuse for starving their child. The addition of this section adds no new information about veganism that isn't covered except for re-reporting the media frenzy around a mis-reporting of Allen's comments. KellenT 20:45, 20 June 2007 (UTC)

Ok - I'll take your word for that link being the letter where she says she is taken out of context - but if that other link is the same discussion as previously listed then what I said about 2 comments ago (or maybe my last comment) would've applied. All this being said - this article needs some anti-veganism stuff. When I was searching the web for the demographics thing I out of the blue found a bunch of anti-vegan stuff, much of it from reliable sources. The article is obviously npov, and it does need a lot of clean up. Perhaps we should each try to find at least 1 good anti-vegan source, and that way we'll have plenty of material to work from and it'll at least balance the article a bit --danielfolsom 21:09, 20 June 2007 (UTC)
The other link is a different one; it's where I justify the removal of the previous paragraph discussing Allen's comments. The citations there are valuable in reconstructing the media frenzy. I understand why the BBC take on her comments keeps getting added; it's a high-ranking search result from a reliable source that in this case happens to be mis-stating Allen's position. If consensus is to leave this out of the article, long-term editors need to be aware of what actually happened, and explain this to new editors and then explain why this specific incident isn't particularly notable to the subject of veganism. (My version of this is in my previous comment)
I totally agree that there need to be additional criticisms included in the article. The Davis piece is one attack on one aspect of veganism that is included. I tried (above, in the Criticisms_clearinghouse section) to elicit addition of more criticisms, but had few takers. If you can add some, please do. KellenT 22:09, 20 June 2007 (UTC)

Again I don't have the time to work on this article (I'm working on what feels like 500 and I'm dealing with an editor) - but here are some good links that could be extremely useful.

  • Canadian Living - has reasons for going vegan and also has nutriotional stuff
  • Times - it's an editorial - but we can still use quotes and stuff.
Africa Demographics

--danielfolsom 23:04, 20 June 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for tracking these down; I'll take a look at them and add them when I have time if somebody else hasn't gotten to it first. KellenT 20:40, 21 June 2007 (UTC)
These don't seem to be useful for the demographics section, unfortunately. KellenT 17:49, 3 July 2007 (UTC)


I'm curious why you deleted the 'founded by' in the lead? I'm also curious why you commented it as 'odd'. It was cited material and seemed relevant to me, given that his name appears in multiple sources that I've read. Lsi john 18:25, 19 June 2007 (UTC)

And, of course, this: Donald Watson. Why wouldn't we mention someone that significant in this article?

A word can't be 'founded'. He founded the Vegan Society and started using the word, but didn't invent veganism...-Localzuk(talk) 18:56, 19 June 2007 (UTC)
People have been avoiding animal products for thousands of years; to imagine the idea was founded in 1944 is kind of bizarre. :-) SlimVirgin (talk) 19:01, 19 June 2007 (UTC)
Possible Compromise - we just attribute the term torwards Watson.--danielfolsom 19:07, 19 June 2007 (UTC)
I.E. (not a great example, but whatever): "Veganism is a term coined by Donald Watson describing a philosophy and lifestyle that seeks to exclude the use of animals for food, clothing, or any other purpose."
I suggest removing this from the intro, and leaving it in the "definition" section as it was previously. Having it in the intro is rather unnecessary, as well as incomplete as Elise Shrigly was also involved in creating the word. KellenT 20:20, 20 June 2007 (UTC)
Done. SlimVirgin (talk) 20:53, 20 June 2007 (UTC)
Agreed - as long as the intro doesn't sound like he invented veganism - then I'm fine.--danielfolsom 21:04, 20 June 2007 (UTC)

What's going on?

Why is everything changing like this?--Migospia 01:33, 20 June 2007 (UTC)

Why is everything changing like what?
  • As new information is found, articles get changed.
  • As new editors find the page, articles get changed.
Lsi john 16:53, 20 June 2007 (UTC)
Yes. I think I need a little more information. As it stands, I don't think I understand exactly what you mean and so don't know exactly how to address this. mako (talkcontribs) 11:11, 21 June 2007 (UTC)

a good question

can a vegan posses and work in a farm?it appear in an animated film"the barnyard

Finding prominent adherents for viewpoints

Although I understand the desire to provide "dissenting views" to try to balance an article, it is also important that dissenting views do not represent the view of an extremely small minority. From WP:UNDUE:

  • If a viewpoint is held by a significant minority, then it should be easy to name prominent adherents;
  • If a viewpoint is held by an extremely small (or vastly limited) minority, it does not belong in Wikipedia (except perhaps in some ancillary article) regardless of whether it is true or not; and regardless of whether you can prove it or not.

Emphasis on "prominent" is wikipedia's, not mine. There are viewpoints expressed in this article from people that are not prominent enough to have wikipedia pages dedicated to them. If these opinions are going to be represented here, I feel the article needs to find more prominent people or organizations to back them up. Steven Davis and Gaverick Matheny are particularly obscure. William Jarvis seems fairly obscure to me. While Lindsay Allen has published the the "Encyclopedia of Human Nutrition", she's apparently not notable enough to have her own wikipedia page. Kostana Azmi is notable only insofar as she represents a notable organization, justifiable if we believe her statement is meant to represent the position of the organization itself.

If any of these people represent a significant viewpoint, I feel better references than their names and personal opinions should be found and used. I am not trying to be pro-vegan in this, I am trying to set a standard to follow that will avoid inclusion of extreme minority views. I'm encouraging the article and editors to scrutinize the notability of all individuals quoted & referenced in support of particular viewpoints. Madeleine 16:00, 22 June 2007 (UTC)

From what I've seen - anti-veganism is hardly a minority - again, while searching something like "Canada veganism" for the demographics section, the only thing I got was anti-vegan pages - and again, the links above are reliable sources that work. And just because someone doesn't have their own wikipedia page doesn't mean you can't have a quote from them.--danielfolsom 17:57, 22 June 2007 (UTC)
I'm not saying anti-vegan viewpoints don't exist, but I think this needs to be covered in a different way. You're right that this is a significant social viewpoint, but I think it may be a mistake to refer to Allen here as a significant scientific authority on the subject — she's an expert on micronutrient deficiencies in the developing world, that doesn't make her an expert on the choice of veganism in the developed world where there is more access to diverse foods and nutritional supplements are available. Even if it's a significant social viewpoint doesn't make it a significant scientific viewpoint (eg. creationism) and the article needs to be careful about distinguishing between the two. With respect health claims in general -- news articles do not provide a good representation of scientific consensus on issues, they tend to have factoid science (often reporting on unreproducible results instead of waiting for better confirmation and misrepresenting association studies as having found causality) and play up dissenting opinions as being significant (again, eg. creationism). Maybe there's a journal article (preferably a review) we can find that would better justify Allen's viewpoint. If not, maybe this is more of a "social viewpoint" than a "scientific viewpoint" and could be discussed as such without bandying about any particular names as being authorities on the subject -- there are other news articles out there that could also be referenced to establish the presence of such a viewpoint (eg. this recent NYTimes op-ed [24]). The American Dietetic Association is an example of a source I'd trust to represent the scientific consensus on nutritional concerns with veganism. It may be possible to find an article that establishes a significant differing scientific viewpoint, but at the moment I'm not convinced that Allen is representing such a group.
I was actually bringing this up because I've had an issue with Steven Davis's viewpoint. It would be nice if we could consider each of these separately. Even if we decide to keep Allen, you might find the Davis too obscure, I'd really appreciate it if you broadened your consideration of my comments to consider whether some of the other individuals quoted in the article lack significance. Madeleine 19:20, 22 June 2007 (UTC)
As much as we'd like to think (and wish) that it is, the fact is that Wikipedia is not about truth. It is about truthfully and accurately reflecting what has been said in secondary sources with the requirement that the secondary sources be reliable.
Our job is not to write about what we think (or know) that Veganism is. Our job is to write an article that reflects what the world has said about Veganism in secondary sources. And we must do that fairly and without trying to bias the information. If a doctor has said something, in their professional capacity, then their information is appropriately put in a medical section. If that opinion or information was related to a specific country, then that can be 'fairly' stated. (eg. The European iodine issue. While it is globally specific, and does not apply to the USA. If you live in Europe it is VERY important to you and belongs in the article - accurately reflected as a European concern and why).
Bottom line: We need to stop 'rejecting' and 'deleting' things which go against what we 'know' about [Veganism]] and start giving all the relevant (and significant) information fair (NPOV) representation in our article. The only thing left to debate is what constitutes significant, and I think reasonable people can work that out. Lsi john 19:50, 22 June 2007 (UTC)
Huh? Are you agreeing with me or not? My point is exactly that truth is not enough. It's not enough that someone somewhere said something. That is a true statement. But it doesn't mean it merits inclusion in an encyclopedic summarization of the topic. Only significant viewpoints should exist here, you can't include every little weird idea, theory, and dissident opinion that some person said somewhere, even if their profession is vaguely related to the subject at hand. We can't include this stuff on wikipedia just because it's "true" (ie. yes, someone said it), it also needs to represent a significant viewpoint. In anything making a claim on health effects it should be representing a significant scientific viewpoint, not merely a popular one. I'd like to think I'm a reasonable person. I respect veganism a lot, but I also just ate a freebie slice pepperoni pizza, so I'm not heavily invested in it. I hope you aren't associating me with the behavior of some other pro-vegan editors of the article. Madeleine 21:59, 22 June 2007 (UTC)
Even Lindsay Allen doesn't like that BBC story? [25] Madeleine 22:19, 22 June 2007 (UTC)

Since the story first broke Professor Allen has sought to distance herself from it, complaining that the reporter “hyped” her concern about vegan diets and omitted a crucial clause from the preceding quote. In an email message she wrote:

"The news reporter “hyped” my concern about vegan diets for pregnant/lactating mothers and infants/children by not adding the sentence I was emphatic they keep in, namely that vegan diets were unethical UNLESS those who practiced them were well-informed about how to add back the missing nutrients through supplements or fortified foods. I completely agree that it is possible to add back those missing nutrients and have stated this in a position paper on nutrition in pregnancy for the American Dietetic Association. I also agree that well-managed vegan diets, plus supplements plus fortified foods to get those missing nutrients, are probably healthier for adults and even many children than the average US or UK diet."

-- Madeleine 22:28, 22 June 2007 (UTC)

Factoid dump?

Another issue I'd like people to consider whether the article is turning into an incoherent factoid dump. Viriditas above mentioned that the author of a 2003 study Diet, Life Expectancy, and Chronic Disease: Studies of Seventh-Day Adventists and Other Vegetarians [26] concludes that "veganism does not appear to result in either dramatic protection or increased risk when compared with other vegetarian diets". While I haven't read this book, I suspect this reflects the scientific consensus and I feel the health section should reflect this. I'm not against discussing the nutritional concerns or perceived benefits, but when an isolated study on pancreatic cancer and B vitamin intake (note that the study had nothing to do with vegans) is inserted I wonder if this article is turning into an incoherent factoid dump. Also questionable is inclusion of the China vs. Western diet study (which doesn't actually study veganism itself), which seems like a tenuous OR-ish justification for claiming a vegan health benefit.

Just because something is true doesn't mean it belongs, this is a summary article. The best sources for the article should be general reviews of the diet (like the one Viriditas has found) rather than haphazardly picking a few of the zillion isolated dietary studies out there. Madeleine 16:21, 22 June 2007 (UTC)

Actually, a well written article has very few quotes, and is written in a flowing way that reads well. What should be done is that the studies are all summarized in a paragraph or two or three (depending on the quantity of studies found and how they are related) and then the references provided at the end of the paragraph. The problem with that is that people keep deleting things, which separate the sources from the material being written, and making it pointless to try to write any truly constructive verbiage.
The reality is, that this article contains virtually no opinions or citations which reflect anti-veganism sentiment and before it can become a good or featured article it will need to stabilize and be more balanced.
The misconception that I've seen here is that all information must be provided without bias (NPOV). That is untrue. Biased statements can be made in any article, provided they are sourced. NPOV requires that sources be reflected accurately and fairly. It also requires, (as Madeleine pointed out above, that undue weight not be given to any particular viewpoint. That does not mean that we can only accept sources which were provided by some 'major' organization who is somehow allowed to represent a viewpoint. If there are a sufficient quantity of reliable sources that reflect a similar opinion, then that opinion should be represented in this article in proportion to its representation.
So now, rather than fight about whether it gets include, perhaps we can fight about whether it gets 75 or 275 words? (intended as humor) Lsi john 18:12, 22 June 2007 (UTC)

PS - The multivitamin cancer association seems OR-ish to me as well. It is connecting two facts: (a) vegans are at greater risk for deficiencies and supplementation is recommended by notable organizations, and (b) a couple studies have associated multivitamin supplementation with increased incidence of cancer. The implicit OR here is that vegans are "damned if you do, damned it you don't" -- that they face risks from supplementation as well as from lack of supplementation. While this may be true (although note that the studies are merely association and have not found causality), wikipedia should be using an reliable outside source that connects these two dots, not doing it on its own. Madeleine 19:25, 22 June 2007 (UTC)

As long as we closely follow the source, it is not OR. Whether or not it is good science, is another matter. Vegans are 'at risk' for vitamin deficiencies. Vegans are 'at risk' for some increased cancers. The risk can be managed with 'proper diet' and/or vitamin supplements. As for the participants that took multivitamins also having some small percentage increased cancer, I believe it said that the increase was both statistically insignificant and unexplained. In which case, it is not a notable statement to make in this article.
Things we add to any article should 'add value' and give the reader a better understanding of the subject. This is not an article on multivitamins and whether or not multivitamins have some unknown and unspecified associated risk of cancer. The vitamins and the study are relevant and significant only as far as it is directly related to veganism and cancer. Unexplained (and statistically insignificant) results are not relevant and probably should not be included. Lsi john 19:35, 22 June 2007 (UTC)
That's not true, closely following sources can still be OR if you are combining statements in a way that have not been combined elsewhere. I added this postscript because I was thinking about the WP:SYN example. I'm saying there should be an outside source making this link between multivitamins/cancer and veganism, otherwise mentioning it seems to create an OR synthesis. I had argued earlier that it should be removed for these other reasons (questionable significance, just one study, unjustified implication of causality); as you say, it's scientifically weak. To play devil's advocate here, there are others studies that have associated vitamin supplementation with cancer, but it's all new to the field — maybe warrants inclusion in an article about vitamins, but not here, not without better evidence or without an outside source linking the two. Madeleine 19:56, 22 June 2007 (UTC)
If we 'combine statements' that are not combined elsewhere to form meanings which do not reflect the sources we are citing, then we are not closely following the cited sources. Ergo, my above remarks still apply. Lsi john 22:14, 22 June 2007 (UTC)

I have corrected your misunderstanding of my above comments, by adding back part of that survey. The fact that vegans are at risk for lower Bx vitamins, is important, given that increased Bx vitamins show reduced risk of cancer. Its the rest of that study that doesn't apply. Speculating on increased cancer from vitamin supplements and including that the scientists can't explain why, is not relevant. Lsi john 22:17, 22 June 2007 (UTC)

Okay. I was taking issue with the multivitamin cancer. I still think it's a factoid that need to get summarized, but until that happens I guess you're right to keep the first part. Madeleine 22:23, 22 June 2007 (UTC)
  • Regarding your wording change to the lead, that is a good compromise. It separates the recommendation for supplements from the fact that vegan-friendly supplements are available. Thank you. Lsi john 22:20, 22 June 2007 (UTC)

Poorly Managed...

Ok - although I have yet to get into it myself, there's apparently a revert war going on. I actually have to question the one that uses poorly managed ... all the time. At one point we talk about poorly managed diets in general - why is that being brought up on the veganism page? see the second green paragraph "Poorly planned diets, however, increase the risk of deficiency in nutrients such as ..." - seriously - what is that? --danielfolsom 21:10, 22 June 2007 (UTC)

I think Why Not A Duck was merely undoing all changes by the IP that removed all statements about "poorly managed". "Poorly planned" seems like an acceptable NPOV qualification to note that vegan diets are not necessarily risky, that a well managed vegan diet that uses supplementation and pays attention to nutrients can avoid the risks of nutrient deficiencies. I agree with you about that second paragraph that was reverted, all statements about poorly managed should still note "vegan"; different poorly managed diets have different deficiency risks (eg. Vitamin C) this section is about vegan diets. So I changed that one to say "vegan" as well. Madeleine 21:44, 22 June 2007 (UTC)
The reason it's there is because vegans feel that simply saying "vegan diets risk X" fails to consider that well planned diets with supplementation presumably avoid that risk. Madeleine 22:10, 22 June 2007 (UTC)
True - but this isn't an article on poorly managed diets - it's an article on vegan diets. What I'[m saying is I'm fine with everything except this statement which doesn't mention veganism at all: "Poorly planned diets, however, increase the risk of deficiency in nutrients such as ..." --danielfolsom 22:29, 22 June 2007 (UTC)
I changed that statement. Sorry I wasn't clear. [27] Madeleine 22:51, 22 June 2007 (UTC)

Assistance Rqd

Daniel, if you're around, and not close to 3RR, would you be so kind as to revert the article. Thanks. I'll report on AN3RR if the anon IP reverts again. Lsi john 23:11, 22 June 2007 (UTC)

The recent edit I made was not the needed revert. Someone needs to 'edit' the previous version and save it. I'm at 1 or 2 RR and would prefer not to have to defend myself at 3RR. Lsi john 23:23, 22 June 2007 (UTC)
Sorry I was out for a bit - just tell me what exactly needs to be reverted--danielfolsom 00:14, 23 June 2007 (UTC)
Nvm - i think i gotcha--danielfolsom 00:20, 23 June 2007 (UTC)

Lindsay Allen

I have relocated this statement to the relevant section on pregnancy. I also changed that section title to include children.

I reworked the quote into an encyclopedic paragraph which still says the same thing she did, but without quoting her. Any further changes to that text need to be carefully compared to the original source, in order to maintain context and accuracy.

Lsi john 01:48, 23 June 2007 (UTC)

I think maybe you missed this further up the page:

"Since the story first broke Professor Allen has sought to distance herself from it, complaining that the reporter “hyped” her concern about vegan diets and omitted a crucial clause from the preceding quote. In an email message she wrote:

"The news reporter “hyped” my concern about vegan diets for pregnant/lactating mothers and infants/children by not adding the sentence I was emphatic they keep in, namely that vegan diets were unethical UNLESS those who practiced them were well-informed about how to add back the missing nutrients through supplements or fortified foods. I completely agree that it is possible to add back those missing nutrients and have stated this in a position paper on nutrition in pregnancy for the American Dietetic Association. I also agree that well-managed vegan diets, plus supplements plus fortified foods to get those missing nutrients, are probably healthier for adults and even many children than the average US or UK diet."" -- Madeleine 22:28, 22 June 2007 (UTC) 03:25, 23 June 2007 (UTC)

Thanks! I had missed that (in all the confusion going back and forth). I have corrected the paragraph. Lsi john 03:48, 23 June 2007 (UTC)

Link spam

I don't see how the link was SPAM or even a link normally to be avoided?.--Migospia 13:40, 27 June 2007 (UTC)

Then perhaps you would like to re-read the policies and guidelines. Vegan Restaurant Directory Free Worldwide Listings & Reviews

  1. It is clearly used for advertising restaurants.
  2. It does not satisfy the requirements for External Links - It is not a reliable source, and it provides no additional information to the subject of the article. (This article is not about 'vegan restaurants', nor about 'choices vegans have for eating out'.
  3. It is a search engine, which is also prohibited as a link.

Need I go on? Peace.Lsi john 13:48, 27 June 2007 (UTC)

I would like to comment on this. I think the cuisine section could benefit from expansion; including the names of the most popular, award-winning vegan restaurants that have articles should be allowed. I have recently created Blossoming Lotus and look forward to seeing it mentioned in this article. —Viriditas | Talk 08:27, 28 June 2007 (UTC)
If it's notable, mention it, but linking to happycow isn't really appropriate. WP is not a web directory. KellenT 15:54, 28 June 2007 (UTC)
I think we are all agreed on that point. —Viriditas | Talk 19:23, 28 June 2007 (UTC)

Feedlot Radio

I wanted to add a link to my new idea,, to put music in the feedlots and hopefully settle the veganism problem for a lot of people. But my request was denied by an editor, which is strange since many redunant links to various pro-vegan explanations are available on this page, and no alternate points of view at all.

It was suggested that I discuss the matter here, so I am. Why isn't this a good link to add?

Repeat2341 08:25, 29 June 2007 (UTC)

Your link is considered SPAM, as was indicated on your talk page. KellenT 08:29, 29 June 2007 (UTC)

In that case, you have left absolutely no way for an alternative point of view to be added to an unbalanced article. - 00:00, 30 June 2007 (UTC)

That's idiotic. Spamming wikipedia with your site is not acceptable. KellenT 02:43, 30 June 2007 (UTC)

How is it idiotic? You've left me absolutely no way to edit this page. If I try to add a counterargument, it's deleted. If I try to add a link to a counterargument, it's deleted. I am not 'spamming' the site; I added it to the few pages to which it is absolutely a relevant link. You probably shouldn't be in charge of deciding what goes in and what doesn't if you have this little ability to discuss the matter, if your first choice is name-calling. I would go through the steps of formal dispute resolution to resolve this issue, as I believe you are being short-sighted and unfair.

I turned this over for mediation; it was initially refused, and I am exploring other options to get past the wall of oblivious silence you are all putting up. I am very frustrated that there is no recourse for improving the balance of these articles and that my edits are being deleted instead of improved, which is the CORRECT method according to the wiki rules. I think I've stumbled onto a bunch of partisans forcing wiki to spew their opinion, which is directly contrary to the stated goals of the Animal Rights Project on wiki.

Here's the mediation page, which contains links to all the relevant discussion sections: —Preceding unsigned comment added by Repeat2341 (talkcontribs) 08:26, July 3, 2007

I saw your request for comment, though it's a little malformed (it should link to a discussion page, like this one, rather than your request for mediation, which was closed).
I'm sorry, but they are right to remove your additions. Editors here are under no obligation to "balance" articles. The objective is to avoid giving undue weight to any side. In order to have your information included, you need to have reliable sources, in order to verify that it is true and that it is a significant viewpoint. Finally, when content is under dispute regarding sources, the burden of evidence lies with the editor adding material, not those removing it. If you want it to go into the article, find good sources, which demonstrate that it isn't a fringe position. Trust me on this one: if you attempt to fight to put your information in without taking the above into account, you will lose... every single time.
If you're having trouble with the policies, I recommend trying your hand at editing some other articles, where you have knowledge but not quite so much passion. Read through a few other editing disputes and see how they are typically handled here. Sxeptomaniac 16:53, 3 July 2007 (UTC)

Pathetic. People DIE because of this bull. My mom's best friend killed herself because of the frustration of being involved with animal rights. I understand your policies, and I am stating that this needs to be an exemption for safety reasons. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Repeat2341 (talkcontribs) 21:04, July 3, 2007 (UTC)

My attempt to add even an EMPTY Opposing/Alternative POV section to this article was blocked. What in the straight-up @#$. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Repeat2341 (talkcontribs) 21:34, July 3, 2007 (UTC)

Hi, I'm here because of a request Repeat2341 (talk) made at Wikipedia:Third opinion about changes you would like to make to the Veganism article. Although this issue is more appropriate for Requests for comment, I have reviewed the history.
First, let me say I'm sorry to hear about the frustrating damage to your health, reputation, family relationships, and friendships that you feel has been caused by misinformation about veganism. [28] [29]
You have said that "you editors are ... unreasonable" [30] and "can't negotiate," [31] you expect that dispute resolution "options are likely to be fruitless," [32] and you are "hoping a more objective and empowered party higher in the administrative hierarchy will hear [your] case." [33] Good news: You can edit this page now which means you are one of Wikipedia's editors. As long as you are reasonable, most of us will be, too. We can negotiate, which works better when you assume good faith. And finally, the most objective and empowered party in most disputes here is consensus of the community.
Wikipedia has three core content policies: Neutral point of view, Verifiability, and No original research. Your efforts to improve the neutral point of view of some articles will be more successful when you review these policies, then demonstrate your ability to meet all three. We consider these policies essential to creating a great encyclopedia.
The Neutral point of view policy, quoting out of context, "requires that, where multiple or conflicting perspectives exist within a topic, these should each be presented fairly." You say you would like to balance the article by adding an alternative or opposing viewpoint which you say is not there. [34] [35] [36] [37] You are welcome to do this as long as you meet all three of these policies. Returning to the context of my previous quote, the "neutral point of view is a means of dealing with conflicting verifiable perspectives on a topic as evidenced by reliable sources." This leads to the other two core content policies.
The Verifiability policy says that "articles should rely on reliable, third-party published sources with a reputation for fact-checking and accuracy." You said your content can't have academic references, that there are none available to make. [38] [39] [40] However, you also said that "many, many people feel" the way you do, [41] [42] that you "have plenty of argumentative resources" [43] and that "the Animal Rights article ... explicity discusses counterarguments." [44] It would be helpful if you can cite one of those many people who has been published in a reliable third-party source, or cite some of the plentiful resources; you might also evaluate whether any of the counterarguments cited in the Animal rights article would apply to this article. This policy also states that "self-published material may be acceptable when produced by a well-known, professional researcher in a relevant field. These may be acceptable so long as their work has been previously published by reliable third-party publications." When you call a press conference, or write a book, outside of Wikipedia, getting yourself well-known in your field, and published by reliable third-party sources, then we will happily link to those sources. Besides, Wikipedia is not that important -- you will almost certainly get your message out to more people outside of Wikipedia than you will by adding a few paragraphs and/or web links to Wikipedia.
The No original research policy states that "Wikipedia is not the place for original research," and includes a definition of primary, secondary, and tertiary sources. Since you had to figure all this out on your own, [45] [46] [47] your own experiences may fit the description of a primary source, which would still have to be published by a reliable source to be used in Wikipedia. However, a few times you have said that Wikipedia is a primary (re)source, [48] [49] [50] but Wikipedia is not a primary source in the same sense.
Wikipedia definitely wants information with a significant, logical point of view [51] to be available to benefit our readers: [52] that's what Neutral point of view is all about. However, it must also be Verifiable and must not be a "new idea" [53] (No original research).
Charm © 21:32, 3 July 2007 (UTC)

Here's an example of why the "people die from not knowing this" argument doesn't work. Suppose a new editor shows up and insists that alien rays are the cause of all brain tumors, and that we need to inform the public that they should be wearing tin foil hats in order to block the radiation. What if his response to our requests for verifiable, reliable sources was "but people die from not knowing this"? I'm intentionally taking your premise to absurd lengths in order for you to hopefully see why the editors won't make an exception here. If it really is that serious, there should be some kind of source you can use that would satisfy our policies. It might take some work to find, but it probably would exist. Sxeptomaniac 23:34, 3 July 2007 (UTC)

This isn't a good analogy, and not simply because it's absurd (I do that all the time; it's useful). Your point is obvious, but you seem to have missed that my own personal mother's own personal best friend shot herself in the head after becoming frustrated by constant internal warring over veganism and animal rights. That's my proof, that's my counterexample to your point. How many tortured suicides like her and deadened, confused shut-ins like me do you really need to have on your personal tally to consider the idea you might be giving a meaningless, knee-jerk, short-term reaction to the only attempt that anyone will make to balance this article? Why won't any of you try to balance it, or edit my edits instead of rolling them back, as stated in the policy?

Repeat2341 03:26, 4 July 2007 (UTC)

Here's what I found when I went through the article. I actually found statements in 11 different paragraphs which seem to have a balancing effect on the content: 2 paragraphs quoting critics of veganism (Jarvis on ethics, and Davis on numbers of animals killed), 6 pointing out specific nutritional deficiencies and health problems to watch out for in children as well as adults (such as vitamin B12, vitamin C, calcium, iodine, omega-3 fatty acids, iron, bone fractures, and low birth rate), 2 describing a study funded by the National Cattlemen's Beef Association (effects of adding meat or milk/oil to children's diets in Africa, and possible compensation using supplements), and 1 describing arguments of the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (about efficiency of land use, and greenhouse gases). I found 33 footnotes among this information, connected to 28 different references in the Notes section of the article. Perhaps if you follow up on those references you can find some which support your own points. Charm © 07:06, 4 July 2007 (UTC)

Lindsay Allen

I removed this passage because it was deliberately given out of context. Allen was not studying vegan children in the developed world. Rather, she studied starving children in the developing world. "The British Dietetic Association said (Allen's) study looked at impoverished, rural children with a poor background diet low in essential nutrients such as zinc, B12 and iron, and its findings were not applicable to vegan children in the developed world. 'There is no evidence that our vegan and vegetarian children in this country suffer impaired development,' a spokeswoman for the association said." [54] Abe Froman 19:13, 2 July 2007 (UTC)

Putting that passage back in unchanged is deliberately POV. Lindsay Allen is one scientist, as against the entire British Dietetic Association of Britain. Only reporting the loose cannon's opinion more than adequately shows the POV slant of the editor inserting this passage. Abe Froman 19:18, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
  • I have reverted you. Please do not remove this information. It is sourced, and our text includes an NPOV version of her complete view by combining the two citations. This has been discussed. Peace.Lsi john 19:20, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
I would suggest that you have not read what you deleted. It is not just text from ONE source. It also includes her 'clarification'. Peace.Lsi john 19:21, 2 July 2007 (UTC)

Abe: I would call your attention to this part: "Allen later clarified that she believes it is possible to add back the missing nutrients and believes that well-managed vegan diets, plus supplements and fortified foods, are probably healthier for adults, and even many children, than the average US or UK diet" Peace.Lsi john 19:30, 2 July 2007 (UTC)

Did you also notice the subjects of Allen's study were starving Kenyan children, and the study itself was funded by the National Cattlemen's Beef Association? Including this passage at all is absurd. The two populations, western children in developed countries and forcibly starved African children, are not comparable. The study itself is compromised by it's source of funding. Defending this passage is only embarrassing you. Abe Froman 19:38, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
You're entitled to your opinion, but this article is not. The Vegsource link you added almost certainly fails WP:V, and I am going to remove it based on that unless others object. Cheers, Skinwalker 19:45, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
Vegsource is used throughout this article in citations other than the pregnancy passage. Are you going to chop the article in half, as well? The article from Vegsource quotes Registered Dieticians. The Vegsource cites have been on this page prior to the dispute over the pregnancy section. I object to its tendentious removal. Abe Froman 19:49, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
Vegsource is only used one other time, to link to a pamphlet produced by the Physician's Committee For Responsible Medicine. Maybe I'm missing the half of the article that relies on vegsource - please enlighten me as to any other time it is used as a source. Cheers, Skinwalker 19:57, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
What a great example of selective enforcement of WP:V. I will be sure to point it out to others as an example in the future. Abe Froman 20:10, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
You didn't answer my question. Where, other than the two times I noted, is vegsource cited in the article? Cheers, Skinwalker 20:21, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
  • Abe, if you can provide a verifiable link for the UK source, I will support its inclusion in the article. Also, if you can show me in the Allen study that it only included 'starving Kenyan children' then I would support amending the Allen statement. Otherwise starving Kenyan children, sounds a bit dramatic. Peace.Lsi john 19:53, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
1. I added the cite directly to The Guardian to address the U.K. Dieticians Association quote.
2. Allen's study straight-out admits she only studied already-malnourished Kenyan children. From Allen's own study: "Supplemental meat (60–85 g/d), milk (200–250 mL/d) or energy (isocaloric with the meat and milk, 240–300 kcal/d) were randomly assigned to 555 undernourished school children aged 5–14 y in a rural malaria-endemic area of Kenya, at one school meal daily for one school year." [55]
Did anyone even bother reading her study before defending it? Abe Froman 19:59, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
  1. The Guardian does not provide verifiability.
  2. Undernourished does not equate to starving.
I repeat my above offer of support. Peace.Lsi john 20:13, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
  • Please add citations/references correctly/consistently. Thanks. Peace.Lsi john 20:15, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
Starving is synonymous with undernourished. See this entry in the American Heritage Dictionary. [56] . The Guardian sought out the British Dietetic Association for quotation. The citation does not need to directly link to the BDA. Abe Froman 20:17, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
The guardian article is verifiable and can be used. I disagree, however, that undernourished=starving. We need to stick to the terms used by our sources as closely as possible. Cheers, Skinwalker 20:21, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
  • Starving might be considered synonymous with mal-nourished, but not undernourished.
Also I did not say that the guardian isn't verifiable, I said that article in the Guardian article doesn't provide sources, so its claims aren't (easily) verified. I also didn't say I would fight it, I said in order to support it I would need something I could verify.
I have corrected the 'ref' entries. Peace.Lsi john 20:25, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
  • I also 're CAPITALIZED' the word UNLESS in the Allen statement. She was very emphatic about the UNLESS in her clarification. I am not positive how to represent that in our article, and I won't dispute anyone who changes it again. I put it back for clarification as to why it was in CAPS. Peace.Lsi john 20:27, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
Allen's study uses "undernourished" to describe the children studied. Since the dictionary defines starving as "To suffer or die from extreme or prolonged lack of food" I think it fits in this context. Abe Froman 20:29, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
You're welcome to your opinion, but its both original research and incorrect. I could make a better case for you, but it would still be Original Research. I won't attempt to debate the reasons that you're wrong. Peace.Lsi john 20:33, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
Since when is the Dictionary WP:OR? Abe Froman 20:55, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
Please stick very closely to what the reliable sources actually say. There's been some inaccurate paraphrasing in this section. SlimVirgin (talk) 21:05, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
  • There is now entirely too much coverage for a single study. I recommend going back to the version which has been discussed and generally accepted here. While I sympathize with Abe's pro-vegan POV, I cannot support doubling the coverage for a single study in order to nullify its findings. Peace.Lsi john 21:06, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
We actually get all the facts on the page, that Allen's study concerns starving Kenyans, and was funded by a Cattlemen Trade Association, and all of a sudden "there is too much coverage." On the contrary, I think the coverage is just getting right. Abe Froman 21:08, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
  • Lsi John, this is an example of highly misleading reporting. We presented this as:

In 2005, Professor Lindsay Allen, of the US Agricultural Research Service, stated that sufficient studies have been conducted to conclude that women, who avoid all animal foods, give birth to small babies that grow very slowly and are, often permanently, developmentally retarded. Allen went on to say that it is unethical for parents to bring up their children as strict vegans UNLESS they were well-informed about how to add back the missing nutrients through supplements or fortified foods. Allen later clarified that she believes it is possible to add back the missing nutrients and believes that well-managed vegan diets, plus supplements and fortified foods, are probably healthier for adults, and even many children, than the average US or UK diet.

We then find out, thanks to Abe, that the study was conducted on malnourished children in Africa, who had some meat added to their diet and whose health improved. Arguably, adding anything to their diets would have improved their health, and the ethics of deliberately not feeding the control group for two years doesn't bear thinking about. For us not to provide that context would be misleading to the point of deliberate distortion. SlimVirgin (talk) 21:11, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
  • SV.. first.. pfhthththt, stick to the source.. its 'undernourished' not malnourished, and I don't see anywhere that suggests they "didn't feed" the children for 2 years. And they were in school and had lunches. I think its unlikely that the children in this study are the same children with flies in their eyes, and ribs showing, who are up for 'TV adoption' by Sally Struthers. I have no resistance at all to properly citing sources and properly reflecting their context. And, lets not get overly dramatic here. Peace.Lsi john 21:17, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
My resistance is related to 'forcibly' editing an article in a contested area, without discussing it, and continuing to make more changes. That results in a bully-version, or edit warring. We were doing fairly well here until now. Peace.Lsi john 21:19, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
What distinction are you drawing between malnourished and under-nourished? And the study does say they didn't feed the control group anything extra for two years.
They take a bunch of African school kids who they admit are malnourished, and they feed some of them better for two years, while deliberately retaining a poor diet for one group of them, on behalf of the American cattlemen's association? The ethics committee must have been asleep the day that was approved. Not to mention the totally unscientific methodology — (a) They're conducting this study for one meal a day only during school hours, and therefore have no idea what the kids are actually eating overall; (b) they have no way of taking into account whether illness is playing a role, which they admit themselves (the area was noted for malaria); and worst of all, (c) they had no control group being fed a standard, high-quality, vegan diet, yet they extrapolated the results to conclude that all vegan diets are bad. But the African kids weren't on a "vegan" diet — they were just starving. SlimVirgin (talk) 21:25, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
I don't particularly agree with all of that, but this version[57] satisfies my concerns over sourcing. Cheers, Skinwalker 22:22, 2 July 2007 (UTC)

I've said it before, and I'll say it again: this Allen and her research deserves, at best, minimal mention in this article. Allen's study was not about veganism, and the main connection is about a mis-reporting of her comments. Her position amounts to saying that pregnant and nursing vegans have an obligation to supplement properly. This particular position is the same as that of the vegan society. Nobody really questions it. I previously removed the content about Allen from the article, as described at Talk:Veganism/Archive08#pregnancies_section_cleanup. I do not believe it is deserving of inclusion in this article. KellenT 01:09, 3 July 2007 (UTC)

This study, which is of minimal utility or importance to the article, is currently given two large paragraphs. Why don't we just kill it? The first paragraph already covers the "vegan pregnancies are fine, just watch out for nutrients XYZ" sentiment. I'd support removing it altogether. Alternately, we can pare it down to two sentences: "Lindsay Allen's study on malnourished African children led her to conclude blah. The British Veg Society disputes this study, saying blahblah." Cheers, Skinwalker 17:07, 3 July 2007 (UTC)
I support removal, but we'll need a clear decision by the editors of this page so that when it gets added to the article again in the future, we can point to this decision as justification for excluding it. The BBC and other articles misreporting Allen's comments are the first results when searching for "vegan unethical" or "veganism unethical," which is why this keeps coming up. KellenT 17:18, 3 July 2007 (UTC)
Lindsay Allen's statements cannot be in this article without the presently included information on her starving research subjects, and reactions from the wider Dietetic community. Abe Froman 18:55, 3 July 2007 (UTC)
Yes, we know, thanks. Here's a clear statement, then: I support the removal of Allen's study on the grounds that it is a poor source whose main point is already duplicated in the article by better citations. Cheers, Skinwalker 19:19, 3 July 2007 (UTC)
It's been in the article for some time, and it's only now that we find out it was financed by the American Cattlemen's Association, and that it didn't in fact show what she claimed it did, that people want to remove it. SlimVirgin (talk)(contribs) 04:54, 4 July 2007 (UTC)
If you'll read the earlier discussions of Allen and her study, you'll see that its funders were known and mentioned. Allen's comments have been added to the article and then removed multiple times. The re-additions were written by people who obviously hadn't read the clearer and more correct versions that already had been removed. KellenT 06:18, 4 July 2007 (UTC)
Yes, we've known about this for a while. It's been a troll-magnet ever since it went into the article. I believe Kellen's version mentioned the source of funding. Cheers, Skinwalker 12:19, 4 July 2007 (UTC)

So it looks like we have a consensus to remove the section on Lindsay Allen. I'm going to go ahead and yank it. Cheers, Skinwalker 12:37, 8 July 2007 (UTC)

pros & cons

I think this section is unnecessary and should be removed or properly integrated into the health section. There is no reason for this to be a distinct section. KellenT 03:49, 8 July 2007 (UTC)

Completely agree. "pros and cons" have nothing to do in an encyclopedia.CyrilleDunant 08:05, 8 July 2007 (UTC)
In addition, looking at the ref for Refsums disease[58] I see the cure is "The primary treatment for ARD is to restrict or avoid foods that contain phytanic acid, including dairy products; beef and lamb; and fatty fish such as tuna, cod, and haddock. " - how is a vegan going to achieve that :) the article also doesn't contain the word vegan! sbandrews (t) 11:31, 8 July 2007 (UTC) oops, silly me, its supposed to be a 'pro' thing right? Well, you could probably write a very long list of those, I don't realy see why Refsum needs to be given such prominence... sbandrews (t) 11:59, 8 July 2007 (UTC)
From 5 minutes worth of searching about Refsum's disease, I have learned that it is genetic. Congenital. Being vegan will not stop you from having such disorders, though I gather that a vegan diet will help someone who has had it from birth manage it. These references seem a little, um, creatively presented. I have no problem with deleting this section. Cheers, Skinwalker 12:32, 8 July 2007 (UTC)

Moved from article, please integrate into health sections if appropriate, otherwise let it die.

KellenT 17:06, 8 July 2007 (UTC)

The reason that I list Refsum disease is that I saw a TV show in which the patient parents are desperately seeking help from the public. This disease is considered incurable in some countries, which has been curable in others. Vegan diet is the best way of treating the disease which is supported by the reference cited. If not, please cite a reference to support your opinion. I will reverse the pros and cons section, as you perhaps are not the person who is deciding which should be in and which should be out, unless wiki standard is addressed to prevent doing so. The reason that I put this section is for the busy people who does not have enough time to read all but the distinction content. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 01:48, 10 July 2007 (UTC)

We have an intro paragraph for people who are busy; pro & con sections are not encyclopedic. I've read Refsum's disease, which indicates that people who suffer from this disease should have a "phytanic acid-restricted diet," which is not the same as a vegan diet. As such, it is not appropriate for this page. KellenT 01:50, 10 July 2007 (UTC)
I have removed the Pros and Cons section and would ask that it is not replac back into the article until such time as a consensus is reached as to whether or not it should be included in the article. I am not removing it because I believe it should not be there, but simply to to try and avert an edit war. And so that it can be discussed here for a decision to be made. Thank you ♦Tangerines BFC ♦·Talk 02:27, 10 July 2007 (UTC)
Why does the pros and cons section keep being added - it violates so many policies it's not even funny.--danielfolsom 02:32, 10 July 2007 (UTC)
Which is why I have also removed it before you did, and asked the IP user not to add it again, and to discuss it on here. I have asked on the talk page of the IP user for them to discuss on here also. Though it is a bit hard keeping up with the different IP addresses being used, to try and leave messages for them!♦Tangerines BFC ♦·Talk 02:34, 10 July 2007 (UTC)
The lack of response is why I asked the question again :-D I'm not blaming you I'm actually asking the user--danielfolsom 02:37, 10 July 2007 (UTC)
No worries, I didn't think you were blaming me, just asking the question to the user! Sorry if my reply came across as if I thought you were somehow blaming me!! The Internet can be such fun! ♦Tangerines BFC ♦·Talk 02:41, 10 July 2007 (UTC)

GA review

This is how the article, as of July 11, 2007, compares against the six good article criteria: This is well-referenced, and broad article that is reasonably well-written. I'm going to put this on hold as I have some specific corrections, suggestions and questions:

1. Well written?:
  • Lead should expand a little on the animal rights and environmental reasons for veganism, since this is a major part of the article.
  • Subsection titles should not repeat the article title, as in "Vegan cuisine"
  • "many vegans avoid supporting" - "Many" is close to weasel words, simpler to say "vegans do not support" or "vegan organisations do not support"?
  • It would be good to state simply at the beginning of the health section that vegan diets which are high in fruit and vegetables would meet or exceed the recommended fruit and vegetable intakes.
  • Human hormones are natural molecules, since a hormone is defined as a natural signaling molecule, therefore "naturally occurring human hormones" is redundant, just say "human hormones"
  • In the health section "The association states" - which association?
  • Is the statement "The Vegan Society and Vegan Outreach, and others, recommend that vegans either consistently eat foods fortified with B12 or take a B12 supplement" really so contentious that it requires SIX citations?
  • "and if a person has not eaten more than the daily needed amount of B12 then they may not have the stores." The stores to do what? This sentence is a little confusing.
  • Reference for ""with appropriate food choices, vegan diets can be adequate for children at all ages."" needs to be formatted to inline style, presently an external link.
2. Factually accurate?:
  • Is it the case that "not ethical for humans to use animals in any way they see fit" or just to use animals in ways contrary to the animals' interests?
  • I think Singer also advocates Veganism on environmental grounds and as a necessary moral response to world hunger. Perhaps check if this is a simplification of his arguments?
  • Growth hormones are naturally-occurring molecules and antibiotics are frequently natural products. It is therefore incorrect to describe these as "artificial substances"
3. Broad in coverage?:
  • Does not mention if vegans see medicines as animal products, important since animal experimentation is involved in the approval process of all drugs.
  • Religious reasons for Veganism are given very cursory coverage.
  • In the Demographics section, the numbers of Buddhists/Jains/Hindus might be mentioned if these religions follow diets that an be described as vegan.
4. Neutral point of view?:
  • Yes.
5. Article stability?
  • The edits of are a concern, will watch what happens over the next few days.
6. Images?:
  • All copyrights are OK, just a comment that the use of gestation crate picture is controversial in other articles, might cause article instability here.

If you feel that this review is in error, feel free to take it to a GA review. Thank you to all of the editors who worked hard to bring it to this status. Tim Vickers 21:25, 11 July 2007 (UTC)

For reference, this is related to Wikipedia:Good_article_candidates#Food_and_nutrition. KellenT 18:01, 12 July 2007 (UTC)
Does not mention if vegans see medicines as animal products, important since animal experimentation is involved in the approval process of all drugs.
There's not much written on this, though it's the subject of this vegsource article. My experience with this is that it's a fringe issue insofar as vegans would generally support non-animal testing, but recognize that they lack other options when it comes to standard medicines. If one is being legalistic, this would qualify as an exception covered by the "as far as practical and practicable" clause in the Vegan Society definition. KellenT 19:20, 12 July 2007 (UTC)
That might be a good point to add, since animal testing is a very common issue raised in discussions about animal rights. This article is otherwise rather over-focussed on the food aspects of the Vegan lifestyle. Tim Vickers 19:30, 12 July 2007 (UTC)
It would take me a while to dig up a good reference, but I'm pretty sure the FDA mandates in vivo animal testing as part of pre-clinical development for any new drug application. You would be hard pressed to find any drug on the market in the US or Europe that was not tested on animals at some point in its development. Like Kellen said, though, this may fall under the practical and practicable clause, and I'm not sure its worth pointing out. Cheers, Skinwalker 19:41, 12 July 2007 (UTC)

New Reviewer

Tim Vickers has asked to withdraw as Good Article Nominee reviewer, and requested that I finish in his place. Sadly, I don't bring with me the excellent credentials he has in the area of biochemistry, but I'm patient and I try to be fair. I see no reason to change the suggestions he has made; and I will base my judgement on the progress made toward the milestones he has set forth. In the short term (the next two days) I'll be rather more involved in another review that I promised to finish by weekend, and then I promise to pay attention here. Drop any questions you may have here or on my talk page. Take care. — Gosgood 03:15, 13 July 2007 (UTC)

Ah me. Time sure flies. It is the eighteenth today; technically the 'On Hold' spell will expire and turn into a decision of some sort. Here is my draft. I'll be posting it here later today. [Now posted] Take care. — Gosgood 14:30, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
My informal pronouncement: good job. I learned stuff. More importantly, casual browsers of this article will also come away with important information. While my most arch comments concern scope and stability, I'm aware that the good Pendleton724 did a surprise nomination, and kindly told none of you about it, so the beds weren't made, the windows still needed cleaning, and the editors here were stumbling around in bathrobes and slippers. That notwithstanding, I conducted the review (at least my third of it) as if you had requested it. I'd like to thank Tim Vickers| for doing most of the work, and the editors here for informing and educating me. I suppose, if some of you take issue with all of this, you may take this to Good Article Review forum. By the way, I do think much work has to be done for a Featured Article nomination: the items I marked with the grey icon are primarily, in my humble opinion, Feature article work areas. Take care — Gosgood 15:59, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
    1. Revision 144651569 as edited by Christopher Mann McKay (Talk | contribs) at 15:32, 14 July 2007. (Vickers, Osgood. retained for reference)
    2. Revision 145344347 as edited by Skinwalker (Talk | contribs) at 21:21, 17 July 2007 (Approval based on this version)
Rate Attribute Review Comment
Symbol support vote.svg 1. It is well written. In this respect... Agree. The prose is readable, free of weasel words, and technical or specialized meanings of common phrases are explained or wikilinked. The images have been given fixed widths, which overrides user preferences.
Symbol support vote.svg (a) the prose is clear and the grammar is correct; and Agree. I have found no significant or persistent failures in use of English grammar.
Symbol support vote.svg (b) it complies with the manual of style guidelines for lead sections, layout, jargon, words to avoid, fiction, and list incorporation. Guarded Agreement
  • Layout: Neutral Images are staggered, alternating left and right, which can sandwich text. Images also have specific widths that have been set. This overrides user settings, an unfriendly gesture. These explicit widths should be removed
  • Jargon: Approve Technical terms are wikilinked to supporting articles, or defined in place.
  • Words to avoid: Approve A minor instance: countless products (hyperbole);
  • List incorporation: Not Applicable: There are no lists outside of automatically generated standard lists
  • Fiction: Not applicable This article is not about fictional characters or settings.
  • Lead: Neutral The lead does not forewarn the reader on the significant health benefit/risk presentation which forms a large part of this article. Recommendations elsewhere recall that this lead promises a philosophy and lifestyle article and suggest that this health benefit/risk consideration be consolidated, with the more detailed information transferred to supporting, and more technically inclined, articles on nutrition.
Symbol support vote.svg 2. It is factually accurate and verifiable. In this respect, it: Guardedly Agree. The article is heavily referenced in the area of health benefits and risks. It is less well sourced, and developed, on the extent of the movement (Demographics)
Symbol support vote.svg (a) provides references to sources used; Agree. Most references are available in online, as well as printed form, so the casual reader can readily continue an exploration of the topic.
Symbol support vote.svg (b) cites reliable sources for quotations and for material that is challenged or likely to be challenged, preferably using inline citations for longer articles; and Agree. The article is heavily cited, with some statements back by three or more published, printed and editorially reviewed sources.
Symbol support vote.svg (c) contains no original research. Agree.
Symbol neutral vote.svg 3. It is broad in its coverage. In this respect, it: Neutral.. I fear that the nutrition debate has hampered the quality of coverage (the 'Health Benefit/Risk Calculation', largely played out in Health); there are concepts established in the lead concerning philosophy and lifestyle which do not get much development in the article, mainly by the crowding presence of the 'Health Benefit/Risk Calculation'.
Symbol neutral vote.svg (a) addresses the major aspects of the topic; and Neutral. The lead section establishes what the major aspects of a topic are, and the balance of the article develops these aspects. This particular lead identifies veganism as a "philosophy and lifestyle that seeks to exclude the use of animals for food, clothing, or any other purpose." Since the use of animals for food is dominant in almost all human cultures, it is not surprising that this article considers the health benefits and risks of the vegan lifestyle, both to the individual (benefits and risk to diet and nutrition) and to the society (environmental impact of the vegan movement). But nutrition does not cover all the scope that philosophy and lifestyle establishes. Are there religious aspects? Are certain cultures more susceptible to the movement than others? Some particulars:
  • To what extent is the Vegan lifestyle a global movement? Would I find practitioners in Rio de Janiero, Nairobi, or Kathmandu? Or is the lifestyle confined to populations of North American and European descent, as the current set of demographics data suggest? What is the scope of the title 'Vegan'? Does one have to join a formal organization for the right to apply the name to oneself, or does one simply apply it once certain precepts of the lifestyle are followed. To what extent are there variations among those precepts? Can one identify 'schools' of Vegan thought? :What this battery of questions is leading to is the feeling that the Vegan Cultural Setting topic has received a short shrift. In this area, I am echoing Tim Vickers observation on whether "...the numbers of Buddhists/Jains/Hindus might be mentioned..." because we both, (I think), would like to understand the extent of the movement. At present, the article leaves me with only a vague impression that veganism is a phenomenon among populations of North American or European ancestry, but a Featured Wikipedia article would summarize that for me (providing references) and a Good Wikipedia article would strive to clarify that question (and, perhaps, would not go about the most apt way, a factor that distingusihes Good from Featured articles).
  • The lead parenthetically distinguishes Veganism as a strict or pure [form of] vegetarianism, and the 'Definition' section draws the distinction that the British founders of the Vegan Society wished to make concerning their movement and the broader vegetarian one. But as the references hint, there are other Vegan societies, and one wonders to what extent that these various societies also reflect variation in the Vegan philosophy. In footnote (16), to the posed question: "Is refined sugar vegan?" come the rejoinder: " It depends on how you define 'vegan.'" To this end, I look to this article to sort out possible definitions of veganism, part of expanding on the 'philsophy' component advanced in the lead paragraph.
Symbol neutral vote.svg (b) stays focused on the topic without going into unnecessary details (see summary style). Neutral. I believe the tendency of this article to overly explore the 'Health Benefit/Risk Calculation' of the vegan lifestyle has caused the introduction of technical information that might better serve other articles, and that it presently obscures the article's remit, as established by the lead section. I'll confine myself to what seems to have been a particularly apt example from article revision 144651569 (July 14):
  • Professor Lindsay Allen's work on Kenyan children had been a recent addition to the article and has since been removed. It was controversal with respect to the Health/Risk Calculation. The various editors who had viewpoints on this question had, over July, generally added to the passage to bring greater resolution to who Prof. Allen is, the context of her work, and the reaction of the scientific community to it. On my July 14 read of the article, before I was aware of the talk page debates and article histories, I felt that the article had strayed significantly from the topic of Veganism with the inclusion of Allen's piece. My feeling that the passage was a valuable, but misfiled, contribution. With the current version, the Allen piece has been removed, with the consensus being that it was out of scope. I agree, but I am left with two impressions. Had a more careful read been done of the lead section, perhaps, in the first place, the editor would have found another home for the material. Second, while the passage was in place, the discovery of various editors of various aspects of the story led to article volatility. I'll defer this matter of volatility to 5, below, and consider the initial impression. The lead furnishes a concise overview of the article, setting its scope. Before an editor includes new material, a 'scope check', a read of the lead section, is certainly in order. If it is not clear if the new material fits the scope, then take the material to a talk subpage and develop it there, which entails, in part, establishing consensus with other editors, and also establishing if the material might better serve another article.

Recommendation: I think the regular editors ought to approach Wikipedia:WikiProject Medicine to discuss how Veganism fits within the scope of this technical project. The aim of discussions would be to identify articles on the topic of nutrition which can support this article. Some of the more technical information that, I feel, is misplaced in this article could migrate to those articles, leaving summaries in place here. Once the relationship of Veganism with more technical articles on nutrition has been established, part of the scope check for new material would entail surveying these supporting articles.

Within the 'Health/Risk Calculation' there is something of a thematic inbalance, in that the 'Precautions' have more editorial space than "Benefits". Is it true that the precautions of a vegan diet outweigh benefits, or it that editors concerned with health threats are writing at a greater level of detail. In the spirit of the previous recommendation, would it make sense to have editors of the WikiProject Medicine review the section to establish if this information is better presented elsewhere. Finally, a small point. It seems to me that the first paragraph of cuisine is somewhat out of place. Isn't this a cautionary more appropriately placed in the health section?

Symbol support vote.svg 4. It is neutral; that is, it represents viewpoints fairly and without bias. Agree. I find that the editors who regularly contribute to this article are mature and strive for a neutral tone, though they may disagree over a short run, Because of this, there are transient periods when passages may not be neutral. I believe if the recommendation in 5 is followed, then this short-term instability would not be an issue.
Symbol oppose vote.svg 5. It is stable; that is, it does not change significantly from day to day and is not the subject of an ongoing edit war. Vandalism reversions, proposals to split or merge content, and improvements based on reviewers' suggestions do not apply. Disagree. The editors contributing to this article have strong, well reasoned, and largely well-researched opinions, and they fequently fall on different sides to a question; I believe that this diversity of opinion is leading to an article that will be among the best in the encyclopedia.

Recommendation: I think that the editors who regularly contribute to this article should adopt amongst themselves the policy of putting proposed changes to the article on talk subpages first. In addition to developing the prose and establishing consensus, additional consideration is given if the material might not be better placed in 'neighboring' articles, concept established in concert with the various Wikiprojects in whose scopes this rticle falls. If inclusion is agreed upon, then the new material would largely be developed on the talk subpages and would be released to the main namespace only when the new material is stable. This practice is aimed at minimizing the volativity of the article, as seen by the casual user, while allowing regular editors full play for their debates.

Symbol support vote.svg 6. Any images it contains are appropriate to the subject, with succinct captions and acceptable copyright status. Non-free images must meet the criteria for fair use images and be labeled accordingly. Agree.
Symbol support vote.svg 7. Overall Approve The best of Wikipedia are featured articles; for good articles, the reviewer must take care to ensure that the best does not stand in the way of the good. My remarks concerning coverage are marked Symbol neutral vote.svg because I believe the imbalance in coverage would certainly be detrimental in a Featured Article Candidate discussion, but is not serious issue by good article standards. Imbalance notwithstanding, there is much useful information in this article, and it is mainly sourced and referenced.

My one objection to this article's potential status as a good article (5. Stability), has a procedural solution that I think the contributing editors would readily adopt (Indeed, some use the following practice already). For all but the most trival changes (punctuation, spelling, grammar errors), they agree to work out their differences of opinions on talk subpages and, when consensus is achived, bring the result to the main name space article. Such an approach would reduce the public volatility of the article, yet allow full debate in the developmental confines of the talk pages.

My suggestion is to include a worldwide view in this article (like what the template said) and shrink the reference section into a scroll bar menu. Nevertheless, this article will stand as GA for now. OhanaUnitedTalk page 11:54, 16 August 2007 (UTC)


I've moved this to talk as it's not clear what the relevance of it is to veganism, which is not about eating less meat for financial or availability reasons, but about deciding to use no animal products for moral, religious, or health reasons:

However, on a worldwide scale, more meat and dairy products are being consumed in developing countries, as a result of rising incomes and increased urbanisation.[15] The countries that consume least meat per capita are in Africa and South Asia, but meat makes up approximately a third of the diet in some parts of Latin America and Mongolia.[16][17]

It's also not clear what "more meat and dairy products are being consumed in developing countries ..." means. More than where? More than what? SlimVirgin (talk)(contribs) 22:46, 12 July 2007 (UTC)

I believe the "more" refers to the fact that as purchasing power rises in developing countries, so does meat consumption, and thus there are fewer de-facto vegans. KellenT 02:21, 13 July 2007 (UTC)


I find it odd that the health section makes no mention of the fact (which was published recently in the New York Times) that a vegan diet (in both the child and the nursing mother) caused several infant fatalities in the last four years. Also, the article makes no mention of the recent first-degree assault conviction against two parents who fed their child a vegan diet and nearly killed her. Though the first isn't a proper ref for the fatalities, as it's an op-ed, it demonstrates what I feel is glaringly lacking from this otherwise comprehensive article. A criticisms or controversy section. VanTucky (talk) 20:42, 17 July 2007 (UTC)

Per policy criticism sections are bad, however if you can work those sources into the article be my guest.--danielfolsom 20:59, 17 July 2007 (UTC)
Per what policy? Oh, and here, here and here are some better cites for the fatality and malnutrition. VanTucky (talk) 21:00, 17 July 2007 (UTC)
I am also unaware of a policy against criticism sections - they are frequently exceedingly useful. However I caution against claiming that "In the case of the Atlanta vegan parents, who were found guilty of involuntary manslaughter after underfeeding their 6-week-old son with a diet of organic apple juice and soy milk" represents a vegan diet, it is a very severe and stupid diet that no vegan would recommend. sbandrews (t) 21:25, 17 July 2007 (UTC)
Though I agree that vegans are generally as a rule much smarter than that in my experience, these people followed what is accurately described as a strict vegan diet in the source material and were self-identifying vegans. VanTucky (talk) 21:33, 17 July 2007 (UTC)
"But to solely blame veganism in this case wrong. Lots of vegan moms remain true to their beliefs by exclusively breast feeding their infants. These parents were negligent on several levels.
The problem, as a prosecutor noted, seemed to stem from sheer ignorance; in addition to getting the wrong nutrients, the infant simply didn’t get enough."[59]
there is a lot of ignorance regarding veganism - I guess most people just start off on their own and muddle through as best they can - this is where the danger lies, I don't believe a correct vegan diet is dangerous so long as you are aware of the danger signs of vitamin deficiency - but there are dangers too with a meat based diet, in many ways a vegan diet is simpler in this respect because there are far fewer variables, sbandrews (t) 21:44, 17 July 2007 (UTC)
We're veering off into discussion here. I'm writing a sandbox version of my additions to the pregnancy section of "Health", but I can tell you right now that it's only going to be a couple sentences and will only mention that the malnutrition/fatality cases were associated with a strict vegan diet. Not caused by in other words. VanTucky (talk) 21:49, 17 July 2007 (UTC)
more closely associated with ignorance imo, but I think your section will be a valuable contibution, regards sbandrews (t) 21:54, 17 July 2007 (UTC)
Agreed; most of the documented health problems for children with vegan mothers that I have read about have been due to severe B12 deficiency in the mother. This is mentioned in the article. The other "abuse" cases are usually pure and simple starvation, not veganism. KellenT 23:22, 17 July 2007 (UTC)
Well, unfortunately, reliable newsmedia disagrees with you in that it is linked to (if not blankly caused by) veganism. VanTucky (talk) 23:25, 17 July 2007 (UTC)
The two later articles relate to the same case, in which the couple malnourished their child. If you read the RS's in the article, you'll see that the American Dietetic Association specifically indicates a planned vegan diet is appropriate for infancy. That this couple was unable to properly feed their child is not a problem with veganism, but with them being idiots. KellenT 23:44, 17 July 2007 (UTC)
I didn't cite the Chicago tribune blog as an RS in the article. Your opinion of the people (though I agree) doesn't negate the fact that these individuals set out to feed their children with a vegan diet. Even if their execution of veganism was flawed, it was a vegan diet that killed these kids. Are you contesting that they were being fed according to vegan strictures? Because like it or not they were. We're, once again, veering into general discussion of the topic. VanTucky (talk) 23:47, 17 July 2007 (UTC)
struck out reply to struck out comment: The food fed to the child also adheres to an omnivorous diet, but is not seen as an implication of that 'system.' KellenT 00:47, 18 July 2007 (UTC)

About the poor change. The qualifier "poor" is not supported by the citations, and calling it strict is explicitly so. Plain and simple. The poor thing is personal opinion, as is your notion that strict veganism is a positive thing. If you like, we can just say vegan diet without adjectives. VanTucky (talk) 22:38, 17 July 2007 (UTC)

I'm not opposed per se to including this material, but we need to quote the sources verbatim. For example, in case of the parents who were convicted of assault - let's substitute "strict vegetarian diet" with "a diet of ground nuts, puréed fruits, and vegetables" or something similar. These sources give us more information about what exactly was fed to these children. We can just quote the sources and readers can compare it to the information in the nutrition section and see for themselves that it was inadequate. Can anyone find a good link for the proper nutrition of vegan children? All the links in this section are about maternal nutrition. Cheers,Skinwalker 01:19, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
First, all of the sources describe the diet as being strict vegetarian or vegan (the terms are used synonymously even in this article and all the articles make use of vegan in their description) so saying so isn't inaccurate, and quoting verbatim in the sentence doesn't work as there are several different varied references. But a new sentence or two to detail the diets of the specific children from the sources as examples would be okay. So the general statement, and then something like: Kid's name or the child of such and such, died after being fed a diet exclusively of blah blah. But simply removing the vegan term in favor of verbatims is both disruptive of sentence structure and disingenuous of the facts of the source material. VanTucky (talk) 01:34, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
I'm not suggesting we totally avoid the use of the terms "vegan" or "strict vegetarian". A common objection to critical material in this article is "Well, that's not really a vegan diet", which is sometimes justifiable criticism and other times reminiscent of the No true scotsman argument. We can avoid this by clearly stating what the children were fed, which will allow the reader to evaluate whether or not it is adequate and/or meets their definition of a proper vegan diet. I'm not sure this deserves more than a couple of sentences - after all, omnivores starve their kids to death on a regular basis, but not usually for ideological reasons. Cheers, Skinwalker 12:34, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
I'll go ahead and add a verbatim sentence, but keeping in mind that we want to keep it short. However, I want to point out that no source, and not the content itself in any way asserts or suggests that this was a proper diet of any kind. That of course should be obvious. The point is that, whether for ideological reasons or otherwise (there is no common denominator in the cases as for reasoning), these children were deliberately fed a diet devoid of animal products, which is the definition of vegan. VanTucky (talk) 15:28, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
I just thought, rather than adding another verbatim sentence, would it be more acceptable to say an "unsupplemented" vegan diet, rather than strict? that would be more fitting with the rest of the info in the section anyway. VanTucky (talk) 15:30, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
This is conflating lack of food with veganism. If you read VanTucky's cites, they indicate the children were fed little of anything at all. This is not veganism, it is starvation. A family who kept their kids on the Atkins diet, and fed their kids little of anything, would meet the same test VanTucky is using. Abe Froman 15:36, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
I'm sorry, but the only real test for inclusion is verification in reliable sources. The sources I cited all refer to the child's diet as intentionally vegan/strict vegetarian. They weren't incidentally vegan. Just because it's is distasteful to normal, healthy vegans doesn't negate the fact that reliable news-media sources bring this up as a vegan issue, not just a malnutrition issue. VanTucky (talk) 15:40, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
Please stop pushing ideology by leaving out information from your own sources. I have added the caveats that VanTucky has deliberately left out, information from his own sources that contradict his mis-statement of fact. To wit: The American Dietetic Association has said "The ADA approves of a vegan diet for infants and children as long as they also take supplements or eat foods fortified with calcium, vitamins D and B-12, and other nutrients found in animal-based foods." According to ADA spokeswoman Sarah Krieger, "People use vegan like it's a four-letter word, that's bad. It (veganism) definitely is not."[18] [19]

Abe Froman 15:47, 18 July 2007 (UTC)

The 'cited associations with veganism and these cases is fact. The article is repeating itself by saying the ADA's statement twice, both before and after the cited facts of the cases. This is unallowable undue weight. VanTucky (talk) 15:51, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
The fact is, VanTucky is cherry picking his sources for information against veganism, and removing information from the article, from his same sources, that couches the claims in dramatically different terms. This is the very definition of WP:POV. Abe Froman 15:53, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
That's bullshit and you know it. You have:
  • A. removed the facts of the what the convictions were, making it vague, the parents were not convicted of blankly "starving their children" they were convicted of very specific legal charges.
  • B. called the diets poorly planned which is not supported by the cites. They only describe it as a vegan diet, not a poorly planned one.
  • C. called the criticism misdirected, which is a complete and bald-faced violation of NPOV. Quoting the ADA spokeswoman is acceptable, but blankly calling the criticism misdirected is a completely uncited and unacceptable value judgement.
  • D. Repeated the fact of the ADA's statement on the safety of the diet twice in the same section, which beyond being bad writing is giving undue weight of the most obvious kind. the statements of the ADA and other reliable sources on the complete safety of a well-planned vegan diet come directly before the cases. Furthermore, the text says that it was associated with the cases, not the direct cause.
Several other editors have had no problem sticking to the bare cited facts without editorializing by adding qualifiers to the diet and it's subsequent consequences and convictions of specific charges. VanTucky (talk) 16:00, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
Tucky, your cause celebre, Crowd Shakur, has a problem. According to Dr. Amy Lanou, who was an expert witness in the Crowd Shakur starvation case, "some are even misusing the tragic and confusing (Shakur) case to question the ethics and adequacy of vegan nutrition during pregnancy, lactation, infancy and childhood... Yet one thing about Crown's death is very clear. He was not killed by a vegan diet... The real problem was that he was not given enough food of any sort." [60]
Tuckers, you are using the Shakur case incorrectly, as the comment from the good doctor involved with the case above illustrates. Selectively quoting the sources, and removing information from your own sources contrary to your views, is POV. please do not remove information from our own sources that correctly characterizes the Shakur tragedy. Abe Froman 16:04, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
Surrounding the cited facts of the association with veganism by multiple reliable sources with contradictions by commentators is a violation of a NPOV in that it takes simple, cited facts and attempts to downplay them by surrounding them with criticism. Your citation to the opinion of one person doesn't mean that multiple reliable news sources (such as the goddamn NYT's) associated the deaths with a vegan diet in multiple articles. My version of the mention gave no credence to the criticism other to say that it existed, and only repeated what was factually accurate from the sources. You have added adjectives to the description that were not a part of these sources to try and downplay them. A two sentence mention of the cases and the resulting criticism is not a huge campaign to push that veganism kills kids, it's adherence to a neutral point of view. VanTucky (talk) 16:09, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
Tuckers, your cherished NYTimes "article" is an Op-Ed. Dr Lanou's cite, on the other hand, is a non-fiction article from Houston Chronicle. Dr. Lanou appeared as an expert witness in the Shakur case. Dr Lanou says veganism did not kill Shakur, starvation did. The sources do not support your claim that veganism killed Shakur. Abe Froman 16:16, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
There are two NYTimes sources. One is an article about the case, citation number 89. The second was an op-ed that was only used as a citation to the fact that criticism existed. In addition to labeling the criticism as misdirected, you removed the two citations to support the fact that significant criticism exists, that plus adding statements from supporters of veganism saying it's not associated (despite the sources calling it so) is neutral? I think not. VanTucky (talk) 16:19, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
Where are the citations I allegedly removed? I would like to read them, and see if 1. I actually removed them, and 2. If they actually say what Tucky thinks they do. Abe Froman 16:21, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
Just click on the citation link. VanTucky (talk) 16:35, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
I see. I didn't remove any cites, unlike Tucky, who has just whitewashed the ADA Spokeswoman Krieger quote out of the article. Abe Froman 16:39, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
I don't have a lot of time to comment on this, but Abe needs to stop assuming bad faith of editors who disagree with him. The addition of the Lanou quote is a good balance, but accusing people of "whitewashing" is needlessly inflaming the situation. Cheers, Skinwalker 16:45, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
Muliple quotations attacking something and none supporting it is hardly fair. That is why I removed the less informative and explicit of the two quotations. VanTucky (talk) 16:50, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
Actually, as Veganism has such a small amount of criticism (in a similar way to Linux having a small amount), it would be perfectly normal to have the weight be in favour of veganism as it would reflect the real world reaction to it (note, this doesn't mean that everyone thinks favourably of it - as most people think it is odd, but people don't generally criticise vegans). Having too much focus on the negative would be undue weight.-Localzuk(talk) 16:53, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
I think your notion that any criticism of veganism is fringe is based on personal perspective. VanTucky (talk) 16:55, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
Nope, it is based on the fact that veganism has very little vocal critics. For example, some simple searchs for vegan or veganism and 'criticism' or 'malnutrician' turns up a very low number of articles and forums with criticism in, compared with neutral and positive comments bringing up a multitude more. It comes from being vegan and having only ever received criticism about the form of diet once - by a sheep farmer. It is a fringe to veganism as a subject and as such should be treated that way within the article.-Localzuk(talk) 16:59, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
Google and personal experience? Still sounds like personal perspective. For my own, I live in one of most vegan-friendly cities on earth, and my vegan friends get hazed all the time. Just because this article doesn't contain much notable criticism doesn't mean that it doesn't exist. VanTucky (talk) 17:03, 18 July 2007 (UTC)

(unindent) Well, if you can disprove my statements then by all means do, but all I have been able to find in terms of 'notable criticism' has been 2 articles - the one being discussed here (which as has been shown was taken out of context by the media) and the one involving that useless experiment in a third world country, again taken out of context by the media as well as being completely immoral and unscientific in its findings... Please provide me with more. I can find you hundreds, maybe thousands of articles saying how good veganism is for you from university professors, nutritionists, government agencies etc... This still leads me to think criticism is a fringe aspect of veganism.-Localzuk(talk) 17:07, 18 July 2007 (UTC)

Nothing has been proven was taken out of context. Nina Planck's NYT op-ed was written after the witness statement, and offers pointed criticisms and discussion of the assertion that it was simple starvation. I'm not saying that criticism is very notable, I'm saying the personal bias of an article written almost entirely by vegans is going to leave out a search for criticism. If you really want me to get into it, I'll waste my time dredging every published book criticizing it. But the fact that vegans failed to find ntoable criticism from an internet search hardly sounds like a sound finding of fact to me. VanTucky (talk) 17:11, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
You are still misunderstanding. If you have to go and 'dredge' books to find criticism then it is obviously not a largescale and widely occurring thing. The fact the internet has barely any notable criticism also shows this. How else can you show it is a fringe aspect of veganism?-Localzuk(talk) 17:35, 18 July 2007 (UTC)

(unindent)So once again, I come back to look and see that what was a simple, two-sentence neutral statement of fact from sources that was already balanced by the overwhelming professional majority approving a vegan diet, has been obfuscated into oblivion by vegans offended by reputable news media organizations even hinting that a vegan diet isn't perfect. I'll be staying away from this article in the future, both because I get inflamed and because it seems it's lorded over by what has been aptly called a "Hezbollah-like splinter faction" from mainstream vegetarianism. Have fun with your little pamphlet on the joys of veganism. VanTucky (talk) 19:05, 18 July 2007 (UTC)

Obfuscated? Lets take stock. VanTucky adds an article about a murder case, and equates veganism to murder. We post a statement from the medical expert witness in VanTucky's example case. The witness, Dr. Lanou, states veganism was not to blame, it was simply starvation. Dr. Lanou adds that some people are deliberately distorting what the tragic case was about to score propaganda points against vegans. Now VanTucky is angry that he cannot label vegans as murderers. So far, so clear? Abe Froman 19:28, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
Criticism sections are not allowed per mos. Wikipedia:Words_to_avoid#Article_structure. --danielfolsom 22:49, 17 July 2007 (UTC)
Where does it say criticism sections are not allowed? It says they are discouraged, and Wikipedia:Criticism is an essay. —Viriditas | Talk 23:25, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
Discouraged isn't even a word used in the entire section. IT says that it's a bad style of writing, and it's the manual of style - which is policy. (2 + 2 = 4) And I didn't mention WP:Criticism--danielfolsom 11:01, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
It says nothing of the kind nor does it mention criticism; it refers to controversial material and doesn't refer to criticism sections at all except to say see also: Wikipedia:Criticism, which is an essay, not a policy or guideline, which explicitly states, "In general, making separate sections with the title "Criticism" is discouraged." —Viriditas | Talk 20:19, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
And the discouraged argument is crap because if the MOS says they're to be discouraged then someone will place {{criticism-section}} on the page and then other people will have to come in and clean up your crap (I say your because I, obviously unlike you, wouldn't go against the MOS to add a criticism section).--danielfolsom 11:06, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
It's not the MOS, it's a Wikipedia essay. —Viriditas | Talk 20:21, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
Ok, you keep bringing up WP:Criticism and I don't know why - it's an essay, but I never mentioned it - and you're acting like I did. The one I mentioned is policy. Wikipedia:Words_to_avoid#Article_structure - it's part of the manual of style.--danielfolsom 10:59, 20 July 2007 (UTC)
On 22:49, 17 July 2007 (UTC), you wrote, "Criticism sections are not allowed per mos." Please show me where it says that in Wikipedia:Words_to_avoid#Article_structure. —Viriditas | Talk 11:19, 20 July 2007 (UTC)
What are you asking? That section says editors should not write criticism sections. The top of the page says that article is part of the manual of style.--danielfolsom 18:54, 20 July 2007 (UTC)
Please quote the section in the MOS that says "editors should not write criticism sections". I don't see it. —Viriditas | Talk 20:32, 20 July 2007 (UTC)
Look - maybe have no idea what the outlook is on criticism sections, but I'm not going to use this talk page to explain it to you - if you want help then come to my talk page and I'll help you - I'm fine with that, but this talk page is for discussing veganism - and the user who suggested this has already said that it shouldn't be a criticism section after I brought it up.--danielfolsom 18:57, 20 July 2007 (UTC)
Meanwhile, the MOS doesn't say that, and the only place that says it, states that criticism sections should be discouraged, and that's a Wikipedia essay. I think I've pointed this out several times. —Viriditas | Talk 20:32, 20 July 2007 (UTC)
THE LINK I GAVE IS THE MOS - why is this so hard for you to understand? It's like 3rd grade comprehension. THIS Wikipedia:Words_to_avoid#Article_structure IS THE MANUAL OF STYLE. It is not an essay. How do I know? Great question - it's because at the top of the article it says so. Now that section says criticism sections should be avoided. Now for the challenging part - that article is part of the manual of style - and the content in the article says criticism sections should be avoided - so therefore the manual of style says criticism sections should be avoided.--danielfolsom 14:33, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
Daniel, the link you gave does not say "criticism sections should be avoided" nor does the Manual of Style say that anywhere. Please provide a quote and a valid link where you claim it does or retract. —Viriditas | Talk 14:43, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
Viriditas - I'm not sure why you keep having the discussion here - you know that article talk pages are for discussing the article - and yet you aren't discussing the article. No current criticism proposal exist and you haven't brought one up - and I keep trying to have the discussion on user talk pages, where it belongs, but you just delete the comments. But if you want a quote - here:Ok you want a quote - fine. Here:

Since many of the topics in an encyclopedia will inevitably encounter controversy, editors should write in a manner that folds debates into the narrative rather than "distilling" them out into separate sections that ignore each other.

Is that good? Or do you need something more--danielfolsom 14:55, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
And as to the manual of style - that article is the manual of style - look at the top of the page.--danielfolsom 14:57, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
Ok - now is there anything else - tell me if I've proved the following:--danielfolsom 14:59, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
The section you have quoted does not say "criticism sections should be avoided" nor does it discuss criticism sections in particular. So your original claim, "Criticism sections are not allowed per mos" is false. —Viriditas | Talk 15:03, 23 July 2007 (UTC)

Wait - yes it does.

Separating all the controversial aspects of a topic into a single section results in a very tortured form of writing, especially a back-and-forth dialogue between "proponents" and "opponents". It also creates a hierarchy of fact — the main passage is "true" and "undisputed", whereas the rest are "controversial" and therefore more likely to be false, an implication that may often be inappropriate.

Since many of the topics in an encyclopedia will inevitably encounter controversy, editors should write in a manner that folds debates into the narrative rather than "distilling" them out into separate sections that ignore each other.

Ok - read the bold lines - distilling would be like creating a criticism section. But now at least you admit that the page is part of the manual of style right (if you still think no - look at the top of the page where it has the template)--danielfolsom 15:06, 23 July 2007 (UTC)

Daniel, the section you have quoted does not say "criticism sections should be avoided" nor does it discuss criticism sections in particular. Please stop interpreting the Manual of Style. —Viriditas | Talk 15:09, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
Again - I'm just asking if you will tell me what's wrong with these statements -because I'm not sure why you don't believe them after I've given you direct quotes and templates.--danielfolsom 15:14, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
Daniel, the section you have quoted does not say "criticism sections should be avoided" nor does it discuss criticism sections in particular. Please stop interpreting the Manual of Style. —Viriditas | Talk 15:20, 23 July 2007 (UTC)

Article is part of the MOS

Proof - template at top.--danielfolsom 15:14, 23 July 2007 (UTC)

The article is part of the Manual of Style, and it does not say that criticism sections are prohibited. —Viriditas | Talk 15:21, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
Ok - you admitted that - now couldn't you have figured that out a while ago by looking for yourself rather than denying it so many times?--danielfolsom 15:22, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
Try reading the discussion above. —Viriditas | Talk 15:44, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
Wait a minute - even you said that they were discouraged! "It says they are discouraged"--danielfolsom 15:48, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
They are discouraged, in WP:CRITICISM, an essay, not the Manual of Style. I've explained this to you several times. —Viriditas | Talk 16:03, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
Oh I agree that's an essay - I've never said it wasn't - but wait - if you agree they are discouraged then I don't know what we're arguing about. However, as we've been asked to leave this talk page - which I agree we should do, we can only continue this on either your or my talk page - I could care less which.--danielfolsom 16:04, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
Then why did you claim below that my "lack of objection" meant that I had "conceded". It's getting difficult to believe anything you say or write. —Viriditas | Talk 23:25, 23 July 2007 (UTC)

Article says editors should avoid "distilling" criticism

Proof -
Separating all the controversial aspects of a topic into a single section results in a very tortured form of writing, especially a back-and-forth dialogue between "proponents" and "opponents". It also creates a hierarchy of fact — the main passage is "true" and "undisputed", whereas the rest are "controversial" and therefore more likely to be false, an implication that may often be inappropriate.

Since many of the topics in an encyclopedia will inevitably encounter controversy, editors should write in a manner that folds debates into the narrative rather than "distilling" them out into separate sections that ignore each other.
Do you not get the context - cause I'd be happy to explain that to you. When it says rather than distilling them - them refers to controversy - stated in the section before "Since many of the topics in an encyclopedia will inevitably encounter controversy, editors should write in a manner that folds debates into the narrative [and not "distill"]them out into separate sections that ignore each other."--danielfolsom 15:14, 23 July 2007 (UTC)

The section you have quoted does not say "criticism sections should be avoided" nor does it discuss criticism sections. In case you don't understand, not all criticism is controversial, and not all controversy is criticism. —Viriditas | Talk 15:20, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
Ok - so you're upset because it doesn't say criticism. I think it's obvious that they're talking about criticism, "proponents" and "opponents"? But stop calling this harassment because that's bullshit - I'm getting a second opinion, you should to. It seems to me like ever since I proved you were wrong about the article being part of the MOS you've called it harassment.--danielfolsom 15:24, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
This discussion has never been about "the article being part of the MOS". It's been about your claim that that the MOS prohibits criticism sections, which it doesn't. —Viriditas | Talk 15:48, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
Just out of curiosity - can you think of a few instances where criticism isn't controversy? Because mostly, when a organization accepts criticism - they usually try to change - in which case it would more likely become a section.--danielfolsom 15:28, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
Film criticism, literary criticism, art criticism, historical criticism, criticism of scientific studies, criticism of medicine, etc. —Viriditas | Talk 15:48, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
From controversy: a prolonged public dispute, debate, or contention; disputation concerning a matter of opinion. - like criticism.--danielfolsom 15:31, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
And nothing about criticism. —Viriditas | Talk 15:48, 23 July 2007 (UTC)

What does that even mean - I gave you the definition from that essentially said that controversy is a matter of opinion - criticism is an opinion. Have you gotten a second opinion yet?--danielfolsom 15:50, 23 July 2007 (UTC)

Criticism and controversy are not even related words. Criticism is a "a serious examination and judgment of something"; or "a written evaluation of a work of literature"; or "disapproval expressed by pointing out faults or shortcomings". —Viriditas | Talk 15:54, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
I don't mean to be rude, and I respect both of you, but would you two please go talk past each other somewhere else? This exchange has long ago ceased to have any benefit to this article. Cheers, Skinwalker 15:55, 23 July 2007 (UTC)

Second Opinion

Both User:Messedrocker and User:Danny have said that they believe that it says criticism sections should be avoided.--danielfolsom 15:39, 23 July 2007 (UTC)

And User:sbandrews, User:VanTucky and myself have observed that there is no prohibition against criticism sections in the MOS, contrary to your claim. —Viriditas | Talk 15:54, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
Actually VanTucky hasn't commented on it at all after I brought up the link - and I don't believe sbandrews has either--danielfolsom 17:45, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
Actually, both VanTucky and Sbandrews have observed that there is no such policy, contrary to your claim. —Viriditas | Talk 23:24, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
I would say that the MOS does say, in a general manner, that criticism sections (and all other forms of 'clumping' of particular viewpoints) should not be 'distilled' and put together. I would even go so far as to say that it is blatantly obvious that is the intention.
I would like to suggest that saying that it doesn't specifically mention the word 'criticism' is a red herring, as many policies cover aspects of editing which are not specifically mentioned but are within the scope and within the purpose of that policy.-Localzuk(talk) 17:29, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
The MOS says nothing of the kind, and criticism sections are perfectly acceptable and have absolutely nothing to do with "controversy" sections described in the policy in question. For example, WP:FILMS uses criticism sections in thousands of articles, most of which are not controversial, as do art and literature articles as well. Science, medicine, and religion-related articles also make great use of criticism sections, such as Medicine, Evidence-based medicine, Biomedical research, Medical malpractice, Peer review, Social sciences , Creation biology, Baraminology. Diet-related articles also make great use of criticism sections, such as Zone diet, Paleolithic diet, Raw foodism, Atkins Nutritional Approach, Blood type diet, Feingold diet, Taoist diet, and Detox diet. Criticism sections are used all over Wikipedia, and in many instances, the critcism sections do not involve controversy of any kind. —Viriditas | Talk 23:48, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
I would agree with Localzuk on that policy - however I have found a policy that is unarguable: Wikipedia:Neutral_point_of_view#Article_structure (the 7 is a note). Quote:

I have shown this to Viriditas and I believe - through a lack of objection - he has conceded.--danielfolsom 17:48, 23 July 2007 (UTC)

That's an extremely dishonest thing to say. I have objected to everything you have written on this topic, and I have asked you to show me where the MOS states that criticism sections are prohibited. The MOS doesn't say that, so I can only conclude that you made it up, just like you made up my "lack of objection" and "concession", both of which never occurred. You also know perfectly well that User:Skinwalker asked us to stop discussing this page, so stating that I have conceded by respecting Skinwalker's request is doubly dishonest. Finally, quoting a footnote from the NPOV policy that states "there are varying views on whether and to what extent such kinds of article structure are appropriate" proves my point. Thanks for conceding that the MOS does not prohibit criticism sections.Viriditas | Talk 23:34, 23 July 2007 (UTC)
First of all - after he said not to you still replied - I tried to move the discussion to your or my talk page and you wouldn't allow it. Secondly, read the comment above mine by Localzuk, who agrees that the MOS says criticism sections are to be avoided (not prohibited - there's a difference) - you have a tendency to ignore a lot of the discussion, as I have brought up. The lack of objection was assumed because you didn't continue the debate- to me it seemed like the Americans retreating from Vietnam.--danielfolsom 01:54, 24 July 2007 (UTC)
I haven't ignored anything. Your claim, "Criticism sections are not allowed per mos. Wikipedia:Words_to_avoid#Article_structure" is false. Furthermore, you have disproved your own claim by citing a footnote to the NPOV policy which states, "there are varying views on whether and to what extent such kinds of article structure are appropriate". So, this discussion is closed. —Viriditas | Talk 02:00, 24 July 2007 (UTC)
Again - we have two editors that agree that controversy is part of criticism - per the definition that I mentioned above from, and I think it's pretty obvious that the npov policy says criticism sections should be avoided- even without the footnote. I mean it says sections shouldn't be segregated by their subject's POV - so I think we are done here - unless you think otherwise.--danielfolsom 02:03, 24 July 2007 (UTC)
Controversy is not a part of criticism. Look up the definitions I gave you above. The MOS doesn't say what you claim it says, nor does the NPOV policy. You and Localzuk are free to interpret guidelines and policies to your heart's content, it still doesn't change reality. —Viriditas | Talk 02:05, 24 July 2007 (UTC)


So apparently Viri ... was upset because I said the MOS said crticism sections were discouraged - because he/she believes criticism isn't under controversy. Localzuk said that they were, and viri... also disagreed. However, now we know that the policy on NPOV does say criticism sections aren't allowed - so is there any argument?--danielfolsom 01:58, 24 July 2007 (UTC)

Please don't speculate about other editors. You never claimed that criticism sections were discouraged, you claimed that "Criticism sections are not allowed per mos. Wikipedia:Words_to_avoid#Article_structure". I patiently explained to you - several times - that criticism sections were discouraged per a Wikipedia essay, not a policy or a guideline. I hope that clears up your confusion. —Viriditas | Talk 02:01, 24 July 2007 (UTC)
Again - we have two editors that think controversy is a general category that includes criticism - but regardless - I think the NPOV quote proves that criticism sections should be avoided - so we don't need to go back and make points on random things - as long as the general is decided.--danielfolsom 02:05, 24 July 2007 (UTC)
Controversy does not necessarily include criticism, nor is the reverse true, and the NPOV policy quote proves my point not yours: there is no policy or guideline against criticism sections. If you had actually bothered to study the issue, you would understand that the all of the commentary relating to controversy sections is in relation to unbalanced, POV, and disjointed sections. This is not a critique or prohibition against criticism sections: it is a request for integrating controversy whenever it is unbalanced, and for balancing criticism whenever it carries undue weight. This of course, does not apply to all criticism sections, nor could it, which is why there is no prohibition against such sections. —Viriditas | Talk 02:09, 24 July 2007 (UTC)

Fine - look I think if you actually ask any editor - perhaps an admin would be best as newcomers have a tendency towards criticism sections - then you would realize I'm in the majority. I mean keep in mind I've actually asked people as we've gone along - whereas you haven't admitted to doing so, perhaps it is fear - i dont' know. (and again - per the definition at - criticism is controversy) So far you're the only one that has of recent taken the pro-criticism section side, but really, whatever - I mean it's not like a criticism section is proposed- so we don't need to talk about it here --danielfolsom 02:12, 24 July 2007 (UTC)

The definitions at for criticism and controversy are dissimilar. —Viriditas | Talk 02:22, 24 July 2007 (UTC)
So now in conclusion I and Localzuk think criticism sections aren't allowed, and Viriditas doesn't.--danielfolsom 02:20, 24 July 2007 (UTC)
No, in conclusion, your claim that "Criticism sections are not allowed per mos" is false. The MOS does not say that. —Viriditas | Talk 02:22, 24 July 2007 (UTC)
Repeat: Localzuk and I say it does - you say it doesn't (if you're so competitive that you need to declare someone wrong - well you're in the minority).--danielfolsom 02:25, 24 July 2007 (UTC)
Obviously, the MOS does not say that criticism sections are prohibited, nor can you provide a quote saying such a thing: that's your interpretation. What you or anyone else believes is irrelevant. Beliefs have no role to play in this discussion. Either the MOS prohibits criticism sections or it doesn't. And, it doesn't. The NPOV policy footnote that you cited in defense of your position contradicts your belief. —Viriditas | Talk 02:32, 24 July 2007 (UTC)
Nope - it does - and the other user agrees with me.--danielfolsom 03:21, 24 July 2007 (UTC)
Wait - I thought you didn't want to talk about this anymore - so let's end it. I think the MOS says no crticism sections. Localzuk thinks the MOS says no criticism sections. You think it doesn't. Those are the facts. I'm not saying you're right and I'm not saying we're right - I'm just saying obviously there's not going to be a change in opinion on either side. Now as you said and as I said before you - the veganism page is not the place to discuss this, but you refuse to talk on your talk page (not sure why). So obviously, it's closed. Now if you want to have the last word and make a snide comment about how you're right when in fact I've just said let's agree to disagree - go ahead, be my guest.--danielfolsom 03:22, 24 July 2007 (UTC)

Veganism and Dietary Supplements

I think it should be made more explicit that vegans will die unless they take dietary supplements derived from animal matter, which obviously would make the survivor no longer a vegan. - MSTCrow 22:45, 18 July 2007 (UTC)

Dietary supplements exist that do not use animals. B12 from seaweed, for example. Which supplement exists only in animal form? Abe Froman 22:49, 18 July 2007 (UTC)

What's up with the Herring under a Fur Coat dish? Fish is ok for vegan diet??? baloney! - Alexk 22:45, 1 Sept 2007 (UTC)

I'm not sure why you posted that here but you should read the box again as it states it is a vegan version of the dish - so by reading the rest of the article you will know it has no fish in it.-Localzuk(talk) 19:49, 1 September 2007 (UTC)

Lindsay Allen once and for all

OKAY! This has been discussed to death, so I would like to do a straw poll to settle on whether to include or exclude (a) discussion of Allen's B12 study (b) Allen's comments on veganism and the ensuing media frenzy.

For reference, here is the version which I think most accurately describes both the study and Allen's comments, without documenting the media frenzy that was provoked by a partial reporting of Allen's comments:

Another B12 study was conducted in rural Africa, partially backed by the U.S. based National Cattlemen's Beef Association, which demonstrated a dramatic improvement in the health of individuals who had, prior to the study, been on diets completely lacking in animal products. The study concluded that the added nutrients, especially vitamin B12 contained in the meat and milk improved the health of the children in the study.[20] The author of the study, Professor Lindsay Allen of the United States Agricultural Research Service, declared: "There's absolutely no question that it's unethical for parents to bring up their children as strict vegans, unless those who practiced them were well-informed about how to add back the missing nutrients through supplements or fortified foods."[20][21][22] However, the British Dietetic Association contended that the findings of the study were not applicable to vegan children in the developed world. They note that B12 (produced by fermenting carbohydrates with specific strains of bacteria) is now included in many fortified foods generally available. Noting that the impoverished children in the study had diets deficient in zinc, B12 and iron, they concluded, "There is no evidence that our vegan and vegetarian children in this country suffer impaired development." They did note, however, that young children, pregnant and nursing women are vulnerable as vegans, urging parents to review their children's diets to be sure that they have a well-balanced diet.[23]

A number of previous discussions have been held:

To restate my position here:

  • Allen's study showed that nutrients like B12 can be found in meat, and although this is true, it has little relevance to veganism. Allen's study should therefore be excluded.
  • The media uproar was based upon a partial reporting of Allen's comments, and almost all of which is irrelevant to the article. The media uproar should be excluded from the article.
  • Allen's comments regarding veganism amount to saying that "withholding vital nutrients from a child is unethical." This is not a notable viewpoint, as basically everyone would agree with this, including the Vegan Society. As such, her comments should be excluded.

Should Lindsay Allen's study be included in the article?

Yes, include

  • Yes, it should be included. It was widely reported and used as a reason not to raise children as vegans. In fact, when you know the background of the study, you can see that it was a very badly formed piece of research, which did not support the conclusion Allen drew from it. I think we should report it. SlimVirgin (talk)(contribs) 07:04, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
  • Note that I'm talking about this version (final paragraph beginning "In 2005 ..." in the pregnancies and children section), not the version posted above. SlimVirgin (talk)(contribs) 07:08, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
    The events related by that version and the one above are no different. What happened was:
    1. Allen does study
    2. Allen makes comment: "vegan diets are unethical unless mothers add in missing nutrients" (not exact wording)
    3. Allen's comment is mis-reported as: "vegan diets are unethical"
    4. Allen's mis-reported comment is re-reported multiple times
    5. Various people, including Paul McCartney, the BDA, etc object, and say Allen is stupid.
    6. Allen clears up the fact that she had the caveat "unless nutrients are added back"
    7. The end.
    The news stories were predominantly about her mis-reported comment, not her B12 study, which is not notable in itself. For this reason I do not believe her study deserves mention here. KellenT 08:28, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
  • I think it's worth reporting because it shows the lengths some groups and researchers will go to to denigrate veganism. The study did not include a group that was given extra soya (tofu) instead of meat, which made it worthless, yet it was funded by the American Cattleman's Beef Assocation and supported by the Agricultural Research Service. In addition it arguably abused a group of children in the developing world. SlimVirgin (talk)(contribs) 08:37, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
  • Note: the above is why I'm supporting the version I posted above, and not the one you posted. The version I'd prefer includes the details of the study, so that readers can see for themselves what was done. SlimVirgin (talk)(contribs) 08:39, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
  • Include as I trust Slim's judgement and good intentions re this subject, SqueakBox 02:07, 24 July 2007 (UTC)

No, exclude

  • Exclude for the reasons I listed above. KellenT 03:06, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
  • Exclude per Kellen. This material is a troll-magnet and there is better criticism of obstetric/pediatric vegan nutrition in the article. Skinwalker 03:24, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
  • Exclude - it is a nonsense study and per Kellen.-Localzuk(talk) 07:02, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
  • Exclude the conclusions of the study were flawed. If it must be included due to its topical nature then there needs to be a disclaimer. I read the version proposed by SV above and it seems to be too much for such an irrelevant study. Wikipedia should not give so much weight to discredited conclusions. I would favor a mention and an explanaition for why it was a flawed study, i.e. third world diet (that happans to be vegan) is not comparable to first world diet of vegan children. Note, i am not a vegan, or a proponent of veganism. David D. (Talk) 14:56, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
  • Exclude per all above.--Michig 20:18, 19 July 2007 (UTC)

Should Lindsay Allen's comments be included in the article?

Yes, include

No, exclude

  • Exclude for the reasons I listed above. KellenT 03:06, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
  • Exclude per my comments above. Skinwalker 03:26, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
  • Exclude if the study is to be excluded as the 2 are linked.-Localzuk(talk) 07:02, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
  • Exclude most of her personal opinion, but include the material derived from the study in this version. SlimVirgin (talk)(contribs) 07:10, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
  • Exclude A major physicians group, representing over 100,000 MD's, says Allen's research was not actually about vegans. Allen's mislabeled research should be in an article about her. Abe Froman 14:42, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
  • Exclude per above.--Michig 20:20, 19 July 2007 (UTC)

Deletions from Pregnancy and Childhood section

I believe this section is weighted heavily towards criticism of veganism in general. In the Pregnancy and Childhood section, several editors have attempted to equate veganism with child abuse or even murder. I would like to add the following quote from Benjamin Spock's book Baby and Child Care to show these criticisms were not supported by the most famous pediatrician in the United States.

"The well-known pediatrician Dr. Benjamin Spock embraces vegan diets in his bestselling (second only to the Bible) book Baby and Child Care. Dr. Spock wrote, "Children who grow up getting their nutrition from plant foods rather than meats have a tremendous health advantage. They are less likely to develop weight problems, diabetes, high blood pressure and some forms of cancer." [61]

I think using the pre-eminent voice in modern US child care will put these criticisms of veganism in childhood into perspective. Abe Froman 16:26, 19 July 2007 (UTC)

Not sure this helps. What studies is Spock citing to make such claims? He only mentions meats, he might be referring to a vegetarian diet? David D. (Talk) 16:31, 19 July 2007 (UTC)

(edit conflict)I'm having trouble understanding this edit summary: "rv "we are discussing it, what is this if it's not a discussion? A diesel locomotive?" ie, you are in minority, discuss".[62] My objections to large quotations from anyone in this article are based on principles found at WP:UNDUE, namely that articles should represent all significant viewpoints in proportion to the prominence of each. The viewpoint that vegan diets are appropriate for pregnant mothers and children is adequately represented by the ADA quote at the beginning of the section. As well, the article structure subsection at WP:NPOV (just above UNDUE) indicates that "arrangements of formatting, headers, footnotes or other elements that appear to give exclusive emphasis to a particular "side" of an issue" require attention as to NPOV. Can we talk about why Localzuk and AbeFroman think that WP:UNDUE is not violated by this addition? As for the minority comment, you will see that my aim on this page has been to promote a fair and neutral assessment of vegan nutrition and medical issues. If that puts me in a minority then this article's newly-acquired Good Article status may have been granted too soon. Cheers, Skinwalker 16:31, 19 July 2007 (UTC)

Answering David D.: Spock meant Veganism. The seventh edition of Baby and Child Care recommends a vegan diet -- a vegetarian diet minus dairy and eggs -- for children over the age of 2. Abe Froman 16:37, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
Answering Skinwalker: I believe the criticism has undue weight. Look at the passage. It consists of a lead-in, two cases of parents who starved their children, and a study funded by a Beef Trade Association. Defining vegan kids and pregnancies by crazy parents and crank science is my idea of undue weight. I would like to include the Spock quote to counteract the random, though verifiable, cranks represented later in the passage. Abe Froman 16:45, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
I disagree that most of the criticism in this section is generated by cranks, though you will see above that I too want to get rid of the Cattlemen's study. I have no problem with the Spock quote, preferably inserted after the first sentence of the pregnancy section. He is a significantly more reliable source than a PCRM physician. I can agree to this if the PCRM quote is removed. Cheers, Skinwalker 16:49, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
This reference summarises his thoughts. . The over two part is an important part wrt milk. David D. (Talk) 16:44, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
I believe Spock means breast milk, not dairy milk. Abe Froman 16:45, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
In the article it mentions cow milk. Here is the quote:
"Dairy products (other than breast milk) after the age of 2 years are not recommended. He listed many health reasons. Vegetables and legumes provide calcium and have other nutritional advantages, so milk from cows is unnecessary."
Not sure if this is faithful to his book, the article may have it wrong. It is written in a strange way since it only implies that he recommends cow milk prior to age two. With out seeing his actual text it is hard to know what he actually recommends in the first two years. Possibly he is this vague in his own book? More importantly what are Spocks sources or are these based on his own experiences? If the latter then, despite being an expert in child care, it might not be the best info. Linus Pauling won two Nobel prizes but his ideas on vitamin C are still regarded as dubious, at best.David D. (Talk) 16:51, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
Spock's views on milk and kids evolved over his editions. It was only with the 7th edition of Baby and Child Care in 1998, the final to appear in his lifetime, that Spock finally advised a nondairy diet. [63] However, he did not rule out cow's milk. He just advised breast or fortified soy milk instead. Abe Froman 17:15, 19 July 2007 (UTC)

I didn't get a response about this above, so I will reiterate my offer of compromise. I propose incorporating the Spock quote:

"Children who grow up getting their nutrition from plant foods rather than meats have a tremendous health advantage. They are less likely to develop weight problems, diabetes, high blood pressure and some forms of cancer."

as the second sentence of the first paragraph of the prenancy section. This is contingent on removing the following paragraph that consists of a long quote from Dr. Lanue. Spock is a better source than Lanue for pediatric nutrition, and Lanue's views are still aired as the rebuttal to the Crown Shakur case. Will this be acceptable to everyone? Cheers, Skinwalker 18:40, 19 July 2007 (UTC)

  • agree, but point out it is from Spock. He is a recognizable name to most readers. Abe Froman 18:47, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
Yes, of course. His recognizability is one of the reasons I prefer his quote. I'll wait for more comments before I implement the change. Cheers, Skinwalker 19:04, 19 July 2007 (UTC)

Please Bring Pros & Cons section back.....

and more edition is needed, see Treatment with CAM for amendament

No, sorry, a pro & con section is not appropriate for this article. KellenT 03:32, 30 July 2007 (UTC)
Indeed, it is just bad style. The info is better integrated within the rest of the article. CyrilleDunant 06:41, 30 July 2007 (UTC)


Hi, everyone! I added some examples to what they do, are they good? Feel free to change them :) --HollywoodHeart

Hi. Sorry, I removed your examples because there is no need to have them. "Vegans do not use or consume animal products of any kind." is pretty clear - no need to mention every kind of animal product.Bob98133 22:27, 31 July 2007 (UTC)

Hi, Bob! Um, that might not be specific enough for people who don't speak English as their primary language.

But this is the English Wikipedia - we can't accommodate everyone. Else articles would be filled with examples, repetition explaining things etc... We don't need specific examples as the line, as mentioned by Bob98133, covers it all.-Localzuk(talk) 22:42, 31 July 2007 (UTC)

Anon's dispute

An anonymous contributor, (talk · contribs), recently added

I question the neutrality of this article. Especially as the three sources listed for the following tidbit are either more than two decades old or from the propaganda mills of vegans. (104-106)

to the beginning of the "Resources and the environment" section. The addition was reverted by Kellen` (talk · contribs) as "vandalism". Obviously the main article space is the wrong forum to discuss such concerns with the article, so Kellen` did nothing wrong. At the same time it feels a bit inapropriate to ignore the comments outright, so I moved them here. —Gabbe 12:05, 1 August 2007 (UTC)

The passage and citations in question are:
People who adopt veganism for environmental reasons do so on the basis that veganism consumes less resources and causes less environmental damage than an animal-based diet.[24][25][26]
I think these are fine sources for establishing the reasoning of people adopting veganism for environmental reasons. The following two sentences provide the basis for veganism using fewer resources and causing less environmental damage. These are also from vegan advocacy organizations, however. Each of these statements could be reworked to say "vegan advocacy orgs contend" but don't really think this is necessary, and will probably result in all of the citations in the vegan advocacy papers being transferred here in a way which borders on OR. KellenT 18:51, 1 August 2007 (UTC)
I agree that these are good sources. In the passage above, maybe we could change the word "basis" to "belief"? Short, simple, and avoids weasel words. Cheers, Skinwalker 19:24, 1 August 2007 (UTC)
"Belief" implies lack of evidence in some way. I don't think many people actually contend that a vegan diet would use more resources than an animal-based diet (i've never read a serious critique of that position, anyhow). The problem with supporting such a statement is that the only people who relate research to veganism -- the only sources citable that would say "veganism uses fewer resources" -- are vegan advocacy organizations. Other organizations have no grounds to mention veganism, and instead say things like "animal agriculture is resource intensive" or "exporting grain from the third world to raise meat consumed by those in the first world is an issue." KellenT 22:29, 1 August 2007 (UTC)

I think "belief" is a far better word. It doesn't imply that they're wrong, but it does imply that it hasn't been proven to be true. In some cases, vegan diets may cause less environmental damage, but in other cases they may cause more. It depends where you are in the world, and what you're eating. Pastured poultry may be more friendly than imported tofu or monocultured soybeans. We can't say for sure, so let's call it a "belief." --DPB, 8/4

  1. ^ Cite error: The named reference adajournal was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  2. ^ "Vegan Health: Vitamin B12". Vegan Outreach. 2006-07-26. Retrieved 2007-02-23.
  3. ^ a b "Vegan Health: Bone Health". Vegan Outreach. 2007-01-09. Retrieved 2007-02-23.
  4. ^ P Appleby (2007). "Comparative fracture risk in vegetarians and nonvegetarians in EPIC-Oxford". European Journal of Clinical Nutrition. doi:10.1038/sj.ejcn.1602659. PMID 17299475. Retrieved 2007-02-25. Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help); Unknown parameter |month= ignored (help)
  5. ^ "Vegan Health: Iodine". Vegan Outreach. 2006-12-26. Retrieved 2007-02-23.
  6. ^ "Vegan Health: Fat". Vegan Outreach. 2007-02-20. Retrieved 2007-02-23.
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  11. ^ a b Key, Timothy J.; et al. "Health effects of vegetarian and vegan diets <Internet>". Retrieved 8 July. Unknown parameter |accessyear= ignored (|access-date= suggested) (help); Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  12. ^ Qi, Lu; et al. "Heme Iron From Diet as a Risk Factor for Coronary Heart Disease in Women With Type 2 Diabetes <Internet>". Retrieved 8 July. Unknown parameter |accessyear= ignored (|access-date= suggested) (help); Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  13. ^ Saxelby, Catherine M. "Supplement: Essential role of fats throughout the lifecycle <Internet>". Retrieved 8 July. Unknown parameter |accessyear= ignored (|access-date= suggested) (help); Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  14. ^ Dawczynski, Christine; et al. "Amino acids, fatty acids, and dietary fibre in edible seaweed products <Internet>". Retrieved 8 July. Unknown parameter |accessyear= ignored (|access-date= suggested) (help); Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  15. ^ Delgado CL (2003). "Rising consumption of meat and milk in developing countries has created a new food revolution". J. Nutr. 133 (11 Suppl 2): 3907S–3910S. PMID 14672289.
  16. ^ Speedy AW (2003). "Global production and consumption of animal source foods". J. Nutr. 133 (11 Suppl 2): 4048S–4053S. PMID 14672310.
  17. ^ Gill M (1999). "Meat production in developing countries". The Proceedings of the Nutrition Society. 58 (2): 371–6. PMID 10466179.
  18. ^ Planck, Nina (May 21, 2007). "Death by Veganism". New York Times. Arthur Ochs Sulzberger, Jr. Retrieved 2007-07-17.
  19. ^ Nipps, Emily (June 25, 2007). "Custody battle over quints questions vegan lifestyle". St. Petersburg Times. Retrieved 2007-07-17.
  20. ^ a b Michelle Roberts (21 February 2005). "Children 'harmed' by vegan diets". BBC. Check date values in: |date= (help)
  21. ^ Danielsen, Christian (2005-03-02). "UCD professor's comments on vegan diet hotly debated". California Aggie. Retrieved 2006-10-30. Check date values in: |date= (help)
  22. ^ "Former Beatle Paul McCartney Calls GL-CRSP Nutrition Study 'Rubbish'" (PDF). Ruminations Newsletter. Spring 2005. Retrieved 2006-10-31.
  23. ^ Left, Sarah (2005-02-21). "Raising children as vegans 'unethical', says professor". Guardian Unlimited. Guardian Newspapers Limited. Retrieved 2006-10-31.
  24. ^ Brown LR (1981). "World food resources and population: the narrowing margin". Population bulletin. 36 (3): 1–44. PMID 12263473.
  25. ^ "About Veganism: For the Environment". Vegan Action. Retrieved 2007-05-29. Animal agriculture takes a devastating toll on the earth. It is an inefficient way of producing food, since feed for farm animals requires land, water, fertilizer, and other resources that could otherwise have been used directly for producing human food.
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