03 May

Are You a Reducetarian?


Do you make it a habit to cut back on animal products? Have you been more pedantic when checking the ingredients on product labels lately? Are you eco-minded yet still struggling to give up certain foods?

Move over veganism, vegetarianism, pescatarianism, flexitarianism… There’s a new kid on the food trends block, and it’s called reducetarianism.

If you’re on the fence about going fully-fledged vegan but still find yourself wanting to reduce your intake of meat and dairy for ethical, environmental and health reasons, you might be a reducetarian without even knowing it!

Simply put, this mouthful of a diet is the practice of reducing your consumption of meat, dairy, and eggs without giving them up entirely. It’s the perfect middle ground for those who find themselves between two extremes – a food identity crisis if you will – and offers a more pragmatic and sustainable solution for those who have tried and failed at their veggie diet as soon as the first cheeseburger came along.

Reducetarianism is a lifestyle that’s characterised by being mindful of the ethical farming practices behind the ingredients in your pantry, like choosing to opt for grass-fed meat or pasture-raised eggs.

The lifestyle embraces the core principles of Mediterranean and vegetarian diets, and chooses to focus less on what you shouldn’t eat, and more on all the wonderful plant-based ingredients you can and should rather be eating more of. Think of it as cultivating a deeper appreciation for dishes in which fruit, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, beans and nuts are the stars of the show, and then, in turn, reducing your intake of meat, seafood, milk and eggs to the occasional weekly meal item.

Reducetarianism isn’t an all-or-nothing approach, instead, people who live by it choose to celebrate the small changes in personal and institutional behaviour so that, as a society, we can collectively strive towards a sustainable future.

Ready. Set. Reduce!

  • Choose local, seasonal foods wherever possible
  • Minimise your food wastage by planning meals and grocery lists in advance
  • Support ethically farmed, sustainable suppliers
  • Start out by making it fun, with themes like Meatless Mondays, Vegan,
  • Before Six or Weekday Vegetarian
  • Swap your go-to items for meat-free substitutes you actually enjoy eating and take the time to explore new recipes
  • Look out for ingredient labels like pasture-raised and grass-fed

By Liesl Lamprecht

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