What is everyone's opinion on this study stating that vegetarians live longer?
asked byDivrgurl13 (1876)
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on June 05, 2013
at 01:10 PM
Here's what Chris Kresser had to say on his Facebook page:
"You may have seen the WSJ piece today on a study claiming vegetarians live longer than meat-eaters. Those studies are notoriously confounded by the 'healthy user effect' (i.e. since meat has been viewed as 'bad' for the past few decades, vegetarians are more likely to avoid other behaviors perceived as unhealthy, like smoking, lack of physical activity, etc.)
A much better study would compare lifespan amongst vegetarians and omnivores that are all health-conscious, since that would reduce the influence of this healthy user effect. Fortunately, that study has been done. Researchers compared 11,000 vegetarians and omnivores that shop at health food stores. They found that both groups lived longer than the general population, but that there was no difference in lifespan between the omnivores and vegetarians.
So the next time someone links to a study claiming that vegetarians live longer than meat-eaters, you can send them this one: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8842068 "