On social media, we tend to see a lot of food pictures. This makes sense, because people generally enjoy sharing food as a means of forming connection and community. Have you ever wondered what the most popular diet or lifestyle posted about on social media is? According to recent research from Brandwatch, the vegan diet is the most popular.
The analysis looked at posts on Twitter, but the trend does seem to be the same on other forms of social media, like Instagram. Second after vegan is gluten-free, and the third most popular is vegetarian.
Specifically, this team of researchers looked at what "influencers" (accounts with large followers) posted about the most frequently.
Many people use social media multiple times a day as it is. If you're looking to change your diet, or just need inspiration for new recipes, seeing what others are eating around the world can be eye-opening. It can also be a great way to read product reviews before making a purchase.
Of course, the reason veganism won out could come down to multiple factors. It's possible vegans are the most active in the foodie world of social media, perhaps as a way to answer the common question, "so what do you eat?" It's also possible more people are turning to a vegan outlook instead of other diets because they welcome the more lifestyle based approach.
It's worth noting that identifying as a vegan can mean different things to different people. For example, a vegan is someone who abstains from consuming animal products and by-products, including things like meat, seafood, honey, and eggs.
But for some people, veganism is about consumption in ways outside of food. For example, not buying a leather couch.
You can also adhere to a vegan diet, plus additional modifications. So for example, you can be both a vegan and gluten-free. Or you could be both a vegan and nut-free. But in its very basic level, veganism is about avoiding animal products.
There are also people who follow a plant-based diet. Some people who are vegan also specifically eat a plant-based diet, meaning that they eat a diet focused on whole foods and mostly vegetables. Some plant-based eaters do incorporate things like eggs or seafood, provided they are still "natural" and "unprocessed."
And of course, there are also vegans who don't eat plant-based diets. Some vegans enjoy processed foods, like meat or dairy substitutes. You can also be a "junk food" vegan, meaning that you indulge in things like chips, ice cream, and nachos, just all in their vegan form.
This may be one of the reasons veganism is becoming so popular on social media. There are countless ways to modify the diet to fit your individual lifestyle and needs. You can recreate "traditional" dishes, like BBQ ribs or ice cream sundaes, or stick to a very holistic, nutritional diet with lots of protein and healthy fats. And while there are plenty of meat and dairy substitutes on the market, being a vegan can be pretty cheap, if you stick to mostly simple foods, like beans, rice, and produce.