Two out of five Russians say that not eating meat is bad for your health, according to a recent survey published by the state-run VTsIOM pollster.
Although no figures are kept on the number of vegetarians in Russia, the vegetarian lifestyle is gaining a foothold in the country.
Thirty-nine percent of Russian respondents said a vegetarian diet is harmful, according to the survey published Friday, with 50 percent of people in the 18-24 age bracket sharing the same view.
One-fifth of the respondents said a no-meat diet is healthy, while 27 percent said it has no health effects. Only 1 percent identified themselves as vegetarians.
“Arguments for and against [the diet] are based on subjective notions about the benefit or harm of meat products,” VTsIOM expert Yulia Baskakova said.
Those who oppose vegetarianism mostly argued that plant-based foods lack the nutrients and vitamins contained in meat, while its proponents say fruits and vegetables have more vitamins.
VTsIOM conducted the phone survey on Tuesday among 1,000 Russians.