Diets of all kinds - from pescetarianism to paleo to good old vegetarianism and beyond - have always had many followers worldwide. Still, nothing has entirely captured the imagination of millennials and Gen Z, like veganism. As a result, nowadays, more young people are turning towards veganism. This diet could be called a subsidiary of vegetarianism in a broad sense, but it strictly does not include dairy or animal-based products, even honey. Ms Sonal, CEO WhiteCub Dairy Free Foods shares five reasons explaining why veganism is indeed the new food trend - which is highly likely to grow further shortly - and is here to stay:

The rise in vegan-only restaurants

Veganism has moved past being just a ‘food trend’. It is now considered a badge of honour that most vegans carry with pride. It is a marker of their self-identity and personality. Vegans are seen as the right way to exist on the planet by sticking to eating plants and plant-based products. The sense of togetherness and unity that a vegan feels in the company of another vegan is unparalleled, and many restaurants dedicated to vegan food have been opening up recently. In these hot new eateries, vegan food is given a fine-dining spin, and these have also become significant crowd-pullers. In addition, there has been a massive upgrade in the techniques used to experiment with vegan ingredients, thus giving customers more choice and variety.

Vegan ‘milk’ and ‘meat’ have become great alternatives

In many surveys, people cited one reason for not even considering turning to veganism: they could not avoid dairy products, especially milk, from their diet. However, the vegan food market came up with a solution to this problem by producing ‘vegan milk’ sourced 100% from plant-based sources like coconut, almond, soy and even rice. Although this vegan milk tastes the same as dairy milk, it has helped many people who could not consume dairy earlier due to lactose intolerance. In addition, Vegan ‘meat’ has also helped meat-eaters convert to veganism. The meat, sourced from soy, wheat, and pea protein, is flavoured similarly to conventional meat. These new versatile entrants have pulled more people towards a vegan diet.

Veganism has spotlighted climate change

Most vegans argue that they have chosen this lifestyle where they do not consume nor use animal-based products because of the lesser carbon footprint they generate. Studies have shown that vegans have a 73% lesser carbon footprint than their meat-eating counterparts. Studies have shown that meat-eaters are responsible for more greenhouse gas emissions per day than vegans. Carbon footprint and greenhouse gas emissions are direct contributors to human-induced climate change. These factors have contributed to people opting for a plant-based diet as they can be sensitive to animals' plight and be climate-conscious.

Celebs are endorsing veganism like never before

Many celebrities worldwide vouched for veganism, claiming that the diet has done wonders for their overall fitness, health and wellness. As we know, celebrities are influencers in the sense that people tend to follow their diet and fitness regimen to a T. Many vegan celebrities, from Benedict Cumberbatch to Natalie Portman, have endorsed veganism and rallied for it heavily, even sharing PETA’s messages and videos on animal cruelty and being PETA ambassadors. Since their social media presence is also high these days, more and more people get drawn to their ideas and emulate them.

Vegan recipes have taken social media by storm

If you scroll through Instagram or Facebook, you may come across at least one picture or video featuring a vegan recipe. The likes and shares on these posts are likely to range in the thousands, if not millions. Vegan recipes have taken over social media and are being widely shared nowadays. People are intrigued by how vegan food uses creative alternatives to some ingredients thought to be staples and irreplaceable in most recipes – like butter, milk and cream. Vegan food in these posts looks sumptuous and mouth-watering too. Thus, attracting more people to veganism.