Reading Time: 2 minutes Johnson must lead the way in recognizing the steps to improve long-term public health. Credit: Estonian Presidency
Reading Time: 2 minutes

A group of vegan doctors and healthcare professionals is urging UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson to adopt a plant-based diet. 

Plant Based Health Online (PBHO) says the politician should ‘set an example to the nation by eating a healthier and sustainable diet’. 

It has therefore created a petition encouraging Johnson and his family to ditch animal products. 

‘A healthy plant-based diet’

The online healthcare service says the PM should ‘understand the importance of a healthy plant-based diet for human, public and planetary health. It says this would, in turn, provide cost-saving benefits to the NHS’.

PBHO added: “This would also tie in with the government’s 10-point plan. [This] lays out measures to scale up the nation’s climate ambition, as well as a new obesity strategy to improve the overall health of the UK population.”

Dr. Shireen Kassam is the co-founder of PBHO and a consultant hematologist. In a statement sent to PBN, she said: “It’s a world leader’s obligation to do everything in their power to maintain the policies they have set out. 

“A whole food plant-based diet is key in tackling both health and environmental issues. So, we’re calling on the Prime Minister and his fiancé Carrie Symonds to take action by setting an example to the nation. 

“We believe that by adopting a healthy vegan diet for their family, Mr. Johnson and Ms. Symonds will connect with the problems at hand.

‘Boris Johnson must lead the way’

Dr. Kassam also points out that nutrition is becoming ‘increasingly recognized as a significant factor in disease prevention and health development’.

She then added: “The NHS spends £14 billion on diabetes treatment each year alone, with a poor diet estimated to be a bigger mortality risk than smoking. 

“Meanwhile, a recent survey by Public Health England found that 7 in 10 adults are motivated by Covid-19 to make healthier lifestyle changes. However, we know that most people find it difficult to navigate the choices presented to them. And, it can be hard to know where to start. 

“Johnson must lead the way in recognizing the steps to improve long-term public health. We implore him to take the simple yet effective step of adopting a plant-based diet for the sake of the country.” 

‘Outdated’ ideas about veganism

Last year, Johnson was blasted over his ‘outdated’ ideas about veganism.

In an interview with Dan Walker about his 2020 resolution to lose weight, the leader was asked if he would be ditching meat and dairy products from his diet. But, Johnson said that would require ‘too much concentration’.

Moreover, he added that he ‘tipped his hat off to vegans who can handle it’. However, he then said a vegan diet is ‘a crime against cheese lovers’.

You can urge Boris Johnson to adopt a plant-based diet here.

Liam Giliver

Liam is the Deputy Editor and Social Media Coordinator for Plant Based News. He has written for a number of top publications including Gay Times, Attitude Magazine, Oh Comely, and The Huffington Post - and is the author of 'We're Worried About Him'.