I ate nothing but vegetarian fast food for a week - and discovered a huge problem with the industry


Kate salad

Tova Diker

As someone who loves both meat and chain restaurants, I was only half prepared when I adopted a 100% fast-food diet with no meat allowed.


After spending a week trying to eat healthy while consuming nothing but fast food, I figured that going vegetarian for five days would be a breeze. I already knew fast-food menus like the back of my hand, and I had plenty of vegetarian friends I could consult.

Plus, a growing percentage of the American population has already gone vegetarian. While about 3% of the US identifies as vegetarian or vegan, an increasing number of people are cutting meat from their diet; 26% to 41% of Americans report that they cut down on the amount of meat they ate in the past year.

If fast-food chains want to compete with the new wave of trendy fast-casual restaurants, they need to appeal to the vegetarian market - including people who want to decrease the amount of meat they eat without cutting it from their diet.

So, I became a short-term vegetarian to see which fast-food chains were evolving to meet the meatless needs of consumers.