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The Empathetic Vegetarian Brain

The empathetic vegetarian brain
...Many differences were found among the brains of those with different feedings habits....

May 27, 2010

It is often the case that meatless lifestyles are chosen for ethical reasons related to valuing animal rights. As a consequence of their food choices, vegetarians and vegans are often accused of and taunted for loving animals more than people. But do most vegetarians care less for fellow humans than animals, care for humans and animals equally, or care more for humans than animals but still care more for animals than omnivores do?

A study published yesterday in PLoS ONE has attempted to parse out differences among omnivores, vegetarians and vegans in brain responses to human and animal suffering. The three groups were first given the Empathy quotient questionnaire, and it was determined that vegans and vegetarians scored significantly higher in empathy than omnivores....

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