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Taboo: Are vegans slow-witted?

Hi, gang. So, as a newbie I have a lot of questions and fears, many of which are unfounded, and many of which should really be kept to myself. Here’s one:

Are a good majority of vegans slow-witted?

Now, please, don’t go attacking me for this; I think it’s a valid question and I’ll explain why. I’ve been going to this rawfood restaurant in Santa Monica that is just wonderful—really terrific, and I was curious to know what reviewers had written about the place …

Lo and behold I was surprised by how many posts complained of rude, or disinterested staff. From then on I noticed how much checking and double-checking of orders I saw—this was a long line with two registers—and one staff member, with dreadlocks and a sorta slow, sacred-cow gaze about him, even swiped a credit card twice and then stood between two take-out bags trying to remember which bag was which, moving his pointer fingers in a back and forth windshield wiper motion for several seconds until the customer had to intervene.

Ordinarily I would chalk this up to all those stereotypes about pot-use in the vegan community but here I am, someone who is getting into this thing, and here, over the past few weeks, I’ve been reading all you guys agreeing on the importance of certain nuts and berries and what-not for brain power and so I wonder …

Is there a connection?

Don’t hate me, I’m just stating that it stands to reason that if certain foods are essential for brain power, then not getting those foods will have a negative effect in that same area.




  • And how else would you explain patchouli?

    No, seriously, I do wanna know your opinions and insights; I’m not just being a rabble rouser.

  • LOL. Zooey you make me laugh! Not at you, but at the picture you painted of the restaurant antics! In a way I can understand what you’re referring to as I’ve met some vegheads who seem “different” than the typical so-called “smarter” people, yet I actually think many times it may simply be that be that veg%ns (all emcompassing term for vegetarians and/or vegans) dance to the beat of their own drum and that may seem strange, possibly even “slow” to those who are more “mainstream” or collectively acting people. Many veg%ns simply do not care what the mainstream think of them so they are not inhibited to act certain ways nor to put on airs for the masses either. Does that make any sense?? Hope so! I do not mean to offend anyone on either side. I have been on both- mainstream (ie: ignorant) originally, now becoming more and more “eclectic” in my thinking! ;) Either way, I think there are plenty of slow-witted people in every/any class stucture, it all depends on your focus in noticing them. And I’m afraid many omnivores are going to try to say veg%ns are dumber and attempt to try and justify their own choices!

    Anyway, here are a couple of articles on a recent study to put your doubts to rest. And in case you are now veg*n, congratulations on your intelligence! ;)



  • Yeah I would say the same thing aspire is saying. I was struggling with this post as I have been through this before, but the person I was thinking about makes outstanding food and is the only one in Atlanta that has made it in this RAW food game. So though he may not be the best at multi-tasking, he makes damn good food.

  • Thanks, Aspire! These articles are great. And I wasn’t really referring to behavior—barefootdness, Phish concerts—I went to art school, this stuff is great—I was just referring to the general slower-speed that I seem to be witnessing. Like the synapses aren’t really firing very often.

  • He may not be the best at multi-tasking!


  • elizabethhelizabethh Raw Newbie

    LOL Zooey…that restaurant stuff is hilarious. I doubt there is a connection…I know plenty of vegans (including myself, I like to think) that are quite sharp. We also should not discount the highly plausible presence of marijuana, which tends to slow down the thinking process juuuust a tad lmao. Or perhaps there’s no connection. Funny story though!

  • coconuttycoconutty Raw Newbie

    Welllll… the meat eating community definitely has their fare share of “winners” (lol). Since the veg community is much smaller when being compared, it may just seem easier to associate these slow-movers to the lifestyle they chose!

  • maybe the guy just ate too many nuts that day :D

  • HI, Cherie. I appreciate that, but this guy was definitely a raw foodie. As for the pot … I haven’t a freaking clue; this is one of many related subjects where I am woefully square.

  • greeniegreenie Raw Newbie


    I’ve observed stuff like that in…cults. People are hired because they’re ‘one of us’ instead of because they’re qualified for the job. A lot of really strange behavior gets tolerated because it’s outside the purview of the dogma. You may have noticed that some people get pretty culty about eating raw. Also some sad and wounded people get attracted to self-help cults, raw included, hoping to get made whole.

    That was a long-winded way of saying I don’t think you witnessed the effects of a raw diet, but of something else. I’ve been around a lot of vegans and haven’t noticed this behavior. Of course, being one myself…

  • I was in a raw food restaurant in Santa Monica the other day (sounds like the same one Zooey described) and the staff was so rude. Ten minutes before closing time they made it clear they wanted everyone in the dining room to leave so they could start cleaning the tables. They even said, “Thank you everyone, goodbye!” to get us to go. They did it twice. You just don’t do that kind of thing if you want to keep customers.

    Sadly, my boyfriend was with me and he said he’d never going back to that restaurant because he was so annoyed with the service. I think some business owners just don’t understand how to treat customers, vegan or otherwise. Then again, maybe the owners of this restaurant know the raw foodists will come back whether they are polite or not because there aren’t very many raw food choices, even in L.A.

  • coconuttycoconutty Raw Newbie

    That’s really crappy, but when you think about it, it is true… with so few restaurants available they can pretty much do as they feel. How does that place work?? Is it an order your food and sit… or do you get the chance to tip? There’s always power in tipping!

  • queenfluffqueenfluff Raw Newbie

    Hey, what’s wrong with patchouli??? :)

    Anyhow, well, since you are new you probably don’t notice it yet but you will once you meet more raw foodists – there are some rawies that are shall we say “just kinda spacey”. Honestly, my bf said he thinks that they are missing something in their raw diet that makes them that way. He noticed it in rawies that live off of mostly greens and not much else. Don’t know why this is.

    Another thing is that I have met a lot of rawies that once had “troubled” lives – like they had addiction problems like drugs or alcohol. Many of them were drawn to the raw life being of how good the whole diet is suppoed to make you feel and some of them are after the “high” of feeling that good. That said, some of these people might be slightly “damaged” from their old lives and don’t always seem “with” it.

    I also noticed that alot of people into raw are extremly laid back and just almost TOO relaxed and are so much so that they seem like they are not paying attention and seem to be in outerspace.

    Anyhow, these are just theories and things I have observed in the past several years of meeting many types of raw foodists. There are all sorts.

    It also could be that maybe that dreaded guy had his mind on something else that day – maybe he normally isn’t like that – and you caught him on a bad day.

    I am a vegan and I am far from slow witted and I think I am not even capable of being slow-witted either :) – I meet plenty of SAD eaters that are just as spacey and slackery too as the rawies.

    I have had some fabulous service at some raw places, where the employees were very attentive and energetic and the service is great and than other I get the spacey types who don’t pay attention and seem unaware of the world around them and get my order wrong.

    I think it is just something you will realize the longer you are into raw – you will meet the flakies and non-flakies. You will get used to it.

  • angie207angie207 Raw Master

    I read somewhere that spaciness is a symptom of being too alkaline – that would explain spaciness in people who eat greens and not much else? There is only one raw food restaurant in Utah, and a couple of other places that may have some raw choices on the menu. The raw restaurant I love, because the food is excellent and the people are great!

  • i’m reading the power of now, right now…getting into present moment living. i went onto jerseyshoregirl’s post about the meyer’s- briggs personality test, took the test, got ISFP and in the explanation of personality type was this

    “Focused on enjoying the present moment, they may appear lazy or slow-moving at times”

    there are just a few ;) raw vegans who are also expanding their consciousness…reading eckhart tolle and the like, maybe one reason why they seem to be in a different space from others who don’t experience such a level of wellbeing.

  • Wow, great feedback! Yes, spacey is what I’m referring to. Greenie you hit all the points too. As for you, Cherie… I knew he was a vegan because… because I’m a bigot and legitimize all of my negative feelings through these forum postings. No proof necessary.

    But I tell you, if I start getting all drifty and take to wearing wraps then I know which diet I’m going to blame.

  • Morning_theftMorning_theft Raw Newbie

    I don’t mean to be a downer but I have read in the past that while Vegetarians have a higher IQ than meat eaters statistically, vegans have a lower than average… It does worry me to an extent… I do wonder sometimes if animal proteins have something to do with brain evolution.

  • angie,

    yes i just read that spaciness is a symptom of being too alkaline – this came from david wolfe’s ‘eating for beauty’ book. other symptoms he claim include ‘lack of drive’ and ‘excessively passive’.

    i realise i am exactly all that and have become this way only in recent years. Coincidentally, it seems to have come about after i turned vegetarian and consume tons of green juices. it seems to make sense in a way because i have always been very driven, pro-active and quick-witted!

    i can’t help but feel there is a real coorelation there!

  • elizabethhelizabethh Raw Newbie

    I don’t know, I consume plenty of greens and am far from spacey, lol! If there is a correlation, perhaps it has more to do with a state of mind…maybe raw foods and green juices have a pacifying effect on some people, putting them in a natural meditative state? It definitely can be challenged though, I cannot afford to be spacey living my life. And for those who are spacey…I bet they are spacey but happy!

    I also have to reiterate that spaceyness is a classic pothead symptom, I know, I’m surrounded by them. Not to say all vegans are potheads, but many are.

  • I have witnessed this too. I think people who exhibit the behaviors described by Zooey are antiestablishment. So this means that they do not live in the fast lane and behave oppositely in order to make a point about how much they do not belong to the society that is fast-paced, stressed out, materialistic, and any other values that are espoused by the modern, civilized ideology of the western world.

  • Good morning, Morning Theft. Where did you get your info? This scares the bejeezus out of me.

  • Yes redhouse I love it “antiestablishment”.

    This is what I would have to quote to the so called meat eating driven one’s that morning_theft speaks of

    The great arises out of small things that are honored and cared for. Everybody’s life really consists of small things. Greatness is a mental abstraction and a favorite fantasy of the ego. The paradox is that the foundation for greatness is honoring the small things of the present moment instead of pursuing the idea of greatness. The present moment is always small in the sense that it is always simple, but concealed within it lies the greatest power. Like the atom, it is one of the smallest things yet contains enormous power.

    - Tolle

  • Okay, I am going to try and tackle this one.

    I am no historian/paleontologist/anthropologist, but I do know that the scientists who study human history/evolution create explanations based on evidence. They could be wrong. I don’t study in those fields, so I can’t come up with an alternative explanation without reading more and examining the evidence myself.

    I find it interesting that the investigators thought that because the meat eaters adapted to change, they were smarter. (And I know I am only going by this little blurb here.) We don’t know the whole story. Perhaps a change in climate altered food supply or those that ended up eating meat were for some reason ostracized from the community. And this resulted in no other choice but to eat meat. These are somewhat lame alternative explanations, but we also have to consider that people who interpreted the evidence are meat eaters themselves. I wonder if vegetarian/vegan scientists looked at the same evidence, if they would interpret it equally.

    Furthermore, we are not living in the same conditions as our ancestors. Perhaps the human body at this point in history has evolved to a state where it has different nutritional needs. This topic is too complex to rely only on what our ancestors have done. We are constantly evolving and adapting to (and destroying) our environment. When the early settlers went north, they had no vegetation, so they started drinking cows milk to survive, now we have an insidious industry that serves no purpose other than to perpetuate disease.

    On the other hand, it could be that there are different ‘strains’ of people. Some thrive better on meat and have adapted to eating it. Others thrive better on vegetation. Throwing intelligence into the picture only complicates it more. We don’t even know what intelligence is now let alone what it was back then.

  • Patchouli? Ha ha. You almost made me wet my pants Zooey Glass. But seriously, I’ve met meat eating, midwestern, octogenarians who love the stuff.

  • Luna bluLuna blu Raw Newbie

    Duh, what? ;) Hey I love patchouli, that’s my signature stink!

    Anyhow, this is quite a hilarious question. My answer is, these people were probably dim wits their whole lives, even pre raw vegan. I can tell you one thing, I am not a dim wit.

    Mental clarity is supposed to increase when you eat raw, not decrease. So if you have run into vegan and raw dum dums, just think of how dumb they must have been before! :) Ha!

  • Luna bluLuna blu Raw Newbie

    You know, cometo think of it the lady who owns a raw cafe near me, is a little blah. She isn’t dum, I don’t think, just blah. I would figure all raw foodist were like me, a real spark plug!!!! Eating raw, I have no choice but to be obnoxiously bubbly! ;)

  • alpdesignsalpdesigns Raw Newbie

    I had brain fog as a symptom of MS, but eating a raw diet has pulled me out of that. I’m as sharp as a marble now. In all seriousness, education or lack of it makes you smart or stupid, not the food that you eat. Evolution doesn’t happen overnight. (IMO)

  • coconuttycoconutty Raw Newbie

    Haaaaaaaaaa luna blu I love your statement “So if you have run into vegan and raw dum dums, just think of how dumb they must have been before!”

  • Luna bluLuna blu Raw Newbie

    I have a friend that has a universtiy degree in business, she is a total dip! my father, who has no post secondary education is a friggen brainiac! The man is mensa material!

    I am not knocking education by no means, but I have met some pretty well educated nimrods!

    Also, for once I agree with 123, evolution does not occur over night. Your brain is not going to regress to a cro magnon state becsuse you are not eating animal protien! I think you are going to be ok!!

  • alpdesignsalpdesigns Raw Newbie

    You don’t usually agree with me? I didn’t think I was ever wrong! (lol)

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