In addition, creating social norms is an approach that unravels in schools and has a
compelling influence among young individuals. In a report that extended over 30 years by the New England Journal of Medicine, it was observed how obesity spreads through a social network in a similar way an infectious disease might spread. (1)Even “free thinking and independent” adults cave-in to powerful social pressures, which have a measurable impact on our health and well-being.
According to Dr. Nicholas A. Christakis, a physician and professor of medical sociology at Harvard Medical School and a principal investigator in the new study, said one explanation was that friends affected each others’ perception of fatness. When a close friend becomes obese, obesity may not look so bad. Therefore, the way we think is profoundly influenced by others.(2)(3)
Developing a social norm for a meatless diet is equally advantageous throughout the early years of childhood and on to an individual’s later years of adulthood.