The world’s first vegan hospital

| 11 March 2021
minute reading time
Doctor with fruit and vega

A private hospital in Lebanon has become the first hospital in the world to go 100 per cent vegan.

The hospital will no longer serve patients meat nor dairy, and will instead replace its menu with a number of healthy plant-based dishes.

Hayek Hospital has become the world’s first hospital to serve only plant-based food. The hospital has taken this move following a transition phase that saw more plant-based meals being introduced.

Vegan hospital menu

The vegan menu includes vegan croissants, plant-based fajitas and burgers alongside a number of veganised traditional Lebanese dishes like shish barak, labneh sandwiches and shawarma platters.

Hayek Hospital said their patients will no longer wake up from surgery to be greeted with ham, cheese, milk and eggs… the very foods that may have contributed to their health problems in the first place. They point out how a vegan diet can not only prevent many diseases but reverse some of them too.

They cite the recommendations made by the World Health Organisation (WHO) to limit meat consumption because of its links to a higher risk of certain cancers saying that “serving meat in a hospital is like serving cigarettes in a hospital”.

They highlight the growing concern about the role of animal agriculture as a leading cause of rising zoonotic diseases and, in the light of the current coronavirus pandemic, they say: “We believe it’s well about time to tackle the root cause of diseases and pandemics, not just treat symptoms”.

It’s an exciting development and one that we hope will inspire other hospitals around the world to follow suit.

About the author
Dr. Justine Butler
I joined Viva! as a health campaigner in 2005 after graduating from Bristol University with a PhD in molecular biology. My scientific training helped me research and write numerous reports, guides and fact sheets for Viva! including Meat the Truth, Fish-Free for Life, One in Nine (breast cancer and diet) and the substantial report on the detrimental health effects of consuming dairy; White Lies. This accompanied Viva!’s report The Dark Side of Dairy which spelt out the inherent cruelty of dairy farming. We were the first UK group to take on the dairy industry in this way, and many of our supporters go vegan after reading these reports.

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