One of the most influential writers of modern times, J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter book series has sold more copies than any other in history. Is Rowling a vegan or vegetarian?
J.K. Rowling is not, as far as we are aware, vegan or vegetarian. She has been critical in the past of overly restrictive diets, feeling they set unrealistic expectations and that people will put their health at risk by following them. Evanna Lynch, who portrayed Luna Lovegood in the Harry Potter movies, has credited Rowling with helping her recover from an eating disorder in her early teens.
For more on J.K. Rowling’s thoughts on eating and how she helped the future Luna Lovegood through a difficult time, read on.
Rowling on Food
Contrary to many fad diets embraced by celebrities, J.K Rowling seems less concerned with restricting what she eats and more with enjoying it.
In 2007, the author said that she was on the “eat more” diet and joked that she was considering writing a revolutionary book on the subject, although this failed to materialize. She also said that she feared her daughters, who were a baby and a teenager at the time, might be influenced by the media’s constant demands for celebrities to diet and be thin.
It seems she feels there are more important things in life than maintaining a perfectly flat stomach.
Although Rowling hasn’t made a definitive statement on whether or not she eats meat, in a 2014 Twitter exchange she did make a reference to having to deal with “Meat is Murder”, so it’s probably a fair assumption that she doesn’t subscribe to that particular notion.
Veganism and Magic
Vegan and vegetarian Harry Potter fans have long questioned whether or not it is possible to attend Rowling’s magical school of Hogwarts while eating an animal-free diet.
Inspired by traditional magical potions and concoctions, there are frequent examples in the books of items that have been created using animals. Popular sweets in the Wizarding World, for example, use insect stings as part of their recipe.
Even so, the series is full of messages that are more in line with vegan thinking. After seeing a house-elf abused, one of Harry’s best friends Hermione Granger forms S.P.E.W., dedicated to fighting for elf rights.
The Ministry of Magic also banned the use of toads in the making of potions sometime before the events of the book series, indicating that there is at least some legislation regarding animal cruelty in Rowling’s Wizarding World.
In an interview in 2000, Rowling also confirmed that the kitchen at Hogwarts is vegetarian-friendly, with its house-elf chefs happy to cook animal-free meals on request.
Though she became famous for her memorable portrayal of Luna Lovegood, beginning with “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix”, Evanna Lynch already had a connection to J.K. Rowling.
Lynch has spoken about battling an eating disorder in her youth, becoming hospitalized at the age of 11. She was diagnosed with anorexia nervosa and entered therapy.
Lynch said that one of the greatest bits of help for her was discovering the Harry Potter novels, which provided her with an escape and a sense of wonder during her darkest moments.
During her recovery from the illness, Lynch wrote a letter to Rowling and was shocked when the author responded, with the two continuing to correspond.
It’s easy to assume that this played some part in Lynch’s casting in the series but the events are unrelated; she attended an open casting call for the part and earned it.
There might be nobody who felt a closer connection to the series than Lynch and she provided one of the standout performances in the later Harry Potter films, bringing the Ravenclaw to life on the big screen.