Why This Survivor Contestant Had To Give Up His Vegan Diet

"Survivor" is a hardcore reality show that requires its participants to be ready to tackle extreme situations: According to Men's Health, participants on the show have to figure out ways to get by on a deserted island for an extended period. This means that the food options are rather limited and they typically have to share a single bag filled with rice for more than a month. Estimates indicate that participants usually get to eat around one cup of rice each day but they can try to get their hands on other food options such as coconut, crabs, and fish on the island. Furthermore, they can also rely on the "reward challenges" to snack on delicious food items such as fried chicken and chocolate cake. 

The show can be brutal for many participants who have to look for ways to sustain themselves and not feel overwhelmed by the challenges. For a vegan participant on Season 42, Hai Giang, the lack of suitable food options become a real issue after he found out that rice would not be handed over to the contestants in the latest season of the show (via Insider).

He didn't have a choice

According to Insider, Hai Giang's fellow tribe members managed to find some hermit crabs and shared them with the entire group. Giang was not excited at the prospect of consuming seafood as a vegan and said no to the invitation. He mentioned that he knew that following a vegan diet wouldn't be a cakewalk on an island but realized that he had limited options after the host revealed that the participants wouldn't receive rice. Giang said, "As someone who loves animals I obviously want to stay true to myself out here, but I'm obviously not going to be able to sustain myself on coconuts alone."

He was afraid that he wouldn't be strong enough to participate in the show's physically demanding tasks without enough food and chose to eat crab after five days of no food.  He said that he couldn't help but feel "good and guilty" and hoped that "the universe will understand in this one nuanced instance." Giang added that it will take time but he will "eventually" forgive himself for the transgression.