Plant-Based vs Vegan Diet: What’s the Difference?
Plant-Based vs Vegan Diet:
- Plant-based vs vegan diet have been in the news recently, but what’s the difference between these two diet categories?
- A plant-based diet includes fruits, vegetables, legumes, whole grains, nuts and seeds that are all derived from plants.
- A vegan diet eliminates all animal products from your diet including dairy and eggs as well as foods that contain animal byproducts like gelatin or lard.
Vegans don’t eat any animal products, such as eggs or dairy
In Plant-Based vs Vegan Diet most vegans choose to avoid animal products for both ethical and health reasons. Some object to killing animals for food.
Many just don’t want to contribute to animal suffering in any way, even if they aren’t directly involved in a killing or cruelty, while others are simply worried about their health.
This is an emotional topic and how one feels about it might change over time. For example, once you learn more about farm conditions, you might decide that not consuming eggs is best for your moral framework.
There are also lots of arguments against veganism out there so don’t take what I say here as absolute truth either!
Plant-based diets exclude meat and fish, but may include eggs and dairy
A plant-based diet excludes meat and fish, but may include eggs and dairy products. Vegans also avoid eating honey, making sure that every ingredient is 100% vegan.
People following a plant-based diet are more likely to eat more vegetables than someone following a traditional Western diet, which often includes lots of meat and dairy products.
People on plant-based diets have been found to have lower body mass indexes (BMIs) than those who eat lots of animal products.
Vegans tend to be stricter with their diet than plant-based dieters
Vegans avoid all animal products, whereas plant-based dieters will sometimes consume animal products if they’re raised that way.
For example, someone who grew up on a farm will likely eat meat and dairy—they aren’t necessarily vegan or vegetarian, but their diet is influenced by those things because they came from a culture that has been around longer than ours.
A lot of people assume that if you’re eating vegetarian food (i.e., food without any meat) you’re vegan; however, it doesn’t work like that.
These Are Examples of Foods Vegans Can Eat
It’s easy to assume that vegans just eat a lot of green stuff, but that’s only half true. Yes, they definitely eat a lot of vegetables, but they also consume beans and legumes.
Many opt for soy products like tofu or soy milk, because they are rich in protein and contain less saturated fat than meat and dairy products.
If you want to be vegan but are worried about consuming enough calories (vegan diets are sometimes low in calories because there is so little animal product involved), try adding some healthy fats like olive oil, avocados or nuts to your diet on a daily basis.
Or simply include more fruits and vegetables—they will make you feel full without adding many calories at all!
This Is How You Can Get Protein on a Vegan Diet
It’s not easy to meet your protein needs without meat, but there are plenty of vegan foods that are high in protein. Beans and legumes top most lists of high-protein vegan foods, as do quinoa, nuts and seeds, soy products like tofu and tempeh, and whole grains like oats.
Still worried about getting enough? Supplement with vegan protein powder or seek out a supplement made from hemp or brown rice.
And remember: if you’re still eating animal products on top of all these plant sources of protein, you might be shooting yourself in the foot when it comes to meeting your dietary needs.
These Are Plant-Based Proteins That You Can Find in Grocery Stores
Lentils and beans are arguably some of the best proteins you can get from plants. Both are packed with a variety of vitamins and minerals, plus they’re inexpensive.
If you follow a plant-based diet, or even if you’re just looking to get more plant protein in your diet, adding lentils and beans to your meals is a great way to do it.
Try adding lentils to salads, soups or pastas, as well as incorporating them into stews; experiment with chickpeas by throwing them into hummus or serving them over rice with veggies; add soybeans to stir-fries and curries.
You can even try substituting any of these for meat in dishes that normally use ground beef—chickpeas make particularly good meatballs.
A Few Things To Keep In Mind When Switching To A Vegan Or Vegetarian Diet
A vegan diet is not a vegetarian diet. If you want to be healthy, it’s important to understand that eating a vegan diet doesn’t give you license to overindulge on processed junk foods or eat whatever meatless meals are convenient.
Eating vegetables, fruits, legumes and whole grains is good for you; fast food burgers are not! If you’re planning on adopting a plant-based lifestyle, get educated about nutrition so that you can make smart choices when eating out or in front of your pantry.
And always remember that moderation is key no matter what type of diet you follow. A regular exercise routine and adequate sleep can help prevent an increase in unhealthy habits after adopting a new way of eating.
Myths About Being Vegan/Vegetarian
Many people think that vegans and vegetarians are malnourished and don’t know how to feed themselves properly. They assume vegans/vegetarians will eat nothing but lettuce all day long, which is far from reality.In fact, eating a plant-based diet doesn’t necessarily mean forgoing animal products altogether.
There are numerous variations of vegetarianism, including pescatarianism (the combination of veganism and seafood) or flexitarianism (the practice of limiting animal product consumption in your diet).
Some folks choose to eliminate meat from their diets altogether; others may still consume small amounts here and there.
Resources For Making The Switch To A Vegan/Vegetarian Diet
Whether you’re just considering making a switch or you’ve already decided to, it can be overwhelming and confusing. You may not know where to start when it comes to grocery shopping, preparing meals, or finding new recipes and ingredients.
Here are some helpful links to help get you started on your vegan/vegetarian diet journey. They’ll help take some of guesswork out of figuring out what and how to eat! Eating A Plant-Based Diet On A Budget:
It is possible to live a healthy plant-based lifestyle without breaking your bank account. Eating healthy does not have to mean eating expensively—you just need to shop smart and focus on foods that are less processed and more natural (like fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds).
There are plenty of ways to make healthy food choices that won’t break your budget. Here are 10 tips for eating a plant-based diet while saving money!
Veg Out At Your Local Farmer’s Market: In addition to offering fresh produce in season at great prices (hello apples!), farmer’s markets often host cooking demonstrations by local chefs and guest speakers who provide valuable information about health benefits of various foods.