What is the difference between a Vegetarian and a Vegan?
What is a Vegan diet?
Being vegan is not just about what a person eats, it is a mindset and lifestyle. Vegans do not eat any product that is derived from an animal source. They also do not wear leather, silk, fur or suede and do not use products tested on animals or made with animals by-products. Depending upon the person they may not eat refined sugar because the process of getting white sugar can involve the use of animal bones. They may or may not eat honey. Being vegan is more of a mindset about being compassionate towards animals and saving the planet, not just healthy eating. Being vegan does not necessarily mean a person will not eat processed foods, such as frozen fake chicken or tortilla chips, which can be vegan. Some vegans prefer to eat only or mainly fresh, unprocessed plant foods, it is up to the individual.
What is a Vegetarian diet?
Being vegetarian is sometimes a mindset and sometimes just a change in diet. Vegetarians do not eat meat, poultry, fish, gelatin, some cheeses because they are made with natural rennet (which comes from a cows stomach), there is also lab created rennet. They may eat processed foods and wear clothing made from animals. It depends on the person. There are such things as lacto ovo vegetarians, which lets you know the person eats dairy and eggs and lacto- vegetarians, meaning the only animal products they will consume are milk products or ovo-vegetarians which means they eat eggs. There are also pescatarians or pesco lacto ovo, I’m not being a snob, but this is where I jump ship. That means the person eats fish, dairy and eggs. You are not vegetarian, I applaud everything you are doing to help the planet and improve your health, but vegetarians don’t eat things which have nerve endings*. *That is a personal opinion and not a fact. Some vegetarians do not wear clothing made from animals and do not use products tested on animals. This is a wide category, in case you haven’t noticed!
I am now vegan and have been a strict vegetarian since 1998. I have not worn clothing made from animals, eaten gelatin or any type of meat, broth or animal flesh, I also buy cruelty free, eco-friendly products. I have been vegan at times and then allowed small amounts of dairy into my life. I am very passionate about animal rights, saving our planet, and spiritually, believe this is the right path for me. Don’t worry, this website isn’t about pushing my agenda, just giving you some background. I do try to eat more fresh or whole foods because I feel healthier when my diet is diversified and full of plants and not as many processed items. I have tried many recipes and fake meat and fake dairy items as well and that’s what got us here!
If you made your way here I am guessing you are either on, or on your way, to a healthy, plant centered diet. Congratulations! I will write most of the recipes as vegan, but all you have to do as a vegetarian is add whatever animal products you use. Milk, cheese, eggs, sour cream, etc. Sometimes there may be a vegetarian recipe, but I think we can all figure this out!