Vegan vs Vegetarian vs Plant Based Diets: Differences & Similarities

Present Notes:

  • Our Why Vegan Collection of podcast episodes (episodes 133-139)
  • Our on-line course The Roadmap, a vegan on-line course designed that will help you with all the things it is advisable know when going vegan or making extra plant based mostly decisions

There are such a lot of phrases these days to speak about diets and life that search to scale back or exclude animal merchandise. We have acquired vegetarian diets, plant based mostly diets, plant ahead diets, flexitarian diets, pescatarian diets, vegan diets and extra, and the frequent query most individuals have is what are the variations between every of those phrases and methods of consuming.

In at present’s submit and episode we’ll cowl all of them, what they imply by way of what every sort of eater chooses to placed on their plate, and why extra of those phrases hold popping up, in addition to the give attention to perfectionism we have a tendency to connect to dietary labels and extra.

I need to provide you with a quick rundown of all of those totally different phrases to begin after which get into a bit of little bit of the nuance concerned with regards to plant-based diets, vegan diets and the deeper that means behind veganism.


Vegetarian Diets · What do Vegetarians  Eat?

Normally once we discuss a vegetarian food regimen what individuals are referring to is lacto-ovo vegetarian.

Lacto-ovo vegetarians eat fruits, greens, legumes, grains and grain merchandise, nuts, seeds, mushrooms, dairy and eggs, that means they exclude the meat of all animals. They do not eat meat from cows, pigs, chickens, turkeys, lambs or some other land animals, bugs, or fish or different sea animals.

There’s additionally a smaller subdivision right here:

Lacto vegetarians embrace dairy within the food regimen however not eggs.

Ovo vegetarians embrace eggs however not dairy.

Vegan diets · What do Vegans Eat?

Vegans eat fruits, greens, legumes, grains and grain merchandise, nuts, seeds, mushrooms, and merchandise constituted of plant-based elements versus animal-based elements. Vegans do not eat the meat of any animals (together with fish and different sea animals), dairy, eggs, honey or different animal by-products.

Veganism additionally consists of different moral life-style decisions which we’ll get into under.

Pescatarian diets · What do Pescatarians Eat?

Pescatarians eat fruits, greens, legumes, grains and grain merchandise, nuts, seeds, mushrooms, together with fish and different sea animals. They do not eat meat from cows, chickens, turkeys, pigs, lambs or some other land animals.

Some pescatarians keep away from consuming each eggs and dairy, whereas others embrace solely eggs, and others solely dairy.

Flexitarian Diets · What do Flexitarians Eat?

The time period flexitarian normally refers to people who find themselves consuming principally vegan or vegetarian diets however do embrace small quantities of meat or different animal merchandise within the food regimen (together with dairy and eggs).

Plant Based mostly Diets · What do People who find themselves Plant Based mostly Eat?

This time period is a bit tough as a result of not solely is there not an official definition for this manner of consuming, nevertheless it’s utilized in alternative ways to discuss with a food regimen that’s based mostly on crops.

Initially, a plant based mostly food regimen, a plant based mostly meal, a plant based mostly restaurant was used as a synonym to vegan (and with that got here an exclusion of all animal merchandise from the food regimen).

Once I write our content material for Brownble, after I movie movies, after I educate our cooking courses or write any of our programs, I exploit these the phrases vegan and plant based mostly as synonyms. For many individuals
these are the identical factor.

The time period plant based mostly has additionally been used when speaking about a vegan food regimen with regards to the dietary facet (i.e. the meals you eat), however not referring to a few of the different life-style elements of being vegan (extra on this under). Primarily, somebody who was making the entire vegan decisions with regards to their plate and their meals, however weren’t so involved about making animal pleasant decisions exterior of meals in different life-style elements just like the merchandise you purchase, cosmetics, clothes, and many others.

It additionally acquired an enormous push inside a really explicit area of interest amongst individuals who had determined to eat basically a 100% vegan food regimen excluding all animal merchandise, however had been doing it principally for well being causes, and never a lot for environmental or moral causes corresponding to animal rights. It grew to become a very fashionable time period amongst docs
which might be recommending a plant based mostly food regimen to sufferers to heal or stop sure continual sicknesses. 

Right here it was additionally thought-about basically a vegan food regimen, but in addition on account of its use for well being interventions, further restrictions had been hooked up to it as properly. You have heard me speak lots about the nuance behind this and why when going vegan, until specified by your physician and a vital intervention for you, it won’t be one of the best thought so as to add on further restrictions.

In recent times nonetheless, the time period plant based mostly has been used to speak a few food regimen that’s principally vegan and
centered round crops however does nonetheless embrace some small quantities of animal merchandise, typically by people who find themselves easing their method right into a vegan food regimen and typically by people who find themselves merely making crops the main focus however nonetheless together with different non-vegan meals. On this definition, it will be similar to what’s known as a flexitarian food regimen.


A Newer Time period: Plant Ahead Diets · What do Individuals Who’re Plant-Ahead Eat?

Lately I have been seeing the time period plant ahead as an alternative of plant based mostly to discuss with a few of these diets the place small quantities of animal merchandise are nonetheless included however the food regimen is usually centered round crops.


Why so many Phrases and Dietary Labels?

With regards to our method of consuming, as human beings we appear to like labels. We like to have a tidy field
the place we put ourselves in. The place we all know the place the bounds are, what meaning to us, and as consolation in realizing that others will even know what meaning. I feel we’re all very drawn to that and as a result of we’re all totally different, all of us have totally different wants, and all of us have totally different life circumstances, once we cannot make
certainly one of these match, we make one other time period for it, however what all of them have in frequent is that their methods of consuming through which you are inching your technique to a discount or full elimination of animal merchandise and in that method, we’re all on this collectively and we’re all doing one of the best we will. 

We’re all pushing this motion ahead in that we’re acknowledging and realizing that there are
severe penalties to the way in which we buy merchandise, the meals merchandise we purchase and the strategies by which they’re produced.

Anyone who makes use of any of those labels is attempting to make higher and higher decisions, for various causes
because the central level, however we acknowledge that there’s a want for change, particularly with regards to how animals are raised and killed in these industries.

For lots of people there’s additionally the necessity to discover one other identify for it as a result of we do not prefer to be caught making a “incorrect alternative”, or a alternative that goes towards what we have beforehand mentioned or what we had dedicated to.

As a result of we worry we cannot be capable of follow one thing and are very afraid of being caught making a mistake or a alternative that wasn’t 100% aligned, we provide you with newer phrases that may make us really feel we’ve a spot.

Everybody has met a vegan, or on the other finish of the spectrum, somebody who may be very a lot towards veganism, who’s nitpicking at each single alternative you make and looking for the place the place you are not doing it 100% proper. I get it, these individuals are on the market, however you do not have to let that information your decisions and that is one thing that units us a bit aside at Brownble. We like to present you a special perspective on veganism that permits you to see that it is about a lot extra than simply that particular person alternative. that particular person meal, that one plate, that one dish, that one restaurant outing. 

I’ve been vegan for over 10 years and along with my husband Carlos who’s an MD, we created this house at Brownble to not solely educate you learn how to cook dinner scrumptious vegan recipes that anybody could make, however deliver you assist in all areas when attempting to make this alternative.  It isn’t just for vegans, we’ve college students who’re all throughout the consuming spectrum, and we’ve been on this mission and created Brownble and our programs, our on-line program, a podcast, and extra, to information you in the direction of this want, as a result of for most people who come by our doorways it is a reliable want. They need to strive making a special alternative to scale back or eradicate animal merchandise and attempt to transfer into a kinder method consuming that’s gentler on the atmosphere, respectful of animals and supportive of our fellow people as properly.


What’s the definition of veganism? What does it imply to be vegan?

If you learn this listing of all of those methods of consuming, veganism can really feel like probably the most inflexible and most excessive method of consuming, and in case you’ve ever met certainly one of these very militant vegans you’ll be able to positively have that affiliation with it. A vegan food regimen nonetheless is about far more than the perfection in your plate. Let’s discover the definition of what veganism and consuming a vegan food regimen imply as a place to begin:

“Veganism is a philosophy and way of life which seeks to exclude—so far as is feasible and practicable—all types of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for meals, clothes or some other goal; and by extension, promotes the event and use of animal-free options for the good thing about animals, people and the atmosphere. In dietary phrases it denotes the observe of shelling out with all merchandise derived wholly or partly from animals.” – The Vegan Society

The Vegan Society additionally provides:

“There are lots of methods to embrace vegan residing. But one factor all vegans have in frequent is a plant-based food regimen avoiding all animal meals corresponding to meat (together with fish, shellfish and bugs), dairy, eggs and honey – in addition to avoiding animal-derived supplies, merchandise examined on animals and locations that use animals for leisure.” 

Once we discuss veganism we’re speaking about a lot greater than the specifics of what occurs on our plate. I at all times inform our college students that in case you can solely begin in a single place or space the plate is the place you are going to have such an unimaginable impression since we do it 3+ instances a day, day-after-day for years on finish, however you can begin wherever you can begin, and meaning so many alternative issues for various folks.

The way you incorporate this into your life, the methods of transitioning into a vegan food regimen and life-style can fluctuate a lot from individual to individual, and it ought to. We’re all so totally different, and one of many issues I at all times attempt to give attention to after I share this definition is that half the place it states “so far as is practicable and attainable”.

This is what veganism is NOT about

It isn’t about placing each alternative as the tip objective and the right place the place we’ll get an A+ and a bit of laminated card that claims “you made the right vegan alternative”, “you’ve got made 365 excellent vegan decisions this 12 months”. Veganism is not about that in any respect.

It is a choice you make day-after-day to do what you’ll be able to to scale back this cruelty to and exploitation of animals
and naturally for all the superb advantages to the atmosphere, to different people (the people that work in these industries and the toll that this has on them) in addition to the candy perks to our well being.

It is essential to know that with regards to veganism it is actually a few step-by-step journey
that you simply renew every day.

I prefer to see it as a dedication to do our greatest, and that may imply various things relying in your circumstances, and we have to begin getting used to that within the vegan motion. We have to begin
seeing it as this dedication to do our highest to skip as a lot cruelty as we will, to assist with the conservation of sources, to assist animals as greatest we will, at all times by that kindness filter and that may be a alternative and a dedication that we renew day-after-day, at all times considering that we dwell in a world that is not absolutely vegan.

Veganism and Perfectionism

We even have so as to add to that the imperfection current in each alternative we make as people. There isn’t a such factor as a 100% cruelty free agriculture system. That does not exist but. a minimum of not within the strategies and the way in which issues are at present.

There’s additionally no such factor as a 100% pure vegan, or a pure vegan alternative. We’re not there but, and we have to begin realizing that as a result of there’s imperfection in all of those areas, we’re allowed to have imperfection in our decisions on this path, and that it’s not about that particular single meal, merchandise, preparation, recipe.

It doesn’t suggest that if we made a alternative that wasn’t 100% excellent, we won’t do it or we have failed. It means it is part of the method. It is about doing one of the best we will for animals at present and it doesn’t matter what occurred at present renewing that tomorrow and attempting our greatest once more from a clear and recent begin.

A Completely different Means of Seeing your Journey when Going Vegan

I prefer to see veganism as this sort of filter by which you’re looking at your path, the world, your day, your meal, your buying alternative while you’re at a retailer, and each time you are in entrance of
a buying choice you strive to select that’s aligned with these values and that kindness. Then
you renew it repeatedly it doesn’t matter what occurred the earlier time.

I get the place all of those phrases and kinds of consuming are coming from, the place all of those phrases are coming from. We do not need to get caught making a special alternative, however while you see veganism from this lens
(and I feel it is so essential particularly for vegans to begin internalizing this), from a spot of imperfection, from a spot of “I am doing one of the best I can each time and that typically means I am not excellent”, it is going to assist the motion and assist individuals who need to make this alternative really feel supported and never judged.

If you begin seeing veganism from this angle, it releases you from that impression that it is going to be extraordinarily troublesome, restricted and arduous. In some circumstances it may be while you add a ton
of further restriction on prime of it, it may be relying on the way you’re approaching it, however that is why we do what we do at Brownble. We wish it to be as straightforward as it may be for you, as enjoyable and as approachable
and in addition as connecting together with your social circle as it may be, in order that this does not should imply it’s a must to
break up with the life you had earlier than.

It doesn’t suggest that by this I am saying that you may go do no matter you need as a result of veganism is imperfect by definition. I feel everyone knows the place we stand once we need to make a dedication like this or we’re inching in the direction of that. I feel we’re all about attempting to make that kinder alternative every time, however the place I’m coming from is I need us to have and incorporate a bit extra flexibility in how we choose the moments through which we had to select that was imperfect. That is the place that candy spot is in that we’ve that kindness in the direction of ourselves as properly.

Once we keep in mind that on this method, the phrase vegan may be very totally different from all of those different phrases. I feel you will see that veganism does not should be that tiny field you shut your self off in. It might probably truly be a really open journey, through which you’re doing one of the best you’ll be able to, through which you understand that it’s about that filter by which you are your entire decisions, not solely dietary decisions, however you’re additionally not involved and never
anxious about that purity and perfection on the plate as a result of it is not about that one plate of meals.

Why are so many individuals going vegan or plant based mostly or selecting to eradicate animal merchandise?

In case you are new to any of those subjects and also you’re questioning “why have all of those phrases and consuming labels appeared?”, “why is it that these industries have such adverse results on the atmosphere, on animals?”, “what’s the connection between animal merchandise and our well being?”.

We have a full collection of episodes referred to as the Why Vegan collection (episodes 133 to 139) of the Brownble podcast.

We have now a devoted episode for every facet together with well being, animals, the atmosphere, and one that’s
fairly often ignored once we discuss veganism and it is the impact that these industries have on
our fellow human beings (the individuals who work in these industries, the folks in surrounding communities, the folks impacted by the manufacturing of those merchandise of their native communities). I additionally added a further episode very private to me, because the entire theme behind our podcast is not solely to present you assist with regards to your vegan journey however to additionally speak a bit of bit about your relationship with meals and your physique, in order that has an area within the collection as properly.

Earlier than I am going at present, since at present’s submit and episode is all about these dietary labels, know that you’re at all times welcome on this house. In case you are a pescatarian, flexitarian, vegetarian, hardcore carnivore attempting to assist somebody in your life who’s making certainly one of these decisions, otherwise you’re simply curious. In case you are a principally vegan
besides while you go to your mom’s home, or principally vegan besides when it is Thanksgiving, or vegan till 6, or in case you select to not use a label in any respect, regardless of the place you’re on that spectrum of consuming we’re right here to assist you and provide you with not solely scrumptious recipes however some other sort of assist you could want.


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