We all know that vegetarianism has become a more common lifestyle choice, with many people opting to give up fish, meat, chicken – plus any other animal produce they can think of. But what might surprise you is how so-called ‘veganism’ has also seen an increase in popularity, particularly over the last few years.
So vegetarian and vegan diets – what’s all the hype about? And which one is better? Let’s take a look.
Vegetarian: What Is It and How Do You Do It?
First of all, vegetarianism is basically just that – vegetarian people don’t eat meat, fish, or poultry. Instead of these, vegetarians rely on eggs and dairy products to get their protein fix – so vegetarianism is basically what would be called a ‘diet’ in everyday life.
The main positive points of being vegetarian are that it’s easier to lose weight on a vegetarian diet than it is on one that includes meat products, the high fiber content of vegetarian food means you’re likely to feel full for longer, and there can also often be more variety when it comes to vegetarian meals compared to meals containing meat.
So why doesn’t everyone go vegetarian? Well, some people think they’d miss eating meat too much if they gave up animal produce completely – this isn’t really accurate since vegetarian diets actually contain more than enough protein, but the point is that vegetarianism isn’t for everyone.
Vegan: What Is It and How Do You Do It?
What sets veganism apart from vegetarianism is the fact that vegans don’t eat ANY animal products whatsoever – this means no meat, dairy, eggs, or any other kind of animal produce. Some vegans may also avoid honey and choose not to wear clothing made with wool – however, this level of commitment tends to vary depending on who you’re talking to. While some people might give up meat and fish when they become vegan (but still wear leather), others will go all out and give up anything with a face or an animal-based ingredient in it!
So vegetarian vs vegan: what’s the difference? Well, vegetarianism is just a diet, while veganism is more of a lifestyle choice – although some people might consider vegetarianism to be a step too far!
Vegan vs Vegetarian: Which Is Better?
Whether you’re vegetarian or vegan, there are many different ways to go about it. It’s possible to skip meat but still eat fish and poultry, for example – this would mean that your diet was vegetarian rather than vegan. You can also decide not to cut out eggs and dairy completely if you want to take a more flexible approach towards vegetarianism. Similarly, going vegetarian doesn’t have to mean giving up all animal products – you could also choose only to avoid red meats such as beef and lamb, while still eating chicken and fish.
So vegetarian vs vegan… which is better? While vegetarianism is considered to be the healthier of the two diets because it’s lower in saturated fats, vegans can still enjoy healthy meals by simply avoiding dairy products with a high-fat content (such as cream or butter), choosing more fruit and vegetables over processed foods like chips and biscuits, limiting salt intake, etc. Of course, vegetarian food isn’t automatically healthy just because it doesn’t contain meat – vegetarian junk food exists too! However, there are some things that vegetarians definitely have the upper hand on when it comes to vegetarian vs vegan: veggies just tend to cost less than fresh produce, so vegetarian shopping trips won’t cost you an arm and a leg (or a toe and an eye if you’re vegetarian!).
You’ll also need to put in a bit more effort when it comes to vegetarian vs vegan, as vegetarian meals tend to take longer – something that’s definitely been taken into consideration with vegetarian slow cooker recipes.
In conclusion… vegetarianism is just as good as veganism! The truth of the matter is that vegetarian diets can be healthier than those containing meat, but this all depends on how strictly you want to avoid animal-based products altogether. Veganism has its advantages too though – for example, being vegan makes it easier to lose weight, and vegans have a wider variety of food available to them. Ultimately, whether you choose vegetarian or vegan isn’t going to make a huge difference to your life unless you have a very strict idea of exactly what vegetarianism and veganism entail.