Vegans - who are they? The difference between a vegan and a vegetarian, nutritional characteristics of vegans

Do you know that already more than a billion people living on planet Earth have abandoned food of animal origin ?! And recently there has been only a tendency to increase this indicator. The popularity of veganism and vegetarianism is so high that its own trends and variations have emerged in these directions. And the difference between a vegan and a vegan is enormous.

vegan diet

What is the difference

These trends have gained much popularity relatively recently, despite the fact that they originated more than one thousand years ago. Adherents of Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism introduced us to vegetarianism. They preached non-violence towards any living creature, be it a man or a cow. And the differences between a vegan and a vegetarian have been formed over many decades.And still in India almost 40% of residents do not eat animal products, and in some areas it is even forbidden to kill animals for food. After India, this type of food was spread in ancient Greece, but it was not called vegetarianism or veganism, but Pythagorean diet. Its founder was considered to be the well-known Pythagoras, and the power system was named after him. The scientist believed in the transmigration of souls, and already from this point of view the eating of animal meat does not look entirely ethical. But in the Pythagorean diet, even legumes were banned. Why did it happen? It is not known for certain, but many scientists are of the opinion that the beans are shaped like a human germ.

Vegetarianism in Europe

how to become vegan

For Europe, the rejection of meat for ethical, moral and medical reasons came much later than to the Indians and Greeks. It was the middle of the XIX century, only then the colonialists began to master the Eastern culture. The homeland of vegetarianism and veganism can safely be considered India. In the territory of England, the first vegetarian movements appeared only in 1847, and Bernard Shaw, Mahatma Gandhi and the McCartney family followed it at a certain period of time.150 years ago, only 900 people called themselves vegetarians, and now vegetarian and vegan dishes are sold in almost any institution anywhere in the world.

Vegetarianism in Russia

In Russia, Leo Tolstoy is considered the father of the movement. The classic of domestic literature refused meat when he was 50 years old, and in every possible way tried to convey his moral values ​​to others. In his essays, he wrote that cows feed entire families with milk, sheep warm people with their wool, and as a reward, a person cuts their throats and eats them. By the end of the XIX century, vegetarian canteens began to appear in the Russian Empire. Movement faded with the advent of Soviet power. Vegetarians began to actively fight, all dining rooms were closed, and in 1929 they banned this movement altogether and even sent vegetarians into exile. The next wave of popularity has covered the world only in the 21st century, when a healthy lifestyle has become extremely fashionable.

vegetarian set

Who are vegans

Interest in vegetarianism grew, and people began to study other nutritional systems that call for the abandonment of animal products. Simply put, veganism is more severe than vegetarianism.That's because vegans refuse not only meat, fish and seafood, but also any other animal products. Vegans do not eat milk, eggs, honey, do not wear fur coats and leather jackets, do not go to circuses and zoos. Simply put, any place, food or thing, which at least somehow involves manipulation by a person in relation to animals, is prohibited. The vegan menu is food of plant origin and nothing more.

Where did this flow come from?

Who are vegans? The term came into use after the ancestor of the Vegan philosophy itself, Donald Watson, simply took the first and last letters of the word vegetarian (vegetarian).

So what's the difference between a vegan and a vegan? At the age of fourteen, the boy saw pigs being killed on the farm. The sight impressed Donald so much that he stopped eating meat. And after the boy had studied the details of making milk, he refused it. In this case, Watson had no supporters and did not know a single person with the same life position as his. The only person who shared his interests was his wife. Together they organized a vegan society, the development and popularization of which Donald Watson was engaged in until his death. The father of veganism at the age of 95 died.He has not eaten meat and animal products for more than 60 years.

vegetarian pizza

Directions of vegetarianism

Vegetarianism is a large-scale movement that has 4 branches:

  • Veganism is the complete absence of any animal products in the diet. What do vegans eat? These are exclusively cereals and cereals, vegetables and fruits, that is, products of plant origin.
  • Lacto-vegetarianism - the adherents of this movement eat more than dairy products in addition to herbal products.
  • New vegetarianism - suitable for those who can not give up eggs. They are allowed because of the industrial production of them do not appear chickens.
  • Lacto-vegetarianism - allowed to eat both eggs and milk.

However, veganism is not the harshest nutritional system yet. Raw foodists, for example, refuse any products of animal origin, eat only vegetable food and do not heat treat it, that is, they eat everything raw. The maximum temperature for heat treatment of products is 40 ° C.

vegan pizza

Famous Vegans

The era of vegetarianism began to fade, veganism is steadily replacing it.Who are vegans, we found out. Surely you will be interested to know that celebrities who have refused animal products include Bill Clinton, Jared Leto, Ozzy Osborne, Anthony Kidis, Ben Stiller, Michael Tyson, Surya Bonaly, Timothy Bradley, Jack La Lanne, Fyodor Konyukhov and a lot others.

The most common myth is that sport and veganism are incompatible concepts. But this is fundamentally wrong, the famous boxer M. Tyson, Olympic champion in figure skating S. Bonaly, a real fitness master J. La Lanne prove the opposite. Vegans need only carefully plan their diet and do not forget to eat vegetable foods with high protein content. In general, most vegans are active advocates for animal rights.

Restrictions for vegans are not only about food.

Food taboos are not all that vegans have to face. Their long list of prohibitions also includes:

  • Cosmetics, if animals were involved at any of the stages of its production.
  • Circuses, zoos and any other activities in which animals participate and this process may cause them discomfort.
  • Any products made of fur or wool, leather are prohibited.
  • Alcohol. Indeed, for the manufacture of some varieties using gelatin and other animal proteins. But here, the modern alcohol industry has unscrewed and offers vegans a special wine or beer, in which only vegetable ingredients are present.
  • Honey also got into the list of strict “no”, because in the process of collecting bees they can not only hurt, but also kill.
  • And, of course, under the prohibition of gelatin, because it is prepared from the joints and cartilage of animals.

This is the answer to the question, what is the difference between vegans and vegetarians.

Vegan currents

vegan salad

Like vegetarianism, food for vegans has its own directions, the main ones are as follows:

  • Traditional veganism is a strict rejection of meat, milk, fish, eggs, honey, etc. Only cereals, cereals, vegetables and fruits should be present in the diet.
  • Raw foods. This power system implies a complete rejection of the heat treatment of products of plant origin.
  • Macrobiotics - representatives of this trend, among other things, also refuse from sugar and oils.
  • Fructorianism. In this case, everything is extremely simple.Fruit, fruit and fruit again.

As we can see, classic veganism is not the harshest nutritional system yet.

Where to get protein

The main problem of all vegans and vegetarians is the search for protein, the lack of which can negatively affect health. This is the main disadvantage that trumps meat-eaters. But there is a way out of this situation. Protein-rich foods for vegans are nuts, soybeans, broccoli, spinach, peas, avocados, beans, lentils, etc. Vegans have learned how to bake bread and sweets without eggs and milk, make chocolate without adding animal products, and even no problem finding vegan sausage made from soy.

Experienced vegans advise beginners to carefully read the composition when buying groceries to avoid unpleasant situations. Especially if you are vegan by conviction.

friendly diet


In the confrontation between veganism and vegetarianism, official medicine took the side of the second. And this is understandable, because vegetarianism does not prohibit the consumption of milk and eggs. But what other advantages have these power systems? They are as follows:

  • Vegetarianism can be attributed to a balanced type of food, such a system is even prescribed for therapeutic purposes.
  • The risk of atherosclerosis, coronary heart disease, gout and diabetes is reduced.
  • This is one of the best ways for those who wish to get rid of extra pounds without exhausting diets.
  • Slags and toxins are not retained in the body.
  • Vegans and vegetarians get all the necessary vitamins in the right amount, due to the fact that they consume large quantities of fruits and vegetables. This has a positive effect on immunity and the overall tone of the body.

It is important to carefully plan your diet to get all the necessary elements.


Disputes about the benefits and harms of veganism and vegetarianism erupted a lot. The following can be attributed to reasonable disadvantages:

  • Both vegans and vegetarians suffer from a lack of iron and vitamin B12that is fraught with low hemoglobin, anemia and diseases of the central nervous system.
  • The ban on the use of fish provokes a lack of omega-3 fatty acids, so you should use them as a dietary supplement.
  • Often, vegans and vegetarians due to the high content of fiber in the body ceases to normally digest protein.
  • Veganism is forbidden to practice for people suffering from immunodeficiency syndrome, as well as during the rehabilitation period after serious operations and injuries.

In fact, all the disadvantages are insignificant, and they can be easily avoided if you responsibly approach the food system and correctly plan the menu. Who are vegans? These are mostly those who refuse animal products due to moral convictions.

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