Have you ever asked the question “what is a plant-based or vegan diet?”. There is a lot of confusion surrounding the terms plant-based and vegan, and you may be wondering “Are they the same?”. In this video, we’re explaining what it means to be vegan or plant based and the difference between the two.
What Does Being “Vegan” Mean?
Let’s begin by looking at what it means to be vegan.
Veganism is not just a dietary choice. It entails being conscious and mindful of animal rights and welfare, as well as the environmental impact of industries that exploit animals. Vegans don’t include any animal foods in their diet, and don’t use or own any animal tested or animal derived products. A vegan diet can be healthy or unhealthy depending on the amount of processed foods that are consumed.
What Does “Plant-Based” Mean?
Now lets look at what being plant-based means. There are two schools of thought when concerning a plant-based diet.
Firstly, there are those who believe it means eating 100% plant based only, with no animal derived products such as in a vegan diet. Secondly, there are many individuals that are predominantly plant based, but may still consume some animal products. Either of these plant-based dietary choices can be healthy or unhealthy depending on which foods are eaten.
Another way of eating is whole food plant-based, which emphasizes eating whole or minimally processed plant foods. Those on a whole food plant-based diet don’t typically consume foods that have been heavily processed. However, eating this way may require supplementation of certain nutrients to avoid deficiencies due to the lack of fortified foods in the diet.
Transitioning To A Plant-Based Diet
If you want to transition to a plant based diet for health reasons, we recommend limiting processed foods and opting for a more whole foods plant-based diet. This would include a diet high in plant foods including vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes, nuts, and seeds and limiting or eliminating processed foods, refined foods, and animal products.
For some people, transitioning to a plant based diet may take several months. Just remember that slow and steady wins the race. We suggest tracking your diet and health with our Diet & Lifestyle Tracker, as this will help you to discover which plant foods work best for your body and how a plant based diet is impacting your overall health
To recap, there are many differing opinions and often confusion surrounding what “plant-based” means. That being said, it’s all about making lasting dietary and lifestyle changes. A journey begins with just one step, and we should support one another no matter where each person is on their journey to optimal health, while caring for our animal friends and this planet we call home.
If you need some healthy plant-based recipes take a look at our recipe eBook “30 Recipes to Boost Your Energy”.
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