Plant-Based or Vegan?
What IS the Difference?
I answer a lot of questions on Quora and other sites and post on several social media sites and have some 18 different web sites; all dealing with health, wellness and longevity. My wife, Chef Nancy, and I began this over 13 years ago when we began our journey into the world of Health.
There seems to be a general view with product labeling of products as ‘vegan’ that, IMHO, should really be ‘Plant Based’. Personally, we avoid ALL animal-based food products, derivatives and products that contain ANY animal-based items. There are distinct differences between a person who is a Vegan and one who is Plant Based.
Being a ‘Vegan’ and embracing Veganism is the practice of abstaining from the use of animal products, particularly in diet, and an associated philosophy that rejects the commodity status of animals. Their main priority is protection and preservation of animals.
I make a very specific distinction when talking about Plant Based. A Plant Based Lifestylediet is a practice and focus on Health, Wellness and Longevity for HUMANS. It focuses on a healthy way of eating that avoids consumption of meat, fish, dairy and eggs. This lifestyle also avoids excess oil, sugars and processed foods as much as possible.
A ‘Vegan’ focuses on avoiding foods, and products made from animals. Whether food or clothing. While it can include healthy nutrition; that is not the focus. A vegan will often eat processed foods, soda and other ‘junk food’ while a person embracing a Plant Based Lifestylediet would avoid all or most of this category of poor nutrition.
A Plant Based Lifestylediet would, strictly speaking, allow a small consumption of animal products or additions in a recipe most totally avoid this. Vegans would never consider even this small bit of animal product consumption.
While a Vegan would totally avoid ALL products made from animals, someone following a Plant Based Lifestylediet might, for instance, wear moccasins made from animal skins. The variations on this are as many as there are individuals following these Lifestylediets.
From a dietary perspective then, Vegans and Plant-Based folks are pretty much in agreement when it comes to food choices. While the ‘focus’ is different the end result is much the same. Avoiding the consumption of any/all animal products is good for the Human as well as the animal. It is also exceedingly good for the environment but we won’t go into that here.
So enjoy your Vegan or Plant-Based Lifestylediet and the health it can bring.