How do I become a vegetarian and what is the difference between vegan and vegetarian?

There are so many ways, but let’s start at the beginning. What is a vegan or vegetarian? Basically, a vegan or vegetarian is a person who has removed certain animal products from their diets. The degree to which they have removed them is what determines whether they are a vegan or vegetarian. A vegetarian is someone who removes many animal products from their diet and there are a few types of vegetarians that can be classified. A lacto-ovo vegetarian is someone who does not eat any animal flesh such as in meats, but will eat dairy and egg products.

Whereas some vegetarians may only eat eggs, or only eat dairy products while others may still eat fish but no other types of meats. A vegan is a person who has removed any and all animal-based products from their diet – no milk, meat, eggs, or honey. A fully vegan lifestyle also includes avoiding items made from animal products such as wool, leather and silk. Being a vegan or vegetarian is very healthy. Eating a balanced ‘plant-based diet’ does in fact meet the nutritional recommendations of the USDA such as eating more whole foods such as fruits, vegetables and grains and then of course in eating less saturated fat and cholesterol. All of these can decrease the chances of suffering from diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, strokes and cancers.

There are also many vegan and vegetarian weight loss plans and vegetarian weight loss programs that make losing weight the healthy way easy, fast and fun. These diets are suitable for all age groups and lifestyles. Every day more and more research is proving the many health benefits of having a plant-based-diet and because of the wide variety of delicious foods available, it is also a very delicious way to live. It is kind and compassionate. If you happen to love animals and care about their well-being, then a vegan or vegetarian lifestyle is extremely rewarding as it is based very much in the best interest of our animal friends.

The treatment of factory-farmed animals is truly treacherous and once we realize the torture they go through, it is natural to want to help them in whatever way possible which the first step is to stop buying and consuming animal products. It is great for the environment If you want to be as green as possible, the fastest way to do it is by changing your diet. A University of Chicago study found that the diet most commonly found in the United States actually creates roughly 1.5 tons MORE carbon dioxide per person than someone who eats a vegan diet.  

One fact that is little-known is how the livestock or animal agriculture industries are responsible for greenhouse gas emissions representing 18.8% of the total global emissions. Whereas vegan diets require two-thirds less of the land and water resources than a Standard American Diet. Livestock eat and drink more food, calories and water than what they end up producing as food. Therefore, there is so much more waste when producing animals for consumption than plants for consumption.

Every day, we are hearing about droughts, scarcity, hunger and other resource issues. The more people change to a plant-based diet, the more we can protect our planet and have more for others to eat and thrive.

So why not give it a shot? As you see, there are so many reasons to try a plant-based diet that maybe today is a great day to start! You can start slowly by adding one or two meat-free meals a week, or you can dive right in. But be sure to check out our library of great resources to help you get started by learning great recipes, vegetarian weight loss plan, vegetarian weight loss program and more.

Comments

  1. kristen says

    Vegan is when you odnt have ANY dairy products of products from animals. Like milk, butter yogurt. Veggtarian is when you dont eat meat. but you have milk and whatnot.
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  2. tinafrawley06 says

    Visit this website: http://www.imagesofone.com/cmd.asp?af=533658

    There are e-books on this site… Go to the left of the page and towards the bottom of the list of e-books there is one called Diet Liberation. This book made me a vegetarian…

    A vegan is someone who does not eat anything made from an animal such as milk or cheese…. A vegetarian who is not vegan will not eat meat, but will have milk or cheese or ice cream, etc….

    There are substitutes such as vegeburgers and gardenbergers…. they are comparable in cost… also if you eat fruits and vegtables and no meat….it works out to be cheaper as a vegetarian..trust me…as a full-time student I know about the money crunch…

    Good Luck
    References :
    http://www.imagesofone.com/cmd.asp?af=533658

  3. natalie r says

    Well first off being a vegitarian doesnt make you automatically healthy. Youll have to have alot of speacil foods so you get your protein and stuff that is in meat and all that stuff isnt all that good in taste. Also these can be quite pricey. I personly havent wanted to become a vegitarian because it isnt something im strong enought to do but your could go to google and see cause google can find many good information. budgeting hint is to look for sales and buy the cheaper stuff. It may not taste as good but still it the same ingredeints almost. A vegan is some one how doesnt eat anyting that was once an animal. A vegan only doesnt eat meat. I hope this helped
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  4. shizzy says

    You should only become vegan/vegetarian if you truley believe so. Now there are many types of vegetarians. There are ovo-lacto-vegetarian, semi-vegetarian, ovo-vegetarian, lacto-vegetarian, vegetarian and of course vegan. Vegetarian is basically an overall of all those groups i mentioned, it basically is someone who dose not eat fish, seafood, meat, or poultry. A vegan is strict–not consuming any animal products or byproducts and some go as far as not eating honey or yeast, and not wearing clothing made from animal products. Hope i helped!
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  5. Monica R. says

    Vegans not only abstain from eating anything with any form of animal in it, they do not use or wear any personal products that contain animal in it, down to the shampoos and soaps they use to the clothes they wear. Stella McCartney has a high fashion line of clothing that is vegan, or so I heard. Gotta have bucks though.

    There are such things as unhealthy vegetarians. I watched Discovery's National Body Challenge last night and there was an overweight vegetarian family. They were so because they constantly snacked on chips and baked goods.

    Since you are on a budget you might consider being a vegetarian, and not a vegan. You have to go to a lot of specialty stores to get purely vegan items, and veganism is so much more strict and bothersome. There is lacto-ovum vegetarians, which I am. It means you allow yourself to eat dairy products and eggs. I don't have a problem with eggs and dairy because I don't think it harms the animal to extract those products from them. This will keep things easier for you, and possibly more affordable, since things like veggie burgers and veggie dogs can be pretty expensive, and you don't really get a lot for your money.

    You have to be creative as a vegetarian. The good thing is, beans are pretty inexpensive, and there are plenty of varieties of beans and recipes to go along with them that can keep things interesting. Learning to cook with tofu is probably a good idea too, and I don't find tofu to be extremely expensive. I go to the Asian markets in my neighborhood, and I can usually get a decent sized hunk of tofu for about 99 cents. For me, being a vegetarian has improved my finances. I used to buy chicken breast and lean beef, and that would always set me back. I feel so much more energetic and clear headed since becoming one too. It may be psychological, but it's there nonetheless. Good luck.
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