Vegan Vs. Vegetarian

When practicing a healthier lifestyle, some people choose to adopt a vegan or vegetarian diet. When maintained correctly, both diets are low in saturated fats, rich in vitamins from plant sources and low in cholesterol.
Photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons.

But, just what is the difference between vegetarians and vegans?

Vegetarians:
  • Do not eat meat
  • Eat grains, vegetables, fruits, beans and legumes
  • Some choose to eat small amounts of seafood and chicken
  • Do consume foods created by animals such as eggs and milk
  • Get protein from nuts, beans, legumes, grains, eggs and dairy products
Vegans:
  • Do not eat meat
  • Do not eat animal byproducts such as honey, eggs, milk and cheese.
  • Eat a diet rich in grains, vegetables, fruits, legumes and beans
If you're considering a vegetarian or vegan diet, talk with your doctor about dietary concerns and how to stay healthy. When I chose to become a vegetarian in 1997, I didn't make healthy choices. I filled up on bread, pasta, pizza and candy bars. That's how you become a chubby vegetarian! Work with a dietitian or your doctor to learn about creating well-balanced meals.

Do you follow a vegetarian, vegan or other specialized diet? Please share how it has affected your health in the comments below!

Until Next Time,
Choose Healthy!

Angela Tague
Whole Foods Living

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18 comments:

  1. Over the years, I've tried Vegan and Vegetarian ways of life. My laziness is probably what keeps me from staying on these healthy diets. Even though I still eat mostly vegetarian, at a buffet, I'll try everything!
    http://gail-baugniet.blogspot.com Theme: A World of Crime

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    1. It does take dedication. But, once you figure out a few favorite meals, veggie-friendly restaurants, etc. It's not too tough! Thanks for visiting! ~Angela

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  2. Great post. I know a lot of people wonder about this. I also know several vegetarians who are far from healthy. People just assume that people who follow that lifestyle are healthier and that's just not the case. Like you said, it takes the proper nutrition to be healthy and be a vegetarian or vegan.

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    1. Hi Amy! Thanks for stopping by! It is absolutely possible to be an unhealthy vegetarian! Sweets are meat-free and easy to grab, but definitely not healthy! I'm so glad I overhauled my veggie lifestyle. I feel so much better and have lost weight! ~Angela

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  3. Thanks for clearing that up! I never really understood the difference!

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    1. You're welcome! Thanks for dropping by, John! And thanks for the follow on my Facebook page! ~Angela

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  4. I was a vegetarian for about a year. Now I eat meat, but I limit my meat consumption. I don't wish to be a vegan. Eating like a vegan is boring to me. (I love cheese too much for that.)

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    1. I can admire vegans, but I also love cheese and honey too much. I do purchase "friendly" animal products whenever possible such as cage-free eggs and locally raised honey. ~Angela

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  5. Hi Angela. Thanks for the caramels recipe. I can't wait to try it!

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    1. You're very welcome! Enjoy! ~Angela PS: Don't eat the whole batch at one sitting! LOL!

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  6. I'm mostly vegetarian. I like fish, but I'm not crazy about pork or chicken. I really don't like red meat at all. I prefer fruits and vegetables, even when I was a kid.

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    1. It sounds like a healthy diet to me! Thanks for stopping by! ~Angela

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  7. Hi Angela! Great post. I'm currently eating a 90-95% raw diet. No raw meat. YUCK! I also do some juicing. I do eat some steamed veggies, rice and beans. I do include vegetarian dishes into my eating. After many, many years of dieting, I think I've found what is going to work for me as a lifestyle change.

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    1. Good for you! Eating healthy has to be a lifestyle choice. Dieting doesn't work. It's simply a yo-yo of eating healthy, then going back to old bad habits. Keep it up! ~Angela

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  8. I am not a vegetarian but I am not a big meat eater. I prefer salads, veggies & fruit, oats and whole grain gluten-free breads. Fish, chicken and turkey in small amounts are good. Oh and I love cheese too!:)

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    1. Your diet sounds like it has great variety and is healthy!! Good for you! ~Angela

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  9. It is good to clarify the difference between vegan and vegetarian but there are those (like myself) who believe that to be a vegetarian you do not eat flesh of any kind.

    I used to be a vegetarian and my husband is a vegetarian. I can see the impulse to go either way.

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    1. I agree. I'm of the thought that a vegetarian doesn't eat any meat. But, the more "veggies" I meet, the more I hear they say they eat some chicken and fish -- which I then don't consider vegetarian. There are so many off-shoots of the term vegetarian, such as flexitarian. I believe this is the correct term for a veggie that eats a little bit of chicken and fish. Thanks for stopping by! Angela

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