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. An individual who follows the diet or philosophy is known as a vegan.
The term “vegan” was coined in 1944 by a small group of vegetarians who broke away from the Leicester Vegetarian Society in England to form the Vegan Society.
The term “vegan” was chosen by combining the first and last letters of “vegetarian.”
The list of actors who have become vegan currently includes:
Zac Efron. Gisele Bündchen. Jessica Chastain. Ariana Grande. Bill Clinton. Venus Williams. Beyonce. Liam Hemsworth.
And the list is growing.
Many vegans oppose ending a conscious being’s life simply to consume its flesh, drink its milk, or wear its skin — especially because alternatives are available.
Scientific research reveals that a vegan lifestyle is healthier. Plant-based diets may reduce your risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, cancer, and premature death.
A popular health nutritionist (and doctor) claims that if you go vegan (soon enough) you will never worry about dying of a heart attack!
There is also evidence that veganism may also reduce your risk of Alzheimer’s disease.
Many choose veganism to avoid the side effects linked to the antibiotics and hormones used in modern animal agriculture farming.
Better Looking Body
Vegan diets have been shown to lower body weight and body mass index (BMI). Some people may choose these diets to lose weight.
A 2010 United Nations (UN) report argued that these products generally require more resources and cause higher greenhouse gas emissions than plant-based options.
Animal agriculture contributes to 65% of global nitrous oxide emissions, 35–40% of methane emissions, and 9% of carbon dioxide emissions. These chemicals are considered the three principal greenhouse gasses involved in climate change.
Types of Veganism
Dietary vegans. Often used interchangeably with “plant-based eaters,” this term refers to those who avoid animal products in their diet but continue to use them in other products, such as clothing and cosmetics. Whole-food vegans. These individuals favor a diet rich in whole foods, such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts, and seeds. Junk-food vegans. Some people rely heavily on processed vegan food, such as vegan meats, fries, frozen dinners, and desserts, including Oreo cookies and non-dairy ice cream. Raw-food vegans. This group eats only foods that are raw or cooked at temperatures below 118°F (48°C). Low-fat, raw-food vegans. Also known as fruitarians, this subset limits high-fat foods, such as nuts, avocados, and coconuts, instead of relying mainly on fruit. Other plants are occasionally eaten in small amounts.
Food Not Eaten
Vegans avoid all foods of animal origin. These include:
meat chicken fish shellfish eggs dairy honey
Vegans also avoid any animal-derived ingredients, such as albumin, casein, carmine, gelatin, pepsin, shellac, isinglass, and whey.
Foods containing these ingredients include some types of beer and wine, marshmallows, breakfast cereals, gummy candies, and chewing gum.
Individuals may choose veganism for ethical, environmental, or health reasons.
When done right, the vegan diet can be easy to follow and may provide various health benefits.
As with any diet, these benefits only appear if you are consistent and build your diet around nutrient-rich plant foods rather than heavily processed ones.