Plant-Based Vs. Vegan: How Are They Different?

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Depending on who you ask, the terms plant-based and vegan might mean the same thing. As interchangeable as they may seem, there are some very distinct differences between both lifestyles. Simply put, veganism is an animal friendly and environmentally conscious way of life, while being plant-based mainly focuses on diet and health, with less of a focus on animals and the environment.

 

What Does A Vegan Lifestyle Consist Of?

Those who subscribe to the vegan diet must abstain from eating animal products as a way of not contributing to the exploitation of animals for the purpose of survival. Being vegan also means that you do not purchase or wear anything made from animal products. Clothes, purses, shoes, and hats that are made from animal products, or beauty products that have been tested on animals, are avoided; granted, there are many people who simply maintain vegan diets for personal health reasons and don’t worry about the animal products or testings.

 

Donald Watson, an English animal rights activists and founder of the Vegan society, coined the term vegan in 1944. Since then it has grown tremendously in popularity, so much so that the food and drug industry are constantly creating new vegan-friendly options to capitalize on the expanding market. The downside to the creation of vegan alternatives to animal based foods is that vegans can go through life without ever eating a vegetable or fruit, since processed alternatives like soy, or anything not containing animal-derived products like honey, fall into the vegan category.

 

Vegans have a strong belief that all living creatures have the right to life and freedom. A true vegan opposes any physical or psychological mistreatment of animals and their environment. Even the farming of animals is seen as a violation, according to vegans. A transition to veganism usually involves going through a vegetarian way of life first, and then shifting towards being vegan. From that point on, they can classify themselves as one of the following types of vegans:

  • Dietary Vegans: Those who avoid consuming animal products strictly for dietary reasons, and continue to use the byproducts in the form of cosmetics and clothing.
  • Whole-foods Vegan: Those who prefer to eat foods that are natural and nutritionally rich, such as vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes, nuts, and seeds. This is similar to the plant-based lifestyle in terms of eating habits.
  • Raw-food Vegans: Those who only consume uncooked foods, or foods that are cooked at a temperature below 118 degrees F (48 degrees C).
  • Fruitarian Vegans: Known simply as fruitarians, this group consists of people who only consume fruits, and occasionally vegetables, but mainly fruits.

 

What Does A Plant Based Lifestyle Consist Of?

The plant-based lifestyle has a lot more dietary restrictions than its vegan counterpart. A person can only consume what grows from the ground, and has not gone through a refinement process that expels most of the food’s nutrients. The diet includes fruits, vegetables, as well as whole grains, but it is important to steer clear of meat, dairy, and unnatural or processed foods.

 

Studies have shown that this lifestyle has several health benefits, since all the consumed foods are non-GMO and free of added preservatives or chemicals. It’s known for being the healthiest dietary option for those suffering from cancer, hypertension, diabetes and some of the other more common life threatening illnesses.

 

How To Transition To A Plant-Based Lifestyle:

Transitioning to a plant-based lifestyle is quite demanding and often times complicated. It takes plenty of discipline and willpower to not only go against the ideas and beliefs that you and most people were born into, but to also overcome the temptation to deviate while surrounded by societal influences. Unlike veganism, there aren’t many options to choose from when it comes to your eating habits.

 

Restaurants that are 100% plant-based are very rare or nonexistent, even in most metropolitan areas. One has to be more than okay with preparing his/her meals at home to avoid cross contamination from eating out at a restaurant that does not adhere to such demands.

 

A common question or concern is, “If all you’re eating is plants, where do you get your protein?” The biggest mammals in the world are herbivores that are hunted down and eaten by carnivores, which absorb the rich plant-based protein that the herbivores received from eating plants. It all ties back to the source. If you need a more detailed guide of plant-based protein, click here.

 

The ideas behind both the vegan and plant-based lifestyles are as old as the human species itself. During pre-historic times, indigenous cultures primarily consumed plant-based foods and rarely ate animals or their byproducts. In your health journey, it’s important to eliminate any confusion in order to fully understand the pros and cons of both diets. Choose what is best for you based on what you can manage with regards to your health and values.

 

Sources:

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/what-is-a-vegan

https://www.bustle.com/p/whats-the-difference-between-plant-based-vegan-19300890

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/plant-based-diet-vs-vegan-diet_n_5923374fe4b034684b0ebff0

https://www.forksoverknives.com/plant-based-diet-vs-vegan-diet-whats-the-difference/#

2019-12-10T12:00:56+00:00

Related Questions

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    Q: I am just becoming a vegan going on 20 years in June, and it takes a lot of discipline. I was wondering if you knew any good recipes for some good vegan style dishes. I really want to establish a vegan restaurant. I have purchased your Alternative Diet and Lifestyle Manual, and I know its healthier to eat vegan. But, I also understand its not the healthiest due to soy products. Is their still away to satisfy my appetite and well being at the same time?

    A:

    We have a couple of articles you might be interested in.

    Articles
    Dietary Choices
    Dherbs.Com Position on Soy Products

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    Q: I have read lots of information about B12. Is the plant based formula as reliable as other sources? If you could provide some more information it would be great.

    A:

    Our choice and vote is that plant-based products are always better than man-made sources. Consider doing a search on the Inter-net and compare findings and then make your choice in which form of Vitamin B12 you will use and deem best for you.

    Product Links:
    Vitamin B-12

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    Q: What Are Some Natural Sweet Treats (Junk Foods) I can Consume? Under free will you can consume what you like, but healthier products are best. You will find plenty of "healthier" snack, treat, and junk foods at good health food stores such as Whole Foods Market, PCC Natural Food Stores, Erewhon, Trader Joes, Natural Grocers, New Frontiers, etc. Just make sure to abstain from salt, sugar, and other harmful chemicals in the products you buy. We list many companies of alternative foods and products (and their website addresses) in our ALTERNATIVE DIET AND LIFESTYLES MANUAL.

    A:

    Recommended: ALTERNATIVE DIET AND LIFESTYLES MANUAL

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    Q: I have recently made the transformation to becoming a complete vegan. How can I determine what foods are for vegans?

    A:

    Simple question to the self that you can always ask now as a vegan, "Is this product derived from an animal?", and you'll never go wrong as a vegan. Two good questions, to help you make your own decisions as a conscious consumer and vegan: Is it nautral (from the Earth/plant)? Is it from animal? Always ask yourself these 2 questions when in doubt!

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    Q: Hey Gary, I've heard a lot of hype about the paleo diet. I'm a vegan. Is the paleo diet a diet you would recommend? Can it work with vegan lifestyle? Thanks!

    A:

    Sorry for the late response, This one got kind of lost in my emails. Thanks for your question.

    The Paleo diet.... something nice.... something nice.... heh.

    The Paleo diet emphasizes drinking water and eating local/organic food. They shun dairy, processed food, and grains. I agree. 

    I disagree with just about everything else. For paleo theory to be correct Vegans either have to not exist or be doing very poorly. Wrong on both accounts. They say vegans just can't get enough protein or that we are missing x,y,z in our diets. Never mind that every major paleo website sells the supplements they say only vegans are deficient in. "Vegans don't get enough protein so eat meat and then buy our protein powder supplements. Vegans don't get enough omega 3's so just eat fish and while you are at it buy our krill oil supplements." And so on. The paleo diet is just the low carb diet re-branded. Here are the results of long term low carb eating. http://www.pcrm.org/health/reports/analysis-of-health-problems-associated-with-high.

    Vegans are doing extremely well and in most long term studies Vegans end up on top in both health and longevity. 

    Also see this video http://nutritionfacts.org/video/paleolithic-lessons/

    They claim carbohydrates make you fat and that the more you eat the more you weigh. Why then do the 80-10-10 crowd all appear not only all thin but extremely healthy? Carbohydrates are your bodies main source of fuel. Preferred source. Every cell in your body runs on glucose. The human body is amazing. The is a secondary source of energy in case of starvation, or glucose deprived. The body starts to burn fat as fuel known as keytosis. This was only meant as a way to keep the body running during famine. However the paleo people think this is a preferred state to be in. It's not. Look up keto-acidosis. Could be deadly.The bottom line is that people will always be looking forward to the latest fad that tells them "good things about their bad habits".

    My Diet program that I run follows a high carb/low fat/high alkaline/high raw protocol.  All my client reach remarkable health results. 

    I could go on forever, but I think you get the point. Let me know if you have anything else to add to this discussion. 

    -Gary Gibson HHC CPT

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    Q: I see also that you recommend a complete diet with these programs. I am guessing its a vegan diet right? I wanted to ask something on that is coconut milk and coconut oils ok for that? I personally had a very hard time trying to eat that many vegetables and many ph balance vegans seem to think fruits aren?t good either. I eat that many vegetables one it tears me up the next day and two I just cant consume enough calories that way. I can try and make up for it by eating things like almonds but I eat to many almonds I get the same problem the next day. Now coconut milk (unsweetened) and a digestive enzyme works for me for picking up extra calories.... but I hear very conflicting information about coconut and its saturated fat content. Is it ok to use daily as a part of the diet for cleansing? And your oxy-drops are those the same as the drop for ph balancing water?? Or is it something different? I am wanting to start lifting weights as I need to put on some muscle and I?m wondering if its something that would be beneficial in combating muscle soreness by increased oxygen in the body.

    A:

    The diet we recommend is vegan-based, and RAW FOODS. Fresh fruits, vegetables, raw nuts and seeds are ideal.

    Coconut Milk and Coconut Oil are excellent products to have in your diet. The healthy fats will keep you fuller.

    Oxy-Drops can help balance your electrolytes that need to be replenished after a workout in order to keep your body performing efficiently. 

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    Q: Would the FULL BODY DETOX be of any benefit for someone eating a vegan diet for 3 weeks even though one meal per day was cooked?

    A:

    I REALLY WOULDN'T SUGGEST THAT BUT YOU HAVE FREE WILL TO DO AS YOU PLEASE!

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    Q: How often should one eat cook food? I'm a vegan, I do not consume any meat, seafood, milk what so ever. I eat water cresses like everyday so as cook food. Like white rice with black bean sauce, spinach, and pasta at time's I'll eat some Chinese fried rice, veggie roll, steamed vegetables, any advice?

    A:

    You can eat cooked food as much as you like. However, try to incorporate as many nutrient-dense raw foods, such as fresh fruits and vegetables, raw nuts and seeds, into your diet to make sure you are receiving an adequate amount of nutrients.

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    Q: What's the best way to start on a vegan/raw food diet? I am not sure what to eat to make sure I would get a nutritious diet-you may not be able to go into that much detail but how can I get sample meal plans for breakfast, lunch and dinner incorporating this type of diet-perhaps there is somewhere on the web I find something like this? Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.

    A:

    If I do say myself, the best way to start a raw food diet is to be coached by me. I run a 6 month health coaching program that is 60-90 percent raw and 100 percent vegan/gluten free/ allergy free. You can find out more about my program at www.theveganeffect.com. I am running a special of half off my program if you sign up before march 1st. 

    Here are some other tips to get started.

    1: Join a raw food meetup group or community. Surround yourself with supportive people who can point you in the right direction. Try meetup.org or 30bananasaday.com 

    2: Read books like "beauty detox solution" by snyder, "80/10/10" by Dr. Graham., or "The Paradigm diet" by Adam Dave

    3: Start simple with breakfast. Always start your day with a green smoothie. read "Green smoothie revolution" by forget authors name at the moment. heh.

    A sample meal plan would be.

    Breakfast: Green smoothie

    Bridge: raw bar, handful of nuts or seeds, or fruit

    Lunch: Raw wraps made from collard greens. use a base of tahini, hummus, or nut butter. Fill with sprouts and colorful veggies

    Bridge: raw bar, handful nuts or seeds, or fruit

    Dinner: Raw pasta with a large salad

    Snack: Sorbet 

     

    Hope that answers your question,

    Gary Gibson HHC CPT VLC BMI

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    Q: Melelacula is all tea tree oil based. How does this compare to your products? Will I have an adverse reaction to all these natural ingredients? I am interested in your skin oil product.

    A:

    Our products are mostly herbal whereas tea tree is an oil, but they are 100% COMPATIBLE! Nothing to worry about! Adverse reaction? Truly, how would I or anybody else know? It's your body, Beloved! I say give things a try and get firsthand knowledge. I can't see anything adverse happening. Move forward, Beloved! Think positive too! See your results! See what you desire to see (products working in harmony).

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    Q: I have ordered the detox cleanse, and the weight cleanse. Both state to eat a raw diet of veggies and fruit, nuts, nut pastes??, legume sprouts, seeds, plant oils, sea veggies??,and fresh juices. It mentions Vegan Diet. What are my options when it comes to these choices? What do I eat and how often to keep my sugar from dropping, and feeling sick? Usually mid am, and mid afternoon?

    A:

    The best way to balance blood sugar and keep your body in a fat burning zone is to eat low fat and every 3-4 hours. Also high raw and high carb. Here are some options. Just a general outline.

     

    6am 

    Muesli - fruit smoothie-green smoothie

    9am

    2-3 pieces of fruit

    12pm

    Raw wraps-raw pasta-salad with legumes

    3pm

    2-3 peices of fruit

    6pm

    wraps-raw pasta-salad with legumes

    9pm

    Sorbet

     

    I suggest reading "Beauty detox solution" by Snyder, "Crazy Sexy Diet" by Karr, or 80-10-10 by Graham.

     

    I also recommend to check out my health coaching program www.theveganefect.com for more info.

     

    I hope this helps,

    Gary Gibson HHC CPT BMI VLC

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    Q: I'm a raw vegan, and still suffering from acne. I stay away from all sweeteners, except fresh whole fruits. I started to have lots of greens juices these days, and my skin has improved a little bit. What about spices such a cayenne pepper, is it bad for your skin? What about goji berries? I know they are diet fruits, thats why I stay away from them for a while. I even fast for a while. I just don't know how my skin can getter better.

    A:

    Greetings! Have you detoxed (Full Body Detox)? Acne is a blood disorder. Please read our article "Skin Disorder = Blood Disorder" for more information. Our Healing Facial Kit will be out later this month. Recommended reading: The Mental Science Manual. Stay positive! Don't focus so much on the problem. Use visualization techniques, and see yourself as you desire to see yourself, with flawless skin.

    Article:
    Skin Disorder = Blood Disorder

    Product Links:
    Full Body Detox
    The Mental Science Manual

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    Q: Hetep, I've been a vegetarian for about two year's now, have not consume any meat since, but recently I begin eating shrimp, I don't drink milk, eat cheese, fish. I want to be like a vegan but, is it an issue with me eating the shrimp, and another thing I smoke weed heavy, is the smoking affecting my vegetarian diet.

    A:

    YES!!!!!!!!!!

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    Q: I read your article on Dangerous Dairy, and I cannot find on the internet any back up on what is discussed about dairy. Example, fecal matter (like milk), if this is not real fecal matter. What are you talking about? It is also stated that no other animals will drink other animals milk. This is not so, there are reports of baby animals, that lose their mothers and another species steps in to save the baby animals life. A dog saving a baby tigers life. A squirrel saving a pigs life, etc. It is a known fact that we have been eating dairy products for over 8,0000 years. I know that times have changed, but where are your facts were are you getting these facts to report such cause and effect? I would like to see this facts or websites. Thank you.

    A:

    Your problem may be the Inter-net. You can't be an exclusive Inter-net armchair researcher and expect to find everything, such as the information in my article. We can't give up on BOOKS for a computer screen!

    Everything I cover in my article can be scientifically backed up.

    RECOMMENDED:
    BOOK: Don't Drink Your Milk by Frank A. Oski, M.D.
    BOOK: Milk: The Deadly Poison, by Robert Cohen
    VIDEO: Let's Eat To Live - Vol. 8 "Milk" (shows filter screen with cow feces on it)
    Like the Bible says: ask and it shall be given.

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    Q: I am not sure if I am looking to go vegan, but I am doing the weight loss cleanse and do feel a difference in my body. My question is how do I keep up eating raw without getting bored? Can you recommend meal replacements and exercises.

    A:

    You should absolutely consider going vegan for your long term health, the health of the planet, and of course sparing countless animals from suffering. I have been vegan for over five years and they have been the best of my life! My health program www.theveganeffect.com is a huge success! 

     

    With that being said, the best way to keep from getting bored is to eat a variety of fruits and veggies. The main meals of a basic raw food eater is smoothies, soups, collard green wraps, and raw pasta made with zucchini instead of pasta. 

    You can find more recipes on my page or at http://foodnsport.com/recipes/

     

    When is comes to exercise and losing weight please refer to my detailed blog about it. http://the-vegan-effect.healthcoach.integrativenutrition.com/blog/2013/03/what-cardio-and-weight-training-best-for-fat-loss

     

    Hope this answers your question,

    Gary Gibson HHC CPT BMI VLC

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    Q: I don't know if you remember or know, but there was a Vegan Couple that had a newborn baby, and the baby had died from what seemed to be a lack a of nutrients because the couple fed the baby a vegan diet. If you remember this, what do you think went wrong.

    A:

    The couple was from Atlanta! What went wrong is that while they were well-intentioned, they were ignorant, ignorant to true nutrition. They fed the baby soy milk, and soy milk does not contain nutrition. They didn't supplement the soy milk with nutrition which they could have done with herbs such as alfalfa, Irish Moss, Iceland Moss, etc.

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    Q: What is the best way for a Vegan to get vit? B 12? What do you think about essential oils? Have you heard of the Young Living brand? I work with a woman who says she has eczema, but it is deep purple and very painful. I have never seen anything like it, but her doctors want to try chemo to get rid of it. Doctors are so brilliant. Why do so many people go to get punished by them?

    A:

    FOR B12, EAT PLENTY OF GREEN VEGETABLES OR TAKE VITAMIN B 12. I HAVE HEARD OF YOUNG LIVING BRAND. ESSENTIAL OLIS ARE ESSENTIAL OILS. YOUNG LIVING IS JUST A BRAND. THE OILS ARE THE SAME. YL OFFERS GOOD OILS. I ENDORSE THEM! GOOD GOD ALMIGHTY! CHEMOTHERAPY FOR ECZEMA? PLEASE TELL ME YOUR FRIEND HAS BRAINS AND KNOWS NOT TO FALL FOR THIS. PLEASE HAVE HER READ MY ARTICLE ON â€ECZEMAâ€. I STAY AWAY FROM DOCTORS AT ALL COSTS!

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    Q: If I take your Vegan Protein Powder Mix, what effect will that have on a drug test?

    A:

    The Vegan Protein Powder will have no effect on a drug test.

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    Q: On WebMD there is information stating that high fiber foods such as raw fruits, and vegetables can irritate or flare up Crohn's disease. But, your article on Chron's disease says to switch to a vegan diet after detoxing. Why would raw fruits and vegetables flare up Chron's disease? Why do your articles suggest to eat raw fruits and veggies when people say it can irritate the disease?

    A:

    We don't subscribe to that. We do our own homework at Dherbs.com. There is no confusion at Dherbs because we use logic, reason, common sense, intuition, wisdom, etc. So we are not confused in regards to food and health.

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    Q: I am very interested in Dherbs herbal formulas - they appear to be high quality, good formulas. I have a question for you. I eat a vegan diet, about 50% raw foods (sometimes more), get regular exercise, and love to spend time in nature. I am a generally healthy person who rarely gets sick. I have healed myself from asthma and allergies and other ailments by living a healthy lifestyle and using herbs and energy work. However, I do still suffer from cramping during my period (probably endometriosis) and from cervical dysphasia due to HPV. I would love to get these cleared up, too! What do you recommend in terms of your herbal formulas? For example, should I do the whole body detox first, then start in with the ailment specific recommendations, or start everything all at once? Any advice you could give me would be greatly appreciate.

    A:

    We would recommend that you first start out with the Full Body Cleanse, followed by the Anti-Viral Kit, followed by the Female Cleanse. These should help you to clear up those unwanted reproductive ailments and provide essential nutrients for female health.

    After this series of cleansing, we also recommend the the following supplements in order to to stay on the path towards whole body wellness.

    Menstrual Cycle Formula
    Female Hormonal Formula
    Female Health Tea
    Anti-Viral Formula