health trends · the vegan series

Vegans, vegetarians and flexible what now?

dinosaur-veggie

In this post, I talk about exploring the concept of veganism and what it means to go meat free. So then, let’s explore! I think it’s best to start with some definitions.

Veganism, according to The Vegan Society, is a ‘way of living which seeks to exclude, as far as is possible and practicable, all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose.’

Burning questions

  1. But they can eat honey, right, because no animals have to die?

No. Honey is made by bees, for bees, and their health can be affected when humans harvest it. Taken from the definition above, being vegan means excluding all forms of exploitation of animals for human purposes, which includes honey harvesting.

2. Ok, eggs then.

Also negative. Check out any food & farming documentary on Netflix to see how eggs are mass produced, and you’ll understand why the exploitation principle applies.

3. Can vegans use L’Oreal products? I hear they’re the worst for cosmetic testing on animals.

True vegans will avoid everything, including makeup and beauty products, that involve harming animals. That said, many people who adopt a vegan diet take some time to fully integrate all aspects of their life into veganism. As for L’Oreal, yes, they are the absolute worst for animal testing and deceiving the public about it – don’t buy their shit.

4. I’m a bit scared of speaking to vegans about animals, they seem rather…unhinged in their zeal.

Some of them are, but so are some anti-abortion activists, online trolls and new mothers. There are people who take it too far in all corners of society – politely excuse yourself and move on.

Vegetarianism, by comparison, is the practice of abstaining from the consumption of meat, including fish and other seafood. Vegetarians generally do eat dairy and eggs.

Burning questions

  1. But my sister’s veggie and she eats fish!

Actually she’s a pescatarian, ie she eats a veggie diet but also eats fish. So technically, she’s not a vegetarian.

2. Vegetarians can totally wear leather, though.

Technically yes, according to the definition of vegetarianism, which refers to the consumption of meat. However, if your reason for going veggie is the ethical treatment of animals, you likely wouldn’t wear leather.

Flexitarianism is a newer concept meaning flexible vegetarians – and I don’t mean they’re practicing their splits. Also known as veggie-vores, they follow a mostly veggie diet but occasionally enjoy a big steak.

Burning questions

  1. Aren’t they just cheating vegetarians, then?

Yes, pretty much.

2. Ummm aren’t you one of them?

Sort of! I don’t think my veggie to meat ratio is veggie enough to qualify. Or maybe it is – this lifestyle is quite light on rules. I certainly aspire to be one.

3. I’m exhausted trying to keep up with these lifestyle trends.

I hear you…but that’s why you have me! And remember the reason for all of this: people are just trying to be better humans and make more informed choices. It’s a shining light in a dark, Trumpian world.

Next week I’ll be posting my interview series with vegans, vegetarians and everything in between.

 

 

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