Vegan or Vegetarian - What's the Difference

The supply of food in our western world is abundant. At the same time, the variety of individual foods has also increased to a high degree. However, many people restrict their eating habits nowadays, whether for health, economic or voluntary reasons. Many persons nourish themselves today vegetarian or vegan. But there are also pescetarians in the meantime.

Here, the question often arises as to what each individual dietary form actually means. What are vegans or vegetarians allowed to eat? The different diets are explained below:

Vegan diet

Vegans often have ethnic reasons and therefore decide against the consumption of animals and all products derived from farm animals. Here, therefore, is not only a restricted dietary style, but a very unique way of life.

The foods that vegans abstain from include foods that are made from animals that have been killed. In addition to meat, this includes fish and poultry, etc. Foods derived from farm animals, such as eggs, honey and dairy products, are also excluded from the menu of vegans. In addition, foods made from the remains of animals, such as cheese with natural rennet, gelatin or sausage skin from intestines, etc., are also excluded for consumption by vegans. Also from by-products of farm animals manufactured food additives such as whey flavors or skin clarified wines reject vegan persons.

Vegans additionally do without daily commodities, should they come from animals. These include leather shoes, down comforters or down feather beds, other leather goods, wool from animals and soaps that contain honey or wool waxes. The list is not exhaustive.

The vegan lifestyle therefore not only concerns the food sector, but represents a very unique attitude to life that influences a large part of everyday life. Around 800,000 vegans live in Germany, and the number is rising. Every vegan decides for himself how strictly he wants to adhere to the aforementioned regulations.

The vegetarian diet

Vegetarians, unlike vegans, do not do without leather or other animal by-products. Here, too, it is up to each person to decide how much they can and want to do without.

Vegetarians are mainly concerned with valuing animals. That is why they abstain from meat, fish and poultry. However, a central role of the vegetarian diet style plays a generally healthy diet. In addition to ethical reasons, the focus of vegetarians is also very much on the nutritional area and thus influences the eating behavior decisively.

Vegetarians do not eat foods derived from killed animals such as fish, meat and poultry. Vegetarians also avoid foods produced from animal remains such as cheese with natural rennet, gelatin or sausage skin from intestines.

But there are also subgroups that apply stricter standards. These include the ovo-vegetarians, who additionally abstain from dairy products. The lacto-vegetarians do not eat eggs.

Around 6 to 7 million vegetarians now live in Germany. The trend is rising.

The pescetarianism

In addition to vegans and vegetarians, there is also pescetarianism or the pescetarian diet.

In this type of diet, poultry and meat are not allowed, but fish (translated pesce) may be eaten. Many people opt for this dietary variant because they also hope for a healthier diet. But also the mass animal husbandry is indicated as reason, why Pescetarier fall back only to fish. Here it is naturally paid attention to the fact that also the fish does not come from bad mass animal husbandry or overfished waters. Here, too, the focus is on appropriate animal husbandry and fish from sustainable catches.

Pescetarians do not eat food from killed animals such as meat and poultry. Fish, on the other hand, is allowed. Mollusks and shellfish are also excluded from consumption in some cases. Just like vegetarians and vegans, pescetarians abstain from foods produced from animal remains.

The classification into the individual dietary styles is not a binding set of rules, but clearly presents the common characteristics and differences. It is up to each person to decide how to organize his or her diet and what health and moral rules he or she bases it on.

Whether vegetarian, vegan or pescetarian, they all have one thing in common: they are very knowledgeable about nutrition in general and want to positively support their health. These people eat a balanced diet and are often active in sports.