How do veganism and vegetarianism differ?

live vegan

Who is (is) what?

Pescetarians? Frugans? Freegans? And what are you We try to give you an overview of the other vegan and vegetarian variants.

Either you eat animal products or you refuse them. Everything is very easy! Indeed? We show you that there are a lot of other nutrition trends or diets in between and how they differ. But first the question - how do all these trends come about?

We live in times of nutritional abundance, the range is huge, regional, international, be it bread, fruit, vegetables, muesli or oil. Each category already fills entire shelves in supermarkets and specialist shops, and with the choice of the respective product we can express a lot about our lifestyle, our approach to life or our social stance. Although the choice can sometimes be a torture.

Nutrition is therefore not just about the absorption and production of energy in order to optimally supply our body and keep it running. It is not just enjoyment and sociability, but increasingly an expression of our social being. At least we think so. Which leads to the fact that we all deal more or less intensively with the topic of nutrition. Which is a good thing in principle.

Orthoorexia, sick for sheer health

But if you exaggerate that, as it actually happens more often, engaging too intensively with healthy nutrition can make people sick. Orthoorexia, for example, is a disease in which the patient suffers from an addiction to healthy food. This, too, is a contemporary phenomenon that, by definition, can lead to social isolation, nutritional deficiencies and an emaciated body. Well, as I said, that's an extreme variant. And also quite unhealthy. Let's get to our actual topic.

Besides us, we all know vegans, vegetarians and omnivores or mixed dieters, as we like to refer to them in our other articles. As is well known, consumption or the avoidance of products of animal origin is fundamental for this distinction. So, everything is very simple and understandable. But what about terms like raw foodists, frugans or flexitarians? Then there are also the pescetarians or the lacto-ovo vegetarians - many terms and also a lot of content? What is behind it and where are there similarities and differences? We have researched for you and hopefully provided a little more clarity for us and for you.

vegetarian

Vegetarians differ from omnivores in that they do not eat dead animals. But not all vegetarian is the same as a vegetarian. Generally speaking, vegetarianism means a diet in which mostly plant-based foods plus products from live animals such as milk, eggs and honey are eaten, mostly for ethical reasons, sometimes for health reasons. Vegetarians do without meat, fish and products made from them such as gelatine. However, it is often very difficult to do without all by-products such as rennet or the gelatine just mentioned in foods, as these are often not declared. This means that some juices or cheeses are made with animal products or, for example, filtered. Another example of this is lard used in baked goods, for example.

There are also other types of vegetarians:

Lacto-ovo vegetarians
As the Latin terms ovo "egg" and lacto "milk" already reveal, these are vegetarians who forego meat and fish, but not eggs and dairy products.

Lacto vegetarians
On the other hand, they not only remove meat and fish from their menu, but also the eggs.

Ovo vegetarians
In contrast, the ovo vegetarians eat eggs, but no dairy products and neither meat nor fish.

vegan

Those who continue to pursue vegetarianism will logically end up with us vegans. We are characterized by a purely plant-based diet with no products from living animals such as eggs, milk or honey. We also make sure that this form of nutrition is transferred to all areas of daily life, that is, we do not use any animal products such as leather in shoes and bags or wool in clothing.

Raw foodists

The diet of raw foodists is in principle open to all types of food. Naturally, however, there is a strong overlap with vegetarians and especially vegans. The followers of this diet heat their food to a maximum of 40 degrees or leave it in its raw state. This is how enzymes and vitamins should be preserved. Theoretically, meat and fish may therefore also be eaten, provided they are only slightly heated or left natural. As a rule, however, fruits and vegetables are consumed.

Fruitarians (also frugans or fructarians)

The term fruitarian derives from engl. "Fruit" and engl. "Vegetarian" from. Like us vegans, they rely on a plant-based diet, but in a much stricter sense. Because not only do they not want to harm the animals, but also not the plants from which their food comes. Fruitarians therefore only consume fruit and vegetables that have fallen from trees or bushes, or that can be plucked from the plant. In other words, what nature gives voluntarily or vegetable products, the extraction of which does not harm the plant. As a result, berries, nuts and seeds, vegetable fruits such as pumpkins, tomatoes and avocado, legumes such as beans and peas and grains are eaten.
Tubers, roots and leaves of food plants such as B. beets, spinach, leeks, potatoes and onions, however, are taboo, since the mother plant is damaged with its roots during harvest.
On the one hand, the fruitarians deliberately consume foods that contain a large amount of minerals and vitamins; on the other hand, this very limited choice of foods also entails the risk of malnutrition. While proteins are easily neglected in this form of diet, a high fructose intake can lead to high cholesterol levels due to the high consumption of fruit. It is very clear that when deciding on this type of diet you have to pay particular attention to the fact that you can cover all the important vitamins.

There are also some other forms of nutrition that we do not want to withhold from you for the sake of completeness.

Pescetarians

The so-called fish vegetarians do not eat meat, but fish, eggs, milk and honey are allowed.
Crustaceans and molluscs are only eaten by a few pescetarians. In addition, the fish must not come from factory farming. For the classic vegetarians, who have often decided, for ethical or health reasons, to generally forego products from dead animals, the assignment of pescetarians to vegetarianism is therefore not without controversy.

Flexitarians

The flexitarians are also often - derisively - referred to as part-time vegetarians. They advocate more moderate meat consumption and make sure that it is meat that does not come from factory farming. Meat is rarely served here on special occasions.
Many of us vegans, but also of vegetarians, believe that the flexitarians hardly differ from the omnivores, i.e. the omnivores. Because most of this group is more concerned with a healthy diet than with animal welfare. On the other hand, it could be argued that meat is consumed at least in a reduced form, that factory farming is rejected and not supported.

Pudding vegetarians

This is what vegetarians are referred to as being judgmental; they do not eat meat and fish for ethical reasons, but who don't care about a conscious diet. They eat vegan junk food, i.e. ready-made products, sweets and white flour products and therefore pay no attention to vitamins, fiber or calories.

Freegans

The freegans are a politically motivated group who generally do not exclude any food from their diet, but they must not come from commercial trade. Since their intention as political activists aims to draw attention to poverty and the consumer behavior of the people, they basically only eat food that they have grown themselves, that they have given, that others throw away or that they find.

Paleotarians

feed on foods that were already available in the Stone Age. This type of diet is also known as the Stone Age diet or the paleo diet. The choices for this diet include fruits, vegetables, nuts, honey, eggs, and meat. In return, milk and grain products are not used. It tends to be a form of diet that follows the idea that the human organism has been used to this food for 2.5 million years and is therefore easy to digest and utilize. On the other hand, it could be argued that humans need less energy today than they did in the Stone Age, and that the high protein content also seems questionable.

As you can clearly see, today man is more of what he eats. Due to the variety and possibilities offered to you, you can freely decide what you want to eat and why. Basically a really great thing!

In veggies we trust!

Photo: iStock.de/DisobeyArt

vegan life overview