Ask just about anyone what the difference between plant-based and vegan food is, and you’ll get the same answer: “They’re the same thing, right? So what, exactly, makes a plant-based diet different from a vegan diet? To get it straight, we spoke to dietitians below. Spoiler: You’ll eat a lot of veggies either way. Vegans also cannot wear any clothing or use any products made from or with animals, including wool and silk. And although a vegan diet is automatically plant-based, that term’s meaning has evolved into something new. The key difference is that you’re not necessarily eliminating all animal products in a plant-based diet. Everyone can get on board with eating more fruits and vegetables, because that’s what’s recommended. It’s possible to lose weight and improve your overall health with both vegan and plant-based lifestyles, and, based on your personal goals, either might have incredible health benefits.
It is a truth, now more or less universally acknowledged, that a plant-based diet can do wonders for both your health and the health of the planet. Veganism is now much more mainstream and its adoption by a greater number of Americans has been fueled by celebrities such as Beyonce and Jay Z and high profile personalities like Bill Clinton, who have gone the vegan route. According to a study conducted by the Vegetarian Resource Group, a non-profit organization dedicated to educating the public on vegetarianism and healthy eating, 1 million Americans above the age of 18 are now vegan and the numbers are growing. One of the immediate results of adopting a vegan diet is weight loss and this, says Reed Mangels, a registered dietitian and lecturer in nutrition at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, is a definite positive that attracts many people to veganism. Monica Montag, a certified nutritionist and founder of holistic nutrition practice BeWell Associates in State College, PA, attributes the weight loss that results from adopting a vegan diet to the much lower fat content in vegetables, fruits and grains as compared to meat and dairy. Fat, Montag says, also has a much higher volume of calories per gram there are 9 calories in a gram of fat than carbohydrates, where the calories-to-gram ratio is 4-to-1, so a diet made up of fruits, vegetables and grains is much lighter. While there are definite benefits to weight loss for overall health, a sudden and rapid decrease that some vegans experience could backfire. Here are 10 great tips for dipping your toes in the waters of vegan living. Keller is one of many nutritionists who agree that a vegan diet significantly reduces the risks of a number of major illnesses. According to a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, vegan diets are even more effective than vegetarian diets in protecting against hypertension, type-2 diabetes, and cardiovascular diseases.
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