What does it mean to be vegan?

What does it mean to be vegan?

There are many ways to be vegan, so when someone says they are vegan it could mean that they simply adhere to a vegan diet, or they could be following a whole vegan lifestyle. 

But lets just go back to basics first.

What do vegans and vegetarians eat? 

A Vegetarian is someone who eats VEGETABLES – not meat, not fish, not seafood, not chicken. But they DO eat dairy products and eggs.

A Vegan is someone who DOES NOT eat any food derived from the animal world, ie they are like vegetarians but do not eat dairy products, eggs or honey (which to many people comes as a surprise, but it is after all made by bees and thus derived from living creatures). Putting it simply, vegans do not eat anything that originates from animals or animal by-products. 

Is veganism only about diet?

Usually people talk about the ins and outs of a vegan diet. However, veganism doesn’t end there. Compassion towards animals, which is probably one of the biggest reasons people become vegan, is more than just about food. It’s also about clothes/shoes, hygiene/beauty products and the environment. All of these things are to a greater or lesser extent linked to animal welfare. 

Something we forget is that a lot of products don’t just contain animal products but are also tested on animals, like make-up and creams, and other beauty products. Fortunately, there are more and more vegan alternatives appearing every day as both producers and consumers are becoming aware of this.

When my daughter was 11 she asked me to buy her some makeup, so we went to the High Street and found several make-up brands that are vegan and not tested on animals. When I searched for vegan makeup, I came across an article by the Cosmopolitan from March 2019 listing 12 vegan makeup brands. It is certainly becoming easier to embrace a vegan lifestyle! Next time you buy something stop and think for a few minutes how and out of what it is made – you might be surprised when you realise that it is somehow linked to animals. Can you perhaps find a vegan alternative to it? 

Here is another vegan recipe….

This is one of my favourite lunches.

I have come across several versions of this “salad”, this one is simple to make and fairly quick.

Puy lentil salad

Ingridients:

  • 225gr puy lentils
  • 500 ml water
  • 1 medium red onion, chopped
  • Handful cherry tomatoes (or 4 large ones, chopped)
  • 1 yellow pepper
  • 1 tsp vegetable buillon ( I use the Swiss vegetable vegan buillon powder, available at Planet Organic)
  • 2-3 tbsp olive oil
  • Apple cider vinegar (optional)

Vegan Puy lentil salad

Method:

  1. Wash lentils, put in a pan and add 500 ml water. 
  2. Boil, add vegetable buillon then turn down to simmer for 20-25 min until lentils are cooked and most of the water is gone. 
  3. When the lentils have cooked for about 10 min I usually add the onion. (I don’t like raw onions, however you can just add the onion raw along with the tomatoes and pepper at the end if you prefer).
  4. In the mean time, cut cherry tomatoes in half and slice the pepper.
  5. When the lentils are ready, put them in a large bowl with tomatoes, pepper (and onion).
  6. Pour over 2-3 tbsp olive oil (and 1 tbsp vinegar) and mix everything together.

To save time you can get organic lentils, organic onions, organic cherry tomatoes, organic peppers and other organic food and cooking ingridients online, and save money with the latest Planet Organic voucher codes or Waitrose & Partners voucher codes and deals from Voucher Shares, the UK's #1 Green Voucher Codes Website

Enjoy! 

Yamini Baars

Yamini Baars, massage therapist, mother of 2, and passionate about healthy conscious eating 

More blogs from Yamini:

Happy Veganuary 2020!

How can we have a sustainable Christmas?

1st of November - World Vegan Day!

What are the differences between vegan and vegetarian? 1st of October - World Vegetarian Day

Check out our latest Vegan products voucher codes and deals

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