Special diets such as vegan or vegetarian are now widespread. Whether lactose- or gluten-free – very few eat everything that comes on the table without being asked. The most well-known renunciation type is the vegetarian, the stricter version of the vegan. We explain who eats what.
Vegan or vegetarian – origin and background
Consciously avoiding certain foods is not a new fad. A diet without meat and fish already existed in ancient times. For example, it is documented that the ancient Greek mathematician Pythagoras was a vegetarian. But in the past people did not eat meat, mainly for religious reasons. For example, many Buddhists believe that not eating animals is better for their karma.
Lifestyle, animal ethical concerns, and environmental protection are now the most common incentives to eat meatless. Most vegetarians are lacto-ovo, meaning they don’t eat meat but do eat eggs and dairy products. Ovo-vegetarians, on the other hand, eat eggs but not dairy products such as cheese or yogurt. Animal milk is on the menu for lacto-vegetarians, but not eggs. The strictest variant of the vegetarian is the vegan. He completely avoids animal products.
Vegan vs. vegetarian: What are the differences?
Diets largely reflect a person’s philosophy of life. The vegan diet prioritizes animal welfare over human comfort. For this reason, the vegan movement is also replacing animal products such as honey or leather. It is a principle of veganism to question and replace habits of everyday life. This is often associated with challenges for optimal nutrient supply. In the case of babies, small children, and pregnant women in particular, there is a risk of a lack of supply with purely vegan cuisine, since this group cannot easily take food supplements, for example.
It is undisputed that a vegan lifestyle requires a very conscious diet. In order to consume enough vitamins and protein despite not eating animal products, alternatives made from legumes, soy and nuts must be put on the table. Tofu and seitan in a wide variety of forms are particularly popular. They can be found in stores rolled into balls or sausages or as burger patties. But “veggie schnitzel” are also made from vegetables, lupins, or beans. With a regulated diet, so many minerals can be absorbed – even if vitamin B12 tablets often serve as a supplement in a vegan lifestyle. Vegetarians who want to be more flexible and who still care about animal welfare often choose organic dairy products and organic eggs.
At ChefReader you will find a variety of delicious vegetarian and vegan recipes, for example for oriental falafel. As a little extra, there are always suggestions for our recipes on how to replace milk, quark, and yoghurt with appropriate products made from soy or grain. This is how you can reinvent your tried and tested favorite recipes. Even if you are a die-hard latte macchiato fan, you should definitely try espresso with foamed oat drink. You will be surprised by the result! Our tip: Dare to be creative – and find out for yourself what is good for you.