What is Veganism?
According to The Vegan Society, Veganism is“A philosophy and way of living which seeks to exclude—as far as is possible and practicable—all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose; and by extension, promotes the development and use of animal-free alternatives for the benefit of humans, animals and the environment. In dietary terms it denotes the practice of dispensing with all products derived wholly or partly from animals.”
The philosophy was first set up in the early 1940’s and now has gained quite a lot of traction the world over. Although there are many ways people adopt the vegan way there are a few characteristics that define vegans worldwide which include the adoption of “a plant-based diet avoiding all animal foods such as meat (including fish, shellfish and insects), dairy, eggs and honey – as well as avoiding animal-derived materials, products tested on animals and places that use animals for entertainment.”
Vegans also do not just limit their respect and deep regard for animals to their diets but also extend this to other aspects of their life including the products they buy, the clothes they wear and even the sort of entertainment outlets and causes they choose to support. Luckily for those who follow the vegan life, today thousands of alternative products are available for use.
These definitions seem pretty straightforward and actually quite a sustainable and peaceful way to live one’s life, then why is there so much backlash and criticism for people who choose a vegan lifestyle? There are a lot of misconceptions and stigma attached to a vegan lifestyle because quite frankly most of us have been brought up to accept no alternative to meat.
From absurd statements such as vegan diets making one weak to leading to major deficiencies, we would all do well to learn a thing or two about the misunderstood way of life. Here are the top 5 myths associated with veganism that should just die out already!
Vegan diets are not well rounded, healthy meals
This is certainly not true as vegan diets have been proven to be far more healthier as they are all about being in touch with what you put inside your body. From being more conscious of your carbon impact and otherwise to carefully planned portions, vegan diets make alternatives look archaic.
Vegan diets are not a good source of protein
Contrary to popular belief, meat is not the only way to get the body some protein!Many plant based alternatives offer far more reliable sources of amino acid fueled proteins and that too without the risk of cholesterol and heart issues. From lentils to chickpeas to potatoes, a plant based diet is enriched with proteins.
Dairy products are still the only reliable source of calcium
Again, false. Leafy greens such as spinach and kale with vitamin K have huge amounts of calcium and have greater absorbing power as compared to dairy milk or other products. Many humans are also already lactose intolerant and can instead get their daily calcium needs from alternatives such as almond milk.
Vegan diets make you weak and in need of supplements
This again is not true and depends quite a bit on the sort of diet and lifestyle you adopt instead. A need for supplements might affect someone who eats meat and dairy as much as a vegan.
Vegan diets are not as fulfilling and are harder to commit to
This is true for any dietary change and diet where an individual makes informed decisions that support a certain lifestyle or ideology. There is far less hared for equally hard diets such as keto ones which are super popular nowadays. For a vegan way of living, the focus isn’t always on less consumption but rather on informed consumption.