While these two words sound similar, there is a slight difference between the two. Veganism and vegetarianism both revolve around the aspect of eating or not eating meat actually both vegetarians and vegans do not eat meat. The difference however comes in that one is a diet while the other is a lifestyle. In as much as vegetarians avoid eating meat, they go ahead and consume dairy products as well as eggs. Vegans on the other hand tend to avoid all sorts of animal products, which include eggs and dairy, as well as all other non-edible animal-based products like wool and leather. Both aspects have their own benefits but being a vegan has more merits than being a vegetarian, some of which as going to be discussed below.
First and foremost there are cholesterol benefits in being a vegan. Cholesterol normally comes from animal products whether it is meat or dairy or even eggs. Vegans have an advantage here because they do not consume any of these products unlike vegetarians who consume eggs as well as dairy products of animals. There is good and bad cholesterol and both dairy and eggs contain bad cholesterol. It is however important to note that bad cholesterol is not only obtained from foodstuff with high cholesterol content but also from the level of saturated and trans fat that we choose to feature in our diet.
Saturated fats are normally featured in animal products. Trans fats on the other hand come from hydrogenated vegetable oils although you may find some of them in animal products. The combination of saturates fats, trans fats and cholesterol is bad for the heart. Research is still yet to determine how this combination works together to cause clogging of the heart and result to diseases like high blood pressure. To make matters worse, may more diseases like cancer, kidney failure and gallstones are also proven to have been cause by saturated fats to some extent.
Vegans tend to consume foods with higher fiber content since their options for food is limited and animal products are excluded from the list. Wit fiber comes plenty of health benefits. One is that you get to experience more and regular elimination as well as detoxification. Fiber is useful in the excretion process, for instance if you have problems with going to the toilet you can consume kales and because they are rich in fiber they would help you remove waste from your body. In addition to this, fiber also lowers the level of cholesterol in the body thus enabling you to avoid having weight issues.
The normal pH of an average human being is between 7.35 and 7.45, which is slightly alkaline. The pH has to stay within this range for a person to remain alive; therefore our bodies employ various mechanisms to maintain this state. In looking at the acidity, neutrality of alkalinity of the body we focus on the end-product, that is basically what the food turns out to be after it has been digested. Animal products are acidic while plant foods are alkaline. In case of excess acidity due to animal product intake, the body would use minerals like calcium from the bones to combat the acidity. This wold result to a situation whereby one develops weak bones or any of the acidity-related diseases such as ulcers. Vegans have an advantage over this as they do not consume animal products at all.
If you care about animals you would want to protect them from harm. Being a vegetarian plays that role as you would indirectly prevent them from slaughter. However, being a vegan goes a mile ahead in the protection and care of animals. For instance, dairy cows during production are forcefully as well as repeatedly artificially inseminated. After they have given birth the calves are separated from their mothers within a few hours. Being in the animal’s shoes, this is a painful process as every being needs its parent for nurturing during the early stages of life. Even worse the milk that could have been used to feed the calves is used for human consumption. If these animals could speak they would demonstrate for having been denied their rights.
People are drawn to veganism for a number of reasons from healthy lifestyles to avoiding pollution to care and concern for animals. However one thing is for sure, there is a lot to gain from this kind of lifestyle as it would help you reduce the risk of a number of diseases.