Will I have to become vegan?
NO. Adopting a plant based lifestyle does not require you to give up meat, dairy, seafood, or anything else. So fear not.
What is the difference between “vegan” and “plant-based”?
Eating a plant-based diet does not mean you have to be 100% vegan, but rather that the majority of your food comes from plants. More specifically whole foods and not the processed garbage. Eating plant-based means consuming a lot of fruits, veggies, whole grains, and legumes. The percentage of animal products you consume is completely up to you; I am here to inform you of what they do to your body and what you will have to do to reach your goals. While I would never encourage anyone to keep consuming animal products, I understand that not everyone truly wants to be 100% plant-based. Likewise, people who are plant-based usually are so for health reasons; animal welfare is a nice byproduct though.
A vegan diet excludes any food that is derived from or comes directly from any animal. To name this big ones: meat, fish, poultry, dairy, cheese, butter, eggs, and honey (since it is produced by an animal. Some not so well known ones are: casein, whey, lactose, rennet, gelatin, and glycerides. So, foods like soda, chips, chocolate, and white bread can all technically be vegan. However, there is a BIG difference between “vegan” and “healthy”. Vegans, technically, eat based on ethical concerns which is why you may see a great many unhealthy vegans.
Where will I get my protein from?
The biggest myth of them all is that a 100% plant-based diet will leave you protein deficient. I’m here to inform you that this could not be further from he truth. You will easily get your daily requirements of protein by eating a varied plant-based diet. So, where does the protein come from? In short, the same places that any herbivore gets their protein (fun fact: the world’s largest land animals are all 100% plant-based: elephants, rhinos, hippos, gorillas, etc). Not only that, but plant based protein is much healthier than animal based proteins that actually cause disease and disorder. Oh, and that old adage that you need 1-2g of protein per pound of body weight is erroneous too!