Although the vegan lifestyle has been around for a long time, it has become more popular and notorious in our society in recent years. Despite some people considering this to be a new diet trend, veganism is much more than a diet: it is a movement characterised by respecting animals and covers things including diet and the defence of their fundamental rights. 

People who follow this lifestyle, vegans, refuse to eat food products of animal origin. But, is being vegan the same as being vegetarian? Below, we will analyse the so-called “veggie trend and the benefits of being vegetarian.

What is veganism?

Veganism is a way of life where animals are considered to be equal, so they refuse to consume animals in their diets and in fashion, but also in areas in which they may suffer harm. Those who consider themselves to be vegan refuse to perceive animals as goods, transport or entertainment, in addition to a product to be used for experimentation in the cosmetics or pharmaceutical industry.

Differences between the vegan and vegetarian diet 

Have you ever wondered what the difference is between the vegan and vegetarian diet? Both diet options have a similar base, vegetables, but if we look closely we can see some differences. Make a note of them!

  1. The reason for the diet: veganism is an ethical and moral attitude which isn’t just focussed on diet and is, therefore, stricter. For its part, the vegetarian diet also excludes animal meat, but the main objective is to have a diet which is as healthy as possible or to help to look after the planet.
  2. Prohibited foods: vegetarians don’t eat meat, but they can eat foods of animal origin. These include dairy, milk, gelatine or honey. In some cases, they also include fish or poultry in their diet. In terms of a vegan diet, it is more restrictive and excludes any product that comes from an animal.
  3. Vegans can be included within vegetarians, but not vice versa: many vegetarians opt for this type of diet to combat animal cruelty, but in a less restrictive way than vegans. Hence, the vegan diet could be considered as the “stricter” version of the latter group. Nowadays, there are different types of vegetarians depending on the degree of tolerance. The most common are:
  • Pescatarians: those who eat fish, dairy and eggs, but not meat.
  • Lacto-ovo vegetarians: people who consume dairy and eggs, but not meat or fish. 
  • Lacto-vegetarians: people who consume dairy, but not meat, fish or eggs.
  • Vegans: those who don’t eat eggs, dairy or any type of animal derivative.

Discover the advantages and disadvantages of following a vegetarian diet


  • Taking care of your health: following this type of diet forces those who eat it to be more aware of the foods they eat and, therefore, be more careful about the nutrients they need in order to have a balanced and healthy diet. In addition, it helps to inspire creativity to create healthy dishes.
  • Taking care of your figure: although the aim of vegetarian diets is not to lose weight or maintain your figure, adopting this type of diet helps people who follow it to control their weight.  This is due to the fact that the main source of vegetarian and vegan diets is fruit, vegetables, pulses, dried fruits or cereals, food groups that don’t contain a high percentage of fat, so they provide fewer calories than animal meat.  
  • Taking care of the planet: many people who choose this type of diet understand that, by not eating meat, they are helping to look after the planet. This way, farming activity is reduced and, with it, deforestation and greenhouse gas emissions emitted into the atmosphere will also be reduced.  


The big problem with this type of diet is that you need to carefully control what you eat so you don’t lack nutrients and don’t suffer healthwise. 

  • Nutrient deficiency: vitamin B12 is necessary for the correct working of neurones and blood, so a deficiency of this vitamin can damage cardiovascular health, but can also cause neurological damage. Additionally, together with a lack of proteins and iron, it can cause anaemia. It is important to follow a balanced diet, correctly combining vegetables, pulses and cereals to improve the absorption of some vitamins and minerals.
  • Lack of essential fatty acids: these are the ones that the body cannot synthesize and must be acquired via the diet.  Essential fatty acids are omega 3 and omega 6, and their intake is necessary for the correct working of the brain and good eyesight, as well as for immune and inflammatory processes that take place in the body.  
  • Weaker bones: one of the biggest risks of stopping eating foods of animal origin is a vitamin D and calcium deficiency. The lack of these two nutrients directly affects bones since calcium is necessary for continuous bone regeneration. The presence of vitamin D in the body is essential to be able to correctly absorb calcium!

In order to be healthy, both the vegan and vegetarian diets must include a suitable amount of vegetable proteins, iron, vitamin D, calcium, omega 3, iodine and vitamin B12. Therefore, if you are considering this type of diet, we recommend that you consult a doctor or nutritionist so they can look into your situation and advise you correctly.