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Vegan

by Joost Nusselder | Updated:  August 3, 2022

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Veganism is the practice of abstaining from the use of animal products, particularly in diet, as well as following an associated philosophy that rejects the commodity status of sentient animals. A follower of veganism is known as a vegan. Distinctions are sometimes made between different categories of veganism. Unlike ovo-lacto vegetarians, Dietary vegans (or strict vegetarians) refrain from consuming animal products, not only meat but also eggs, dairy products, and other animal-derived substances. The term ethical vegan is often applied to those who not only follow a vegan diet, but extend the vegan philosophy into other areas of their lives, and oppose the use of animals and animal products for any purpose.”Vegan Diets Become More Popular, More Mainstream”, Associated Press/CBS News, 5 January 2011: “Ethical vegans have a moral aversion to harming animals for human consumption … though the term often is used to describe people who follow the diet, not the larger philosophy.” Gary Francione and Robert Garner, The Animal Rights Debate: Abolition Or Regulation? Columbia University Press, 2010, p. 62: “Although veganism may represent a matter of diet or lifestyle for some, ethical veganism is a profound moral and political commitment to abolition on the individual level and extends not only to matters of food but also to the wearing or using of animal products. Ethical veganism is the personal rejection of the commodity status of nonhuman animals …” Victoria Moran, “Veganism: The Ethics, the Philosophy, the Diet,” Vegetarian Times, January 1989, p. 50: “Webster’s dictionary provides a most dry and limiting definition of the word ‘vegan’: ‘one that consumes no animal food or dairy products.’ This description explains dietary veganism, but so-called ethical vegans – and they are the majority – carry the philosophy further.” Another term used is environmental veganism, which refers to the avoidance of animal products on the premise that the harvesting or industrial farming of animals is environmentally damaging and unsustainable. The term vegan was coined in 1944 by Donald Watson when he co-founded the Vegan Society in England, at first to mean “non-dairy vegetarian” and later to refer to “the doctrine that man should live without exploiting animals.” Interest in veganism increased in the 2000s; vegan food became increasingly available in supermarkets and restaurants in many countries. Vegan diets tend to be higher in dietary fibre, magnesium, folic acid, vitamin C, vitamin E, iron and phytochemicals, and lower in calories, saturated fat, cholesterol, long-chain omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin D, calcium, zinc and vitamin B12. Well-planned vegan diets can reduce the risk of some types of chronic disease, and are regarded as appropriate for all stages of the life-cycle by the American Dietetic Association, the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council, and Dietitians of Canada. Because uncontaminated plant foods do not provide vitamin B12 (which is produced by microorganisms such as bacteria), researchers agree that vegans should eat B12-fortified foods or take a supplement.

Check out our new cookbook

Bitemybun's family recipes with complete meal planner and recipe guide.

Try it out for free with Kindle Unlimited:

Read for free

Joost Nusselder, the founder of Bite My Bun is a content marketer, dad and loves trying out new food with Japanese food at the heart of his passion, and together with his team he's been creating in-depth blog articles since 2016 to help loyal readers with recipes and cooking tips.