Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Day 8: What's a Vegan

You probably remember me talking about vegetarians and vegans simultaneously in a psuedo-interchangeable way.  Historically this is correct because the term "vegan" wasn't coined until the 1940s.  That isn't to say that there weren't vegans, but they were such a small minority of vegetarians that they were referred to as vegetarians or to be distinctive strict vegetarians.  In other words, vegans aren't really separate from vegetarians, but rather they are a subset. 

Vegetarians are more common historically speaking.  No one knows where the term vegetarian comes from, but there are several cultures that have practiced vegetarianism over the historic landscape of humanity.

Vegans, even though they are subset, don't agree with what is acceptable in a vegan diet.  This is similar to a vegetarian who may or may not eat eggs.  Some vegans have no problem consuming foods derived from insects such as red dye number 4 or honey.  Others are so strict that they refuse to eat sugar that has been whitened with bone char or manufactured in a plant with machines that also process food with dairy.  I even came across a gentlemen arguing that it wasn't vegan to buy the chicken romen noodles even though the person wasn't consuming the packets. It's a kind of surreal vegan in-fighting and squabbling over who can out-vegan the other. 

It gets worse when you branch outside of the realm of food consumption to any animal consumption.  Some life-style vegans argue that dietary vegans who wear leather or wool should drop the vegan moniker.  The argument goes that they are only eating a plant-based diet and should refer to themselves as such.  They aren't vegans because they don't subscribe to same set of ethics.

All of this actually reminds me of Christians or Catholics with the in-fighting of who can out-Catholic each other.  Not a trad-Catholic who attends Latin Mass- quelle horror!! In other words, I don't take the militant vegan seriously and many vegans don't either because it doesn't actually help their cause.  The ones I see more often want to educate the public and encourage baby steps not large leaps since that's the more likely way a person will stick with veganism.

What I ate today:
Breakfast: apologies for the weird camera lighting.  That's overnight oats with black berries.

Snack: not pictured half a bagel with hummus and black berries

Lunch: left over pizza and a salad with vegan ranch not pictured chocolate chips with peanutbutter

Dinner: not pictured loaded bake potato and salad with vegan ranch.

The potato had black beans, vegan cheese, vegan sour cream (which it has saturated and trans fat so I don't think I'll be purchasing again), vegan butter, and bacon bits for crunch.

Bacon bits?

Yes. Unless it says "made from real bacon" it's not really bacon.  Bacon bits are actually soy bits.  They are flavored and dyed to look bacon-y.  And by dye I mean the unnatural kind red dye no 40.  Bacon bits are vegan.  They are what vegans term "accidentally vegan" which I'll explain tomorrow.


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