While veganism is one of the fastest-growing trends around the world, not everyone is keen to be a part of the cause. Often, this is due to the demanding, and sometimes aggressive, vegan activism. However, not all vegans are militant. For most, the goal is to reduce animal products and lead a more compassionate and sustainable life. By this point, you’ve probably decided you are ready to reduce your meat and dairy consumption, and we salute you! However, as with most everything in life, the process of changing something fundamental takes time and is indeed a process. Considering this, below are eight variations of veganism. You might find you fall into one (or even more) of these categories. Remember, the goal is to reduce. Perfection is unattainable! (And yes, I got that off of an inspirational poster, but it’s true).
So, you’ve decided to go vegan, but it is hard to give up those eggs. We get it, they’re cheap and convenient! If this sounds like you, then you might be a Veggan! While you shouldn’t be discouraged over a couple of yokes, remember there are many plant-based alternatives available today! Have you heard of tofu scramble? Check out our delicious recipe here. And not to mention the “Just” egg, made from mung beans, that replicates scrambled eggs to perfection! Yum!. Before you spiral out due to guilt, take a deep breath. Here are some suggestions on how to live your best Veggan life. When it comes to baking consider using flax eggs or chia eggs. One tablespoon of ground flax or whole chia seeds (plus 2.5tbsp of water) can replace one egg when baking and cooking. If you find yourself scrambling for the real thing, try JUST plant-based eggs. From omelets to quiches, to plain scrambled eggs, JUST has got you covered!
If you find yourself sneaking out in the middle of the night, taking a quiet drive to the nearest neon-lit restaurant, and ordering something not-so-vegan, you’re a Cheagan. No worries! We all get those cravings, and being vegan 99% of the time is more than helpful! Don’t become discouraged and give up altogether just because you ate that sushi at a party last week. One great thing is the surplus of companies jumping at the opportunity to provide us with plant-based alternatives to our favorite animal-based foods. Today we have the Impossible Burger, which from personal experience I had to do a double-take. It is so much like a hamburger, I was certain the restaurant made a mistake. KFC is making a move towards vegan fried chicken! And with nearly the same number of ingredients, you can still have those freshly baked chocolate chip cookies! So, don’t turn yourself into the vegan police if you give into a craving.
If you’re someone who loves coastal crustaceans and seafaring fish you’re probably a Seagan. In the wild, Seagans can be found on the weekends at their local fish markets, sneaking a scallop or two at the best seafood place in town, or taking secret trips to Montauk for some late-night fishing. In short, Seagans are plant-based plus some seafood. For those interested in a plant-based alternative check out the mushrooms that taste like lobster, plant-based tuna, or crab free cakes. For those concerned about their Omega-3 intake, take a vegan algae supplement.
At the end of the day, if the scent of snapper reels you in, don’t flee to international waters. OopsVegan is a safe place.
Have you heard the buzz about Beegans? If so, you either are one or figured it out from the name. Fairly self-explanatory, Beegans are vegans who eat honey. Before the spotlight was on veganism, it was on the bees. Most of us know bees are a vital part of our ecosystem. Without bees, we could starve, as they are responsible for pollinating the majority of our fruit and seed-bearing crops. While beekeeping is used in tandem with crop farming to help seasonal crop production, bees themselves need honey to thrive. Bees produce an average of 1/12 teaspoons of honey during their six weeks of life. When this honey is taken, it is usually replaced with sugar water, which is not as nutritious for our buzzy friends. Here are some alternatives that keep bees happy and satisfy a Beegan’s sweet tooth: date syrup, maple syrup, molasses, butterscotch syrup, golden syrup, and agave nectar.
Whole Foods Plant-Based Vegan (/həʊl/ /fuːd/ /plɑːnt/ /beɪs/ /ˈviːɡ(ə)n/)
Do you shop at Whole Foods? Do you have a Greenpeace account? Do you read Plant Based News? If you selected one or more of these, you are a WFPB vegan. Processed sugars and prepackaged goods do not come within four feet of your lips. You sweeten your oats with dates. Your protein powder has been tested for heavy metals. And you only shop organic! Jokes aside, a WFPB vegan is someone who eats little to no processed foods. Instead, they get their daily intake from the WFPB food groups: fruits, veggies, nuts/seeds, legumes/beans, and whole grains. If you see one sneaking a bite of vegan ice cream they will deny it!
Raw Vegan (/rɔː/ /ˈviːɡ(ə)n/)
In a world, where all food is cooked below 104–118°F (40–48°C); where no processed foods are consumed; and where only the sprouted grains will survive you will find the Raw Vegan! Raw Vegans are one of the more extreme vegan subtypes. Pasta, to the Raw Vegan, means spiralized zucchini paired with an aged sprouted sourdough. It takes some serious commitment. If you are faint of heart or fear kale, Raw Veganism might not be for you. Personally, I have never been able to do it. Also, as with any diet ensure it is balanced and you are getting all vital nutrients.
Since going vegan, the two things I hear most often: ‘Where do you get protein?’ and ‘I could never live without cheese!’ (Oh, the humanity!). The latter is the focus of this vegan subtype. The Cheegan can be found scaling the Swiss Alps or backpacking through Wisconsin to the land of the cheeseheads to get their fix. It’s true, cheese is hard to give up. It has a lot of addictive properties and keeps people coming back for more. For those transitioning away for the dairy wheel, check out these lists of plant-based alternatives. So, Cheegan or not, you can stay cheesy!
Vegans come in many forms, as we’ve seen here today. How to know if there are vegans among us. Their skin will have an orange hue, like the plethora of carrots they survive on. Their eyes glow bright green in the dark like the kale pumping through their veins. And just when you think it’s safe to approach one…BAM! The vegan lays down pamphlet after pamphlet on why veganism is the way of the future! Okay, this is only true for like 0.01% of us. In all actuality, vegans are just everyday people. We eat plant-based foods, the occasional mock meat or plant-based imitation product and try to not take from animals.
If you are thinking about going vegan, consider the many possibilities of the diet and lifestyle. To reiterate, the goal is to reduce dependency on animal products and live compassionately and sustainably. But be prepared for the green eyes and orange skin…