Veganism is an enormous topic encompassing nutrition, animal protection, food politics, and more. In this short piece I’ll introduce the concept and explain its vast appeal.

The word vegan was originally defined as a diet free of meat, dairy products, and eggs. The term now also refers to any item, from shoes to shampoo, made without animal products.

Vegan diets offer compelling advantages on several fronts. They keep farm animals out of slaughterhouses and factory farms. Choosing vegan foods can also benefit your health and protect the environment.

A careful look at the reasons to go vegan is well worth your time. But our objective right now is to quickly cover the basics. So let’s keep moving.VEGAN

Are Vegan Diets Healthy?

People of every age thrive on vegan food. The most rigorous assessment of the healthfulness of vegan diets is documented by a position paper published by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. The authors determined that, “Vegan and vegetarian diets can provide significant health benefits compared with non-vegetarian diets.”

Vegan diets can even support elite levels of physical fitness. In fact, some of the world’s top athletes eat vegan. If a primarily vegan diet works for Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams, it can work for you. Going vegan offers a marvelous opportunity to upgrade your eating habits. For expert guidance on proper diet planning see our vegan nutrition primer.

You need never fall short on any particular nutrient. If required, a few supplements can cheaply and reliably close any gaps. Our vegan vitamins guide will help you make informed purchases.

In addition to proper nutrition, good health requires sufficient physical activity. Our lazy person’s fitness guide will get you off the sofa.

How Do You Go Vegan?

Switching to a vegan diet takes remarkably little effort. Our guide to going vegan explains how to make an easy transition.

Here’s its most important lesson: Don’t emphasize cutting animal-based foods out of your diet. Instead, crowd them out by constantly discovering vegan foods you prefer.

To rid your diet of animal products, focus on trying several new vegan foods each week. The more foods you try, the faster you’ll progress. So, ideally, try at least one new vegan item every day. That can be a restaurant meal, a grocery item, or a new dish you cook at home.


Vegan Foods are Everywhere

Vegans enjoy an abundance of flavorful food choices. Everywhere you look, you’ll find more vegan foods to experience.

The easiest option is, of course, ready-to-eat foods. Sure, some of these foods are unhealthy indulgences. But you’ve got plenty of wonderfully healthy choices too. We publish the definitive list of the world’s easiest vegan foods.

Sandwiches occupy a mid-point between convenience foods and actual cooking. You can make vegan sandwiches in thousands of healthy varieties. Buy large whole-grain tortillas and you can also turn any sandwich idea into a wrap.

Going vegan doesn’t mean giving up favorites like burgers, cream cheese, or yogurt. Dozens of companies make delicious vegan versions of these and other popular foods. The same goes for desserts. Vegan ice creams are marvelous and sold everywhere. And the best brownie and the best cookie I’ve ever eaten were both vegan.

If you enjoy alcohol, many of the world’s best wines and beers are vegan. And the vast majority of distilled spirits are vegan too.VEGAN

Vegan Cooking

You can master the basics of vegan cooking in no time. Just read our vegan cooking guide.

Many vegan meals take just minutes to prepare. Your first vegan cookbook should specialize in quick and easy recipes. You can later move on to more sophisticated meals.

As your cooking skills develop, your options increase. You can choose from hundreds of vegan cookbooks that collectively cover every conceivable cooking niche. Consider buying one specifically devoted to your favorite cuisine.

You can also go deep into any branch of vegan cooking that interests you. Maybe it’s desserts or Instant Pot recipes. There are even cookbooks focused entirely on vegan meats and cheeses.

Once you’ve gained confidence preparing vegan food, why not commit to going vegan at home? This move requires practically no effort, since you have total control over which foods you bring into your kitchen. Yet this simple commitment puts you a giant step closer to going entirely vegan.VEGAN

Vegan Restaurant Meals

Eating out lets you discover all sorts of exciting new dishes. Vegans have countless excellent restaurant choices. No matter where you live or visit, chances are there’s impressive vegan food near you. Thousands of vegan and vegetarian restaurants exist worldwide. Dining out is a joy when the entire menu is vegan.

Many non-vegetarian restaurants work hard to please vegans, and offer superb vegan dishes. To make ordering extra-easy, these places often label their vegan menu items.

Lebanese and Israeli cooking are especially vegan-friendly. These restaurants serve outrageously good falafel, hummus, and salads. Italian and Ethiopian restaurants also offer a variety of enticing vegan meals. We offer in-depth guides to the world’s most vegan-friendly cuisines.

If you travel abroad, you can get sensational vegan restaurant food unlike anything available at home. That’s doubly true if you seek out your destination’s favorite regional dishes.

On top of all this, vegan fast food is everywhere. That’s a big change from just a few years ago. Most of the top chains now feature delicious vegan items.

Vegan Apparel & Beauty

As you transition your diet, you may also decide to shift other lifestyle choices. Avoiding leather and wool makes great sense. Vegan clothing and apparel is easy to find. You can likewise switch to cruelty-free beauty products.

Just start with the easy stuff, and work your way forward.

Grow Your Vegan Know

That finishes this vegan introduction. However you make use of it, the vegan concept can enable you to eat and live more healthfully, in a way that reflects your values.

For further reading, start with our “Why Go Vegan?” essay or our Vegan Eating Guide. After that, you can explore the nuances of this topic by reading our FAQ and our “What is a Vegan Diet?” essay. Next, you may want to check out our unrivaled food and health coverage.

Want to go deeper still? Visit our books page for solid recommendations. offers more than a hundred articles covering every vegan-related topic. Access them all through our vegan links page. And remember: every step in a vegan direction is a good one.


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