Choosing a healthy lifestyle is always the best choice. But it’s important to be mindful of the diet you opt for because it needs to be compatible with your lifestyle, sync with your weight goals, and meet nutritional requirements. 

Some of you may think of going meat-free or giving up dairy products, which often motivates people to turn vegan or vegetarian. Please note that these lifestyles are different from each other; both may include giving up meat, but vegetarians consume dairy and other animal products in their diets whereas vegans don’t. 

Curious to know which one’s best for you? Should you turn vegan or still enjoy your cheese and take the vegetarian route? At Chef V, you’ll get all your answers as we briefly discuss vegan vs. vegetarian with their benefits and downsides. 

Vegan vs. vegetarian – What’s the difference? 

Let’s take a look at the difference between vegan and vegetarian.


Veganism is a lifestyle that encourages you to give up all animal products, ranging from clothes to food items, in an attempt to save the climate and limit the exploitation of animals. It’s a lifestyle that motivates individuals to consume plant-based and dairy-free products, including whole fruits, seeds, nuts, legumes, beans, and vegetables.

More than for social reasons, people are opting for veganism or a vegan diet because of its varied health and wellness benefits. According to a 2022 report, Americans are turning vegan six times faster in 2022 than they did in 2014.  

As more and more people move toward veganism, the market is experiencing a change. Due to the increasing demand for vegan products, the global market for plant-based products is likely to grow by 12.95%. 

There are many vegan food options and alternatives that won’t let you miss your usual meat-based diet. There are vegan smoothies and burgers; you can also go for an organic juice cleanse diet and bake with plant-based ingredients, such as coconut milk and vegan meat.


A vegetarian diet excludes consuming meats, which include all animal flesh, seafood, or insects. Vegetarians may choose to only give up eating animal products but still wear materials made from their skins, such as leather jackets, wallets, or shoes. 

Vegetarian diets are mainly divided into three categories:

  • Lacto vegetarians: don’t consume meats, seafood, and eggs but do eat dairy products, including cheese, butter, and cow’s milk;
  • Ovo vegetarians: consume eggs but avoid dairy products and animal flesh; 
  • Lacto-ovo vegetarians: consume eggs and dairy products in a diet but avoid meat or meat products. 

Most of the 22% of the world’s population of vegetarians have opted for this lifestyle because of health-related factors. Conversely, only 1% of people actually turned to vegetarianism out of choice. 

To make the most of your vegetarian diet, add various nutritious foods, including vegetables, fruits, dairy, legumes and nuts. A well-planned diet helps keep you healthy and protected against common health-related problems. You can fulfill your daily intake of fiber from fruits, protein from lentils, and energy from nuts and seeds. 

The pros and cons of vegan and vegetarian diets

Benefits of a vegetarian and vegan diet

  • Research on dietary patterns and the heart shows the health benefits of a vegan and vegetarian diet. Individuals following these diets have low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, lower blood pressure, and a healthy heart. 
  • When you consume a healthy diet containing whole fruits, nuts, and vegetables, you get all essential nutrients, including vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and phytochemicals that protect you against common diseases and boost your immune system. 
  • Older research suggests a vegan diet can lower asthma symptoms. Apart from that, a vegetarian and vegan diet also boosts bone density and prevents type 2 diabetes in some individuals. 
  • Cutting down on meat or other animal products will help curb cruelty against animals and benefit the environment with low carbon emissions. 

Downsides of a vegan or vegetarian diet 

  • Most people following a vegan or vegetarian diet need to take vitamin B12 supplements to fulfill their daily vitamin B12 needs. The most significant source of B12 is seafood, including fish, sardines, and clams, but since vegetarians and vegans don’t consume animal flesh, they take medications or other substitutes to meet health requirements. 
  • The limited option for complete proteins is also a significant downside of a vegetarian diet. Complete proteins contain nine amino acids, which are rare in plant-based diets. You may need to add a variety of different proteins, such as legumes, lentils, and nuts to meet daily protein needs. 
  • Believe it or not, a vegan diet can also result in weight gain because you tend to eat more to meet your daily nutritional requirements, which is why you should always include a juice cleanse diet or intermittent fasting in your lifestyle while turning vegetarian or vegan. 
  • Going vegan is challenging; be aware of whether the food item is vegan or not before putting it on your grocery list. It requires a complete behavioral and consumer change, especially when new to the diet and philosophy. 

What works best for you? 

This mainly depends on your lifestyle, weight goals, and health requirements. The journey will be tough if you eat meat and want to give it up to become vegan or vegetarian. Plan things accordingly to deal with cravings, find substitutes for favorite dishes and how you can accommodate the change in lifestyle. 

Both vegan vs. vegetarian are lifestyle choices, and both do wonders for your health by encouraging you to eat healthily and focus on your overall well-being. You can always move back to your standard diet if things don’t go according to plan or expectation. You just need to take that one step toward a healthy lifestyle.

Learn more about this on Chef V, a platform that helps you achieve your body goals. We offer multiple juice cleanses, ranging from one day to 21-day detox challenges to take you a step closer to a healthy lifestyle. 

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