"I'm vegan for health reasons" - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 05-01-2012, 02:07 PM
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Am I crazy for thinking that it's impossible for someone to be vegan just for health reasons.
Is being a vegan about not supporting animal cruelty and not using products tested on animals? Everytime someone tells me this I'm just like
...vegan isn't just about food???
and they really defensive....
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#2 Old 05-01-2012, 02:15 PM
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Here's my take. Vegan = no animal products, as much as practical and possible. That extends beyond food. So someone who is vegan abstains from eating animals, wearing animals, etc. Its unlikely that anyone would be motivated to do that purely for health reasons, or even environmental. But I won't rule out the possibility. And in fact I really don't care what someone's motives are so long as they behave in a manner that is ethical. And although I wouldn't call someone who eats a purely plant-based diet a "vegan" if they wear leather or fur, I won't argue with them about it; I'll let people self-identify however they want just as I will for gender, race, sexual orientation, etc.
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#3 Old 05-01-2012, 02:27 PM
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I've stayed quiet for a really long time, but I keep hearing this more and more to the point that it just frustrates me lol.
Although, I do not argue with people I just state my opinion as politely as possible...and then it gets ugly and I just leave it alone haha.
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#4 Old 05-01-2012, 02:32 PM
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Ive heard people say this too. I kind of figure that if they love the food enough (and they will!!!) they will stay vegetarian or vegan for life... so I dont see any point in discouraging them.
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#5 Old 05-01-2012, 02:32 PM
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I know "vegans" who seem to think that eating vegan somehow allows you to buy a fancy leather bag or shoes every so often with fewer moral consequences.

It is our choices that show what we truly are far more than our abilities. ~A. Dumbledore
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#6 Old 05-01-2012, 03:03 PM
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"I follow a vegan diet" or "I'm a dietary vegan" would be more accurate.
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#7 Old 05-01-2012, 03:04 PM
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#8 Old 05-01-2012, 03:05 PM
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I eat vegan for health reasons... how's that.

You do have to keep in mind most lay people do not understand the term vegan or what it means outside of diet.
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#9 Old 05-01-2012, 03:48 PM
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'Vegan' is what you do, not why you do it. Elaine already said everything I would to elaborate, so I'll save some typing and just say 'yup' to her post.

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#10 Old 05-01-2012, 04:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Poppy View Post

I know "vegans" who seem to think that eating vegan somehow allows you to buy a fancy leather bag or shoes every so often with fewer moral consequences.

Wow

Quote:
Originally Posted by cornsail View Post

"I follow a vegan diet" or "I'm a dietary vegan" would be more accurate.

Yep, or plant based diet works too.

It does annoy me a bit when people misuse terms, but at the same time I'm really happy they are at least not eating animal products so I'm not going to look a gift horse in the mouth (or whatever the vegan equivalent of that expression would be )

If I see people misusing terms I politely correct them, but my hope is that as plant based diets become more popular more and more people will learn about the ethical issues and go all the way with it.

"If we could live happy and healthy lives without harming others... why wouldn't we?" - Edgars Mission
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#11 Old 05-01-2012, 04:57 PM
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I started for health reasons, then it became ethical later.
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#12 Old 05-01-2012, 04:58 PM
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I started for health reasons, then it became ethical later.

Yay! And hopefully more will follow

"If we could live happy and healthy lives without harming others... why wouldn't we?" - Edgars Mission
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#13 Old 05-02-2012, 12:19 AM
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I always thought the same, I was under the impression there were people completely vegan for health reasons - but maybe not, but they've had a vegan diet, which makes a lot more sense.

Although even then I have alwas wondered, if you're vegan for health reasons, what if your in a situation where you aren't in control of what you eat (around a friends, or in a resturaunt you didnt' choose, etc) and your choices were limited in a way that the healthier option wasn't the vegan one? As a vegan, you'd always eat vegan, but if you're doing it for health reasons there wouldn't be a reason to pick the vegan option. Maybe this doesn't come up, I imagine if you're so contientious about health eating out in resturaunts probally doesn't happen much either, but I just always wondered. I've eaten some pretty unhealthy stuff because of being vegan - likes chips and salad at resturaunts, or on holidays where I don't choose what I eat.

I hope nobody thinks I'm being rude I'm genuinely curious. Also I'm not asking anybody in particular, you don't have to answer!
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#14 Old 05-02-2012, 02:34 AM
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I was always taught that 'strict vegetarian' meant eating no animal stuff and 'vegan' was a western sociocultural philosophy that included a (usually western themed) strict vegetarian diet as a mandatory requisite.
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#15 Old 05-02-2012, 02:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jessickah View Post

Am I crazy for thinking that it's impossible for someone to be vegan just for health reasons.
Is being a vegan about not supporting animal cruelty and not using products tested on animals? Everytime someone tells me this I'm just like
...vegan isn't just about food???
and they really defensive....

Entirely possible to be vegan just for health reasons.

It is weird though!

Not a perfect analogy, but: It's a bit like learning to build a car from scratch but having zero interest in ever learning to drive.
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#16 Old 05-02-2012, 02:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Kari View Post

I started for health reasons, then it became ethical later.

Yes!

Once you don't need meat in your body you no longer need the unethical BS in your head to justify it, kinda thing?
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#17 Old 05-02-2012, 04:42 AM
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#18 Old 05-02-2012, 04:50 AM
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Thankyou, I was just REALLY confused.
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#19 Old 05-02-2012, 04:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Identity_thief View Post

I always thought the same, I was under the impression there were people completely vegan for health reasons - but maybe not, but they've had a vegan diet, which makes a lot more sense.

Although even then I have alwas wondered, if you're vegan for health reasons, what if your in a situation where you aren't in control of what you eat (around a friends, or in a resturaunt you didnt' choose, etc) and your choices were limited in a way that the healthier option wasn't the vegan one? As a vegan, you'd always eat vegan, but if you're doing it for health reasons there wouldn't be a reason to pick the vegan option. Maybe this doesn't come up, I imagine if you're so contientious about health eating out in resturaunts probally doesn't happen much either, but I just always wondered. I've eaten some pretty unhealthy stuff because of being vegan - likes chips and salad at resturaunts, or on holidays where I don't choose what I eat.

I hope nobody thinks I'm being rude I'm genuinely curious. Also I'm not asking anybody in particular, you don't have to answer!

That crossed my mind as well because it's not like they are morally opposed to it~!
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#20 Old 05-02-2012, 05:49 AM
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Originally Posted by Clueless Git View Post

Yes!

Once you don't need meat in your body you no longer need the unethical BS in your head to justify it, kinda thing?

For me, it became ethical after I started getting more involved in message boards like this one and PPK -- the ethical issues came to light, and I also read the 30 Day Vegan Challenge, which brought the rest to light. I came to the conclusion that I cannot support those industries anymore.

But it did start as purely health reasons, as an experiment to see if I could "cure" my gallbladder issues and keep my organs by consuming zero dietary cholesterol along with a low-fat diet.

On the eating out question, yes, at that point I was thinking of myself more as a "vegetarian with vegan tendencies" as someone on this board has in their signature, because I thought it would be difficult to eat vegan at restaurants. But those cheesy, fatty foods were making me sick. So then I wound up eating vegan more when eating out and realized it really wasn't that hard.

Now it has extended to other areas of my life, like buying shoes and sweaters. I won't pretend I'm not a "newbie" and that I still don't make a LOT of mistakes, but I'm trying.
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#21 Old 05-02-2012, 08:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Identity_thief View Post

Although even then I have alwas wondered, if you're vegan for health reasons, what if your in a situation where you aren't in control of what you eat (around a friends, or in a resturaunt you didnt' choose, etc) and your choices were limited in a way that the healthier option wasn't the vegan one? As a vegan, you'd always eat vegan, but if you're doing it for health reasons there wouldn't be a reason to pick the vegan option. Maybe this doesn't come up, I imagine if you're so contientious about health eating out in resturaunts probally doesn't happen much either, but I just always wondered. I've eaten some pretty unhealthy stuff because of being vegan - likes chips and salad at resturaunts, or on holidays where I don't choose what I eat.

Yeah I'm wondering the same. Obviously, going into a resteraunt and having the tomato and roasted vegetable (egg) pasta is going to be healthier than having the plate of fries us vegans are stuck with. So I'd imagine being vegan for health reasons may involve a lot of exceptions.
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#22 Old 05-02-2012, 11:10 AM
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Vegan for health makes no sense. I don't go out of my way to buy down alternative pillows and comforters, vinyl shoes and bags, and boycott lip balms with beeswax and lanolin in them for my health. What vegans eat is only a fraction of what goes into living as a vegan.

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Originally Posted by Auxin View Post

I was always taught that 'strict vegetarian' meant eating no animal stuff and 'vegan' was a western sociocultural philosophy that included a (usually western themed) strict vegetarian diet as a mandatory requisite.

Yeah.

www.thesaucyvegan.com
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#23 Old 05-02-2012, 12:01 PM
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ive got nothing against people who eat vegan food for health reasons cuz they are reducing the profits of the meat & dairy industries so i consider anyone like that an ally but if they only do it for that reason & are then stupid enough to call themselves a "vegan" in my company, i will whip out google in front of them & put them straight on a few facts about the vegan lifestyle cuz they are clearly a blinkered wingnut who has never bothered to look up what a vegan actually is & they could obviously do with the reality check

auto correct can kiss my ask
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#24 Old 05-02-2012, 12:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Earthling View Post

'Strict vegetarian' is a more or less meaningless term.

Well in living languages all terms are meaningless if the standard of measurement is absolute uniformity of definition. Thats how language is. Gay used to mean happy, the common word for cats now means something quite different, even the word 'yam' can mean 20 different things depending on who you talk to. People use dead languages when they need uniformity. The latin word for vegetarian is Leo, but if you tell westerners your a leo they might just think your stuck in the 70's.
When pitted against absolute reality, raw human experience, or even human cognition language is a crude and inefficient tool.
But in any case 'strict vegetarian' is a term thats been around a while.
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#25 Old 05-02-2012, 12:27 PM
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I probably wouldn't say anything to a person if they incorrectly called themselves vegan and were not, unless they brought it up themselves. But yeah, I don't think there is such a thing as entirely health-related reasons for being a true vegan.

Apparently, it's a coveted title to be "vegan" now, so. *shrug*
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#26 Old 05-02-2012, 12:33 PM
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Yeah I gotta agree with the term "strict vegetarian" to me it means no animal products were as vegetarians are commonly seen as being able to eat dairy/eggs even though they are more properly labeled as lacto-ovo vegetarians. To me using the "strict" denotes that one eats no animal products no further explanation needed. Certainly better than saying one eats vegan.
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#27 Old 05-02-2012, 12:35 PM
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Apparently, it's a coveted title to be "vegan" now, so. *shrug*

No not really at least among the general populace. I think using the term "vegan" to describe diet is more out of ignorance.
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#28 Old 05-02-2012, 01:19 PM
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Well in living languages all terms are meaningless if the standard of measurement is absolute uniformity of definition. Thats how language is. Gay used to mean happy, the common word for cats now means something quite different, even the word 'yam' can mean 20 different things depending on who you talk to. People use dead languages when they need uniformity. The latin word for vegetarian is Leo, but if you tell westerners your a leo they might just think your stuck in the 70's.
When pitted against absolute reality, raw human experience, or even human cognition language is a crude and inefficient tool.
But in any case 'strict vegetarian' is a term thats been around a while.

I don't think most people know what "strict vegetarian" means.
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#29 Old 05-02-2012, 01:30 PM
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My aunt has always been a vegan for health reasons to my knowledge (we talk about vegansim a lot, the cancers and other diseases out there and how they're linked to eating animal products etc, which was her motivation to become vegan in the first place) and I have no idea whether or not she uses leather or other animal products but would never think to ask her and let her know that if she is, that she's not really vegan. Furthermore, if I ever noticed her with a leather bag or non-vegan shoes I wouldn't call her out on it either. She's doing a heck of a lot more to prevent animal suffering than 99.9999% of everyone else I know IRL so way to go, her!

Also I think to people who are not very familiar with the full meaning of vegan, it is a description of a person's diet. Just as vegetarian is. I didn't know it extended further than that until I explored it for myself and found VB, to be honest. The term "vegan coat" sounded odd to me because to me (then), vegan=food.

All in all though, this kind of reminds me of a "who's more vegan" pissing contest. Some veg*ns refuse to cook meat for omni relatives and inquire at a restaurant as to if the oil used for their french fries is also used to cook meat... and some do not.

One person's "practical and possible" may not be the same as the next person's.

-Kari, Minnesota mommy, wife and vegetarian. treatyourbodyright.blogspot.com
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#30 Old 05-02-2012, 01:34 PM
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I think rejecting the notion that it would be vegan to buy a fur coat is very far from anything that could be characterized as "holier than thou" or "'who's more vegan' contest".

"and I stand

upon a mountain

made of weak and useless men"

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