One of the most common questions we get at Choices Cafe is what is the difference between plant-based, vegan, vegetarian and/or Paleo diets?  Since it can get pretty confusing, let’s play the “what it is/what it’s not.” game.

 

What a plant-based diet is..
A plant-based diet is one that focuses on whole/plant foods such as fruits, vegetables, legumes (beans), grains, nuts and seeds.

What a plant-based diet is not…
What it doesn’t include is meat, fish, butter, milk, eggs, cheese, animal by-products and processed foods.

What a vegan diet is…
A vegan diet abstains from all animal products including meat, fish, butter, milk, eggs and cheese. However this diet/lifestyle is also rooted in the ethical treatment of animals, emphasizing banning any products made from an animal (leather, fur, etc.) or tested on an animal (cosmetics, household cleaners, etc.)

What a vegan diet is not…
Because some people who are vegans do it for animal cruelty reasons, the focus on a healthy, plant-based diet isn’t as important.  There are many processed, ‘meat-like’ products out there that can be used to replace animal products.  So in essence, you can be what some refer to as a ‘junk-food vegan.’ For example, an Oreo cookie is considered vegan but not Plant-Based because it’s highly processed and loaded with sugar.

What a vegetarian diet is…
A vegetarian diet also abstains from all animal products.

What a vegetarian diet is not…
However, there are variations of this diet in which people consume eggs, dairy and fish.  

What a paleo diet is…
A paleo diet is based on the types of foods presumed to have been eaten by early humans, consisting chiefly of meat (grass-fed/organic), fish, vegetables, and fruit.

What a paleo diet is not..
No dairy or grain products and processed food.

Research has shown that eating a whole foods, plant-based diet with food minimally processed, is the healthiest and most nutritious fuel you can put in your body. It’s been proven to reverse and prevent chronic diseases such as diabetes, auto-immune disorders, heart disease and depression, just to name a few. By opting out of eating a diet rich in meat and loading up on veggies, you reduce your consumption of cholesterol and saturated fats while increasing your intake of fiber and heart healthy nutrients. 

At Choices Cafe we are committed to serving home made, nutritious and minimally processed whole foods to fuel your body with the nutrients necessary to sustain good health. For example, our walnut meat is made with organic, raw walnuts, soaked to unlock their nutrition, and combined with onions, garlic and seasonings. Its an omega 3 powerhouse. Try it in our Off the Walnut or La Pixsa .  Or try one of our flavor packed salads such as the Jason Style with kale, spinach, black beans, chickpea ‘tuna’, lentil patty, guacamole and cashew cheese.  Your tastebuds will thank you!  

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“You are the embodiment of the information you choose to accept and act upon. To change your circumstances you need to change your thinking and subsequent actions.” ~Adlin Sinclair