A vegetarian's diet does not include any food products which directly caused an animal to die, i.e. meat, fish, fowl, shellfish, rennet (from a cow's stomach, found in some cheeses), and gelatine (made from various animals parts such as hooves and cartilage, found in some jellies, sauces, chocolates and gummi lollies). A strict vegetarian will remember to ask about rennet and gelatine, but not all vegetarians do.
A lacto-vegetarian is as above, as well as adding dairy to their diet.
An ovo-vegetarian is as per the first paragraph, as well as adding eggs to their diet.
A lacto-ovo vegetarian is as per the first paragraph, as well as adding both dairy and eggs to their diet.
Jain vegetarians are also as per the first paragraph, however they also exclude root vegetables such as turnips and carrots. This is because of religious beliefs.
Buddhist vegetarians are also as per the first paragraph, however they also exclude garlic and onion, as these are viewed as overstimulating/sensory foods.
A plant based diet abstains from all animal products - no meat, fish, fowl, shellfish, eggs, dairy, rennet, gelatine, oyster sauce, fish sauce, duck fat, etc. This is based on research such as The China Study and W.H.O. amongst others which show that animals products, particularly meat and dairy, cause inflammation, high cholestorel, can lead to cancer growth, heart disease, diabetes, and other risk factors.
Veganism is not just a diet like the above-mentioned plant based diet. Vegans abstain from all animal products as much as practically possible, in all areas of life. As well as the food aspect, they also abstain from animal products in clothing such as leather, wool, silk, fur, suede, and also buy toiletries and make up that is not tested on animals, or sold in China (where animal testing in legally mandatory, unless the product was first made there). Veganism is based on the idea that animals are not products or commodities; they have a right to live in peace just as humans do. Vegans are against specism and carnism. Animal rights are not the only reason, or even the main reason, some people go vegan though. There are also ethical, environmental, health and social impact issues (such as the global food shortage).
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