Beyond Vegan-ish® takes a lighthearted approach to the serious issues of health, nutrition, disease, diet, foods, plant-based products, the environment, the ethical treatment of animals and more. It coins the word “vegan-ish”, to describe those who know what veganism means and may intellectually and morally identify with the vegan way of life, embrace the vegan philosophy and adhere to the vegan diet - but not exclusively.
A vegan is generally defined as a person who does not eat any food derived from animals and who typically does not use other animal products. The suffix "ish', means "somewhat", "kind of", "approximately". Those labeled as vegan-ish® understand the benefits of a vegan lifestyle, including improved health outcomes, but fail to consistently plan, select and prepare vegan meals. Instead, these individuals are flexible in their culinary choices.
At times they may eat vegan dishes, totally abstaining from animal products, and at other times they consume vegetarian, fish, seafood, dairy, meat and other cuisines. Vegan-ish® is also a celebration of the adaption of healthier eating habits and lifestyles. More Americans are establishing healthy eating patterns with diets composed of whole foods like vegetables, fruits, beans, nuts, seeds and whole grains.
Veganism is growing in popularity and visibility, especially in countries like the U.S., Canada, the U.K., and Australia. Commonly thought of as a diet which excludes all animal products, including meat, fish, seafood, ddiary, eggs and honey, it consists of plant-based foods. It is also a lifestyle and philosophy which opposes the cruel and unethical treatment and use of animals for any reason and holds the belief that harvesting or industrial farming of animals is environmentally damaging and unsustainable.
Currently, the number of Americans identifying as vegan is at an all-time high, increasing by 600% between 2014-2017. This reported growth may be due to the health benefits associated with eliminating meat and other animal products from meals, as well as the increase in accessibility and availability of foods. A more plant-based menu is linked to improved heart health, weight loss, prevention and management of diabetes and lower rates of cancer.
While many people are fully transitioning to a vegan lifestyle by eliminating animal products completely, others are hesitant to fully dedicate themselves to veganism. They endorse veganism in theory, but find it challenging to practice. Adapting a vegan diet requires conscious and mindful intention in the planning and choice of foods. For example, foods which contain milk, eggs or cheese are eliminated. Many commercial and ready to eat foods, which are readily available in grocery stores and restaurants, like breads, pastries, pastas, frozen and quickly prepared foods, may be off limits.
Despite these challenges, veganism is no longer considered a fringe notion but has entered the mainstream. The Vegan-ish® brand offers garments, kitchen and other household merchandise, bearing the Vegan-ish® logo. These products are designed to draw attention to the many aspects of veganism and related subjects. Aprons, mugs, dish towels, tea towels, T-shirts, hoodies, napkins and more, offer an amusing way to identify and connect like-minded and health conscious individuals as they learn, develop and evolve in their journey to healthy eating and long lives.