vegansaurus!

07/27/2011

Ask a Vegansaur, vol. 01  »

Hello, and welcome to what might pass for an advice column on Vegansaurus!

I’m a vegan, and people ask me a lot of questions. I’m getting pretty good at answering them, I think, so I want to share with you. Please note that my answers to your questions, while they have to go past some editors here, will only reflect my own opinions. Let’s go!

Damian asks: Should there be a “legal” definition of vegan food? Like if something is “non-alcoholic” or “artisanal”?
I think there should be for packaged/prepared foods; at least, I hope you wouldn’t wonder whether a head of cabbage is vegan. In this review, I didn’t do extra research and accepted the “no animal products” designation on the label. Unfortunately, it was not until after I had reviewed the product that I was informed it contained bee food and excretions. Even though food-licensing organizations are suspect, such a rating would make veganism more accessible—especially if, for example, you have a hard time remembering WTF carnauba wax and rennet are. I would like to see the “vegan” label become as visible on commercial products as the “gluten-free” designation is.

Roxane asks: Where do vegans get protein?
From the flesh of naughty children—try it with barbecue sauce and grilled corn. But on the realio, I get it from everything I eat. My favorite forms include tofu and quinoa, but you can also get it from every other bean ever, grains, greens, veggies, seitan, etc. Did you know that the “average” human only needs 10 to 15 percent of his or her calories to come from protein? There are plenty of articles with much more depth on this subject on this site. I know this question annoys a lot of vegans, but I welcome it—when asked sincerely—as answering might help raise awareness. Readers, what are your favorite protein sources?

Greg asks: Is it true that a vegan can’t come into your house unless invited?
It’s easy to get vegans confused with vampires, because both words start with the letter “V” and they both drink blood. KIDDING. I won’t come into your house unless you invite me, but only because I have good manners.

Want to Ask a Vegansaur something? Email me, and try not to be a jerk! Please do not confuse this column with Laura’s Ask Laura column in VegNews; read that, too! VEGAN ADVICE WOO!

[photo by Stephen and Claire Farnsworth via Flickr]

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