The present day vegan community in the U.S. involves many individuals and organizations. Besides the American Vegan Society, there are Gentle World, Vegan Outreach, Vegan Action, and vegan.com. A vegan diet is promoted by other organizations such as Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, the National Health Association (formerly American Natural Hygiene Society), Book Publishing (Tennessee), and Institute for Plant Based Nutrition.
However, eliminating all animal products from the diet increases the risk of certain nutritional deficiencies. Micronutrients of special concern for the vegan include vitamins B-12 and D, calcium, and long-chain n–3 (omega-3) fatty acids. Unless vegans regularly consume foods that are fortified with these nutrients, appropriate supplements should be consumed. In some cases, iron and zinc status of vegans may also be of concern because of the limited bioavailability of these minerals.
Vegan diets are usually higher in dietary fiber, magnesium, folic acid, vitamins C and E, iron, and phytochemicals, and they tend to be lower in calories, saturated fat and cholesterol, long-chain n–3 (omega-3) fatty acids, vitamin D, calcium, zinc, and vitamin B-12 (8). In general, vegetarians typically enjoy a lower risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD), obesity, type 2 diabetes, and some cancers
Common Vegan Foods: Oatmeal, stir-fried vegetables, cereal, toast, orange juice, peanut butter on whole wheat bread, frozen fruit desserts, lentil soup, salad bar items like chickpeas and three bean salad, dates, apples, macaroni, fruit smoothies, popcorn, spaghetti, vegetarian baked beans, guacamole, chili...
Vegans Also Eat...Tofu lasagna, homemade pancakes without eggs, hummus, eggless cookies, soy ice cream, tempeh, corn chowder, soy yogurt, rice pudding, fava beans, banana muffins, spinach pies, oat nut burgers, falafel, corn fritters, French toast made with soy milk, soy hot dogs, vegetable burgers, pumpkin casserole, scrambled tofu, seitan.
Vegans avoid meat, poultry, fish, eggs, milk and dairy produce but eat cereals, fruit, vegetables, pulses, grains, seeds and nuts. Vegans have very different nutritional issues. Without any foods of animal origin getting enough calories to maintain a healthy weight can be difficult especially for growing children and nutrients such as Vitamin B12 and iron (needed for healthy red blood cells),Vitamin D and calcium (needed for healthy bones/teeth) and zinc (essential for healthy growth) all require special attention
Once mocked as a fringe diet for sandal-wearing health food store workers, veganism is moving from marginal to mainstream in the United States. The vegan "Skinny Bitch" diet books are best-sellers, vegan staples like tempeh and tofu can be purchased at just about any supermarket, and some chain restaurants eagerly promote their plant-only menu items. Today's vegans are urban hipsters, suburban moms, college students, even professional athletes.
In the U.S., Dr. Catherine Nimmo and Rubin Abramowitz formed a Vegan Society in California (1948 to 1960). When H. Jay Dinshah founded the American Vegan Society (1960), it became a dynamic force spreading the vegan message at a propitious time in world history.
The word vegan was coined in England by Donald Watson in 1944. He, along with several other members of the Vegetarian Society in Leicester, England, wanted to form an alliance of nondairy vegetarians as a subgroup of the Society. When their proposal was rejected, they ventured to start their own organization. They prospected what to call themselves, and, after evaluating a range of ingenious possibilities, agreed that "vegan" (decisively pronounced VEE-gn, with a long "e" and hard "g") was best.
Gandhi is not the first name that vegans might think of as helping to launch the movement, and yet he did, on November 20, 1931, in London to be precise. He didn’t call it ‘vegan’ of course, but it wasn’t long before others came up with the word to describe what he was talking about.
In a 2009 survey, advocates at the not-for-profit Vegetarian Resource Group reported about 1 percent of Americans are vegan, roughly a third of the people who reported being vegetarians. A separate survey released last year by the same group found a similar breakdown for Americans aged 8 to 18.