What do we mean when we discuss eating a whole food plant-based (WFPB) diet? To put it in the simplest of terms, we mean following a dietary pattern that focuses on eating plants in as close to their natural “as grown” condition as possible. These foods include fruit, starchy and non-starchy vegetables, whole grains, beans, legumes, pulses, herbs and spices, nuts and seeds, each of which is unprocessed or minimally processed and without the need for added “chemicals”. It’s a lifestyle that does not include eating animal parts or products, which means it excludes things like meat, poultry, seafood, dairy, eggs, butter, cheese, yogurt, ice cream, etc.
While the WFPB lifestyle excludes all animal derived products, it’s very distinct from being a “vegan” lifestyle. Probably the simplest way to distinguish the two is that vegan is all about what we don’t eat (animals and their byproducts) while WFPB is about what we do (plants).