Vegan diets differ from plant-based diets in that they are entirely animal-free. A vegan diet doesn't include any foods derived from animals such as honey, eggs and milk.
Plant-based diets are more varied than you might think, and the original version of the diet wasn’t actually strictly vegetarian. Instead, it more closely matched to what we call flexitarianism or a Mediterranean diet now, which means it had plenty of vegetables, wholegrains and pulses and small amounts of fish, lean meat and dairy. Whether you go full vegan or keep it flexitarian, shifting your focus to a plant-boosted diet can help to rebalance your diet by boosting your intake of fibre, wholegrains and your five-a-day. While this type of diet is naturally lower in saturated fats, it is not strictly a low-fat way of eating as saturated fats are replaced with healthier, unsaturated fats from plant oils, fish (if included) and nuts.
Unfortunately, there isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer for this, instead we need to look at the specific types of oil individually to judge if they are healthier. Palm and coconut oils tend to have a high content of saturated fat, while rapeseed, walnut, sunflower and olive varieties have a high unsaturated fat content, making them the healthier option.
With a bit of planning and variation, vegan diets can be healthy and provide all the nutrients your body needs. Alternatives are key to a successful, healthy vegan diet so we've listed a few options below:
Our foodhalls are full of delicious vegan options, just look out for the logo on the front of the packaging or the green vegan statement on the back.
Want to plan your shopping list?
Take a look at our list of M&S dishes suitable for vegans. We update this monthly to ensure it's accurate and you can ask a member of staff in store to help you find what's available in your local store. And the foods on the vegan list will not contain any of the following:
From light and bright salads through to hearty tagines and desserts, there’s something for everyone in our ready-made veggie range
Looking for vegan meal inspiration? Look no further than our range of vegan-friendly food, from tasty grains to veg-packed salads