Monday, October 19, 2020

“Junk Food Vegan” vs “Whole Foods Vegan”


I’ve asked a few experts to answer the question on what we should eat and what is junk food.

First up, vegan activist, coach, nutrition expert, and someone who has personally made a huge and ongoing difference in my life, John . He is not only passionate about health, but he has been a compassionate vegan, working on behalf of animals for for the past few decades. If you have been vegan for any length of time, you probably already know John, if you are new to veganism, or are just thinking about it, he is someone you will want to know as you continue in your journey.

The difference between a “junk food vegan” and a “whole foods vegan”

” First and foremost, before talking about the difference between junk food and whole food vegans, we need to validate and acknowledge that any vegan, regardless of type, should be given praise for not consuming animal products. Let us not forget the countless animals that are saved every day due to the choices that they make. Having said that, it’s true that what sometimes happens when someone turns vegan is that they want to do the right thing for the animals and the planet but they may not know much about diet. Let’s face it, good dietary practices are not taught in school other than the infamous “pyramid”with the same old animal products. Often times, vegans turn to “similar type” products that they ate as animal product consumers. These include, fake soy meats, fake soy ice creams, and generally a continuation of highly processed products minus the animal ingredients. We need to realize that achieving great health is not difficult. We just can’t believe how easy it really is when we hear it and want to make it more complicated than it is. All you have to ask yourself is “Can I find this in nature?” In other words, has what I am holding in my hand been made by a machine in a factory or is it something that came from the earth or a tree? That’s how simple it is.

The more items we eat that come in boxes, the more we are considered “junk food” eaters. Whole Foods are not found in boxes. They are found in gardens and on trees and you find them in your produce section of any store or at your local farmers market. These are the foods that we need to focus on. These are the foods that lead us to what we once ate in nature and are designed to eat. Pretty packages will not help us achieve our goals of good health. Granted, these are great products that are packaged and have their place in our lives. I would rather see someone consume a few processed foods while on a wholesome fresh fruit and vegetable diet than someone who eats no processed food and feels so bad about it that they give up the vegan diet completely. Everything has balance. We cannot forget that simple fact. The key is to increase the consumption of foods directly found and grown from the earth. Processed foods will not and cannot give us the nutrients, enzymes, micro-nutrients, and countless other essential ingredients that our bodies crave in order to be healthy. You can’t pour apple juice in your car and expect it to run. It was not designed to utilize that type of fuel. We need to really grasp the fact that we were designed to eat food from the earth. Whole, unprocessed, fresh, brimming with nutritional value and great tasting, this is the food that we can thrive on. Anything less is going over stimulate your taste buds, run havoc with your mind in the form of addictions, leave your wallet a little emptier, and worse of all, leave your body lacking what it was truly designed to consume.

Here is the list to remember, organic fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, grains, legumes and potatoes.”


  1. Sue

    What an insightful post and exactly what I needed to read this a.m.

    But yes, hope is on the horizon. More and more people are sitting up and taking notice that maybe they can be responsible for their own health and nutrition, and just maybe ‘we’ve always done it that way’ isn’t the best way.

  2. Kate

    wow! that was great advice 🙂 i just found your blog a few days ago and i think it is fantastic. It is so true, all of the food we should be eating is what we first see when we walk through the door of the grocery store- lots of fruit & veg!! So many people bolt right past this section and head straight to the middle aisles for the boxed/canned/packaged stuff in the middle of the store which is really no good. Also I’m glad Dr mentioned that just because something is vegan it doesn’t mean its healthy. I find myself sometimes eating too much vegan ice cream or cookies and then have to remind myself, “hey you can still be putting pounds on from this fatty coconut milk ice cream even though its vegan so dont be eating this everyday!” but hey im working on it

  3. Patricia

    I just found your site today, forwarded from the vegan coupon site, I believe.
    Wow – you are saying everything I need to hear. I have promised myself that this is the year I wean myself off of vegan junk food. I went vegan for my diabetes and so far it has also helped my cholesterol, but I have not lost near the weight I thought I would. Everyone expects a skinny vegan and that ain’t me! I am familiar with Novick, Esselstyn (elder and younger), Barnard, McDougal, and Cousens, I’ve read ‘em all, and still haven’t been able to get past the processed vegan foods.

    Thank you for your site. I will spend a lot of time pouring over it and using it for inspiration to kick the junk food habit.

  4. Rachel

    So why does Popper say to keep nuts, seeds, avocado etc. out of the house……to lose weight? Just curious cause we eat these often 🙂

  5. Vegan Chef

    I love John and his infinite wisdom and compassion. It really is not that difficult. Jack La Lanne said over 80 years ago “If God made it, eat it – if man made it, don’t eat it”. I always say “if it comes from a plant, eat it. If it’s made IN a plant, don’t eat it”. Dr. Hans Diehl (founder of says eat FOODS AS GROWN. Michael Pollan says “if you can’t make it in your kitchen, don’t eat it”. And Dr. Robert Lustig says “if you need to put sugar on it, you aren’t eating the right food”. (I would add oil and salt to that aw well).

    If people were not so seriously addicted to their processed foods and animal products, and not in denial about their addiction, this would be a NO-BRAINER!!!

    Every successful population in the world who is free of our Western diseases of affluence STILL EATS THE WAY WE ARE RECOMMENDING!!!

    Yet people who eat like me and JP and Natala are considered EXTREME? Don’t you think it’s MORE EXTREME to get your chests cut open and inject yourself with insulin?


    (sorry if I’m not as warm and fuzzy as Natala. I am much older than her and have lost too many friends and family members to the ravages of heart disease, cancer and type II diabetes, ALL which could have been PREVENTED AND REVERESED with a whole food/plant based diet.

    I succumber to colon cancer myself from being on a sugar/flour/oil/caffeine vegan diet for 26 years.

    Eat real food. It’s that simple.

    Love & Kale,
    Vegan Chef

  6. Sharon

    A lot of people coming to the Raw vegan diet often do the same.

    They eat a lot of processed “raw” foods (that aren’t naturally fresh or raw but may be “technically” raw) and they use a LOT of fats instead of eating fresh fruits and vegetables.

    They use raw cacao, goji berries, maca, superfoods, powders, etc. that are processed in another part of the world, packaged and shipped to a supplier near them.

    They pour all kinds of oils on their salads, and they also over-eat nuts, avocados, olives plus they go crazy for gourmet recipes and dehydrated foods.

    They are told that omega’s and “good” fats should be eaten in abundance, but don’t realize that ALL fruits and vegetables contain beneficial fats in perfect amounts, and that they don’t need to eat such high concentrated pure fats or overeat the fattier food such as nuts and avocados.

    They tend to use those as fillers since they aren’t eating enough wonderful fruits & veg to be satisfied.

    Then they blame the raw diet when they go back to cooked food.

    So whether a cooked or raw vegan diet, as whole and close to nature as possible is always the healthiest route.

  7. Susan

    I made the decision to become vegan for moral reasons… but I still don’t get the part about all the animals I am saving by doing this. It’s not like there is a registry somewhere that I have signed up for… “Susan is now a vegan, so there are 95 animals that don’t need to be killed this year.” It’s sad, really… because there is just soooo much food in this country that goes to waste… so all those animals are still going to be killed… and then just tossed in the garbage… Don’t get me wrong, I am still going to remain vegan… and eat as much of a whole food diet as I possibly can because it is what is right. But I wish there was that registry that we could go to and then there wouldn’t need to be as much suffering on the part of these poor, defenseless animals as there is…

I went on a plant based diet after diabetes almost took my life. Now, almost 2 years later not only have I reduced my type 2 diabetes symptoms, I have lost close to 200 pounds (and still losing). This is a place where I write about my journey as I continue the quest for health, and living a good life for today, and long into the future. Get hold of me on

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