Because of spam, I personally moderate all comments left on my blog. However, because of health issues, I will not be able to do so in the future.

If you have a personal question about LI or any related topic you can send me an email at I will try to respond.

Otherwise, this blog is now a legacy site, meaning that I am not updating it any longer. The basic information about LI is still sound. However, product information and weblinks may be out of date.

In addition, my old website, Planet Lactose, has been taken down because of the age of the information. Unfortunately, that means links to the site on this blog will no longer work.

For quick offline reference, you can purchase Planet Lactose: The Best of the Blog as an ebook on or Almost 100,000 words on LI, allergies, milk products, milk-free products, and the genetics of intolerance, along with large helpings of the weirdness that is the Net.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Origins of Modern Veganism

The august New York Times allowed readers to ask questions of Rynn Berry, the author of The Vegan Guide to New York City.

His comments on the origin of today's vegan movement (obviously, there have been many such in the past) were interesting.

In Leceister England in 1944, Donald Watson and his wife Dorothy coined the term vegan, which they formed from the first three and the last two letters of “vegetarian.” With this new term, the Watsons wanted to encompass the meaning of “vegetarian” imparted by the Pythagoreans and Buddhists, i.e. one who for reasons of compassion, abstains from consuming all foods and other products of animal origin. It took time for the word to catch on in the United State, but now it has become almost a competing term with vegetarian. To help win recognition for the vegan concept in America, Mr. H. Jay Dinshah started the American Vegan Society in Malaga, N.J., in 1960. Dinshah, of Parsee descent, infused veganism with the Jain and Buddhist doctrine of ahimsa-(non violence to all living creatures). In fact, Ahimsa was the name of the journal (latterly The American Vegan) that Mr. Dinshah and his wife published quarterly. Mr. Dinshah’s wife, Freya, published the first vegan cookbook, The Vegan Kitchen, in 1966, which remains a steady seller. Largely due to the efforts of the Dinshahs and countless unsung others, veganism has become a hip urban lifestyle, and New York City has become the most vegan-friendly city in the world.

Bookmark and Share

No comments: