This post is mostly written for Vegans only. But some animal ingredient terms are also applicable to Vegetarians too.
Though most of the vegan diet is rich in fresh fruits and veggies, you may still find occasions when you have to purchase processed, packaged or prepared foods. When you begin shopping for vegan foods, the easiest way to know whether a food product contains animal additives would be to browse through the packaging labels. However, a lot of animal ingredients aren’t obvious, which can pose a challenge to detecting them.
Many brands of veggie burgers, for instance, contain eggs, while some soy cheeses are made together with milk. Deciphering animal ingredient in the labels is often a tedious task. How will you know if something’s vegan if you don’t understand what it is? Below are a list of 12 animal ingredients in disguise we have discovered:
- Albumin – Water-soluble proteins produced by milk, egg whites or blood from animals.
- Albumen – Occasionally wrongly identified as Albumin, Albumen is an egg white or the protein contained in it.
- Bone char – Derived from charring animal bones and animal bone ash, used to process white sugar. Primarily made from cow and cattle bones.
- Casein -The primary protein in cow’s milk, it comes in several forms, which may be listed as ammonium, caseinate, calcium caseinate, potassium caseinate, or sodium caseinate. Casein is commonly used as a major aspect of cheese, it’s also used as food additive to enhance the texture of foods, including cereals, breads, and chocolates.
- Carmine or cochineal: Red pigment manufactured from crushed beetles, used in foods, makeup, and dietary supplements.
- Gelatin – Common ingredient accustomed to make treats like Jell-O, gummy bears, and marshmallows, gelatin is manufactured by boiling the skin, tendons, ligaments, and/or bones of cows and pigs (kosher gelatin is produced from fish).
- Lard – This is made from pig fat. Sometimes found in many cuisines as a cooking fat or baking.
- Lecithin – Some Lecithin is derived from animal fat and egg (soy lecithin is constructed from soybeans); it is often found in salad dressings to avoid separation of oil and vinegar.
- Methionine – Essential amino acids produced from eggs or cow’s milk.
- Pepsin – Enzyme produced from hog stomachs.
- Rennet – An Enzymes obtained from the stomach of calves, rennet is commonly used as a coagulant during the cheese-making process.
- Whey – Made from milk, the residual liquid after milk curds are segregated out, whey is normally used to make cheese and it is generally found in protein energy drinks and bars.
So there you go, 12 Animal Ingredients disguised in food labels. How many of them do you know? Make sure you memorize them and hope this article will help you identify them on your next trip to the supermarket.
Additionally, should you have an Apple iPhone or Google Android mobile phone, your shopping experience just got easier: You may download an application that could let you scan an ingredient’s label and find out which of the mysterious words actually mean an animal product. You’ll immediately get a reply informing you whether the product is vegan or not. Here is a list of useful smartphone apps that will help you in your next shopping trip 🙂