As a vegetarian myself, I get hyped every time I meet other people who share the same diet as me. That said, I've learned that while we all refuse to eat meat, vegetarians can differ in surprising ways.

I've noticed that we tend to fall into a few distinct categories based on how we came to vegetarianism, how we express it, and what (if any) sort of activism we participate in. So instead of just one vegetarian stereotype you'll likely encounter in college, here are five.

1. The "Vegetarian"

chicken, spinach, rice
Zoe Denenberg

This person loves to tell you all about the benefits of a vegetarian diet, always shares vegetarian recipes, and tries to convince you to become vegetarian along with them. However, they can also be found indulging in some late-night pork dumplings, perplexing everyone as to what their definition of "vegetarian" actually is.

Sure, they'll go for the salad over the rack of ribs, but they aren't going to fuss when the salad comes with bacon bits. This vegetarian seems to endorse the diet in theory, but doesn't sweat the details in practice.

2. The Health Nut

This vegetarian will sing the praises of a plant-based diet: they lost 15 pounds, their skin is clearer, their hair is shinier, and they're far more energized. They inspire you to start a juice cleanse and eat more salad, but when you're left starving and hangry one week later, you become stumped as to how this person can possibly live off of berries and lettuce alone.

Try as you might, you just can't bring yourself to accept their invitation to join them for spin classes at 7 am on Saturday morning. After utterly failing to follow their lead, you tell yourself this vegetarian can't be a real human being and leave it at that.

3. The Activist

It is impossible for you to know this person is not a vegetarian between their Instagram bio and Peta t-shirts, but if that isn't enough, they'll be happy to bring it up with you in every conversation you have with them.

This vegetarian will remind you that pigs have the IQ of a three-year-old child (and therefore understand death) right as you bite into your BBQ pork sandwich and loves to suggest everyone watch "Earthlings."

Although at first you'd like their pictures from the latest animal rights protest or pig-save, after they post the 50th graphic slaughterhouse video to Facebook it's time to just block them.

4. The Passive-Aggressive Vegetarian

beans, rice, pea, curry
Emily Head

This vegetarian claims they understand and respect meat eating diets and would never judge the food choices of their friends, but they'll nonchalantly drop some facts about the cruelty of animal agriculture or the detrimental environmental impact of meat production.

They could be cooking meals for their friends from the kindness of their heart, but more likely it is their sly way of convincing people vegetarianism is doable and tasty. This vegetarian wants to be chill and fight the militant vegetarian stereotype, but can't help nudging others in the right direction in their own subtle way. 

5. The Hippie

This person discovered vegetarianism during their gap year in India and will emphasize how spiritually in-touch they feel on this diet. If you try to talk to them about vegetarianism, you'll find it entangled in a web of counter-culture ideology, so you'll somehow end up discussing Buddhist meditation and the metaphysical benefits of LSD.

Like yoga, holistic medicine, and elephant pants, vegetarianism is simply a facet of their greater boho aesthetic and peaceful philosophy. 

In all seriousness, I respect all vegetarians no matter how they express their lifestyle, and love that so many people get into vegetarianism in college. While some may have their quirks, they ultimately aim to help the environment, the animals, or just their own health —all goals that vegetarians and meat eaters alike can appreciate.