Veganism is slowly taking over the country, and not because it is a “fad.” The countless health benefits it provides have people sharing their stories, and encouraging others to give it a try. Many restaurants are now adding delicious vegan items to their menu. Even meat lovers can enjoy the vegan diet with the Beyond Burger and Impossible Burger, mimicking beef’s signature flavor! It might sound hard to become a vegan, but it does not have to be.
The moment you share that you’re on a vegan diet, you might hear some negative comments from friends or family members. Do not let this deter you. Focus on your goal, and achieve it. You do not have to worry about your household or everyone around you, just start with you.
Make sure to do plenty of research to find out what you can and cannot have. A vegan diet cuts out all animal products, such as dairy and meat. Pretty much anything that can come from an animal (or fish) is a no-go. For example, butter is made with milk, so you cannot have butter, and common things are made with butter. However, this should not be an issue because there are vegan options to substitute like vegan butter or veganaise. Cauliflower is a delicious alternative for pizza crust and breadsticks, and there are yummy vegan cheeses as well. If you have any doubts, you can always Google if a meal or snack is vegan before you indulge. The more you know, the more success you can have with your diet.
Planning is Everything.
In order to be successful, planning is everything. The more you focus on organization, the easier it will be to execute! Do not simply think: “Oh, I will just eat salads every day and be okay.” There has to be more thought and planning, because you will eventually get bored with salads and want to give up. Meal prepping is your greatest ally.
If you have the time to cook and meal prep, there are tons of recipes right at your fingertips via the internet. For busy days, there are plenty of delicious frozen vegan meals you can pop right into the oven or microwave.
There are a lot of vegan snack options, and if you do not have the time to go buy some stick to the basics like nuts, vegetables with hummus and peanut butter, and fruits. Also, did you know that Oreos are vegan? So, if you are looking for a sweet snack, have an Oreo. It doesn’t just end there, many things you probably eat on a daily basis are
Planning extends outside the kitchen too. When you go out to eat with your family or friends, make sure to look up the restaurant’s menu beforehand to make sure you are not limited to eating the complimentary bread.
If you want to try the vegan diet, you do not have to jump into the deep end. Get your feet wet by going meatless until dinner time. Eat a plant-based breakfast and lunch, such as vegan scrambled eggs made of tofu, fruits, and curried broccoli chickpea salad. You can opt to go vegan one day a week and start there. Or you can choose to go meat-free or dairy-free and progress. Start with whichever makes you comfortable.
It is important to not look at a vegan diet as losing meat and dairy, but rather gaining delicious, healthy alternatives. The moment you think you have “cut out” animal products, you feel defeated and deprived. The simpler your meals, the better they are for you.
You will open an undiscovered world of foods when you go vegan. The best way to start the diet is by taking simple steps, preparing yourself mentally, and making a solid grocery list. Feel out what works for you, and the hardest part, honestly, will be the psychological and social aspects. Focus on your goals and health, because eating a plant-based diet will fully support your body and mind. They say it takes only 28 days to make something a habit, so give veganism at least 28 days and review what changes.