The what, why, and how of being a vegan are sometimes questions that can make a head spin. This can easily be prevented with just a few simple informational details. Before we delve too deeply into the dimensions of veganism, let’s cover the gamut of other dietary lifestyle choices.
Paleo- the “anti-vegan” diet allows the follower to eat meat, with a side of meat, and meat as the third course as well. Veggies are acceptable, but fruit is to be very limited and grains are a huge no-no. Personal take: This diet seems to mirror the Atkins diet, does it not? Let us take a moment and recall how his life choices affected his outcome…. Death of coronary artery disease has been proven to be greatly increased by meat and dairy consumption. And, with coronary artery disease being the #1 killer in America, I personally would avoid this diet like the Black Plague.
Pescetarian- There are several different positions here, but according to Wiki those that follow a pescetarian diet eat only seafood, and do not partake in other animal’s flesh. They are considered lacto-ovo, eating dairy and eggs, but not all pescetarians do this.
Vegetarian- There are variations within this grouping as well. The typical vegetarian drinks milk, eats eggs, fruits, veggies, legumes, and grains. Although, some vegetarians cut dairy and only eat eggs, or visa versa. The reasons for choosing this lifestyle range from animal rights to health reasons and everything in between.
Vegan- This group of people avoid all animal bi-products including dairy, eggs, honey, and, of course, all flesh (meat). Veganism generally becomes misconstrued by those who do not participate in the lifestyle. However, being a vegan is neither difficult, nor unhealthy.
Alright, let’s get down to the nitty-gritty. First things first: WHAT
What does a vegan lifestyle entail?
It only requires that you respect yourself, animals, and the environment.
What else is there? Oh, that’s right, the food The focus oftentimes gets hung up on what a vegan CAN’T eat, rather than all the foods that CAN be eaten. Fruits, veggies, legumes, nuts, grains, and seeds are not only easy to prepare, have on hand, and satisfying to the tastebuds, they are also usually cruelty free & full of all the vital nutrients needed for a thriving life!
WHY: To help put an end to animal cruelty, for a healthier daily life, reduce environmental pollution, and…why NOT?? The vegan community has been consistently growing due to documentaries like “PlanEAT”, “Forks Over Knives”, and “The China Study”. These books/movies show the death warrant issued those that follow the SAD (Standard American Diet), versus the copious health benefits and disease reversal through simply changing food intake. Find your why, vegucate yourself, and you will be not only unstoppable in your health, but also when asked those ridiculous questions like: “but, how do you get your protein?”
HOW to be a Vegan: My first recommendation to anyone interested in trying to change their dietary intake would be to choose ONE thing to eliminate at a time. Some of you may be able to drop it (your animal bi-products/meat) like it’s hot, but the average person tends to need to take baby steps. There is NOTHING wrong with that!!!
If eggs aren’t that big of a deal, cut them first and eliminate all products (breads, etc) that have egg in them. Then slowly progress toward your goal. I personally started with dairy because it wrecked house anyway, so…why not? I already wasn’t eating meat or gluten, so I was most the way there. I wasn’t even aware that egg or butter was found in so many things I had in my home! The further I delved into my research, the more steps I took toward a total plan-based lifestyle.
Second recommendation, mentioned briefly above, vegucate. Get yours hands on books, movies, documentaries, scientific research, youtube videos, and pamphlets that differentiate between FDA standards and compassionate standards. Once you have a general understanding of the corrupt happenings within the meat and dairy council of America, you will be equipped to answer questions as they come. ”Isn’t dairy good for you?” “What about nutrients only found in eggs?” etc.
Live with Beauty, Compassion, Love, & a Vegan heart