Becoming Vegan: An Easy way to transition

What is a vegan?

A vegan is someone who doesn’t consume any animal products. They don’t eat meat (fish is meat), eggs, or dairy (ice cream, milk, cheese, etc.).

Reasons to become vegan

People have different reasons to become vegan. Some people love animals and don’t want to harm them. Another reason is they want to help the environment and lessen their carbon footprint (slaughtering animals does damage to the environment), and others want/need to change their diet to become healthier.

How to become vegan

It’s easy. If it’s made from an animal don’t eat it. Actually it’s a really hard choice if you have been eating animal products for a long time. If you are someone who loves animals, then it makes the decision easier. I love dairy (PIZZA!) and eggs, so transitioning is not an easy task.

The best way to become vegan is replacing the meat. Finding meat replacements is easy. It use to be hard because you had to go to expensive places like Whole Foods, but now you can go into Kroger, Walmart, and other local grocery stores to find veggie burgers, meatless chicken patties, fake bacon, fake ribs, and etc.

My advice for anyone who wants to go vegan is to go vegetarian first. It’s an easier transition because it’s so easy to find meat replacements. It’s also easy to find something to eat at restaurants. You even have a variety of choices at fast food restaurants. I mean, even Burger King has a veggie burger!

After that, you can start replacing dairy with almond milk, soy milk, coconut milk, and so on. I have yet to find a good replacement for cheese…

Vegan does not equal healthy

Just because you’re vegan doesn’t mean that you’re eating healthy. Did you know Oreos, and some Pop Tart flavors are vegan? Have you read the ingredient list for those products? These foods are very processed, and eating a lot of these products is not healthy. Honestly, if the ingredient list is a mile long, you shouldn’t eat it. I learned that if a 2nd grader can’t pronounce the ingredients, don’t eat it.

Vegan Replacements

As I said before a lot of local grocery stores carry meat replacements, but you have to read the ingredients to make sure they don’t include dairy or eggs.

Always read the ingredients for Morningstar products because most are vegetarian, but not vegan. Most Boca products are vegan except for the sausage. I always tend to read the ingredients for fake pork products because they usually have dairy or eggs. Gardein is another vegan brand that has a lot of meat replacement choices. I love their mandarin orange chicken and their beef tips.

If you can’t give up snacks, but want one that’s not processed, Back to Nature has a lot of vegan crackers and cookies. Annie also has a variety of snacks that are vegan.

If you want a list of foods at the local grocery store that are accidentally vegan, Peta has one here.

Vegan Supplements

I always make sure to tell vegans to take B-12 supplements. It’s very hard, even as a meat-eater to get enough B-12. Make sure your B-12 is from Methylcobalamin. This is the natural form of B-12. The other, Cyanocobalamin, is man-made. I like to take the Jarrow Formulas Methylcobalamin (Methyl B12).

Are there any vegans here? Leave a comment on your favorite foods and tell us how you made the transition.

-P

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