Becoming a vegan is quite an undertaking. Unlike vegetarians who only restrict themselves to a no-meat diet, vegans need to take it a step further and cut out all animal-based products from their diet and lifestyle. This means saying no to milk and cheese. While it might seem impossible to survive on a vegan diet, once you get the hang of it and fully immerse yourself in the vegans’ way of living, you will find that it becomes much more simple and easy, becoming a part of your identity. Here are some tips to help out new vegans and to help guide wannabe vegans.
Keep It Simple
While it might be tempting to buy exotic vegetables and try out complex vegan recipes, try to keep it simple. You can make a lot of tasty vegan dishes with regular vegetables so don’t spend too much time on complicated recipes or you might find yourself getting frustrated and end up thinking that being a vegan is a very time-consuming process, when in fact, it is not so at all.
Do Your Research
Make a list of all items that you are accustomed to and that you will now have to give up after becoming a vegan. Keep a copy of the list stuck to your refrigerator and saved in your mobile phone for easy access at any time. You might have to refer to the list constantly in the beginning to make sure you don’t inadvertently end up breaking your vegan diet. Also, find out vegan substitutes for sauces and other items that contain animal-based ingredients. Make a hundred percent vegan shopping list to help you out with your grocery shopping.
Clear Out Your Pantry
Go through your kitchen pantry and dispose everything that is not vegan. This will help cut down on any accidental usage of non vegan products while cooking. Once you’ve cleared out your pantry, stock it up with vegan foods for future use.
Learn to Forgive Yourself
It is not going to be an easy journey. If you lapse or end up accidentally consuming an animal-based product, acknowledge the mistake, remember to not repeat it, and then forgive yourself. Beating yourself up about every mistake that you make on your path to vegan-hood will only discourage you and make it seem like an impossible feat. Instead, use the experiences in a positive way to fortify your resolve.
While it is okay to have a healthy discussion about vegan lifestyle vs non vegan lifestyle, avoid from getting judgemental and taking a moral high ground. If anything, being overly critical about other people’s choices will only serve to alienate you and make them resent your vegan lifestyle. A much better approach would be to explain why you made the decision to go vegan by providing them with factual statements and mild reasoning.
Try Not to Limit Yourself
If you’re finding yourself holed up in your home and saying no to pretty much every social event, citing your veganism as a reason, then you are not doing it right. Do not let being a vegan become a life-limiting disease. Never use it as an excuse to get out of anything. You must always be looking at how you can live a normal life, be as active socially as you’ve always been and still be a vegan.
Do Not Apologise
Make a conscious effort to never apologise for being a vegan. It is your personal choice and is nobody’s concern. If someone does not like or approve of it, that is entirely their problem. You have nothing to apologise for. Be proud of being a vegan and be unapologetic.
And lastly, Stay Strong
There are going to be numerous temptations from every corner, you will be experiencing strong cravings for meat, there will be occasions where you’ll have to sit with meat eaters and eat a salad while they gobble up steaks and chicken wings. Stay strong through it all and then one day you’ll find that the cravings and temptations are gone and nothing can sway you from the vegan way of life.
Hope you enjoyed this post on Vegan tips for beginners.