You know it’s a healthier and happier lifestyle both for you and the planet, but that doesn’t mean going vegan is always a smooth transition. However, by adopting some tips from the beginning, you can embrace the lifestyle and avoid potential pitfalls.
- 1. Plan Your Meals:
If you are not accustomed to eating lots of greens in your meals, then you might not know where to start. Having a food plan for a week ahead of time is a great way to ensure that you won’t go hungry or feel that this new lifestyle is overwhelming. Make sure your kitchen is always stocked with delicious vegan treats, such as beans, whole grains and leafy vegetables. If you have vegan food available, the process is easier. Start replacing non-vegan foods with vegan alternatives. For instance, cottage cheese can be replaced by crumbled tofu and milk can be replaced by almond or rice milk.
- 2. Make it a Fun Discovery:
Instead of thinking of your vegan lifestyle as restrictive - that is, featuring all the things you can no longer do or eat - view it from the point of view of an adventure! Now is the time to explore new kinds of clothing material, cosmetics and food that will open up new paths for you - and make you healthier in the process.
- 3. You Can Enjoy Social Eating:
It might feel like you won’t have many vegan options when dining out, but this is not always the case. Scrutinize restaurant menus and you’ll see that there are non-animal foods you can enjoy. For instance, organic tofu, vegan hummus, veggie burgers, vegetarian burritos, and so on. Don’t be afraid to ask the waiter about vegan options or calling the restaurant ahead of time to see if they will be able to accommodate your vegan diet.
- 4. Don’t Worry Too Much About Protein:
It’s a common myth that vegan diets don’t offer enough protein sources. Many people who want to become vegan might even be put off this lifestyle choice because they fear they will suffer a lack of protein. The truth is, there are many protein-rich foods you can consume, such as nuts, legumes and soy. How much protein do you really need? The recommended daily intake for protein is approximately 36 grams of protein for every 100 pounds of body weight.
- 5. Connect with Other Vegans:
Reach out to other vegans so that you have support. It helps to share cooking ideas or experiences, and this can help keep you motivated. If you know a few vegans, why not host a vegan party at your home? Your friends can bring other vegan friends and you can all have a lovely meet-up in no time!
*Image courtesy Flickr creative commons.