If you’ve been a vegetarian for a while, you might be considering making the leap to full-blown veganism. This might be scary for you - or those around you who will be asking you how you’ll manage - but it can be done with minimal stress.
- Ask Yourself Why
First things first, ask yourself why you want to be vegan. People have different reasons for embracing this lifestyle choice, and it helps to choose it because it hits home with you on a deep level. Maybe you feel that you want to have less impact on the earth and you want to save the animals, for instance. Perhaps you also want to lead a healthier lifestyle. Whatever your reasons, be clear about them and ensure they are strong motivations as this will help you fulfil your decision to become vegan.
- Find Vegan Substitutes
Whatever you enjoy eating, it helps to find vegan replacements for these meals. This will mean that you don’t have to miss out on enjoying foods you love! Use soy milk, vegan cheese and vegan margarine as substitutes for dairy when baking or cooking. The best thing is that you’ll see that no animal products are required to create delicious food.
- Get Healthier!
Without eating dairy, you will need to supplement your calcium needs. This can be achieved with leafy greens and oatmeal. However, try to achieve a wide range of nutrients from your diet, with colorful vegetables and fruits, seeds, nuts and legumes.
- Wear with Pride
One of the best things about becoming a vegan is that it opens you up to new ideas and products! This is exciting, such as when it comes to clothing and cosmetics. By choosing vegan products, you can also start using ones that are better for you and the environment. For instance, plant-based make-up can reduce the event of allergic reactions, while preventing chemicals on your skin. You also don’t have products that have been tested on animals. You can make the transition to vegan, organic items one by one as this can be easier to achieve than having to change your diet and lifestyle in one go. When changing your make-up, for instance, start with items that you use the most, such as foundation and skincare items.
- Plan Ahead
One of the best tips is to plan ahead for your meals, shopping trips and social gatherings. Find restaurants that offer vegan meals and when you're eating in, make sure you schedule your meals for the week in advance so that you can plan healthy, tasty foods. Having a plan for this lifestyle change will help to keep you on track while giving you a chance to explore exciting new avenues within it. Enjoy the ride!
*Image courtesy Flickr creative commons.