If you are wondering how to become vegan, you must first know some aspects of veganism.
There are two ways to become vegan.
The first is the transition overnight when you remove from your menu all foods of animal origin (eggs, milk, cheese, meat, honey).
The second way to become vegan is to gradually eliminate animal foods, to give your body time to get used to the change from non-vegan to vegan.
If you are wondering how to become vegan, you should know that veganism is a lifestyle, not just a diet.
This way, you will appreciate yourself more; you will be able to stay healthy, to be in shape.
Also, you should know there are several types of a vegan diet, so you can choose which one suits the best for you.
A beginner vegan will have little trouble at first until he gets used to the reactions of the people around him.
Going out will be a little stressful at first, but we’ll talk about that too.
What type of vegan diet should I choose?
Always remember that becoming vegan is a learning process. Living in a vegan lifestyle, in a non-vegan world, requires both courage and curiosity.
First, there are some different types of vegan diets; all of them are (almost) cruelty-free and plant-based.
You can choose whatever type of vegan diet you want, what type suits the best for you.
Types of vegan diets:
- Raw vegan = It is the most restrictive diet, fruits, vegetables, oilseeds, seeds, all raw or processed up to 41 degrees, ie, in the heat of the sun.
- Vegan = Everything is edible, except meat, eggs, and dairy.
- Vegetarian = It’s a more relaxed vegan. It allows the consumption of dairy and eggs and excludes meat of any kind.
- Plant-based diet = A plant-based diet, not excluding meat and dairy products. It is 80-90% vegan, with occasional consumption of animal products.
Once you have chosen what type of vegan diet you will follow, it is essential to understand what this choice means and how we can stay healthy even if we give up animal foods.
When taken correctly, the vegan diet has various benefits for the body. Still, if you do not properly supplement specific properties that you usually get from meat, there is a risk of nutrient deficiencies.
Also, if you had chosen a type of vegan diet that isn’t suited for you, you can always make a change.
Leaving the comfort zone can take you on a journey of discovering new kitchens.
There are thousands of vegan recipes from every corner of the globe.
Whatever your food preferences, you will come across amazing new dishes and exciting variations of your favorite recipes.
You will be pleasantly surprised by the number of dishes that you can easily prepared from foods that you already have at home or that you can find in supermarkets.
What’s the difference between vegetarianism and veganism?
A vegetarian does not eat meat, while a vegan eats absolutely nothing from an animal – no milk or eggs and not even gelatin, which is made from animal bones and tissues.
Also, some vegans avoid any products of animal origin, such as clothes made of leather, fur, wool, or silk or some soaps and candles made with animal fats.
Why is veganism preferred?
Many people become vegan to uphold animal rights or protect the environment and for the health benefits of a vegan diet.
Although there is no data on vegan diets, a study showed that vegetarian diets lead to lower amounts of water and energy (for preparing food) compared to the regular diet, which includes meat.
Research has shown that vegans tend to have healthier weights and lower cholesterol and blood pressure levels than meat consumers.
Some studies have shown that vegan diets can reduce the risk of diabetes or some cancers.
And the benefits are most likely because less saturated fat and less cholesterol and more healthy nutrients are consumed, such as fiber, magnesium, potassium, vitamins C and E.
However, these things are general, because being vegan does not automatically mean being healthy, being about nutritional balance in particular.
For example, many women who become vegan feel more tired and hungry and have deficiencies in protein and iron.
So you need to pay close attention to what you eat for the body to get enough nutrients because the beginning is a little bit harder, but you will get used to it.
If you eat only vegan junk food, you can’t get the right calorie daily intake so that it can affect your health.
Health benefits of a vegan diet:
The Vegan diet is richer in certain nutrients because you eliminate animal products, you must replace them with other foods that provide you with the necessary vitamins and minerals (whole grains, vegetables, nuts, seeds).
Several studies have reported that vegan diets tend to provide more health benefits than non-vegan diets if you follow it correctly.
Also, those types of vegan diets seem to be more abundant in potassium, magnesium, folate, and vitamins A, C, and E.
If you just become a vegan is very important to know that the foods consumed throughout the day supplement the number of nutrients the body needs to function normally.
Vegans tend to eat fewer calories, weigh less, and have a lower body mass index (a measure of body fat) than those who eat meat.
The advantage is that even if you no longer eat meat, dairy, and eggs, you will not feel hungry. This is because the vegan diet includes foods that contain more fiber, which can give the feeling of satiety faster.
Veganism also has benefits for type 2 diabetes and decreased kidney function.
Vegans tend to have lower blood sugar levels, higher insulin sensitivity, and up to 50–78% lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
People with diabetes who replace meat with vegetable protein may reduce the risk of reduced kidney function.
Avoiding certain products of animal origin can also help reduce the risk of prostate, breast, and colon cancer.
These benefits are because vegan diets lack processed meat, high-temperature cooked meat, commercial dairy, and other products that are said to increase the risk of cancer.
Consumption of fresh fruits, vegetables, legumes, and fiber is associated with a lower risk of heart disease.
Reports have shown that vegans and vegetarians may have up to a 75% lower risk of developing high blood pressure.
Vegan diets are much more effective at lowering blood sugar, LDL cholesterol, and total cholesterol.
Compared to the general population, vegans also tend to consume more whole grains and nuts, both of which are good for heart health and longevity.
Tips to become vegan:
If you’re still wondering how to become vegan, there are some tips and life hacks that will help you with the transition from a non-vegan to a vegan.
After giving up meat, eggs, and dairy over time, most vegans said they lost weight, increased their energy levels, and improved their overall condition.
Veganism does not mean that you have condemned your social life to death.
You can ask the restaurant staff to adapt the meals according to your diet. You have to be kind and know what to ask for it.
Every restaurant has at least rice and vegetables – you have to ask what sauces or oils were cooked in.
Even fast-food restaurants have started to add guacamole, black beans, or salads to the menu. Besides, you can order excellent products, but without cream, cheese, or meat.
Vegetable sources of iron are vegetables, sunflower seeds, raisins, and dark green leafy plants.
Eat lots of salads, and in the spring, nettles and spinach.
Also consume a source of vitamin C for better absorption of iron (lemon, red pepper, broccoli, parsley, oranges, etc.)
You need to get used to eating protein from sources other than meat.
Some sources of protein: pumpkin seeds (take them with you in your purse, or use them abundantly in salads and soups) soy, quinoa, beans, lentils, chia seeds, edamame, hemp seeds, hemp flour.
Friends and family will ask a lot of questions and be worried as if you have an illness.
They will try to persuade you to give up because they think you are hurting yourself.
It’s good to tell them it’s a personal choice that works for you, and they don’t have to become vegans.
White flour, in any form, through the fluctuations of insulin it produces, will make you hungry after a while, will drain you of energy and make you unhappy.
Plants and seeds contain vitamins, minerals, proteins, healthy fats, and fibers that give you the feeling of satiety, provide you with energy, and a great mental state.
It’s cheaper to be vegan. You have to be organized, buy fresh vegetables more often, take some food with you to the office, maybe, but overall it costs you less than meat.
For example, you can confidently use frozen vegetables and fruits. They keep their properties very well, being frozen immediately after harvesting.
Your mental state will change radically. You will become full of energy, you will have more ideas, you will be more creative, and you will start new projects.
Maybe you’ll even get into sports or yoga. This way, you can lose weight easier.
You will love people more, you will rediscover nature, you will notice the beauty around you, you will be more optimistic, and your whole relationship with the universe will change by changing your diet.