Do you care about animals and still eat meat? You aren’t alone.
It’s easy to feel defensive when vegetarians point out the cruelty and environmental destruction meat-filled diets often support. Depending on who you are, you might keep eating animal products guiltily or feel an impulse to devour a burger in front of them.
Going vegan is easy. Grocery stores are always stocked with colorful fruits and vegetables, and they now carry plenty of delicious meatless options, too—including veggie burgers, veggie hot dogs, vegan chicken nuggets, faux bacon, beefless strips, and more.
Going out to eat couldn’t be easier, either. With more and more people going vegan these days, most restaurants now offer great-tasting, healthy vegan selections.
Here’s a meat eater’s guide to going vegan:
1. Educate Yourself
Before you can approach a vegan diet with full confidence and the best chances for success, it’s a great idea to educate yourself on why you’re considering a vegan diet. Don’t do it in the name of a fad, but instead, learn the benefits of the lifestyle and how others out there have done it too. Watch some inspirational movies that show the benefits of a plant-based diet and the reality of what eating animals actually entails. They will open your eyes, motivate you to change, and get you excited about a vegan diet, which is key to success and a healthy diet.
2. Have Good Reasons
If you just want to become vegan for kicks, you probably won’t stick with it for long — not because it’s hard, but because any lifestyle or habit change requires a little bit of motivation. You need to first think about why you want to become vegan, and really believe in it. The rest is easy.
3. Take It Slow
Keep your end goal in mind, but go at your own pace. Some people manage to go vegan overnight and if that's the right approach for you, fantastic. But don't be concerned if you feel you need more time. Like any other lifestyle change, going vegan not only takes getting used to, but it takes time to determine what will work best for you. It's not a one size fits all experience and there are numerous approaches you can take.
4. Think Of It As An Evolution
When going vegan, people get so caught up in rules and they become anxious. Relax and learn to love to cook, explore new cuisines, and be adventurous with food. Most importantly, be easy on yourself. Don't view a vegan lifestyle as the finish line, but as an evolving process of conscious eating.
5. Focus On The Basics
Remember that eating a vegan diet doesn’t have to be hard. Just start with the basics when it comes to your first few batches of meals. Remember that sometimes the basic ingredients end up tasting the best so don’t get too fancy unless you just want to. When in doubt, you can always make a smoothie and keep things interesting. They’re a great way to fill in the gaps and keep things creative, not to mention delicious!
6. Find A Vegan Support Group
Once you begin your vegan diet, you'll need someone to rant to about how many times a day you get asked where you get your protein. Whether your support lives next door or is through a Facebook page, you'll widen your world of vegan-friendly products, recipes, and restaurants. If you don't know where to look hold your hand through grocery shopping, dining out, and trying new recipes.
7. Eat Whole Foods Most Of The Time
It’s easy to go vegan and buy processed vegan foods, but that’s not the best way to approach a vegan diet. Instead of buying processed foods, choose whole foods as much as possible and keep your diet balanced by consuming a variety of vegan foods, not just a small handful. This will ensure you get the highest amount of nutrition and that you’re more satisfied with your meals. Don’t worry, you can have the coconut ice cream or dark chocolate bars for special indulgences and enjoy them without abandon – just not all the time.
The transition from being a meat eater to vegan is not very easy but not very difficult, too. Having the knowledge of what to do and what to eat is key to successful transitioning. In this post, I shared with you a meat eater’s guide to going vegan.
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