Remember that feeling you get when starting a new job that is the same way you feel when starting a new diet; anxious but excited. Veganism involves adopting a way of life that does not involve consumption of any animal product whether meat, eggs, honey or dairy.
Going vegan has great benefits to your health but losing your taste for animal-based foods will not start in a day as it is an evolving process. You will now have to adopt conscious eating as compared to how adventurous you were with animal-based foods. Your commitment to the cause of being vegan is what will first ensure you reach the finish line. It is advisable to start going vegan gradually so that your body will adjust to the altered balance of foods. You will also need time to research the great vegan foods and recipes to begin with. Here are a few things you need to know on how to go vegan:
Always read food labels
Checking food labels will always be a necessity if you are serious about being a vegan. This is because not every food which looks vegan is suitable for the vegan diet, you always have to be sure. It may be hard to tell if the ingredients in what you are buying are suitable for vegans so just be on the lookout for a vegan label on the food packaging. This will help save time to look through a long list of ingredients. If in doubt with a product you want to buy but hasn’t been labelled, then contact the manufacturer for clarification.
Consume more fruits and vegetables
Vegetables are rich in calcium and thus consuming them helps to cover what you lose from not eating animal-based foods. Natural calcium foods are recommended such as soy beans, kale, oranges and figs. Food rich in vitamin D such as fortified foods and leafy greens will also help your body absorb calcium. To get all nutrients you need, you may need to balance your choices when it comes to vegetables. Mineral rich fruits that are also have high iron content are vital to a vegan and can be found in jackfruit, mashed bananas, dates, raisins and apricots.
Join a vegan support group
Joining a vegan support group is will be crucial for you as you will be able to deal with like-minded people. They will help during those times that you feel like you cannot go another day without eating animal-based foods. If you do not have a vegan support group near you, then you can consider starting your own. One can also opt for an online community if you have none near your area. Share your experiences and learn how to overcome the challenges vegans face from those who have been in the journey longer than you.
Where to get proteins
The most asked question when one decides to go vegan is usually on how they will get their proteins. However, you do not need to worry about this as there are other sources of protein apart from animal-based foods. Food products such as soy products, beans, nuts, seitan, hemp seeds and quinoa are rich sources of concentrated proteins. You can also use peanut butter in stews, soups or serving them in cold salads. It can also be spread in veggie wraps. Your calories intake needs to be adequate in order to meet the recommendations for proteins. If you think a product you are consuming is low in protein, then it is recommended you eat a variety of legumes, nuts, grains and seeds so that another food will make up for the deficit in another.
Dining Out Versus Cooking
It is not easy for a vegan to find a good restaurant that will satisfy their needs. The dining options my range from incredible to terrible but doing research will help you identify good restaurant options. Getting reviews from fellow vegans on these options will help you know the one restaurant that will suit your needs. You can also choose to dine in by doing your own cooking. Get the best cook book so that you know the vegan meals that are easy to make. Your cook book should therefore contain hassle-free meals that are healthy and require minimal time to prepare.
Going vegan will require your full focus so that you can have rapid process. Discover as many foods as you can and also visit many vegan restaurants to explore.