Please don’t take a shot every time I say “vegan” or “plant-based” in this blog. You’ve been warned.
One thing we’re hearing more and more about lately (finally!) whether it be in the news, in pop culture, wherever – are the issues with the environment – and how we’re in a state of emergency and only have so long to turn it around. This is why I write about sustainability and will continue to address ways we can change to help in any way possible.
I have been on a #veganjourney for a month now, (yay #veganuary) and I figured this would be a perfect topic to speak about now that I have some personal experience with living a plant-based lifestyle.
First, I want to say that deciding to cut meat and dairy out of my diet was one of the best (if not THE best) things I have ever done for myself. Period.
I have never felt better physically, mentally, emotionally. I just feel good. And that is such a wonderful realization.
I will mention , (because I’ll feel guilty if I don’t) there have been a handful of times this past month that I had butter or a little bit of cheese. There was also a night that I had a small bit of seafood. This lifestyle is not about perfection, it’s about making an impact and putting good things in your body.
What I’m not gonna do in this post is try to shove my opinions down anyone’s throat, so I expect you to do the same. I’ll let you do your own research on the benefits of eating plant-based, and you can make up your own mind.
So, what did I realize after a month of being plant-based? More than I ever thought possible…
Eating plant-based is easy to stick to.
Yes, seriously! This is something I’ve wanted to do for so long and loved the idea of doing, but I never fully committed until now. And there’s no turning back for me.
Not because someone is telling me to do this, not because I don‘t want to be a failure. But because I enjoy this. I am absolutely in love with this lifestyle.
It’s 2020 and we have Pinterest and new plant-based foods coming to supermarkets every day. It’s not that hard to get on board and start living a vegan lifestyle.
Start by making a list of foods you love that are mostly plant-based (no milk, eggs, dairy, meat) and go from there. With so many resources online, it’s never been easier to adopt a plant-based lifestyle.
People really aren’t that judgy, but maybe a little.
It’s so funny because one of the main things I was worried about when I decided to become vegan was people judging me. Because a lot of people will pick on anything you do that’s different, it’s inevitable that some people are going to roll their eyes at you for trying something “out of the ordinary”.
But really… ignorance is bliss, and I’ve found that the main reason people do judge is because they’re intimidated. Intimidated by someone knowing more than them or doing something they’re unfamiliar with. It’s all about intimidation.
And honestly, who has time for that? Anyone who wants to argue or judge me for the freaking food I choose to/not to eat… yikes. Sucks to be you.
Overall, most people have been super supportive. It’s also a good way to check to see if you’re surrounding yourself with like-minded people or if some of the friends you have are maybe not the best for your growth.
Eating this way feels so freeing.
This is easily the most restrictive I’ve ever been in terms of the food I can eat, yet it feels the most freeing.
It’s so much easier to say no to bad foods because it’s like I really can’t have them. And after saying no for a little while, you don’t even want it anymore.
I never thought the idea of cheese would gross me out, but honestly now it does. And it’s great!
It’s not about perfection.
One of the biggest things I took away from my first month of a plant-based lifestyle, is that it’s not about perfection. It’s about dedication.
So many times, when I would think about going vegan, I’d have the thought “But what if I can’t do it? What if I mess up? What if I’m not perfect 100% of the time?”
That’s the beauty of life, including being plant-based. You don’t have to be perfect. You’re allowed to mess up. It’s not wrong to want to eat some cheese.
Your why will continue to grow and change.
At first, I started this lifestyle because I care about the environment. It worries me that everything that comes with animal consumption is one of the biggest killers of our planet.
But, my why has gotten so much bigger since starting this lifestyle. The more I learn and do my own research, the more my reason behind being vegan grows and stands strong.
I encourage you to do some digging. Do some exploring. Try something new. It just might change your life like it did mine.
If you’re interested in learning more about veganism, trying a plant-based eating approach or simply cutting back on your animal consumption, I suggest you follow these accounts: @weareveganuary | @vegan | @veganalysis.