A guide on Vegan Do’s And Don’ts When Transitioning to help your journey in transitioning to the vegan lifestyle easier.
You might be a bit overwhelmed when you decide to transition to veganism – there is a lot of information out there, and it can be a lot to take in.
Especially when it comes to what is vegan and what isn’t.
In this article, I am going to break down the do’s and don’ts when going vegan to make your life easier.
The Dont’s When Going Vegan:
1. Family & Friends Don’t Know Better
I can understand that it can be really hard to do anything in life if your family or friends arent’s supportive.
However, at the end of the day – it’s your life, your choices, your direction. Also, going vegan is one of the noblest best thing you can ever do for yourself, the animals, and the planet.
I mean, if your parents were against you using drugs, sure, in that case, they are right – but if you decide to stop eating animal flesh, and that’s a problem – then the problem isn’t you – it’s them.
So, my first ‘don’t’ when transitioning to veganism is don’t allow to be discouraged by people who are against your decisions and beliefs. Even if these people are one of your dearest ones.
2. Don’t Be Too Hard On Yourself, Take Your Time!!
Miss cheese? Struggling to adjust to the lifestyle? – it’s okaayyyy!!!
Take your time – don’t force yourself, don’t be too hard on yourself if you do eat a slice of dairy cheese along the way…it’s okay, it’s a work in progress. Nothing happens overnight.
When I first decided to go vegan, for some reason I found it really hard to quit eating eggs…loved eggs, absolutely loved them. So I remember I was vegan for a whole month straight with no messing up, however, I really craved some eggs one day and just had them! I felt awful and really beat myself afterward – and it really didn’t help me at all. So I thought – you know what, man I am trying! At least I am doing this, I really am, I am not perfect, but I am working towards my goal, I am working towards the best decision I have ever made – and that’s to go vegan.
Nothing is perfect, so every time I fail, I will make sure I bounce back stronger. So, after I had some eggs that day, I was eating completely vegan for 6 months, until one day I realized I had bought something assuming it’s vegan, but it had milk powder in it..oops, it was totally accidental, but the point is – you will mess up, you will eat none vegan products along the way, and that’s okay!
The most important thing is that you have made the decision to go vegan, and you are working towards that, how you get there fully is irrelevant, as long as you arrive at your destination in the end.
3. Don’t Isolate Yourself, Connect With A Community!
When I first started, I was alone…nobody in my family was vegan, heck they didn’t even know what veganism was…still haven’t got a clue… “Vegans eat fish right?” whatever.
So, I had so many questions, but I didn’t know where to ask them and how to get answers. Google was helping, but it’s so much better to talk to actual people who have experienced/done things for real.
So, I joined loads of Facebook groups and started talking to people. Asking questions, learning.
You are not alone, and there are so many people out there willing to help, and learn, just like you!
So, get out there and connect with other vegans!
4. Don’t Give Up Eating Out
I know, it can be very hard sometimes to eat out as a vegan, but trust me, nowadays it’s so much easier than it was in the early 2000s.
Now, almost every single restaurant or coffee shop has got at least 1 vegan option.
What you need to do is, is do some research into where you should be eating out. There is an app called “happy cow” which you can use to find vegan eats.
Also if you have got the money, going out and trying different places regularly, you will end up with a list of places that you like, and you can go there regularly. It takes a bit of experimenting as well.
5. Don’t Be A Junk-Food Vegan
When you are a new vegan, everything that has the label “Vegan” can be very tempting… however, they are not always the healthiest.
Convenience is important for sure, but convenience costs…both money and your health.
Buying pre-made vegan meals can cost you double if you made it yourself. Not to mention how unhealthy they can be.
I am not saying “don’t ever buy pre-made vegan meals” – but try to reduce them to a minimum.
One amazing thing about veganism is that you will learn a lot about different cuisines and cooking.
So, I really recommend you experiment in the kitchen and do some cooking at home!
The Do’s When Transitioning To a Vegan Diet:
1. Be Patient And Persistent
As I mentioned above – to not be hard on yourself and take your time? Well, this is to reinforce it again.
If you are transitioning straight from eating meat and all, it may be difficult to adjust to a vegan lifestyle, especially if you haven’t read much into how to do it, or have anyone to support you.
Going vegan may seem pretty easy and straightforward “you just stop eating all animal products, right?” but it really isn’t that simple.
You need to start thinking about what meals you are going to eat, reading the ingredients lists on everything you buy from the store, looking for vegan-friendly restaurants…and the list goes on.
What I am trying to say is, take your time, be patient and keep going.
2. Research All The Vegan Foods You Will Need To Consume To Obtain Essential Nutrients
…And supplements! Well, I only take one, and that’s Vitamin B12 – all the rest, I get from eating plant-based food.
But really do some research to make sure you are getting all the nutrients you need on a vegan diet.
Hence the reason why I advised above not to be a junk food vegan, because if you are, you are going to start becoming deficient in important nutrients.
One of the pros of being a vegan is that a vegan diet consists of healthy foods like grains, legumes, fruit, nuts, etc. However, these foods can easily be turned unhealthy with loads of processing, sugar, and nasty oils.
So just be careful what you put on your plate.
3. Beware Of Any Side Effects Whilst Transitioning
A lot of people report stomach problems, skin problems, headaches, fatigue at the beginning of their vegan journey.
Why? – Because your body is detoxing from all the animal products you’ve been eating all your life.
It’s a stressful period for your body. But in a good way – you are detoxing yourself from all the animal food. Your body is adjusting to the new lifestyle.
Bloating especially is very common, it happens mostly because vegan food tends to be higher in fiber, and people who haven’t consumed much fiber in their lives will need time to adjust to a higher fiber diet.
Give it all a couple of weeks, and all your symptoms will settle down. Your body will adjust.
4. Learn As Much As You Can About Veganism
Watching documentaries for example is a great place to start.
Here are my favorite documentaries to watch:
1. The Game Changers
3. What The Health
4. Forks Over Knives
5. Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret
Highly recommends you watch these documentaries.
Also always try to learn new things, maybe follow some vegan activists or bloggers? Join a community that shares information and experiences. I mean the options are endless…Just never stop learning!
So these are my Vegan Do’s And Don’ts When Transitioning.
Transitioning to a vegan diet may seem a bit overwhelming when you first start but trust me, it gets so much easier the more you follow it and the more you learn as you go.
Just keep going, keep learning, keep experimenting and you will become a pro at being vegan.
Going vegan is the best decision you will ever make and I am so proud of you for being here, reading this, trying to educate yourself.
I see you – and I appreciate you!