While making pancakes for breakfast, I kept thinking about being vegan and the impact it has had on my life. I also kept thinking about people's reaction, from friends to family, their concerns and curiosity about being vegan.
So I decided to write about my experience as a vegan to create a better understanding and also clear out any misconceptions out there.
The first thing I really want people to stop thinking is that vegans only eat sallad and that you will miss out on a lot of the "good" things because you are vegan. Here is how it is, there is almost nothing out there that cannot be veganized and nothing that can't be replaced with a vegan alternative. Sure, I admit that the reason I wrote almost, is because there are a few products that does not have a vegan alternative, however that does not mean that there will never be. Just compare the vegan substitutes that exists today that people couldn't imagine would be possible a few years ago. There is vegan Ben&Jerry's now, I never thought that would happen. My point is, anything can be veganized and all you need to do is use your imagination and have a bit of a patients.
Now to the things that I had to face and questions that needed to be answered. A lot of people did wonder if I could even go out and eat(da fuq?), because "Are there even alternatives for vegan?". Yes. It is everywhere. All you need to do is ask them to remove the part that you do not want on your plate, you know.. like regular people do. Even before I was vegan I used to mess up the menu's by adding or removing things that I liked or didn't like. People do that all the time, so what's wrong if a vegan does it? Not that there are not any vegan restaurants.. just saying, it is not like we do not have any choice at all.
Another "worry" that people had were how I would get my protein and calcium for my bones(it makes me laugh now when I think about it.. I'll explain it to you later) and how the whole thing would affect my body. I did my best and explained to them the pros and cons about veganism and I'll let you guys know them as well. There are more pros than cons, really.
Pros: You will live longer and live a healthier life. Don't believe me? check it out.
You won't be eating dead bodies or stolen milk that will leave you with diseases and will mostly do you harm. Meat increases the risk of cancer, heart disease, diabetes and so, so much more. That was just the meat, here is why dairy is bad: first of all, you're a human and that's the milk of a cow. I'll repeat it as some think it still makes perfect sense. human. cow. what point of it made sense? Back to the health risks: cancer, acne, contributes to osteoporosis- which means it is not good for your bones at all and there is a reason why so many people are lactose intolerant(once again.. cow milk).
You will be more conscience about the choices you make. After a while of being vegan, there is this veil/cloud that disappears from your mind. I know it may not make sense to everyone, but it is true. You become aware of the things that you had been putting in your body, the harm it did and the harms you did. The world makes more sense and you see it as it is, rather than as others present it and want it to look like.
You will never have to feel guilty about a life being taken just because you like the taste of it.
Your choice will be saving the planet, not just for you but for the future generations as well. This is also where the conscience part comes in, as the world makes sense, you begin to realise how harmful the meat industry is to the planet and also why there is not enough food for the poor, because it goes to the animals that are later to be slaughtered so that people can enjoy 5 minutes of the dead body on their plate. We grow enough food to feed 10 billion people, in a planet of a bit over 7 billion people, where millions are still starving.
You can use that perfume or any other product of yours without feeling guilty about the company testing on animals.
It may take you a while to adjust. That's probably the only con I can think of.
You need to make sure you get enough nutrients, vitamins and minerals. Not that you wouldn't have to keep that in mind if you ate meat, but still, it is just a friendly reminder.
Being vegan has not only had an impact my life but also those around me. I know a lot of people who are so damn sure that meat and dairy product is necessary that they get butt-hurt as soon as I prove them wrong. I do not do it because it is fun, I do it because either they decided to judge me by judging the things I eat or decided to try and prove me and the facts that I put out there wrong because they've grown up hearing how good certain things are for them without ever checking it up. However, I also do have my moments of making sure to create awareness of the things people eat. I feel like it won't hurt me or the person in anyway by knowing the risks out there.
I remember telling mum a few weeks ago, about how dairy products actually affects our bodies and at first she was a bit upset and did argue. BUT two days later, I opened the fridge and found dairy-free drinks. My mum, and I'm sure most parents, want the best for their kids. So if they have grown up hearing how good something is for everyone, of course they will make sure to provide it. Mum has always been health conscious and made sure that we would not fall too much for the unhealthy things in life, which has had a great impact in my siblings and my life. Sure we do it eat unhealthy sometimes as well, but it rarely happens.
When me and my sister decided to go vegetarian, this was before we chose to take it a step further, my mum did get worried about a few things and the sudden change, however, she also gave it a chance and today she cooks vegan food as well. She has managed to turn all of my favourite foods, that she made and required meat or dairy, into vegan and they taste just as good and sometimes even better. She also loves a lot of the food that me and my sister make that are vegan. My mum and my sister is where I got a lot of my stubbornness from and which is why I never give up on things that I love and know that most things veganized because they showed me that it is possible when I thought it wouldn't be, all you need is your creativity.
This post went from vegan facts to my mum..
Anyways, what I have learned and would like people to keep in mind if or when they would try out a vegan diet, is that there are vegan alternatives to the things that you do love, however, you must find it. It took me some time and a lot of patients before I found and now know the things that I like and do not. I mean, you're changing your diet and there will be tastes that you are not used to, however it does not mean that you won't like it. It took me a while and a lot of different products before I found a dairy free "cheese" that I did like, dairy free ice cream that I did like and so on. It doesn't mean that I quit trying everything else because I found the next best or maybe even the best, I want to keep trying since there are so many alternatives. So, don't be afraid of going vegan, you won't miss out on anything.
Now, I'm going to continue enjoying my vegan pancakes and I hope you all have a lovely day.