In today’s day and age we are faced with a barrage of unhealthy eating choices every day. Phone calls from friends with invites attached to have lunch at the local Five Guys Burgers and Fries happen frequently, and for those of us who prefer to eat a vegan diet, that can cause a lot of strain and tension within friendships, and can even cause inner battles inside of our own minds.
It might make you question, “Is being a vegan really for me?”
Making the choice to become a vegan is easy for some women. Other times, it’s not an easy transition. There are many reasons why someone might choose to go vegan.
When I chose to become a vegan back in 2006, I had to learn how to live my food life all over again. Giving up meat, for me, wasn’t too hard. It was a chore at times, sure. I was actually doing it more out of the fact that I was an animal lover, and had seen a PETA video which had upset me to the point of wanting to completely be done with meat, and stop supporting the industry which brutally attacked and inhumanely killed the animals they mass murder on a daily basis.
I decided it was time to try and live a different kind of lifestyle. Incorporating more raw vegetables, fruits, and water into my life was one of the best decisions I had ever made. Learning to cook without the worry of saturated fats also improved my health a great deal, and puts me at much less of a risk for heart attack or heart disease, the number one killer of women in America.
My husband, naturally, didn’t understand – as most husbands won’t. He was and forever will be a carnivore. He always said that my giving up meat wouldn’t stop the industry from killing chickens and cows. He might be right. At least, in my heart, I knew that I wasn’t contributing to any of their death’s any longer. It made my soul feel good.
When I learned how to live without meat, it really wasn’t hard at all. Food was actually more appealing to me, and I was really getting into becoming completely vegan. To be vegan means to live completely animal and animal byproduct free. No eggs, cheese, milk, butter, or meat (which probably goes without saying).
Even the products you use in everyday life, like lip gloss and lotion, could contain animal byproducts, so the labels need to be read on those as well. It took some adjustments and was a bit tricky at first to learn how to not take creamer in my coffee, or cook without eggs in recipes, and to not be able to use my favorite lip products anymore. I would say that overall, it took me about 2 years to really get adjusted to the idea and fully respect and adore it.
Aside from becoming completely vegan, I went off on a Pilates tangent and between not consuming meat, dairy, etc. and an active lifestyle with loads of Pilates and cardio thrown in, I was literally in the best shape of my life, and I had never felt better.
It was after having my second son that I decided I wanted to make this change and I had all of the baby weight plus some to lose. I had lost the baby weight, plus an additional 30 lbs, and became very toned and tight. It was amazing!
It is important to mention that if you do decide to go ahead and give a vegan lifestyle a try, to please keep up on getting some good sources of protein in your diet every day. Nuts are my favorite form of healthy protein. They will give you lots of energy and even help you feel full. Also, they are natural and versatile. I like to buy raw, organic nuts and do my own ‘thing’ to them. I pop them into the oven and toast them very slightly on high heat, and then remove them before the heat has an opportunity to deplete the nutrients from the nuts. They really are a great substitute for meat as far as protein is concerned.
Becoming a vegan as a woman in today’s culture is more widely accepted than ever before. If it is really something you would like to do, it really is possible. Even feeding your children a vegan diet and living a vegan lifestyle will surely improve their health, and quality of life, as well as yours. Maybe your husband would even like to give it a try with you.
You never know just how great you might feel until you give it a try.