The popularity of veganism is growing among people for various reasons. To make this transition easier, here are tips to become vegan!
With more people glorifying the idea of good health, we can easily witness a drastic shift in people gravitating towards turning vegan. People are now happily ditching meat and dairy and are going vegan. But, do you know apart from crossing dairy foods or meat from your diet, there is more to being a vegan than just consuming a plant-based diet? Choosing a specific diet has an impact on every aspect of your life. So, you need to be armed with knowledge on how to become vegan slowly and steadily.
Health Shots got in touch with dietitian Garima Dev Verman to understand certain things you must know before turning vegan so that you embark on your veganism journey with a lot more ease.
Beginner tips to turn vegan
Embarking on a vegan journey is a transformative decision that impacts your diet, lifestyle, ethics, and environmental consciousness. Before making the shift, it is crucial to fill yourself with knowledge to ensure a smooth transition and a well-rounded vegan experience. Here are essential things to know before turning vegan!
1. Get to know why you want to turn vegan
There can be umpteen reasons why someone wishes to turn vegan – from safeguarding health to protecting the environment to animal welfare. But getting closer to your driving factor will help you stick to veganism. If you have a clear purpose in mind, it will be easier for you to adhere to diet or lifestyle changes you will be incorporating further in life. If protecting the environment is your concern, do in-depth research about the benefits of going vegan for the environment.
That way, in some of the weak moments, when you feel like giving up, you will have plenty of reasons to stay vegan and keep going.
2. Nutritional awareness
Opting to go vegan can be a healthy and an educated move. However, the vegan diet may be devoid of some essential nutrients, and your body can start lacking that once you choose to stay away from certain foods.
“Familiarise yourself with essential nutrients that might be more challenging to obtain from a plant-based diet, such as B12, iron, omega-3 fatty acids, and vitamin D. Explore plant-based sources for these nutrients and consider supplements if necessary,” adds the nutrition expert.
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3. Meal planning
Plan your meals to ensure a balanced and varied diet. Experiment with new recipes and find plant-based alternatives for your favourite dishes. This will make the transition more enjoyable and sustainable.
4. Kitchen essentials
Get your kitchen full with vegan pantry staples, including grains, legumes, nuts, seeds, and plant-based proteins. Explore a variety of fruits and vegetables. Familiarise yourself with vegan cooking substitutes like plant-based milk, nutritional yeast, and egg replacements.
5. Label reading
Get accustomed to reading food labels to identify non-vegan ingredients. Look out for common animal-derived additives and preservatives, and be aware of hidden sources of animal products.
6. Connect with the vegan community
A suggestion from the expert is to join local or online vegan communities to connect with like-minded individuals. Seek advice, share experiences, and gather support. Socializing with other vegans can provide valuable insights and make the journey more enjoyable”.
7. Inform friends and family
Let your close friends and family know about your decision to go vegan. This can help avoid misunderstandings and ensure that they are supportive. Share information about veganism and why it matters to you.
8. Gradual transition
Consider a gradual transition if that suits your lifestyle better. You can start by incorporating more plant-based meals into your diet and gradually phasing out animal products. This approach can make the adjustment more manageable and sustainable in the long run.