The word 'survived' is so dramatic. Yet, that's the word that kept coming up when people were asking me questions about going vegan.
"How are you surviving being vegan?"
"How are you surviving without meat?"
"What do Vegans eat?"
The real question was how did I 'survive' being asked all these questions? After mentally screaming "OMG", I would educate people that vegans eat FOOD excluding meat and all other animal-derived substances.The restrictions may seem alarming but, what I found more alarming was how hidden animal products are in almost everything that we consume. For example white sugar, some beers/wines, some apple juice, dry roasted peanuts, etc.
The biggest challenge for me was getting over the mental cravings that I got for my favorite snacks and meals. I was thinking about grape nut ice cream and oxtail every other day. However, it did get easier once I started finding new favorites to replace them with.
It was a hard change at first because in all honesty I was not prepared. The first and last meal I cooked myself was a Tofu Stir Fry. It turned out okay except I ended up picking out all the tofu. I would've enjoyed it more if it was in small almost nonexistent pieces instead of big cubes. During my second week, I did a 3-day deep juice cleanse which gave me the time and clarity to plan out the rest of my 30 days. Below are my #TanishaTips to help you jumpstart your vegan diet ✊🏾
3 Vegan Diet #TanishaTips
- Do Your Research Beforehand. Peta offers a vegan shopping guide to help you navigate your way through your grocery store. Also, try to find a grocery store in your area that provides a variety of vegan options. I did a majority of my shopping at Community Natural Foods grocery store. A huge thank you to the knowledgeable staff there. They were so helpful and gave me great recommendations. Google was also detrimental for me! Thank God for iPhones because I googled everything.
- Meal Prep. Planning your meals will help you stay on track. It's not hard or time-consuming. I meal prepped once or twice a week depending on what I was feeling for that week. My system was to put on one of my favorite shows on my iPad and prep away.
- Don’t forget your protein. Make sure you’re thinking of ways to add protein to your meals. I added hemp seeds to my morning smoothies and beans to my salads, amongst other things. Health.com has a list of the 14 Best Vegan and Vegetarian Protein Sources and ways to implement them in your diet.
Have you tried a vegan diet? What are are some resources that helped you along the way? Comment below!
Love you leave you 🍒