Veganism is the lifestyle of abstaining from all animal derived products as practicably as possible. I’m focusing on the food aspect of it here on Cooking Vegan, but the vegan lifestyle contains food, clothing, cosmetics, and shoes.
To put it simply if the suffering of anything isn’t necessary for my survival, then why allow it to suffer?
I understand that there might be questions and I’m always happy to answer them to the best of my ability. Let’s start with a few of the more common ones.
Where do I get my protein?
My main source of protein comes from beans, tofu, peanut butter, and, shockingly enough, potatoes. Fun fact: a medium potato has over 4 grams of protein, which is 8% of your daily intake if you follow a 2,000 calorie diet.
Is being a vegan hard?
As far as food is concerned, not at all. It takes a little bit of research if I plan on going out to eat, but making food at home is super simple, and if I just don’t feel like cooking there are plenty of quick and easy options that I can pick up from the store. The only ingredient in bread I have to watch out for is honey, so peanut butter and jelly sandwiches with original potato chips and a salad is a fairly quick option.
As for things outside the realm of food it gets a little bit more tricky. Everything has chemicals in it these days, so it’s hard to research everything, and official vegan brands are so expensive. I make my own lip balm, shampoo, conditioner, deodorant, and soap from scratch because it’s easier for me since I control what goes into my own products. My lotion is simple coconut oil and a little goes a long way. Shoes are even trickier and I find it almost impossible to find true vegan heels. It could end up where everything is vegan but the glue, and I’m okay with that since I’m trying my best.
Is it expensive to be vegan?
For me, it can be, but that’s because I do eat some processed foods. I like pre-made veggie burgers and non-dairy ice cream, so that can jack up the cost. Thankfully as more of these products hit the market, the price will go down. As for my main staples for meals, no it’s not expensive at all. I’m still working through a 20 lb. bag of rice for $10 that I bought over a year ago. Potatoes are inexpensive as well, and I prefer frozen fruit over fresh since it has a longer shelf life. Beans are also fairly cheap. I tend to buy the cans since I don’t have the time all that often to cook them from dried. However I can make 3-4 meals out of a couple cans of black beans, a can of diced tomatoes, and some rice so all in all, no I don’t consider it expensive to be vegan.
We’re naturally omnivores though, right?
I grew up thinking that, too. I won’t bore you with all the science, unless you really want me to, but I will share my personal experiences. I am one of those overnight vegans. I saw what happened in the slaughterhouses, and couldn’t physically bring myself to eat my omnivorous dinner that night, so I changed overnight into a plant-based dieter. I saw results very quickly that told me I was on the right path.
I used to get chronic sinus infections. They would come once to twice a month like clockwork. It would mow me down to the point where the thought of going to work was enough to exhaust me. It would always end with me going to my doctor and getting two shots for my “allergies” and a prescription for antibiotics. Since I went vegan in March of 2016, I have had the occasional bout of the sniffles, but in June of 2017 I haven’t been to the doctor about a sinus infection for a year and 3 months.
UPDATE: I jinxed myself! Late June of 2017 and I got a sinus infection. However, this is the first one I’ve had in over a year, so I’m happy with my choices to give up the products that were hindering me. I make sure to get plenty of fluids and rest when my body needs it. Or I would in an ideal world. I try to rest as much as possible, and make sure that I’m eating more whole foods than I normally would since all the natural vitamins and minerals will help my body get better, faster.
I try not to take any types of medicine since they’re not vegan, however if I’m feeling really poorly and can’t stop what I’m doing, such as my day job, then I will to make sure I can make it through my day.
I also have more energy. I don’t feel weighed down, and my bowels have never worked better if you know what I mean. My acne has cleared up somewhat, but since I can’t stay away from the processed foods hasn’t disappeared completely, and the same with my eczema. I will admit to only having lost 10 lbs. in that time, but I also don’t eat the best things for my body, so I understand that. I’m working on changing what I eat.
What’s wrong with honey?
To put it bluntly, it’s bee vomit. I really don’t want to put anything else’s vomit in my body. Yuck!
What about B-12? Isn’t that only found in animal products?
B-12 is actually a bacteria. We used to get by drinking unfiltered water and eating unwashed veggies. Nowadays we wash and filter everything, so we don’t get the B-12 that we need. None of us do. We should all be taking a B-12 supplement and the only reason animal products have B-12 in them is because the animals are given a vitamin supplement.