Going vegan is one of the most positive things you can do for yourself, the planet and of course, the animals and thankfully it has never been easier to do! To put it simply, you avoid consuming animal products or supporting animal exploitation as far as practically possible. The following is everything I think you need to know to make the transition to a vegan lifestyle not only easy, but enjoyable, rewarding, and the most beneficial for you and for animals.
1. Get Motivated
To make a change in your life you need to be inspired enough to do it. The following videos will give you a strong motivation to go vegan!
Yes, it is graphic. Yes, you will want to turn away. It's not uncommon to burst into tears. This movie sheds light on the horrifying reality of what animals go through for fashion, food, entertainment and vivisection. If you think it's hard to watch, imagine what it would feel like if it was you in their place.
101 REASONS TO GO VEGAN
1.5 trillion innocent beings are mutilated, tortured and killed for food and products that are easily avoidable and completely unnecessary. So that is already 1.5 trillion reasons to go vegan. This is a powerful, myth shattering, truth telling presentation that will leave you wondering how you ever valued your taste buds as more important than an animals life.
FORKS OVER KNIVES
Now, you can kick back and enjoy listening to some of the world's leading experts explain the many health benefits you will gain from cutting animal products from your diet. There is absolutely no nutrient in animal products you don't get from a vegan diet. It's a win for animals and a win for us! The film examines the profound claim that most, if not all, of the degenerative diseases that afflict us can be controlled, or even reversed, by rejecting animal-based and processed foods.
COWSPIRACY: THE SUSTAINABILITY SECRET
www.cowspiracy.com (Or watch on Netflix)
A groundbreaking environmental documentary following intrepid filmmaker Kip Andersen as he uncovers the most destructive industry facing the planet today – and investigates why the world’s leading environmental organisations are too afraid to talk about it.
Animal agriculture is the leading cause of deforestation, water consumption and pollution, is responsible for more greenhouse gases than the transportation industry, and is a primary driver of rainforest destruction, species extinction, habitat loss, topsoil erosion, ocean “dead zones,” and virtually every other environmental ill. Yet it goes on, almost entirely unchallenged.
Commonly referred to as "the Australian Earthlings", Lucent is a feature-length documentary which explores the darker side of Australia's pig farming industry through a combination of hand-held and hidden camera footage, highlighting the day-to-day cruelty accepted by the industry as standard practice.
Narrated by Lindsay McDougall (The Doctor from Triple J), the film contains footage from over 50 farms and slaughterhouses across Australia - much of this footage has never been seen before.
2015 was a huge year for the rise of veganism. World record breaking vegan athletes, more studies proving the health risks associated with consuming animal products, animal rights activists taking it up a notch... See the highlights here in this inspiring, short film!
2. Embrace The Change
If you've watched those videos the chances are you're convinced going vegan is the right thing for you to do. Here's how you embrace the change.
It's going to be a beautiful moment when you realise - surprise, surprise - you actually love vegan food. I was rather amazed and stoked myself! You're avoiding all animal products now which means no meat (including fish, which is an animal, not a vegetable!) dairy (cow's milk/cheese/cream/butter), eggs or honey.
This is incredibly easy to do with the help of a few tips and recipes:
COW'S MILK - Plant Based nut and seed mi
YOGHURT - Soy/almond/coconut yoghurt
MEAT - Tofu & tempeh
EGGS (in baking) - Applesauce, pureed soft tofu, egg replacer, a flax egg (1 tablespoon ground flax seeds plus 3 tablespoons water or other liquid, blended), or mashed bananas
HONEY - Date paste - Maple butter
CHOCOLATE- Raw Vegan Chocolate
These changes can be implemented at a moments notice along with the decision that you aren't going to participate in cruelty to animals any longer. Though, if for some reason, you don't believe you can do it all at once, the best way is to go vegan for breakfast, then when you have that covered go vegan for lunch and when that's sorted go vegan for dinner. Mission accomplished!
THINGS TO BE AWARE OF:
Produced by bacteria and found in soil, water, etc, it's a good idea for vegans to supplement their diet since most vegetables are cleaned very well. Get B12 by eating nutritional yeast or fortified foods e.g. Plant-based milks fortified with B12. Consume B12-fortified foods daily or vegan B12 from garden of life available on Iherb.com
Two tablespoons of ground flax seeds or two teaspoons daily of flax seed oil. Can add to smoothies, salads, cereal/oats, etc.
Assuming you watched Earthlings, this should make sense.
DO NOT BUY:
Any other plant based/synthetic material
Yes, many companies STILL test their products on animals. The cruelty is immense and the lack of compassion, astounding. Thankfully, there are many companies who don't test on or use animals in their products.
Tested on animals
Containing animal products
Not too sure what I ever found entertaining about watching animals being whipped, imprisoned in cages, or made to work as slaves performing tricks. I'm happy to say those days are behind me and now I see it for what it really is. Oppression and exploitation.
Places using animals for entertainment e.g. Sea World
Horse/dog races, etc.
There is nothing natural or educational about seeing an animal in that type of setting. Learn in other ways and enjoy the presence of animals as they appear in nature.
3. Get Support & Learn More
I'd recommend joining vegan Facebook groups or forums - for any questions and also encouragement and support, recipes, experiences and education.
Ethical Vegan Education
You might still have some objections for why you shouldn't go vegan. The answers to these can be found in this FAQ:
5. You're Vegan!
So, what does this mean?
You have improved your chances of living a longer, healthier life while reducing the likelihood of many lifestyle diseases and cancers.
You have significantly dropped your carbon footprint and negative effect on the environment.
Huge amounts of food and water are saved which before were being wasted producing meat and dairy.
You have cut your contribution to the routine abuse, pain, suffering and slaughter animals endure at the hand's of humans.
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