As someone who has been vegan for more than 4 years already, I have gathered enough information about this lifestyle that I can report back to you.
Today I want to talk about 13 things everyone needs to know about the vegan lifestyle.
Because I want to normalize it. It’s not a radical or restrictive diet – actually, it’s not a diet at all -, and it is not a cult or a religion. It is just a lifestyle that you adopt when you decide to stop exploiting other animals.
If that sounds harsh, the problem is you not me. Remember, you are the one standing up for animal cruelty while I am waving my hand and trying to stop you from paying someone to abuse zebras, pigs and mice.
But don’t worry, everyone is capable of changing and making progress. I am not here to judge you – I used to be where you are -, I am here to show you that veganism is cool and fun and not scary at all once you learn about it.
So here are those 13 things I want you to know:
- Although there is a definition, there are no rules, per se, for being vegan. There is no book to follow or god to worship. It’s just a lifestyle. I have been vegan for 4 years but only last year I was able to buy fully vegan cleaning and beauty products. I was vegan before, too, but I just wasn’t able to buy all vegan products. We are all making progress. That doesn’t mean you can eat fish and be vegan but you can wear your old leather shoes until they fall apart and buy non-vegan detergent if you can’t a vegan one where you live.
- Veganism is not a diet. Plant-based is a diet. One can be plant-based and occasionally eat eggs, but veganism is about other animals and not eating animal products at all.
- Yes, vegans are preachy but so is every human being that cares about something bigger than themselves. I don’t see anyone who is speaking up for an oppressed group of animals as preachy – whether that group of animals are human or non-human.
- No, vegans do not eat grass. We eat everything you do, we just leave corpses and bodily fluids off the plate.
- Eating plants is the healthiest diet you can follow. Read more about the science behind eating plant-based here.
- Some of the biggest names in history were vegetarian since in their times the word vegan did not exist. People like Lev Tolstoy, Kafka and Buddha who were vegetarians talked about leaving animals off of their plate in their work and thus showing that greatest minds think alike.
- Yes, you can get protein from the same sources cows get it from – greens.
- You can also get iron by just eating plants.
- And calcium.
- And no, B12 is not only a problem for vegans. Most humans lack it and since other animals do not magically produce it they are also injected with B12. Learn all about B12 and how to get it as a vegan here.
- You can actually spend less money on food by eating plant-based. Here are my best tips on how to eat vegan on a budget.
- It is possible – shocking, I know – to be vegan long-term. Just look at Colleen Patrick-Goudreau, my favourite vegan advocate, who has been vegan for like 20 years already. She is shining and thriving and looking as beautiful as ever. And these two vegan twins were raised vegan and are still alive and thriving! They are not some special humans with different bodies than yours, they are regular humans who just know how to eat right.
- You can be an athlete and only eat plants, too. Look at Rich Roll and Lewis Hamilton, they are crushing it!
I always say that being vegan is not the goal; it is just a bonus to our life. It helps us live according to our values and morals.
There is absolutely nothing you can’t do as a vegan because it takes nothing away from you. It is a bonus to your life, not a new life itself.
The only thing that changes is that you open up your heart a bit more. You show more compassion and kindness, and even that doesn’t have to be the case.
You don’t even have to love other animals to be vegan. There are vegans who hate other animals but know it is wrong to exploit and abuse them so they choose to not harm them.