So, You Wanna Go Vegan…

Vegan-PosterHappy 2016!

Recently there’s been a lot of talk of people trying out Veganism as a New Year’s Resolution and I get absolutely excited each time I see someone saying they want to  Go Vegan! I can honestly say that becoming vegan was one of the best decisions that I’ve ever made. Here’s my Story   It’s a choice full of only positive results and I have no regrets. I wanted to write this post to share my tips on how to successfully transition to Veganism. Veganism is not a  crash diet; it is a lifestyle. So remember this is a journey and don’t be too hard on yourself.

Inform yourself

There is a plethora of information out there.  If there is more than one reason that you are Vegan than you are more likely to stick with it. The more you know, the more you grow.  I started out for health reasons then continued to do so for the animals and then the environment. Earthlings  had the biggest impact on my decision to go Vegan. It’s hard to watch but life changing.

Here’s a list of other documentaries I recommend.

Fork Over Knives

Meat the Truth

Food, Inc.

Food Matters

Cowspiracy   ( available on Netflix)

** Warning** Watching these documentaries may cause you to no longer enjoy the consumption of bacon and other cancer causing meats. 

Go to a Cooking Class

This is a great way to learn how to make vegan meals. I found my first cooking class on Meetup.

Veganize your favorite non-vegan dishes.  

VeganFoodProducts

I absolutely love Mexican food! Mexican food is very easy to Veganize. Find a milk substitution, a cheese substitution and butter substitution that fits your needs.

infographic-vegan-cooking-substitutions-v02.jpg They even have vegan ice cream! Trader Joe’s makes a magnificent coconut milk based one.  Also, try Meat Alternatives like Beyond Meat and Field Roast. I’ve also heard good things about Gardein although I haven’t tried them myself.  I really try to stay away from ” fake meats” and processed foods so I only use these in moderation!

Vegan Cook Books

I cook more than ever now that I am vegan. It’s almost a requirement for most Vegans, you’ll be surprised at the things you’d find milk in. Here are my favorite Vegan Cookbooks and a link to the author’s blog.

Oh She Glows  by Angela Lidden   I love this book because all the recipes are plant-based. She doesn’t use any processed foods and many of the recipes are soy and gluten free.

Vegan Soul Kitchen: Fresh, Healthy, and Creative African-American Cuisine  by Bryant Terry  Hopping Jean, Red Beans & Rice, Collard Greens, and Cornbread are a few of my favorites from this book.

Thug Kitchen   by  Thug Kitchen The name grabbed my attention, the delicious recipes makes this one of favorites.

Skinny Bitch Ultimate Everyday Cookbook  byKim Barnouin love the recipes in this book as well as the info throughout out the book

Fresh From the Vegan Slowcooker Set it and Forget it!! The Cornbread topped Chili is my hubby’s favorite! It’s a must try.

The Lusty Vegan  byAyinde Howell &Zoe Eisenberg is a great book for those dating vegans.

The Best Green Smoothies on the Plant by Terry Russell

One-Dish Vegan

Drink the Rainbow  by Moniqua Sexton ( E- book) The Sweet Potato Pie smoothie is the bomb!!

Step your Staple/ Pantry Game

The most intimidating thing about most Vegan cooking is all the ingredients needed to make a dish.  Make it a point to grab a new staple every time you grocery shopping.  Here are a few of my favorite Vegan staples.

  • Chia Seeds
  • Flax Seeds
  • Lentils
  • Quinoa
  • Nutritional Yeast
  • 100 % Whole Wheat Pastry Flour
  • Unbleached all-Purpose Flour
  • Virgin Unrefined Coconut Oil
  • Medjool Dates
  • 100 % Pure Maple Syrup
  • Coconut Sugar
  •  Cold-Pressed EVOO
  • Grapeseed Oil
  • Vegan Butter
  • Chickpeas
  • Arrowroot Powder
  • Dried Kombu
  • Coconut Amino Acids
  • Liquid Smoke

There are many negative things said about the Vegan diet. You can live a healthy life on a Vegan diet as long as you eat the right things. Oreos are considered vegan ( but there’s question on bone char in the sugar ) but that doesn’t mean you should eat them til your heart is content. You must eat organic fruits and vegetables and whole foods to be healthy and well. 

Find other Vegan Friends

Many of your friends and family will say that you are “extreme” for going vegan. You may not have much support. This is where the world wide web comes in handy, I only have one real life vegan friend and I met her on Instagram. ( Hey, Moniqua  girl, hey!)  Don’t be afraid to reach out to others. Again, Meetup is a great place to find other Vegans if you live in a metropolitan area.

 

Thanks for Reading,

Jazz Moore

 

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