Opting for plant-based products can offer numerous benefits for your health and the environment. But, changing your diet to one that is purely plant-based can still be a difficult transition. Nonetheless, if you’re determined to accomplish your diet goals, these transition tips for vegans starting out can help you in your journey towards a healthy lifestyle. So let’s get started!
1. RESEARCH AND PREPARE YOURSELF
Your body will send signs if you are eating a bad diet, like digestive problems or a lack of energy. However, before making any changes to your daily meals, you need to do some research and consult your doctor. This is especially true if you want to eliminate any animal products and eat a balanced vegan diet. Keep in mind that some nutrients like protein and iron are prevalent in dairy and meat products. Thus, learning the different fruits and veggies that can help you meet your dietary needs is a must. For example, the best plant sources of calcium are chia and sesame seeds, but that’s not all. Your diet is just the first step of your transition process. Choosing cruelty-free apparel and beauty products is also a vital part of a vegan lifestyle, which you can slowly transition as you progress in your journey.
2. FIND OUT THE VARIOUS VEGAN FOOD SUBSTITUTES
When researching about the vegan lifestyle, it is crucial to get to know the various products you can substitute for animal products. In fact, learning about the different food alternatives is one of the most valuable transition tips for vegans starting out that can make your journey manageable and stress-free. For example, if you’re craving a steak, you can rely on several meat alternatives like portabello mushroom to satisfy your palate. When baking without eggs, you can use applesauce instead for a similar texture in the finished product. When out of time or other options, there are now plenty of vegan brands in your freezer aisle which can help you wean yourself off animal products.
3. KEEP MEALS SIMPLE YET DIVERSE
You can create numerous delicious vegan recipes to balance and diversify your daily meals.
But, simpler meals are better during your early stages, especially when you’re still trying to figure-out and familiarize yourself to the various alternatives to cow’s milk, cheese, and other animal products. As much as possible, try to opt for more whole foods to get the utmost nutrients. Getting to know several common practices
that make your veggies less healthy like boiling can also help in your transition to being a full-fledged vegan.
4. JOIN VEGAN SUPPORT GROUPS
Aside from those transition tips for vegan beginners, another great move you can do is to join support groups. Doing this will help you understand and learn more about the vegan lifestyle. As you know, you need determination and support to successfully change your old eating habits and preferences. Isolating yourself may do more harm than good. Instead, share your journey with other people living a plant-based lifestyle. They can answer your questions, shed some helpful insights, and inspire you to make healthier choices.
5. LEARN TO READ LABELS
For some product labels, you will notice phrases like “vegan-friendly” or “suitable for vegans” but not all will be as clearly labeled. Thus, learning to read labels is a crucial requirement when transitioning to a vegan lifestyle. Remember, some animal ingredients are hard to detect, such as casein, albumen (egg white), and gelatin in both your food and beauty products. You can use several vegan apps to help you determine which ingredients are plant-based. As much as possible, try to opt for natural ingredients and avoid chemicals and additives that are hard to pronounce.
6. WELCOME CHANGE
Finally, welcoming the changes in your body is also part of your journey.
For this reason, you may experience some signs of detox like headache and fatigue during the first few weeks of your transition. Normally, these side effects will disappear once your body has adjusted, but you should always consult your doctor if you feel weak or have any unusual reaction to your new diet.
Overall, shifting to a vegan lifestyle may seem easy, but the process will certainly take some time, effort, and determination. Nonetheless, these transition tips for vegans starting out can help you achieve your diet goals with ease and enjoyment. Of course, don’t forget the reason you’re doing this shift. Whether it’s to be healthier, to save animals, or for climate change, your “why” will motivate you along your journey towards a vegan lifestyle.