Considering going vegan during 2017 - VeggieBoards

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#1 Old 01-02-2017, 10:15 PM
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Considering going vegan during 2017

Hello everyone!

I haven't been here in a while, I posted a thread about going ovo-vegetarian and how tiny my "kitchen" was (and still is, doesn't even deserve the name "kitchen") 3-4 months ago. I ended up going mostly vegetarian, but I have still been eating fish, which I want to stop. I also kinda stopped eating eggs for, to me, unknown reasons, I guess I don't like them anymore.

How do I best start going vegan? should I start making fully vegan meals and slowly just remove the animal products from my day to day plan? I have been frying things in butter as well, now when I think about it, which vegetable oil is best to fry in?

I will go for mainly local food, grown on the island or at least in my country (Sweden), but I will make a few exceptions, I don't think we grow buckwheat, chia seeds, hampa seeds or quinoa in Sweden

Any advice or something I should know? I don't know anyone in my life that is vegan, so this will be a lonesome journey.
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#2 Old 01-02-2017, 10:49 PM
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Welcome. Here are a few tips:

Tempeh is a great-tasting, "meaty," high protein vegan food. It's fermented soy cakes. You can slice it into small pieces and sautee in olive oil. Serve over brown or white rice.

Other nice vegan foods: almonds, hummus (try with matzoh crackers), chickpeas, lentil soup (either canned or homemade), and hemp seeds. Tofu is also a nice, high-protein, easy-to-digest vegan food.

Also, consider wild rice. It's as high-protein as quinoa and buckwheat, and it also has a high quality amino acid mix (though not quite as high quality as quinoa). I personally prefer the taste of wild rice to quinoa. I don't know, however, whether wild rice is grown or sold in Sweden.

Regarding butter, which you mentioned, in the U.S., there are some vegan butter substitutes that tastes exactly like real butter. The one I use is "Earth Balance" brand. That's an easy substitution. I assume they must have something similar in Sweden. If not, or if you would refer something less processed, then consider coconut oil as a substitute for butter.

Regarding milk, soy milk is a nice substite for dairy milk.

Finally, there are also plenty of faux meats available, including veggie burgers. I live in the U.S. and don't know the brands available in Sweden, but you may consider exploring them.
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#3 Old 01-03-2017, 04:38 AM
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Thank you for your answer! I never thought about vegan butter before, but now when I think of it I accidentally bought it a few years ago, but for bread, tasted fairly nice I will look into what we have here, I have never considered cooking in coconut oil (silly me has only used that in my hair), will try it out since I have it at home.

Wild rice I'm very unsure if we have in Sweden, I have never heard of it. I forgot to mention (saw that now) that I don't really eat rice. I've heard that rice + beans give a good mix of proteins, is there something else I could mix the beans with to make it good since i don't really eat rice?

I'm not sure how I feel about faux meat, I have never been a big fan of the texture of meat so I'm not sure if I feel a need to "replace" it.

I am wary of soy products, I don't like the thought of contributing to rainforests being chopped down. I do understand that the majority of that production goes to feed animals that people eat, and that if I buy a package of it or not hardly matters, but I can't stand the thought of buying something that was produced on ground that could have been rainforest if they hadn't. I have heard that we have a few types of soy beans that are from better areas, they carry a mark, but I haven't found those in the stores here, and I'm not sure where the soy beans in tempeh comes from. I love tofu as well so it's a shame really.
I think I will take it easy with the soy.


I just realised that the only lip balm that has ever helped my chapped lips without making them dryer contains beeswax and lanolin (carmex), I've tried several others due to carmex looking like glue (I like pretty things), but I've been unsuccessful. I suppose this means that I won't be able to go fully vegan, maybe I should move over to the vegetarian part of the forum?
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#4 Old 01-03-2017, 04:59 AM
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Was wrong here so I remove this-

Last edited by Maara; 01-03-2017 at 05:03 AM.
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#5 Old 01-03-2017, 07:38 AM
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I just realised that the only lip balm that has ever helped my chapped lips without making them dryer contains beeswax and lanolin (carmex), I've tried several others due to carmex looking like glue (I like pretty things), but I've been unsuccessful. I suppose this means that I won't be able to go fully vegan, maybe I should move over to the vegetarian part of the forum?

I wouldn't worry about staying on this part of the forum. Feel free to do so. I'm not strictly vegan. I am vegetarian and eat vegan 95% or more of the time, but eat occasional cheese in social situations. The forum, as I understand it, is for people who eat vegan foods (to any degree), live a vegan lifestyle (to any degree), and/or wish to do so.

I am wary of soy products, I don't like the thought of contributing to rainforests being chopped down.

Soy is not usually grown in rainforest areas. It's widely grown in temperate areas of the world. For example, it's heavily grown in the northern central part of the United States. It's no more harmful to the environment than any other plant crop. I would bet that it's also grown in or near Sweden. (I suspect you may have been thinking of palm oil when mentioning rainforest deforestation.)

I forgot to mention (saw that now) that I don't really eat rice. I've heard that rice + beans give a good mix of proteins, is there something else I could mix the beans with to make it good since i don't really eat rice?

"Wild rice" is not actually rice. It's a grain that is only distantly related to rice. It's grown in wetland areas of temperate regions. You can google it. There is a good Wikipedia article on it.

More generally, the three relatively high protein grain or grain-like foods are quinoa, buckwheat, and wild rice. All are good amino acid compliments to beans. However, the body can store amino acids consumed any time during a day and combine them to make protein, so you probably don't have to worry much about amino acid combinations on a vegan diet. The exception would be if you're eating all grains, especially wheat, which is very low-lysine, and not much else. Most people aren't in that situation. So, as noted, it's probably unnecessary to worry about amino acid combining.
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Last edited by Dilettante; 01-03-2017 at 07:42 AM.
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#6 Old 01-03-2017, 07:57 AM
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Alright, I'll might stay on this part of the forum then I will still avoid soy beans since I did read from a quite reliable source (Swedens biggest nature department or whatever to call them) about the ones coming from brazil. The report was a few years old (2009) so things might have changed a bit since, but since I can't see it stating where the soy comes from on the packages I will stick to those marked as good, which (as I said) I haven't found yet. HOWEVER, I just remembered that the tofu I once got got that safe mark, so I won't be without tofu wonderful!

I did google wild rice and did not find much information about it, just the price tag on the few products around, and it's too expensive for me, about twice the price of quinoa. It does sound and look interesting though

Thank you for taking time to answer again, I will try to not overthink it too much and just do it. I don't feel like it should be too hard, but I think I will have to count my calories the first few days just to see what I get from it, I've been really bad at getting enough calories even on a regular diet.

Adding: I did not think of palm oil when I said that, I thought of a report I came across a few weeks ago.
It's in Swedish, but it's basically a report about soy's use in Sweden as animal food and grocery, but also where it comes from (ex. brazil) and how "it is done". They say that it's a good food, but that we should aim for eating locally produced foods etc etc. (I couldn't share the link, too few posts).
Buying the soy products with the safe mark on them is the best I can do, so that is what I will do if I buy soy

Maybe pointless to mention, but I'm somewhat an environmentalist. I will try to eat local foods, and the foods I buy that are not local, I do look for those marks. Quinoa and hampa and those were easy to find.

Last edited by Maara; 01-03-2017 at 08:12 AM.
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#7 Old 01-03-2017, 08:51 AM
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Interesting. I live in Chicago in the U.S., and when I drive out into the rural areas near here during the summer, all I see are soybean and corn fields. This is one of the biggest soybean-growing regions in the world. And most of the soybeans, as you correctly pointed out, are fed to animals, primarily factory-farmed hogs and chickens. But I don't know about Sweden. So yes, maybe a lot of the soy there comes from deforested areas of Brazil. So best to look for that label!
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#8 Old 01-03-2017, 09:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Dilettante View Post
Interesting. I live in Chicago in the U.S., and when I drive out into the rural areas near here during the summer, all I see are soybean and corn fields. This is one of the biggest soybean-growing regions in the world. And most of the soybeans, as you correctly pointed out, are fed to animals, primarily factory-farmed hogs and chickens. But I don't know about Sweden. So yes, maybe a lot of the soy there comes from deforested areas of Brazil. So best to look for that label!
Must be quite wonderful to have it produced so close to you, if I had it growing right where I lived I would feel much better eating it (knowing exactly where it came from etc)! Maybe the ones that are marked as safe are from somewhere in the US? I don't know how it is, but I'm happy that we at least got that label
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#9 Old 01-03-2017, 02:59 PM
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On soy, there's no need to cut it out entirely but by all means moderate if not a huge fan, checking the label for source is a good idea. I found vegetable butters to be nice and affordable and not that different in taste. Hope it works out well for you, we'll be around to help.
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#10 Old 01-03-2017, 03:33 PM
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I'd never heard of soy beans being responsible for deforestation before! They grow just about anywhere, one of Ohio (USA) biggest crops!
Again though, grown for animal food, for omnivores. I will say, although it's just a thought now, with the growth of the soy milk industries the by product of soy milk is okara which is fed to animals, so that should decrease the growth.

I did come across this which should make you feel better about it-
http://www.greenpeace.org/internatio...ed/blog/56418/
http://www.onegreenplanet.org/enviro...deforestation/
Anyway, giving up meat and dairy certainly does more for the environment than giving up soy -or even palm oil- anyday!
I do try to always avoid palm oil products. Coffee and chocolate are other foods to watch for ethical production, even coconut now that it's becoming so popular

Look at this great pinterest you helped me find!
https://www.pinterest.com/giselle68/...wedish-nordic/

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#11 Old 01-03-2017, 06:49 PM
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Hi Maara,

I really want to ease your concerns about soybeans. According to the United Soybean Board, 97% of U.S. soybean meal is fed to livestock animals, not fed directly to humans: https://unitedsoybean.org/media-cent...l-agriculture/ .

According to Soyatech Corporation, the worldwide percentage of soy eaten directly by humans is only 6%: http://www.soyatech.com/soy_facts.htm .

We vegetarians, together with 1.7 billion Chinese, Koreans, Indonesians, and Japanese, directly consume only the tiniest fraction of the world soy crop. The livestock industry is responsible for the environmental impact of ultra-massive soybean agriculture.

.

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Last edited by David3; 01-03-2017 at 07:16 PM.
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#12 Old 01-03-2017, 07:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Maara View Post

Any advice or something I should know? I don't know anyone in my life that is vegan, so this will be a lonesome journey.

Hi Maara,

Mercy For Animals has a beautiful Vegetarian Starter Guide (it's actually vegan). It includes great tips for transitioning to a vegan diet: http://www.mercyforanimals.org/files/VSG.pdf . They also have a website, with more information: http://www.chooseveg.com/

Also, there may be more vegetarians living near you than you think! Stockholm has very large vegetarian social group called "The Vegetarian Corner" Meetup: https://www.meetup.com/thevegetariancorner-com/
.

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#13 Old 01-03-2017, 09:08 PM
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Thank you all for the replies! It's not that hard to see that most soy goes to animals, seeing how huge that industry is, and then looking at how humans eat soy. I just want to make sure that I buy the kind that has been produced with care Since they don't state where the soy comes from on the packages here I can't really know it if comes from the US or ex. Brazil, but yeah, I'll stick to the ones marked as good.
Palm oil I've been avoiding for years. The potato chips/crisps sort that I liked the most + the rival started labeling themselves with "we do not use palm oil" and that made me understand that it was something bad about it in my mid teens, haha. I only see it in cheap cookies and such now.

Thank you all for all the links, I will check them out. I don't live in Stockholm but I guess I could maybe join in there anyway ^.^
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#14 Old 01-09-2017, 07:07 AM
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Palm Oil in Earth Balance is NOT Vegan

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Originally Posted by Dilettante View Post

Regarding butter, which you mentioned, in the U.S., there are some vegan butter substitutes that tastes exactly like real butter. The one I use is "Earth Balance" brand. That's an easy substitution. I assume they must have something similar in Sweden. If not, or if you would refer something less processed, then consider coconut oil as a substitute for butter.

Regarding milk, soy milk is a nice substite for dairy milk.
Earth Balance is made with Palm Oil which, technically, is not Vegan. Palm Fruit plantations are the #1 cause of rain forest obliteration and elephants and orangutans are poisoned and burned to protect the Palm Fruit crops. This is in Brazil. Malaysia produces sustainable Palm Oil, but only 30% of the Palm Oil that is used in Earth Balance is sustainable. Palm Oil is BAD. Please don't support this product.

Nut milks are far superior to soy milk and widely available. Almond, Cashew, Flax seed and hemp can be found at most major grocery stores.
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#15 Old 01-09-2017, 07:24 AM
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Hi Maara! I've been Vegan for several years and have so much advice that I would love to give you.

First, I would start by incorporating your favorite fruits and vegetables into your diet at every meal. This leaves less room for the stuff that shouldn't be on it. Focus on whole grains (rice, quinoa, bread, pastas, wraps, etc), legumes (chickpeas, black beans, lentils, etc., fruits, veggies, nuts & seeds. There are more than enough options, there is no reason to believe that you need soy. I don't eat it and never have.

Look into Buddha Bowls. Smoothies. Adding greens to fruit smoothies is a great way to get your greens in. 1 banana, frozen strawberries, frozen blueberries, a handful of spinach and some flax, hemp or chia seeds and water. That's a complete meal. Have as much as you want. For lunch have a sandwich, wrap burrito or salad. Keep good foods stocked and throw them together.

If you haven't already, watch Earthlings. It's available online for free at documentary-movie.com/earthlings/. This will help you solidify your resolution to not contribute to the mass suffering of sentient beings.

For frying I would recommend coconut or avocado oil. Olive oil has a low smoke point which means it actually turns toxic and is unfit for consumption when cooked at high temperatures. Avocado oil and coconut oil can sustain very high temperatures.

Please check out my website and sign up to get your free eBook, Top 10 Go To Staples For A Vegan Kitchen & How To Use Them. Is should be very helpful for you.

As far as butter goes, Smart Balance is the most sustainable option I have found. Earth Balance is made with Palm Oil, which is not Vegan. Palm Fruit Plantations are the leading cause of deforestation of Brazil's rain forests. Elephants and Orangutans are poisoned and burned to protect the crops. Malaysia produces sustainable Palm Oil but Earth Balance's Palm Oil is only 30% sustainable. Always read the ingredients. The packaging will tell you if the Palm Oil is sustainable or not. We cannot support unsustainable Palm Oil.

If you have any questions I would love to help out. Good luck! #GoVegan2017
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#16 Old 01-10-2017, 01:21 PM
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Thank you so much for all the suggestions and tips!

I don't have much food at home that's not vegan at this point (have been eating it more now to get rid of it, but I'm still aiming for mid February, so that I have some time.

I did watch Earthlings last week, and this might sound horrible, but nothing really surprised me, and it did not make me feel less or more of what I already felt. The movie had an impact on me in the sense that it was horrible to watch, and the way humans were treating the animals...
I had a hard time relating to much of it due to it being foreign. My family, myself, even the school ... we've all been buying Swedish meat, eggs milk, butter, there are quite hard regulations here with animal keeping and slaughter, I don't know if they're being followed but mostly they probably are. I'm still going vegan for obvious reasons, but it felt like Earthlings was telling about the horrors -that does not happen here-, which made it like watching a war happen in the middle east while sitting safe in your sofa far far away ...
The leather industry was probably the only thing that I could take in a bit better, "relate" to, or whatever to call it. I do have a few leather things, two smaller bags and one pair of boots. I will definitely not buy leather again, but I'm not really sure what I should do with the things I already have.
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#17 Old 01-11-2017, 05:49 AM
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European countries do have better animal regulations than most other places, but in some ways the differences may be slight.

I don't know for sure but I'd be willing to bet that even in Sweden some common and nasty industry practices are used.

Even if they are not there are still some fundamental questions about animal rights and liberation. I think you are on the right track here.
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#18 Old 01-11-2017, 07:34 AM
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Earth Balance is made with Palm Oil which, technically, is not Vegan.

This is incorrect. Palm oil is vegan. Let's be clear: animals are killed in the growing of all plant crops. Insects and field mice, at minimum, are killed when fields are cleared, plowed and harvested to grow crops, whether corn, wheat, kale, almonds, or soybeans. Other animals, such as raccoons and deer, are also displaced to make way for crop fields and, sometimes, are killed by farm equipment. This doesn't stop any of these crops from being vegan.

In the case of palm oil, it's not just insects, field mice, raccoons, and deer that get harmed by the cultivation, but in some cases and on some palm oil plantations, orangutans. Certainly, orangutans are more intelligent than field mice, so in some ways it's more of a tragedy when they get displaced or killed. However, in principal, cultivating palm oil is no different from cultivating, say, wheat. In sum, palm oil is vegan.

By the way, this doesn't stop me from wishing that palm oil growers would take steps to prevent harming orangutans, just as I wish that wheat growers would take steps (if possible) to reduce harm to field mice, though it's more critical with palm oil because orangutans are more intelligent and, probably, more sentient than field mice are, and are certainly more endangered as a species. Many of the palm oil growers, including those who produce for Earth Balance, claim that they are taking such steps. I have no way of verifying the truth of this, but it certainly doesn't affect whether palm oil is vegan.

Last edited by Dilettante; 01-11-2017 at 09:30 AM.
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#19 Old 01-12-2017, 11:59 PM
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I will not buy anything that states that it contains palm oil due to the rainforest issue, I have personally never seen the brand "Earth Balance" so maybe we don't even have it here, but I'll look around for other options

I wouldn't clump together all of Europe when talking about animal regulations, it differs a lot between the countries.

I bought almond milk before I saw the reply about the soy milk being most neutral in taste, but I'll try the almond milk out and see if it's alright (hopefully it is).

Thank you all for the suggestions, again, they've been really helpful
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#20 Old 01-15-2017, 05:28 AM
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You already know the truth, yet you still support the industry. Interesting.
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#21 Old 01-15-2017, 06:37 AM
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You already know the truth, yet you still support the industry. Interesting.
I have no idea which comment you're referring to but I recommend you refrain from making such snarky comments.

This is a discussion board, not to be used for self promotion.
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#22 Old 01-15-2017, 07:35 AM
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You already know the truth, yet you still support the industry. Interesting.
If that was to me, I'm just saying that the industry is not the exact same in all countries, which is a fact, this does not mean that I "support it".
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#23 Old 01-15-2017, 08:43 AM
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^That's it exactly- regardless of how well the animals are treated during their life, or how quick and painless their death is, the reality is people don't need to breed, raise and slaughter animals for any reason.
I didn't go veg'n because I'm compassionate. I don't abuse people because I'm compassionate. I don't because it's wrong. If any animal, (including people) threatened my safety I would not hesitate to use whatever it took to protect myself or defend others. I have luckily never needed to do use that kind of force.

It's simply bizarre that in this modern age of transport and high tech everything that anyone would defend such a barbaric practice of eating meat
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#24 Old 01-15-2017, 09:45 AM
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Yes! We really don't have to eat meat anymore, even during winter we can find fresh vegetables in the stores and the wide variety of non-cruelty foods that we have today can easily give us everything we need. The things that might be harder, like vitamin b12, we can get from supplements. We don't have to take advantage of other animals to live, we really don't.


I'm happy that I have finally decided on going vegan, the food part will not be hard for me and I count on eating fully vegan in february (I think I said this already)
Clothes, skin care and makeup will probably take a little longer for me, but I will try my best to avoid buying new things with animal products in them.
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