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#1 Old 04-11-2016, 05:43 AM
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Starting point

Whats a good starting point for going vegan? Thanks.
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#2 Old 04-11-2016, 06:21 AM
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I think that will depend a lot on your situation.

My suggestion is to do it slowly. Perhaps see if you can find a vegan food you really like....like a curry or whatever.....and then you can add that to your regular diet. Once you're comfortable with that, find another item and repeat until you have replaced all of your foods.

Once you've done that perhaps see if you can stop buying wool products. Once that is easy for you you can stop buying leather or something similar just like the food thing.

The idea is to not make it impossibly difficult. I have been "vegan" for around five years now and I am still learning how I can make more compassionate choices in my life. I still have a ways to go and my current thing is finding out more about fair trade and the such so I can try to treat our fellow humans better. I will have plenty of things I can start doing after I've figured this out as well.

Every step you take makes a difference so try not to worry about how quickly you get there.
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#3 Old 04-11-2016, 07:21 PM
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Whats a good starting point for going vegan? Thanks.
Hi Angelmel,

Here is a fantastic Vegetarian (actually vegan) Starter Guide. On page 13, it does a great job of summarizing vegan nutrition. It also has many easy meal ideas: http://www.mercyforanimals.org/files/VSG.pdf

_________

Specific recommendations for a healthy diet include: eating more fruit, vegetables, legumes, nuts and grains; cutting down on salt, sugar and fats. It is also advisable to choose unsaturated fats, instead of saturated fats and towards the elimination of trans-fatty acids."
- United Nations' World Health Organization
http://www.who.int/topics/diet/en/
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#4 Old 04-12-2016, 02:54 AM
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Focus on food first in transitioning. What helped me was to make a list of all the plant foods, dishes, and recipes I already had on hand and enjoyed, and build from that list. I was surprised at how much plant foods I was already eating. I also read lots and lots of vegan cookbooks and online blogs. Many vegan cookbooks have sections in front on staples to keep in your kitchen that will come in handy for recipes. And you can find vegan cookbooks in most libraries now too so you don't have to spend a fortune buying them. I started building my kitchen with staples like tomato paste and sauces, dried beans (especially red and green lentils), grains like bulgur, oats, rice, millet, quinoa, couscous; vinegars; dijon; applesauce; canned pumpkin; spices and seasonings. It makes cooking so much easier when you have what you need on hand.

If you like pancakes, google "vegan pancake recipes". Likewise, if you like omelets, google "vegan omelets". I discovered chickpea flour omelets this way, and tofu scrambled eggs, and chickpea salad sandwiches.

Also, support is important. Get more involved with vegan communities (like Veggieboards ), but also find local groups. Meetup.com is a site with community groups all over the world, and many cities now have vegan and vegetarian groups you can find through Meetup. I just joined one last year in my city that started.

For vegan friendly restaurants and other stores, check out HappyCow.net or Vegdining online for listings of stores in your city.

And always remember why you are interested in going vegan. Post your reasons in a place where you can see them daily. Sometimes it is easy to get bogged down in details or discouraged by family and friends/coworkers etc who don't share our views. It is easy to forget when living everyday in a culture that is blind or indifferent to suffering and exploitation of nonhuman animals. The more aware you are, the easier it is to begin to live your life differently and make ethical choices every day.
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#5 Old 04-14-2016, 03:06 PM
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Wow, NatureBound, your responses are spot-on and fabulous. So glad you are here for everyone. You're my hero!
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#6 Old 04-14-2016, 06:49 PM
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Wow, NatureBound, your responses are spot-on and fabulous. So glad you are here for everyone. You're my hero!
Thanks so much Terri! That's the nicest compliment I have gotten in some time! You are also an awesome contributer here, and so very inspiring!
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#7 Old 04-14-2016, 07:42 PM
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Sometimes it is easy to get bogged down in details or discouraged by family and friends/coworkers etc who don't share our views. It is easy to forget when living everyday in a culture that is blind or indifferent to suffering and exploitation of nonhuman animals.
YES!!! Stay strong!

A good starting point would be an awesome book. I have dozens of vegan books, but my hands-down overall favorite is "Becoming Vegan" by Brenda Davis and Vesanto Melina. It's incredibly well-rounded and very easy to read, answering all of the common nutrition concerns, and then some. It even has a section with etiquette advice on handling awkward social situations, like if your well-meaning coworkers surprise you for your birthday with a regular birthday cake!

I just checked Amazon and I'm surprised to see there are now 3 versions of this on there ("Express Edition" and "Comprehensive Edition"). The one I have is "The Complete Guide to Adopting a Healthy Plant-Based Diet."
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#8 Old 04-15-2016, 01:27 AM
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YES!!! Stay strong!

A good starting point would be an awesome book. I have dozens of vegan books, but my hands-down overall favorite is "Becoming Vegan" by Brenda Davis and Vesanto Melina. It's incredibly well-rounded and very easy to read, answering all of the common nutrition concerns, and then some. It even has a section with etiquette advice on handling awkward social situations, like if your well-meaning coworkers surprise you for your birthday with a regular birthday cake!

I just checked Amazon and I'm surprised to see there are now 3 versions of this on there ("Express Edition" and "Comprehensive Edition"). The one I have is "The Complete Guide to Adopting a Healthy Plant-Based Diet."
I also highly recommend that book! It was one of the first I bought when I went vegan and I too bought it on Amazon.com for cheap. I bought the comprehensive edition that covers literally everything lol, from plant sources of vitamins and macronutrients to samples of various subpopulations and their needs (pregnancy, athletes, overweight, underweight, older adults etc). I love that the book does not promote one type of vegan diet over another (such as raw vs starch based etc), but gives a well rounded and well researched (often drawing on double blind studies) account of vegan nutrition.

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#9 Old 04-16-2016, 10:18 AM
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Thanks nature bound for the suggestions i have those few things you suggested but will check the others.
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#10 Old 04-20-2016, 12:01 PM
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Such great advice here!

Personally, I did things very slowly and depending on your personality I think that is the best route for most people to take. When you cut out too much out at once it can be super overwhelming and not easy to maintain, often people don't feel good and then blame the vegan diet.

I would start by cutting out whatever thing you like the least first. For me I never liked meat so that was easy and I didn't eat it much at all for years anyways. Then when it came to dairy I cut out milk first, then yogurt and last cheese (the hardest part for most people!)

You could also focus on meals and start by making your breakfast vegan. Find and try different recipes and keep track of your favorites that you will want to keep in your regular rotation. Once you feel comfortable with breakfast, try to make your lunch vegan. Do the same process of finding and trying recipes.

Pinterest is one of my favorite resources for finding recipes, it contains a wealth of knowledge. Favorite sites are ohsheglows.com and minimalistbaker.com. Cookbooks are Oh She Glows, Thug Kitchen, and Veganomicon.

Just take your time,and enjoy the ride. Becoming a vegan was the best thing I ever did and it's changed my life in so many amazing ways
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#11 Old 04-20-2016, 12:13 PM
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Whats a good starting point for going vegan? Thanks.
I transitioned from omnivorous to pescetarian, to veg and eventually vegan. To be honest, it started with Meatless Mondays and More Month Than Money.

One of the things that helped me the most, similar to what Naturebound suggested, was taking "food challenges" from myself, friends and family. "Name your favorite food, I'll make it vegan." And I would go through my cookbook collection and pore over vegan blogs to do so! Between that and the Vegan Substitution Guide I did pretty well for myself as I transitioned.

My favorite books to recommend are Becoming Vegan (which has a TON of great info on nutrition and some decent recipes), The Complete Guide to Vegan Food Substitutions (which can help with veganizing your favorite recipes), and Vegan on the Cheap (which has some amazing starter recipes that really are inexpensive.)

I'm a bit of a cooking/cookbook junkie, but these are the books that got me started. Transition at your own pace and build up a repertoire of recipes that fit YOUR palette, because if it doesn't taste good, you won't stick to it. Good luck and welcome!
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#12 Old 05-05-2016, 06:54 PM
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Yummly is a good free app. You can set it to your diet requirements... So you can say that you are vegan.
And if you are gluten intolerant, diabetic etc...

If you use Facebook I would suggest looking for vegan and vegetarian groups in your area so you can meet ppl. Just try typing in your city or province/state and the word vegan or vegetarian and see if anything pops up. It is so helpful to meet others with the same mind set and then friending them on social media so you have more vegan posts popping up on your timeline!
Join 'plant based fitness' on Facebook! The guy that created it, did so b/c he wanted a judgement free zone. I love that group!! So it doesn't matter if you are struggling with the transition, ppl on there are so supportive and helpful.
Try googling vegan and your province/state as well and see if there is a website that mentions upcoming events and potlucks.

Check out www.happycow.net ! This is a great website to find restaurants all over the world! Be sure to start leaving your own reviews.

Whenever you have any questions, it is good to use a group like this one or check out face book groups and just simply ask. or use google too!

Feel free to message me anytime too!
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#13 Old 05-05-2016, 06:58 PM
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Also check out YouTube!

I love 'Cheap Lazy Vegan' for recipes, and I love 'Bite Size Vegan' for her compassionate, non-judgemental way of getting her message across of why it is good to be vegan.

Get a b12 supplenent and look into other supplements (vitamins) to take. I use the equate brand of a multi vitamin from Walmart as well as b12. (I use natures bounty liquid b12 from superstore) Equate is the cheapest and doesn't contain gelatin.
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#14 Old 05-05-2016, 09:27 PM
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I think the person who said start eating more vegan meals is giving you good advice - things like Indian or Thai food, hummus with pita and tabouli salad, bean burritos with guacamole. ..things that are somewhat familiar with a few tweaks, no adding vegan products unless you already enjoy veggie burgers. It's also pretty easy to eat fruit for breakfast, or a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.

Then start removing animal products and swapping in plant based milk for dairy milk. At this point you might want to try some Tofurky, or other vegan products, to make it easier to leave out meat.

Eventually you'll want to add beans and tofu so you aren't feeling deprived nor over spending on processed foods.

Look up recipes. I love Pinterist. It's much maligned, but the easiest way to learn to veganize familiar foods like gravy or pasta dishes. Then if you enjoy cooking you'll marvel at the huge number of new things you can try.

Finally you'll cut out whatever you're stuck on, whether it's fish or cheese. Cheese seems to be an issue for lots of people, it was for me.

One of the things I did was take things out of my pantry that were not vegan, like cream soups, and give them to a food bank.

You could potentially do the same with lightly worn leather shoes if you have that issue and can afford to buy vegan shoes right away.

Then you'll get more familiar with more vegan or cruelty free products that are non food, like cosmetics and clothing.

Obviously you can do everything faster than that, but if you do it gradually, then you have time to brush up on vegan nutrition and food swaps.
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#15 Old 05-05-2016, 09:35 PM
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Also check out YouTube!

I love 'Cheap Lazy Vegan' for recipes, and I love 'Bite Size Vegan' for her compassionate, non-judgemental way of getting her message across of why it is good to be vegan.

Get a b12 supplenent and look into other supplements (vitamins) to take. I use the equate brand of a multi vitamin from Walmart as well as b12. (I use natures bounty liquid b12 from superstore) Equate is the cheapest and doesn't contain gelatin.

Agreed. I think Vegan Zombie is a fun YouTube cooking show and Unnatural Vegan gives great rational advice on nutrition.

Bite Sized Vegans latest video speech was awesome, very inspiring and worth sharing.
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