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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
SO...<br><br>
Having tried vegetarianism (and veganism) several years ago and given it up for health reasons, I decided to go back to vegetarianism last November. It's now been just about a year, and I've loved every minute of not eating animals. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)"> VB has been especially helpful for me since I joined this last February, particularly since I'm the only vegetarian in a meat-loving family. I also decided earlier this year to stop purchasing leather, and I have been striving to support companies that don't test on animals.<br><br>
The thing is, the more I study animal rights literature, the more the ethical implications of my ovo-lacto eating habits bother me. At some point I managed to dismiss and forget about the interconnectedness of the industry and the kinds of cruelty that the general public supports when we purchase dairy and egg products (and items made with them). I can't keep dismissing the facts, and I feel like a hypocrite. I've been cutting down on animal products a lot over the last several weeks, but I don't think that's ethical enough for me anymore.<br><br>
Honestly, the reason why I abandoned veg*nism the first time around was that I had a hard time adjusting physically. All I could think about was how my stomach felt. The more I thought about it, the more my digestive tract bothered me -- turned out I had IBS and was consuming WAY too much insoluble fiber for my system to handle.<br><br>
Anyways, I felt so ill that I couldn't eat enough to keep my calories up, and my weight plummeted to 88 lbs. Mind you, I am very small anyways -- the most I've ever weighed was 107. I was about 20 years old and still lived with my parents, and they were extremely concerned about my weight loss. So they insisted that I return to a "normal" diet. Well, I did. I gained my weight back and kept it on. Also kept my weight up over the last year on a vegetarian diet, and according to my last nutrient analysis, I am in the healthy range for all macro- and micronutrients! Except Vit D. Working on that one.<br><br>
Long story short, I really want to jump in with both feet and just give veganism a try again. Now that I know not to over-do the insoluble fiber and to balance it out with gentle foods like refined starches (white rice, enriched pasta, white bread, etc.), I think I'll be okay. Plus, I have a much better knowledge of nutrition than I did back then, and I know what the high-calorie plant foods are, so I should be able to maintain both adequate nutrition and a healthy weight.<br><br>
Going grocery shopping tomorrow, and then I'm going to try a true vegan diet for a week. If it goes well, I'll try it for another week.<br><br>
Also, how strange that I make this decision today, only to discover this evening that November 1 is World Vegetarian Day! A good omen, perhaps? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)"><br><br>
Wish me luck! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/grin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":D">
 

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CONGRATS! and welcome aboard....sorry about the IBS, but maybe you'll be able to find a nice balance.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks, Photojess <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)"> Yeah, balance is the key to pretty much everything in life, so I'm pretty optimistic. I have to be honest, though -- the prospect of not being able to have cheese on my pizza, not being able to go into my favorite bakery and buy cookies and cupcakes, etc. makes me rather uneasy. Life is so simple when you don't give those things a thought. Of course, I'll be able to make my own pizza and baked goods, so it's not like I'll have to give these foods up completely. Plus, they'll probably be healthier if I make them myself! But what it boils down to is that respecting the autonomy and inherent value of non-human animal life is so much more important than my taste preferences. Certainly I'll get used to the dietary change in time if I decide to go ahead and make this a permanent life choice after my trial run <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)"> Giving up meat was really easy -- maybe I'll find that going the whole distance isn't as difficult as I imagine it might be.
 

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believe it or not, after a week or so without dairy, you'll find you're dealing more with the psychological addiction of dairy vs the physical. Most people like Daiya cheese, which is pretty good, if you really need it.<br><br>
As far as the cupcakes, buy yourself Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World, by Isa Moskowitz and Terry Romero! You won't be sorry...they are the best cupcakes and no eggs or dairy <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)"><br><br>
if you like to cook, we can give you some great websites and cookbook recommendations if you want....there are actually full threads on those, let me know if you want it linked....I think the cookbook thread is in the food forum. Getting some good quality vegan cookbooks is the way to go now.....It's not about what you can't have, it's about all of the variety is available to you now! Most people who eat the Standard AMerican Diet, have about the same 7-10 meals they rotate through
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I do have a vegan cookbook, but it's rather slim and I'd like to build up my library, so thanks for pointing me in the right direction. Now, I love cooking with healthy, whole foods. But to be perfectly honest, I think what I'm most excited about in terms of vegan cooking is baking all kinds of yummy, not-so-good-for-you sweets. Hehehe <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/grin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":D"> I'll definitely look into Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World -- that sounds like a great buy!
 

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Congrats!<br>
I was also about to say, vegan baking is SO much fun! I never baked so much in my life. The muffins are so airy and delicious you can have as many as you want without feeling heavy or nauseated. Same with cakes and cookies.<br><br>
Maybe you could try making Seitan. I don't think that has lots of fiber, but it is full of healthy calories and protein.<br><br>
Good luck
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the seitan suggestion, SwissMiss -- I've heard of it, but I've never made it before. Might have to add that one to my list.<br><br>
Well, I am now completing Day 1 of my veganism retry <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)"> Didn't eat as much today as I wanted -- it's really hard to eat more than three meals a day with my schedule. But I made sure to take full advantage of all of the vegan food groups in a pretty decent balance. Probably going to order a bottle of Bean-zyme tablets -- same active ingredient as Beano, but vegan. Also found an old thread in which a VBer mentioned VegLife Vegan Kids' vitamins. Why kids' vitamins, you ask? Because I have difficulty swallowing pills and capsules. These ones are chewable and apparently taste pretty good. And they're MUCH cheaper than the women's multivitamin I thought was vegan, but it turns out it's not. Plant-based gel capsule, but it has Vitamin D3, rather than D2. Fail. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/thumbsdown.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":down:"> I wonder if you can return vitamins to natural markets as long as the container is still sealed. Guess I'll find out.<br><br><br>
I am so excited about all of this! I feel a lot more prepared this time around than I was last time. Now that I know how to get nutrients AND good calories, I'm all set. Not to say that I can't eat some UNhealthy food...totally making brownies tomorrow. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/dancingbanana.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":nana:">
 

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oh wow being vegan makes me GAIN weight! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)"><br>
Learn how to make some vegan sweets. Like someone else said, Vegan Cupcakes Take Over The World is AWESOME. Also, there's a book called Vegan Comfort Food with lots of vegan comfort foods (like alfredo. omg its so good even my omnivorous family LOVES it!)<br><br>
Honestly, I'm eating like I was before I went vegan for the most part and I feel so much healthier. I even feel like I've got more color in my face because I need a darker color of makeup (and it's nearly winter here, so I'm not getting a sun tan.) but good luck! we're all here to support you <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)"><br><br>
also try Boca Vegan Burgers on these thin buns called Sandwich Thins. They're only 100 calories and are super good! I always load them with spinach and tomato with a side of quinoa...mmmmmm!
 
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