When I went vegan four months ago, I decided to wait it out before sharing it on the blog. I wanted to be sure of my decision. I didn’t want to start out on my journey and end up ‘chickening out’ after just two weeks, or something. But now that my 4-month vegan anniversary has arrived, I’m confident in my choice and would like to share my experience with you all.
Why I Waited To Share That I Went Vegan
I make many decisions on a whim… it just seems to be my nature. Sometimes I stick to those decisions, but sometimes I don’t.
I went vegan on a whim. So I wasn’t ready to share that I had gone vegan because I wasn’t yet sure if my going vegan was just one of my experiments that would fail or that I’d give up on.
But now that I’ve been eating a vegan diet for four months, I can confidently say that I’ll continue with it and that I won’t be having a change of heart anytime soon.
Why I Went Vegan
Like many people, I was prompted to go vegan after watching a documentary. No shame here. I watched What The Health (yes, yes, I know it’s sensational and dramatic) and that made me start doing some research. I’m that person who reads for hours and hours on end about a subject that interests me until I feel I’m at a point where I feel I’ve formed an educated opinion about the matter. So I started reading tons and tons of articles on veganism and a plant-based diet and tons of articles that did not support a plant-based diet. I literally planted seeds of doubt in my own mind and didn’t stop researching until I got satisfying answers to all my nagging questions.
After learning about the impacts that consuming animal products and byproducts has on our health, the environment and planet, and the animals themselves, I decided that going vegan was the best thing to do.
After watching What The Health and probably one other documentary and reading a couple of articles, I decided overnight to stop eating all animal products. In the days following, I continued my research until I was convinced.
What I Mean by ‘Vegan’
Vegan, by definition, means ‘using or containing no animal products.’ When I say that I went vegan, I mean that I’ve started to eat a vegan diet. i.e. A diet without animal products whatsoever. More specifically, I’ve been trying to eat a whole foods, plant-based diet, which is not necessarily the same thing as a vegan diet. A whole foods, plant-based diet is vegan, but a vegan diet may not necessarily be WFPB. Vegan diets may include certain vegan junk foods that someone on a WFPB diet would never consume. Oreos, for example, are vegan, but they most definitely do not qualify as a whole food.
By saying that I now eat a vegan diet, I mean that I try to make my diet as healthy as possible by eating a whole foods, plant-based diet, but sometimes I’m barely scraping by and will just settle for anything, as long as it’s vegan.
Although I’ve adopted a vegan diet, I have not actively adopted a fully vegan lifestyle. So when it comes to living a vegan lifestyle (not wearing leather, buying cruelty free brands, etc.), I am no expert. I haven’t done much research with regards to that and I have not yet begun to implement vegan practices into my entire life.
My Experience Going Vegan and the Transition
Since I went vegan cold turkey, I went in without much preparation at all. My house never had much groceries, and even less vegan groceries. I always felt very hungry because I wasn’t eating calorie-dense animal products any more. Based on my research, this happens to a lot of people when they go vegan, so I just made up for it by eating much larger portion sizes (and sometimes eating more often). It wasn’t easy, but it wasn’t hard either (as long as I kept myself well-fed). If I got too hungry and I was surrounded by non-vegan food, especially the ones I really loved, I found it a bit hard to resist. But for the most part, my resolve was stronger than my desire to give in to temptation.
To strengthen my resolve and to be sure that being vegan was something I wanted to do, I continued doing loads of research online, reading articles and watching videos. Doing that also helped me to answer any questions people would bombard me with whenever they found out about my new lifestyle choice.
A few months before I went vegan, I started to experience terrible acne. (Starting in late May/early June, during my exams). I had a huge breakout on my forehead and loads of blackheads on my cheeks. It was very frustrating, as I had never experienced something like that before. I always heard people saying that a vegan diet does wonders for your skin, so going into my new diet, I was expecting my skin to start clearing up. But much to my dismay, my skin got worse. I’d get new painful pimples popping up very often. The pimples always left scars, too, which tend to stick with me for a very long time.
I knew my diet was contributing to it, because it was a new, drastic change. That was very discouraging, but I decided to stick with it and wait out the tide. The wait paid off, because now, my skin has improved tremendously. My forehead cleared significantly after a month and a half of being vegan. I still get breakouts here and there (which comes with scarring and dark marks) but it’s nothing compared to what it was like before. It’s continuing to improve, and I’m grateful for that.
Now, I think I’m at a point where my mind and body are well adjusted to veganism.
Why I’m Sticking to Veganism
After being vegan for a while now, I no longer have a craving for meat. That’s a huge thing for me because I used to be a huge food lover. Except for very few times when I might be extremely hungry and something smells really good, I don’t actually find meat appetizing at all anymore. I have ‘cheated’ and had things that contain dairy products, but I haven’t intentionally ingested any form of meat since being vegan. Part of the reason for this is because, even before going vegan, meat would sometimes gross me out. Going vegan cemented that for me, and I don’t see myself going back.
Though I initially went vegan mainly for health reasons, I decided to stay vegan for environmental and ethical reasons. I’m very pleased with my decision, and though I won’t try too hard to convince anyone, it is my hope that more and more people are made aware of the positive implications of choosing to be vegan.
If you have any questions, feel free to leave me a comment below! I’ll be happy to answer. 🙂
Until next time,