Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Becoming Vegan

I am becoming vegan.  It is something I decided to do a couple months ago but now that I look back I have probably been becoming vegan for a while I just finally realized it.  I used to be very ignorant on the topic and was very critical of people who were vegan.  After watching a few documentaries, reading some books and doing research online I have decided it is the best decision for me and my family.  (Clint was apart of the decision as well so when I say "I" I mean "We".)  It will be a slow transition and as long as we have chickens we will always eat our eggs.  We don't eat a lot of eggs anyways and since I know our chickens are treated really well and that they are fed really well I feel fine about it.

Some of my misconceptions about vegans:

If you are Vegan you have to be like "Straight Edgers".  This is what the kids in high school were called who were vegans, didn't wear leather or use any animal products, and broke into mink farms over the weekend to set the mink free.  They also did a lot of skate boarding.

That Vegan's stink or have an odd odor because they are so unhealthy because people need meat and dairy to be healthy.  (This is very untrue and a very ignorant thing to believe.  I apologize to all the people I judged in my thoughts.)

That Vegan's were only vegans because they supported animal rights and that was the only reason.

All of my misconceptions were based on random comments I would hear from other people and close mindedness on my part.  I have learned a lot in the past few years about food and health and how you actually are what you eat.  I never thought that spirituality and food were connected but since I read the book Women, Food and God I was introduced to the idea that what we eat and the way we treat our bodies is directly related to our relationship with God and spirituality.  Immediately that idea felt right to me and I have found it to be true and read other books on the topic.  Since making changes to the way I eat and showing respect to my body by nourishing it with good, whole, healthy foods I feel happier, more peaceful, balanced and overall just better which translates into me having more patience, being kinder to myself and others, being more open and being more aware and sensitive to people and feelings.

Did you know there are three good reasons to becoming a vegan?  They are:
You will be really, really healthy if you eat a balanced, diverse, whole food, plant based diet.
You will help the environment.  I have read that you will do more for the environment by becoming a vegan than owning a hybrid car.
You will help stop animal cruelty and horrible mass animal farms.

You just need to pick one of these reasons to become a vegan but will have a bigger effect then you think.

The main thing I hear people ask me is where will you get your protein.  When I hear this it is obvious that people just don't know a lot about food.  Have you ever heard of nuts, legumes, quinoa?  They are packed with lots of protein and that is just naming a few..  Plus there are vegan protein bars, powders, etc just to be safe if you really are worried the protein thing.  BTW vegan protein bars and powders are just full of nuts, legumes, quinoa, etc.
Another thing I hear is,"What about the vitamin B12?"  I just take a supplement to be safe.  No biggie.
And the most frustrating thing I hear is,"Where will you get your calcium?"  This is so frustrating because this all stems from the amazing advertising campaign by the Dairy Association.  You get so much calcium from vegetables and it is much more absorbable than cow's milk calcium.  So you can rest easy on that idea.

If a person is vegan and they are unhealthy it is because they are not eating healthy not because they are vegan.  There are lots of processed, sugary snacks that are vegan.  

I will stop for now and write more on the topic later but this is what I am doing now.  I am definitely not perfect and if I go to someones home who has made me and my family a meal I don't refuse meat.  I am also a sucker for sushi and chocolate but this is a transition and I can't completely change over night.  If you know about the cows we raised you know I have a lot of organic beef I need to do something with.  We will most likely slowly eat it.

Becoming a vegan has been pretty great.  I feel amazing and before you judge it as a crazy, extreme thing you should try it and see.  Just give it a couple weeks and you may not want to go back because you will feel so good!  Plus, don't worry, I used to be one of the judgers so I know how people are viewing me.

Here are some links if you want more information about veganism and if you have Netflix there are lots of documentaries available to you on the subject.  I recommend Forks Over Knives and Food Inc. to get you started.  I have heard that Vegucated is very good but very hard to watch because of the graphic images of animal cruelty.  I haven't gotten up the courage to watch it yet.




Vegan love.


bryce and kianna said...

Thank you for the inspiration, Tammy. It's been so good to see you guys the last couple weeks. I finally feel like I am doing what I've always wanted to be doing.

sweetheber said...

You really would like Vegucated. The yucky parts are near the end, when the people in it start watching some movie clips (you'll know it). It only lasts a few minutes so it's easy to fast forward, I did. I enjoyed it because it's in very simple terms and has varying opinions.
Good job!! You're awesomely healthy anyway and now you'll be even more :)

Turbo said...

Cool, Tammy. Sam's GF runs a Vegan cooking blog, in case you are interested-- http://www.theveganparty.com/

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