Wondering How to Go Vegan WITHOUT Feeling Overwhelmed or Deprived?
If you answered yes, you’re in the right place!
The Bottom Line
Figuring out how to go vegan on your own can be overwhelming! My mission is to take what may seem like a daunting course of action (especially if a vegan diet plan is totally foreign to you) and turn going vegan into a fun-filled journey of exploration and discovery. Prepare for astounding results for your body, mind, and spirit!
Here are 10 key tips that will help you make the transition to vegan as practical, easy, and enjoyable as possible.
Here’s the deal. We have been programmed since birth to believe that animal products are a necessary component of a healthy diet. The government guides us with a food graph that still promotes meat, dairy, and eggs as part of a healthy diet.
We have been bombarded our whole lives with marketing making claims like “milk does a body good.” We’re told that that going vegan means missing out on valuable nutrients. It’s total B.S.!
Have you ever wondered why don’t we see ads urging us to eat broccoli or kale? Think about it.
Finally, the facts about the harmful effects of animal products, and the benefits of a vegan diet plan are starting to get more attention. The first step to learning the truth about what a healthy diet looks like, is accepting the fact that we’ve been misled… In other words “know to not know.”
We must open our minds in order to learn how to go vegan in a way that works for you. That way you can embrace the process of transitioning to a vegan lifestyle that will keep you healthy for a lifetime, save animals from suffering, and protect our environment from destruction.
2. Elevate Your Education
To succeed at transitioning to a healthy vegan diet, we must educate ourselves about the food we put in our bodies. We need to know where the food came from, how it was produced, and the impact it has on our health, animals, and the environment.
There is so much information out there these days from so many different sources. It can be confusing and overwhelming to figure out what a balanced diet for optimal health consists of.
I created this website to be a one-stop-shop for the information you need to make sustainable lifestyle changes. Learn about vegan nutrition as a whole, as well as all the reasons to go vegan, the nutrients to pay special attention to, how to get enough protein on a vegan diet, and top vegan resources right here on my website.
3. Marry Your Motivation
Determining your motivation for going vegan is a crucial first step in your transition, but there’s a catch… Time often has a way of allowing the intensity of our motivations to fade if we do not consistently find ways to keep them fresh in our minds and hearts.
Why? Because change is uncomfortable! It takes strong motivation to be able to continue on your path, and work through that discomfort, to replace old habits with new ones until your new routine becomes your new lifestyle.
Think about it like a marriage. Why do people renew their vows? People renew their vows to remind themselves why they got married in the first place. Similarly, it’s important we remind ourselves regularly why we are spending the time and energy it takes to transition to a plant-based lifestyle.
I recommend watching a documentary, or reading a book at least once a month. If your goal is to get off your medication, it may help to re-watch the documentary Forks Over Knives. If your goal is to do your part to end of factory farming and your motivation is the suffering of animals, it may help to watch the documentary Earthlings, or read the book “Eating Animals” by Jonathon Safran Foer. The point is, never lose sight of why you have made the commitment to transition to a vegan diet and what you want to achieve by fulfilling that commitment.
4. Thrive on Variety
When someone asks me how to go vegan “the right way,” my answer is simple… Eat a wide variety of vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts, seeds, and whole grains every day. I encourage you to look at your dietary changes as an opportunity to expand your plate, not restrict it!
When we eat a variety of nutrient-dense whole foods we are able to take in optimal amounts of all of the essential vitamins and minerals we need to be physically and mentally healthy and energized from the inside out!
5. Understand It’s a Process
In an ideal world, in addition to avoiding all animal products, we would also avoid all processed foods all the time. If you’re like me, avoiding all processed foods is just not going to happen. Especially now a days when there are so many tasty vegan food products like vegan cheese, vegan wings, vegan pizza, and the list goes on and on. By the way, when i went vegan there was literally no vegan substitutes that were tasty enough to even tempt me. For that reason I consider companies like Gardein both a blessing and curse!
Some vegan substitutes for animal products are more processed than others. Some were created with the goal of tasting like “the real thing” and contain unhealthy ingredients. I consider these great transition foods and can be good options for people struggling to eliminate meat, dairy, and/or eggs from their diet. I also consider them treats! I love eating Gardein wings on Sundays during football season for example. Gardein products are not a part of my daily routine however, as a diet made up primarily of whole plant foods is the healthiest way to go.
6. Plan, Plan, Plan
Set yourself up for success with a solid plan of action for your transition. Everyone is unique in how they go about adopting a healthy vegan diet plan as a permanent lifestyle shift.
Depending on where you are in the process, you may choose for example, to eliminate an animal product and add a super food to your diet each week until you have eliminated animal products all together. Or maybe you start with eating vegan 3 days per week for the first month, 4 for the second month, etc. until you are eating vegan 7 days per week forever! The Beginner’s Guide gives you detailed instructions on how to establish a plan that will work for you.
Then there is the actual meal planning. Each week sit down and create your specific plan for the week so you don’t get into an “emergency situation” in which you are so hungry you can’t think straight and wind up veering from your plan as a result.
6. Invest in Kitchen “Toys”
Being successful and satisfied on a vegan diet can be much easier if you have certain tools in the kitchen to help you out. I’ll fill you in on a little secret… I am not a fan of cooking or spending time in the kitchen! That’s why I came out with The Six Weeks to Sexy Abs Meal Plan, in which the recipes are super simple and quick to prepare.
When it comes to kitchen tools, I recommend starting with a Vitamix. The price tag may seem steep, but its quality and the use you will get out of it makes this high speed blender well worth the investment. Blending shakes and making soups for example, are quick and easy ways to take in a ton of nutrients quickly and with ease Adding a juicer, air fryer, and dehydrator to the mix can make it simple to create healthful drinks and nutrient-dense vegan snacks and meals in your own home (no culinary skills required!)
7. Stock up on Staples
Come up with a list of staple super foods and healthy snacks and keep your kitchen stocked with those foods at all times. Shakes or smoothies are great go-tos, so keep the necessary ingredients on hand at all times: dairy-free milk, berries/fruit (frozen or fresh), dates, hemp seeds, chia seeds, flax meal, amla powder, spinach, and kale all are great nutrient dense foods that can be thrown into a shake for a quick protein-rich meal. Fresh fruit, raw veggies and hummus, quinoa, raw nuts and seeds are also great staples to consider for healthy, quick, simple snacking!
8. Boost Your Body with B-12
One of the first actions to take when learning how to go vegan “the right way” is to start taking a vitamin B-12 supplement. B-12 is the one nutrient that a modern plant-based diet inherently lacks.
Here’s the quick explanation: Vitamin B-12 is formed from a bacteria found in soil. Interestingly, we used to get enough of the bacteria simply from getting soil under our fingernails back when we grew our own gardens and the land wasn’t stripped of its nutrients. Now, the pressure washing and sanitizing process foods go through, make it impossible to get B-12 on a plant-based diet, except through supplementation.
It’s important to be aware of the essential nutrients that you may need to supplement on a vegan diet depending on how varied your daily menu is.
9. Succeed with Support
You can start with me! My life and work (they’re one and the same) is focused on guiding and supporting you on your journey going vegan. Join me on social media and even set up a phone consultation with me if you feel you need professional coaching to help you get the job done.
Creating a support system for yourself is crucial. Connect with vegan-veterans, and other like-minded people in your community and on social media who provide you with helpful insight and camaraderie. Family, friends, and coworkers can also play a significant role in either helping or hindering you during your transition. It is vital to have a heart to heart with people in your life to explain your decision and request their support.
10. Exercise to Energize
Get your daily exercise high and say yes to a FIT vegan lifestyle! It sometimes takes some exploring, but it’s totally possible to find ways that are actually enjoyable for you to stay active, strengthen your muscles, improve your cardiovascular health, and increase your flexibility. Just like with food, variety is key with exercise.
Try out different types of classes like spinning, kickboxing, yoga, an/or dance, go for jogs, run stairs, lift weights… There is no reason you ever have to be bored! In combination with your healthy vegan diet, your exercise routine will keep you fit, energized, and loving what you see in the mirror!
Take Home Message
You didn’t form your current habits overnight, so no need to expect to adopt new ones overnight! Be kind and compassionate to yourself as you take on the venture of learning how to go vegan in a way that works for you. Work on a positive mindset above all else and the rest will fall into place by following the tips set forth on this page. You got this!