What's the best way to go vegan?

This is going to be a new and hopefully, regular segment here on Eating Consciously. I often receive emails where people ask me specific questions concerning veganism. I will answer the questions on my blog, or if you're lucky, I might even address them on my podcast ;P So, if there is a vegan question you have, whether it be about cooking, nutrition, animal rights, etc., send it my way and you will probably see it here! Don't forget, you can also call my voicemail line at 206.888.3763, please note your message will likely be played and answered on my podcast when you call the voicemail. Let's get to the first question!

Today's question comes from Amy in Pennsylvania.

Q: "Do you find people wanting to make the transition (to veganism) still look for the taste? I would think like cigarettes or something, stopping cold turkey (no insult intended) would be the best route."

A: I've heard arguments from both sides. There are some people who do what they are able and willing to do a that moment and there are others who say stopping all at once is best. I don't find that people who are doing it for the right reasons really look for the taste. In fact, I don't think people really look for the taste of the meat, but the sauces and herbs and spices that usually go along with it. You would be surprised at how the same spices you would use for say, chicken piccata, can translate into say, beans piccata.

I did it in stages, but only because I wasn't completely informed about everything at once, such as fish and dairy for example. Once I realized how, for lack of a better term, fucked up the situation was and how it wasn't necessary, healthy, or normal, is when I went completely vegan. I still learn new things even to this day.

The big "click" for me was when I realized that cows don't just "give" milk and that they actually needed to be pregnant, usually through artificial insemination, to do so. Then, I discovered the babies go off to veal or are forced to suffer the same life as their mothers. Ultimately, I always tell people that when it clicks for you, do it, and not to be afraid of not knowing what to eat because there's so much information out there, you'll figure it out as you move along. I could go on and on....as you know, but hope that answers your question.

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  1. I had that same "click"! In hindsight it's like, DUH cows are just like every other mammal and only lactate after pregnancy. Once you stop to look at it, there's so much absurdity in the assumptions we make about food nowadays! Like how people are always worrying about vegans eating healthy...when everyone else eats eggMcMuffins for breakfast and roastbeef sandwiches for lunch on a daily basis!

  2. My diet was leaning towards vegatrianism/veganism for a long time, but I had yet to completely make the transition - mostly because it was damned hard to feed myself when out and about. You would have to starve throughout the day because our culture does not serve anything but animal-based dishes. Getting into Green Smoothies helped a lot because I was able to get what I needed and not worry about eating everything served to me at a freind's house or a resturant. I even brought a Nutribullet and keep it in the breakroom at my work. It takes the guess work out of it. What finally did it 100% was watching "Earthlings", which made me fully aware of the suffering I was causing. I could never look at an animal product the same way again. Also, I don't call it "vegan" even though it is because people get all weird about it - I just say "Plant-Based Diet". People seem to get it and see it as healthy eating, rather than a snobby subculture. Sad to say, but most people turn up their nose when they discover you are a *gasp* vegan! ;)



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