4 Common Vegan Mistakes That I’ve Made In The Past
Veganism in a nutshell is living a life free of animal exploitation. That includes food, clothing, entertainment, science, etc. It’s virtually impossible to become 100% vegan since most vehicles contain leather in the interior. You may go to a restaurant or another building that may have non-vegan decorations or furniture. Those are just a few examples that came to mind.
The purpose of becoming vegan (from my perspective) is preventing as much animal exploitation as possible through a healthy lifestyle. Seems simple, right? That’s what I thought until I made the transition to a vegan lifestyle.
Here are 4 mistakes I made in the past living a vegan lifestyle.
1. Not checking the ingredients in labels and assuming certain foods are vegan.
The biggest example of me assuming a certain food was vegan was when I ordered Tofu Garlic Noodles at a Vietnamese restaurant. I didn’t find out until the 3rd time that the noodles were in fact egg noodles. #dissapointed
2. Both eating too many calories or not enough.
I’m sure I’m not the only one that has made the mistake. Overeating too many calories usually leads to increased body fat which was not what I was looking for.
When I don’t eat enough calories is when I go out and get the ‘vegan version’ of salads in restaurants that usually lack caloric density. The same goes with certain Veggie Burgers that have around 300 calories per burger. That’s a snack, not a meal!
3. Drilling your beliefs into people instead of providing insight of how animals are being treated
This one is more about how I see people express their beliefs than how I express them. Before I switched to the vegan lifestyle what I found out it existed 2 years ago, I agreed with the message, but the way the message was delivered turned me off.
The ‘pushy’ approach is understandable since many vegans are passionate in what they believe in and want what’s best for the animals, people, and our planet. But by nature, most people get defensive when their personal beliefs of animal consumption is questioned. Since its a practice they have done their entire lives, most people do not want to change due to habit or lack of sense of urgency.
From my personal approach, I just express the vegan lifestyle in a healthy, humorous, and knowledgeable approach. We all have a different way to express our beliefs, but we should remember why we are doing so in the first place and if we are accomplishing what we intended to.
4. Not enjoying the lifestyle.
Before I switched to a vegan, plant-based diet, I was experimenting with the pescatarian diet. I was enjoying the benefits of removing almost all animal products from my diet, but it felt like a drag to eat a serving of fish every day. I actual felt cloudy headed on my fourth week of eating pescatarian. So I replaced that one serving of fish with Tofu or Tempeh and became vegan.
I was forcing myself to eat Tempeh initially since I wasn’t sure how to cook or season it (even after doing research)
Then I found the perfect way to prepare it (Green Mexican Sauce, onions, tons of Lemonpepper) and I look forward to eating it every time now!
The lesson here is that there will be trial and error in the diet and overall lifestyle. Slip ups do happen and there is no reason to beat yourself up and give up. Just remember why you switched to this lifestyle in the first place and use that as lifelong leverage. Whether it’s for your health, the animals, the environment, or all of the above, maintain persistence and remember to enjoy your journey!
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