Vegan lifestyle

So today I came to a realization that I needed a change in my life. Both physically and mentally. After seeing my mom with IVs in her arms and was told she's a diabetic it scared me. I was scared for her. My husband and I been trying to lose weight but we constantly go back on our word. So today I've decided that I want to go vegan to help change my bad habits and also be a good example to my mom and husband. I'm not sure how to start but I could really use some tips. This is not about weight loss for me anymore but about making a better change for a healthier lifestyle.

Replies

  • First if you're going to go vegan do your research. I am no expert on veganism but I do know there are things you'll be needing to supplement. Think one of them is B12.

    My advice tho if you aren't doing it for an ethical reason, you just need to get your eating habits in check. Regardless of what diet you choose its going to be all about tracking your calories. Not saying your are saying this BUT no diet is weight loss wizardry. You can gain weight with any diet and you can lose weight with any diet. Just try diets that you think you can sustain for the rest of your life and if being vegan is one of them, go for it.
  • tiffaninghs
    tiffaninghs Posts: 203 Member
    by the way being vegan can be extremely unhealthy as alot of processed foods actually dont contain animal products.(think potato chips and walmart brand cookies). so thats why i made the plant based and vegan distinction.. feel free to add me or message me. im 2 years into this life..
  • Coconut0527
    Coconut0527 Posts: 6 Member
    Feel free to add me if your vegan, I'm not really but try a lot of vegan stuff since my boyfriend is and I'd like to get to know more vegans ☺☺
  • SuzySunshine99
    SuzySunshine99 Posts: 2,731 Member
    Being vegan is an ethical decision, not a nutritional one. It entails more than just food...it's the rejection of any animal product, including things like leather clothing.

    If it's not an ethical issue with you, then there's no reason you can't include dairy, eggs, and meat into a well-balanced, "healthy" diet.

    But if you are really wanting to try a plant-based diet, be sure to do your research to ensure you get proper amounts of protein and other nutrients.
  • lemurcat12
    lemurcat12 Posts: 30,886 Member
    I think veganism is great if one is convinced by the ethics of it. I'm not totally, but I feel it's important (for me) to be picky about my sourcing and to cut way down on animal products in my diet, and this is something I'm working on, and I may someday do more than that, so if you want to go vegan I certainly would be supportive and respect that. (I was 100% plant-based for a month this fall to support a friend and because I was curious to try it again -- I enjoyed it when I did it one Lent, and found that I was eating more meat/animal products than I wanted to lately.)

    BUT if you struggle with backsliding and your focus is weight loss and health, not the ethics, then think about WHY you keep backsliding and how you think veganism would be helpful. When I lost my weight I found that lean meat and eggs and dairy were actually more helpful than not (which is how I started eating more meat than I personally was comfortable with -- before weight loss I'd been an omnivore but still tended to eat vegetarian maybe about half the time, and with weight loss I was eating meat daily and when I intentionally added in vegetarian days I found I was relying heavily on eggs and dairy -- the reason is protein and these foods are often filling for not that many calories, especially if you enjoy seafood or other kinds of lean meat). From a health perspective, I think veganism can be very healthy, but I think eggs and fish/seafood are probably pretty positive additions and in moderation meat and dairy are at worst neutral (and it depends on what they are replaced by too -- like I said for me they tend to be extremely filling).

    That said, I think lots of times when someone switches to a vegan diet they will start eating more vegetables and fruit and nuts and beans and lentils and so on, because you have to eat something, but you can be vegan in healthier and less healthy ways and if you are not already incorporating those foods (especially vegetables!) doing that will improve the diet. It's that, not the cutting out of eggs and dairy and fish and other meat. It also can be challenging to learn to eat plant-based if you aren't already eating vegetarian sometimes (at least), lots of the kinds of foods you would be eating, so on. Maybe big challenges and changes are more motivating and easier for you than small ones, but these are just some things to think about.

    Sometimes I think people realize they are eating poorly (and too much) but don't really want to learn about nutrition or how to construct a healthy/calorie-appropriate diet or assume it would be complicated (it is not) and so jump to a big change as a replacement, assuming something extreme will be extra healthy. Often this is I'll go paleo or keto or WFPB or do the potato only diet or some fad or who knows (my own version of this when I was gaining was "maybe I'll go locavore" although I never actually tried it (since I live in Chicago, good, as the winter would be pretty darn challenging). I did briefly try paleo, and am not against experimenting, and like I said before I totally support veganism as an ethical choice, but just some thoughts if your idea is merely that it would make weight loss or eating healthfully easier.
  • mizroxy13
    mizroxy13 Posts: 465 Member
    Hi! I'm vegan, and have been for many years. I've been the unhealthy, and now the mostly whole food healthy version who exercises and makes health a priority. It is not restrictive, easier than you'd expect, and life changing. You'll have no more issues with B12 than most, since most of the population is deficient. Feel free to add me, and follow some great people on IG like @veganfitnessmodel (she's my fav, and just LOOK at her!). They will help you and inspire you along the way. Always here for support!
  • TenderBlender667
    TenderBlender667 Posts: 78 Member
    Keep in mind there are plenty of unhealthy vegan junk foods out there that are no more healthier than a mcdonalds meal. Also speaking as a long term vegan myself, you've got to make sure you double your iron intake from foods, and supplement with B12. Otherwise, you do risk deficiencies which can negatively impact your health and energy levels. I've made mistakes on this lifestyle, and it wasn't until I realized that just because something was labelled vegan, didn't mean it was actually healthier for me. Aside from getting rid of my lactose intolerance, I feel pretty much the same health-wise.

    Another thing worth mentioning is the fact that most of us can't convert the plant based omega 3 fatty acids into their most active form, DHA and EPA (which is only present in animal products). This would mean that you wouldn't get the antinflammatory benefits from your flax seeds, chia seeds, walnuts...etc. I started supplementing with a plant based DHA supplement made from algae to counteract this.

    Other than that, I don't find the vegan lifestyle difficult at all and I still eat delicious stuff everyday
  • MichelleSilverleaf
    MichelleSilverleaf Posts: 2,029 Member
    fr33sia12 wrote: »
    I no longer wanted to eat cheap cuts of meat pumped full of god knows what which had lived god knows where and eaten god knows what

    lol literally not a thing. Also very easy to find out where beef or pork is raised with how many farmers are taking to social media these days.
  • Cynde023
    Cynde023 Posts: 1 Member
    I have been exploring the plant based diet but what I am finding is that I am adding WAY to Much sugar to my diet in a lot of the recipes. I don't see how this can be good in avoiding becoming diabetic so, trying to use fruits instead of sugar.
  • lemurcat12
    lemurcat12 Posts: 30,886 Member
    edited December 2017
    Cynde023 wrote: »
    I have been exploring the plant based diet but what I am finding is that I am adding WAY to Much sugar to my diet in a lot of the recipes. I don't see how this can be good in avoiding becoming diabetic so, trying to use fruits instead of sugar.

    I eat plant-based a lot, and pretty much never add sugar to savory meals, so this is certainly not necessary. Are you relying on a particular cook book or something?

    I do sometimes cook fruit and eat it as part of a savory meal, and of course eat raw fruit. Nothing wrong with that.

    Edited to add (got interrupted, so that's why a long gap): For avoiding diabetes, staying at a healthy weight is probably the #1 thing you can do.
  • janejellyroll
    janejellyroll Posts: 25,878 Member
    Cynde023 wrote: »
    I have been exploring the plant based diet but what I am finding is that I am adding WAY to Much sugar to my diet in a lot of the recipes. I don't see how this can be good in avoiding becoming diabetic so, trying to use fruits instead of sugar.

    Can you share where you're getting your recipes? I've been vegan for ten years, I cook a lot, and I hardly ever add sugar to things unless I'm making a dessert (some recipes may call for a tiny bit of sweetener, but non-vegan cooking is the same way). Maybe I can offer some recommendations.
  • Mazintrov13
    Mazintrov13 Posts: 131 Member
    Cynde023 wrote: »
    I have been exploring the plant based diet but what I am finding is that I am adding WAY to Much sugar to my diet in a lot of the recipes. I don't see how this can be good in avoiding becoming diabetic so, trying to use fruits instead of sugar.

    Fruit has sugar..
  • Alatariel75
    Alatariel75 Posts: 17,640 Member
    edited December 2017
    Cynde023 wrote: »
    I have been exploring the plant based diet but what I am finding is that I am adding WAY to Much sugar to my diet in a lot of the recipes. I don't see how this can be good in avoiding becoming diabetic so, trying to use fruits instead of sugar.

    Sugar does not cause diabetes. Not even a little bit. And the sugar in fruit is processed exactly the same way by your body as the sugar in gumdrops.