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Vegan Tips

 
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From this Year I have decided to become Vegan. I am vegetarian and want to become a dedicated Vegan.
I have referred this article https://vegansfirst.com/how-to-go-vegan/, but couldn't find much informative. Please anyone can help me with the tips to become vegan! I am more into Body Building, so it would be more beneficially for me if you give a complete guide.
 
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Hi Aeden. Welcome to Permies.

My youngest brother is vegan, and my much better half and I routinely make meals that I would call "accidentally vegan." That is, I prepare meals from the pantry that happen to be plant-based, including olive oil, from scratch, and from culinary traditions that didn't include animal products. There's a wealth of flavour to discover in the different culinary traditions of the world. Most of my favourites are Indian, and unless I am soaking dried beans, most take under an hour to prepare in the kitchen.

I would suggest that you cook from scratch. Processed, ready-to-eat meals aren't reliably healthy, and often contain palm oil, which my much better half and I have decided to cut out completely for various reasons.

I tend to suggest to vegans that if what they are doing is for ethical and ecological reasons, that they then really look at the processing and outcomes of the vegan industry on the planet. Vegan foods that use ingredients that are actively extractive, or that utilise the same destructive practices as conventional agriculture, are no better for the overall system than the conventional omnivore alternatives.

Some of the issues to look into are the specific farming practices used, the inclusion of ingredients that we know to be problematic already, such as almonds and palm oil, and the country of origin (I don't like my stuff to have travelled too far, or to have come from places with lower food standards than here in Canada, or to have travelled through ports known to be used to confuse country-of-origin tracking).

Lastly, I look at the ingredients list. When I get tinned coconut cream, I want two ingredients on that list: coconut cream and water, and I could do without the water.

Most of these suggestions actually apply equally to vegans as they do to anyone else. The dairy cream I put in my coffee has two ingredients, and that's because it's half-and-half. I think it's as important to source locally, and meet the farmer, if possible, for vegans as omnivores. We cut out so much of the added food-miles that way, and you can actually check the conditions in which your food is growing. Fields tilled to fine dust is a sign to look elsewhere, as the toll on the environment, and on anything that tried to live in those fields, is too high for my liking.

My biggest tip would be to not try to replace meat in terms of taste and texture. A grilled portobello mushroom cap can be delicious for all the same reasons an omni loves their burgers, but the comparison, holding mushroom to meat standards, only causes your enjoyment of the mushroom to suffer. Love your food for the food's sake, and make sure it's the best food it can be.

I hope some of these tips have been useful. I have more, should you want them. Be aware of your health, above all. The amount of good you can do is limited if you cripple yourself with an incomplete diet, so make sure you're hitting that nutritional yeast and those supplements at need.

Keep us posted, and good luck.

-CK
 
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I have been vegan for about seven years and I feel there is no complete guide to becoming a vegan. I will recommend the following books and ideas to help you out:

1. Skye Michael Conroy is one of the best people I have found. A lot of good books  and has a Facebook page that is very good. See link here https://thegentlechef.com

2. Practice. Practice, Practice cooking recipes. I find cooking the same thing three times makes it easier to do. First is hard, second time is better, third time is easy.

3. Keep track of the good recipes and the bad. Many times my mother has written in cookbooks about what worked and what did not.  

4. Watch the movie "The Game Changers" see link here https://gamechangersmovie.com This movie talks about body building.

I hope this helps you out.
 
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My husband has been "vegan until dinnertime" for about 8 years, and I've been doing it for a few months now...I also don't eat anything processed, make everything I eat from scratch, and now eat meat only raised by myself and not every day. I'm not sure I'm qualified to answer this question, my veganhood not being quite complete, but I'll tell you the number one thing that helped me when I decided on that lifestyle.

The thing that got me through the first few weeks--have several go-to meals, snacks, salads, etc. and make a lot ahead of time. I tend to gravitate toward legumes, greens, and other vitamin-dense veggies.

My husband loves this lentil stew I make, and I probably make it once a week in a big batch-- lentils, onions, carrots, cumin, curry powder, thyme, crushed tomatoes, vegetable stock. When it's done, I ladle it over spinach or some other greens. Variation-- kik alicha--yellow split peas, onions, carrots, coconut oil, vegetable stock, ginger, thyme, tumeric--another one we eat a lot, usually with greens. I also make a lot of chilis and curries for him--just have a good basic recipe for the base and start throwing in the veggies.

Also, I usually make a big batch of some kind of hash for the week--onions, roasted sweet potatoes or winter squash of some sort, black or pinto beans, greens, with paprika, cayenne, thyme--there are countless variations that I make. Soemtimes, I even eat this for dinner. Summertime--stuffed squash reigns in the house.

For the morning, I make a smoothie with lots of greens, frozen half banana, frozen fruit, honey. During a day I don't have the hash, I make one of my favorite salads, with whatever is in season or whatever I have in the pantry. I love avocado, hearts of palm, cucumber, and kalamata olives with dijon vinaigrette. In the summer, I eat giant bowlfuls of sliced cucumber, zucchini, red pepper, kalamata, avocado, red onion.

Snacks--I eat a lot of nuts, fruit, dried and fresh.

And I put pumpkin seeds on everything :)





 
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Erin, those are great ideas. Tasty and healthy and a great way to use whatever veggies are in season.

T, second your recommendation of Game Changers.
 
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Hello!

I've been vegan for nearly 6 years now, and I also like to practice an active lifestyle. I've found what helps my workouts the most is finishing them off with a peanut butter banana smoothie. Nuts are nutritionally dense and fatty, which your body will love after a good workout. (I freeze the bananas and then it's almost like peanut butter ice cream.) Basically just keeping your calories up will help with muscle gain, and fatty protein is key. Pan fried tofu is also one of my favorite things. (I think someone already mentioned coconut milk/cream on this thread and I second that)

But just in general for switching to veganism, look to cultures that don't rely so heavily on meat or dairy in their dishes and just start making those cuisines more of a staple. Bulgur is one of my favorite new whole grains to cook with, and it goes with pretty much any vegetable or vegan protein! while I enjoy the fake vegan meats and cheeses that are more and more on the market these days, they're kinda pricier that what I like to spend, and they're more for just a treat. I agree that a grilled portabella is more enjoyable than a fake meat burger.

So for a quick list of my favs to base meals off of:
Tofu
Peanut butter
Lentils
Coconut milk
Cashews
Bulgur
Middle eastern/eastern cuisines
Pasta or rice (for carb loading)

And of course, any and all vegetables in a variety of colors! Going vegan is something that is personal to how your body reacts. Personally I had trouble keeping weight on when I first went vegan so I had to up my carbohydrate intake at first while my body adjusted. It's just about finding the foods that makes your body it's best! I personally don't use supplements, but if you feel like you need to starting out, it could help with your transition. There's a lot of vegan supplement websites out there. Best of luck to you!
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