I just had to include the parenthesis “still going strong” because so many idiots write articles and videos on how they quit being vegan. Those were never vegan to begin with, if they just ‘quit’. Veganism is an ideology, a lifestyle based on that ideology and not a dietary plan that you can ‘quit’. So here’s what I learnt:
It is Absolutely Easy to Go Vegan
First off, it is absolutely an easy shift. If you have a clear conscience of why you are doing this (saving animals, duh) then it will not matter what foods you will miss. I started this journey not knowing whether vegan alternatives existed. I was just clear that I cannot continue consuming dairy (which I loved in all forms) knowing the truth. I was literally ready to fall seriously ill due to deficiencies if the alternative was rape, torture and murder of cows. Thankfully, I found out that it is actually much healthier to eat vegan and all sorts of alternatives to meat and dairy exist which taste almost the same. Some even taste better than the non-vegan foods.
Your Body is Your Temple
I started noticing what I put in my body. This could be just me; I was already looking at food as just ‘fuel’ and I was not a foodie at all. I tried to eat healthy before, I still eat healthy now but I am more conscious about it. Traditional Indian food is good, just remove the ghee, chaas, dahi and most sweets. Plenty of vegan sweets available (and easy to make) to binge on later.
I experienced almost no difference in my general health before and after going vegan. Actually, no; I’ve become healthier. I get sick much less. When I was a vegetarian, I would get a viral infection every second month and visit the doctor, get shots and pills and recover in a few days. The last time I went to my doctor, he asked me to visit more often just for a chat. That was the first time I went to him after a full year being vegan!
Speaking up against Injustice
This was a big one. Ever since I started college, I have been on the journey of self-discipline and building good habits. It was difficult for me to go from reserved introvert to Ambivert and veganism boosted my progress. I learnt to approach strangers and even embraced public speaking. I took on the challenge because I am very passionate about saving animals and my fear of public speaking was nothing compared to their suffering. How could I be a weakling and ignore this opportunity to speak out about the animals, when my talking about it now could potentially save so many lives!?
It can be quite disheartening when close friends and family mock us for being vegan. I faced outright insults and some people even mocked the animals. I did rage at some of them, but overall I managed to stay calm and talk rationally. Anger management is the most difficult part of being vegan. It’s not hard to find things to eat, it is super hard to keep calm and talk to people rationally when they justify their cruelty. Just be calm and explain the idea of veganism, eventually you might turn them around.
Positive outlook towards life
It’s really hard to stay positive when you see people continue their meat and dairy consumption even when you patiently explain why that is wrong. It is obviously very disheartening for a vegan to live in this non-vegan world. But there is a silver lining. People are turning vegan all around the globe. Big carnivore-happy restaurants have started selling vegan alternatives. Delicious vegan foods are bringing non-vegans to veganism as they confess it tastes better than ‘the real deal.’ So I am hopeful and I urge you to be hopeful too. Change is happening as you read this. The information is spreading, people are consciously reducing their meat and dairy consumption. I see the future Earth completely vegan. All humans will one day open their eyes and see that there is no humane way to kill someone that does not want to die. They will realize that when we don’t need all this then why buy it? Every person will bring forth their deeply-sleeping humanity and gain a fresh compassionate outlook towards all animals, not just the cute ones.
Change is happening. Be a part of the change. It is only logical to be vegan.
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