Last Updated on December 8, 2022 by Lauren Beck
Once regarded as a diet for peace-loving hippies, many people now realize the benefits of a vegan lifestyle.
Many famous people from all walks of life have eliminated meat, eggs, and dairy from their diet, including Woody Harrelson, Ellen DeGeneres, Olivia Wilde, and Kourtney Kardashian.
If you are considering adopting the lifestyle, you might be unsure what to expect and if it’s the right option for you. If so, here are four facts to read before becoming a vegan.
1. You Must Take a Vitamin B12 Substitute
Vegans need to take a vitamin B12 supplement to maintain a healthy body, as it only naturally occurs in animal products.
As you will no longer be eating meat, eggs, or dairy, you’ll need to incorporate more vitamin B12-fortified foods or B12 supplements into your diet.
If you’re unsure about the importance of vitamin B12, it is responsible for the health of your nerves and blood cells.
Also, it prevents a vitamin B12 deficiency that may cause:
- Appetite loss
- Weight loss
- Nerve problems
Taking a vitamin B12 supplement or consuming fortified foods may prevent the above issues from occurring.
Also, you can monitor your vitamin B12 levels by requesting a blood test from a doctor.
2. Veganism No Longer Means a Limited Diet
More retailers, restaurants, and food services are catering to vegans. If you’re worried you’ll need to give up on great-tasting dishes, snacks, and drinks, you couldn’t be more wrong.
If anything, a vegan lifestyle could open you up to new flavors, textures, and health benefits.
For example, if you are hesitant to give up sodas that aren’t suitable for vegans, you can replace them with a delicious kombucha ginger drink. It is a healthy soft drink featuring antioxidants, vitamins B and C, and friendly bacteria.
3. You Don’t Need to Become a Vegan Overnight
The most passionate, dedicated vegans will tell you that adjusting your lifestyle takes adjustment and patience.
Rather than pledging to banish all animal products from your lifestyle, you must make gradual changes to turn the behaviors into a habit.
Start by incorporating more plant-based items into your diet and reduce your use and consumption of animal products, especially non-organic, processed, or refined foods.
Small, consistent changes will make it easier to become a vegan.
4. You’ll Need to Read More Food Labels
Get used to reading more food labels. A product might appear vegan, but it might be unsuitable for a vegan lifestyle.
For example, you might not think twice about picking up a cereal bar, granola, or bread, but it might include:
- Gelatin (collagen taken from animals)
- Tallow (suet)
- Casein (a dairy protein)
- Whey (a by-product of cheese or casein)
- Natural Red 4 (a food coloring made from female beetles)
Veganism is a commitment, but it is widely believed to provide various health benefits, such as a lower risk of heart disease and certain cancers, a nutrient-rich diet, and a healthier weight. Plus, you can enjoy peace of mind that your lifestyle will protect many animals.
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