A beginners guide to veganism
Are you curious about becoming a vegan? You’re not alone! More and more people are choosing to lead a vegan lifestyle. So, what does it mean to be vegan? What do you need to consider? Read this guide to learn more about how to get started.
A vegan diet means only eating plants and plant-based foods, but being vegan is also part of a larger lifestyle. Vegans boycott any products that affect the animal kingdom, such as animal-tested cosmetics, fur, wool and honey.
Why go vegan?
There are a lot of reasons why people choose a vegan lifestyle. Most commonly, people do it for health reasons, others for the environmental impact. Some may do it for ethical reasons or medical needs. Of course, some people simply prefer the vegan diet to eating animal products like meat!
How to get started
Are you thinking about going vegan but think it seems a little bit complicated? Well, then we’re happy to let you know it doesn’t have to be! Of course you can go all-in and become a vegan over night, but this is a big adjustment for most of us. Instead, we recommend that you go at your own pace and adjust gradually. There are plenty of little changes that you can make and soon enough they’ll be effortless. Why not start with one, or more, of these steps?
- Eat more vegetables, try replacing pasta and meats with salads and vegetables
- Switch your cow milk to oat milk, a nut milk or coconut milk
- Switch red meat to fish
- Have avocado instead of butter on your toast
- Cook a vegan meal each week
Does that seem easy? Then you can turn the vegan meal into a vegan day, week or month! But hey, remember to keep it realistic and don’t be too hard on yourself. Changing your lifestyle is not a simple task, but it gets easier!
What you should consider
Whether you are considering excluding meat for environmental, health or ethical reasons, there are some things that can be good to think about.
Make sure you get all the nutrients you need
A vegan diet contains less available protein, vitamin B12 and minerals such as zinc, iron, calcium and iodine. So it is important that you have some basic knowledge of where to get these nutrients. To make sure you get everything you need, the following foods should be included in your vegan diet:
- Legumes such as peas, lentils, beans, tofu and other soy products
- Whole grain products such as whole wheat pasta, oatmeal, whole grain bread and brown rice
- Root vegetables
- Fruit and berries
- Enriched vegetable drinks, such as oat milk, soy milk and almond milk
- Rapeseed oil and rapeseed oil-based food fats
Avoid vitamin deficiency
A vegan diet may put you at risk of a vitamin deficiency. Then it’s useful to supplement with vitamin D and vitamin B12 supplements. If you are worried about a vitamin deficiency then contact a doctor!
Get enough protein
When removing meat and other animal foods from your diet, you need to find new sources of protein. There are plenty of options for replacements, for example:
- Soy protein in various forms
- Quorn (only some products are vegan-friendly)
Don't like meat replacement products? Don’t worry - there are plenty of other sources with enough protein. How about an icy chocolate or vanilla protein shake? Then you should try our protein powder One Vegan! It consists of 100% organic and vegan ingredients and is carefully developed to help you increase your protein intake in a sustainable way! Other protein-rich foods include beans, lentils, nuts, seeds and bread. Bönor, linser och andra baljväxter är exempel på bra vegetabiliska källor till protein.
Be prepared for strong opinions
Even though more and more people are choosing to live a vegan lifestyle, there are still many who have different opinions. Some are even provoked by what others choose to eat. In other words, it’s good to know and be prepared for coming across people who may not understand your lifestyle and may be questioning it.
Tips on how to make everyday veganism a little easier
It is not always easy to change your lifestyle and switch to a vegan diet. That's why we want to end this article by giving you some tips that can make everyday living as a vegan a little easier.
- Hard to know if something is really vegan? With apps like Is it vegan you can easily check if an item contains animal products. All you have to do is scan the item's barcode with your phone, and the app will fix the rest!
- Do you need help checking if a beauty or hygiene product is vegan-friendly? Check out the app Cruelty-free.
- Eating out? No problem! The Happy Cow app helps you find vegan restaurants near you.
- Do you need inspiration? Sign up for a vegan cooking class!
Do you have any more questions? Our team here at Fitnessguru is happy to help you, so feel free to contact us!