Veganism is a hot topic at the moment. We are all becoming increasingly aware of the food that we are putting in our mouths, looking for alternatives to meat laden, carb filled fast food, and turning to nourishing vegan alternatives for a healthier life.
Eating vegan food isn’t just about health, it is about animal welfare. With super farms cropping up over the UK, questions of where our food actually comes from are becoming more pressing. We may not actually be getting the essential nutrients we need from meat based protein, and it is time to look at a plant based diet. It can seem like a daunting task at first, giving up your favourite burger, or your beloved pizza topping, and whilst it might not be all sunshine and smiles on the road to veganism, your body will certainly thank you for it.
In the past, veganism was seen as a fad. It was a hippier version of vegetarianism for women who didn’t shave their legs and listened to too much Bob Dylan. This is all changing, however, as veganism has gone mainstream. Even the supermarkets have tapped into the trend, and many are beginning to provide vegan alternatives. Veganaise anybody?
Making the transition to veganism might feel tedious at first, when you’re having to check every packet for egg powder or milk. It might come as a shock to some that a lot of wine isn’t actually vegan, however, many wines actually contain a finishing agent made from shellfish. Luckily, there is a lot of technology around nowadays that will quickly search for food using a barcode and verify whether it is vegan. This is especially useful when eating out at a restaurant when ordering a bottle of your favourite Merlot.
Even eating out at restaurants used to be a huge chore for vegans, however many vegan restaurants and vegan-friendly restaurants have popped up within the last ten years, making it much easier to enjoy a meal out with friends. The variety is impressive too, with Thai, Indian and even Mexican restaurants serving up delicious vegan food. If a cosy night in with a takeaway is more your thing, but you’re not ready to forgo the Friday night fish and chips, sites such as Deliveroo make it really easy to deliver food from top vegan and vegan-friendly restaurants, so your meat loving friend doesn’t have to miss out.
A lot of snacks are also surreptitiously vegan, so you won’t have to forgo your mid-afternoon cup of coffee (with milk alternative!) and a sneaky biscuit. Both plain and milk chocolate hobnobs are vegan, and American favourite Oreos are also a great vegan choice. At first it might seem like a minefield as you begin to work out which foods are vegan, and you might even miss some of your old favourites, however as you begin to adjust to the new lifestyle, you will begin to find that the choices are easier and you’ll spend less time searching for food on your vegan app.
If you are considering making some changes and moving towards a more plant based diet, you might want to start with making small changes, as opposed to going cold turkey. You might find it difficult at first to get enough protein if you are used to eating large quantities of meat. However, if it is the choice between a BLT or a falafel wrap at lunch, go for the wrap, and you’ll not only save yourself some calories, but you’ll have made a choice which benefits animals and the food industry.