Veganuary has become really popular at the moment, so many people want to try it either for a healthy diet or for environmental or ethical reasons. My sister, Miranda, has been a vegetarian for years and has been a vegan for a year. Today my post focuses on why Miranda became a vegan and her experience being a vegan.
How long have you been a vegan and what made you make the change
I have been a vegan for coming up to a year now and it was the best decision I have ever made! Not only for my body but for the environment too. Together, we can reduce the amount of animal and animal based produce that is being consumed, in turn reducing the amount of land we use to produce e.g. corn for the cattle to eat and the emissions that are being pumped into the environment.
Documentaries on Netflix opened my eyes to what we are all eating. For example, I did not know that there was a percentage of puss that is allowed to be consumed in our dairy products, I did not know that puss filled cysts were being popped on meat and still being placed on our shelves and tests on meat found that pharmaceutical medications that are being used to prolong animals lives and keep them ‘healthy’ are also found amongst the meats on our shelves, including faecal matter may I add! Who wants to eat that? No wonder why we all feel unwell, sluggish and lethargic!
Not only that, I do not support animal cruelty and the conditions that these animals aren’t kept in to then become our rashers of bacon and beef burgers is disgraceful. Therefore I again, do not and will not eat meat or any product from an animal again.
Eating vegetarian includes products such as egg and milk and as I’ve said above, it’s not good for us and it’s cruel to the animals and therefore I do not eat it.
How hard is it being vegan?
It’s not hard to keep yourself healthy when eating vegan. You can buy good, wholesome products and vegetables from your supermarket that does not break the bank!
Recipes can be as simple or as complicated as you fancy and it’s not as difficult you think to use alternative products in cooking or baking. For example you can use egg replacer for your pancakes and cakes that taste just as good! Granted sometimes you end up spending more on items such as chocolate or toothpaste that’s vegan and cruelty free but it’s so worth it and so empowering that you’re not supporting the unethical production of products.
I can’t lie that at first, I had no idea what I was doing when cooking as I had it in my head that it was a lot tougher to eat vegan than not. However, it’s just as easy and the stereotype that we don’t eat enough or are not healthy as vegans is just daft as we probably have the healthiest diet around and can eat just as much as everyone else!
Have you always been environmentally conscious?
I don’t really know when I became environmentally conscious. I have always enjoyed being outdoors and for example, have always put litter into bins etc. but wouldn’t really say anything significant spurred me into being as how I am today.
Watching documentaries on climate change and where our food comes from certainly changed my thoughts on the world and how fragile, special and unique it is, how everything can be linked (e.g. mass breeding of cattle to produce meat – adds to the issues with global warming and the reduction of natural land that is available), how unhealthy it all can be (poor methods of producing and keeping food and the effects of co2 emissions to our bodies) and finally, just how cruel we are as people to the world and to natural habitats, the wildlife, animals, each other and beyond! Knowing what I know now from that and from what I’ve seen further caused me to be more conscious and protect the earth and ourselves too.
I got involved with the fracking demonstration in Nottingham as just as other happenings in the environment such as the plastic in the oceans, it is a really important issue! Not only from increase in traffic causing more congestion to the roads, to the contamination of water, small tremors, the lighting used during the night confuses nocturnal animals and more!
I do not support this and therefore I play a part when I can in the peaceful protests against this.
At the moment I’m not a part of any other protests or groups that campaign various issues but I am constantly reading about what’s happening in the world that campaigns against fracking, treatment animals, anti whaling in Japan etc. and to me, that’s just as important as actually participating in demonstrations as it keeps you in the know and it allows you to spread the word to others which in the long run, can educate others of the issues that are occurring in the world and can promote/induce alternative attitudes towards them and thus stand against them for the better.
What would I say to someone who wishes to become vegan or vegetarian? Go for it! You may find it difficult but gradual change is change for the better and sticking with it until meat and dairy is a thing of the past is so satisfying and empowering! You feel more at one with nature and the earth and it opens your tastebuds to all these flavours and meals you might never have tried or have wanted to try before! Some products (at the moment) do not compare to non vegan products but by trying alternative products you become accustomed to it and what’s to say that these vegan products that are the alternative to meat or dairy products, are how they really should taste!
My final ‘take home’ message is be the change that you want to see. Just because you are one person does not mean that you cannot change anything. Together, we can turn things for the better, not only to the environment, to the treatment of animals, to ourselves but also to the world. It all can link and there is only one earth. We do not live on a stable planet, it is dying, we are all dying and we are destroying our true place called home.