As a new vegan, I expected this lifestyle to be almost impossible in college. It turns out that it is actually the best, especially at JMU. I mean, it's not the easiest, especially when your friends want to order Papa Johns and you can't have any... But, there are a lot of things you can have like Oreos, sugary cereal, and pretty much everything. It is all about substitution.
Here are 6 reasons why veganism is great in college.
1. You save money
I know what you are thinking. I thought being vegan was more expensive? That true if all you eat is processed vegan food like "chicken" nuggets or Ben and Jerry's, but if you keep at least half of your diet whole foods, you will probably save money. Think of things like beans, potatoes, lettuce, and fruit. These things can be the cheapest at the grocery store.
2. You can eat a lot
Another perk to veganism is eating a lot. As a girl that can scarf hella food, this is perfect for me. Because there are no animal products that are dense and filled with fat, you can eat more. It is good in the dining halls too, when you can just get huge salads, pasta and potatoes and just keep going back for more.
3. There are substitutes everywhere
Pretty much every dining hall has many vegan options that taste just as great as non-vegan options. You just have to look for example hummus, tahini or balsamic for dressing (I am obsessed with hummus, I literally put it on everything) as well as dairy replacements like vegan cheese and mayo. And if you are craving a burger there are veggie burgers at most restaurants.
4. Staying in shape
The absence of calorically dense animal products allows you to eat more and be in better shape. And for anyone who says it is hard to get protein on a vegan diet is wrong.. Just add tofu, beans, hummus, or nut butter!
5. Think about what you are putting in your body
Instead of just mindlessly picking up that slice of pizza or greasy Chinese food, veganism makes you think about how the food will affect you and what is best to fuel your body in the long run. Becoming more educated on the foods you eat is very important in maintaining a fit and healthy lifestyle.
6. Saving animals
Who doesn't love animals? Not only do the does being vegan benefit our health, but it also saves animals' lives and does not promote the cruelty of the meat and dairy industry. I would rather have some milk squeezed out of an almond than a cow's boob anyways.