One of my sophomore year goals was to convince someone else to go vegan. This has yet to happen and with one quarter left, I’m determined to inspire someone.
I chose to become vegan because I love animals too much to eat them or use them for their products. From talking to friends and peers, I’ve determined that most people don’t want to go vegan because they love meat and aren’t unaware of the real consequences on the animal industry and environment. And so, here are some tips on how to be vegan!
1. Watch documentaries
Documentaries are great starting points for any aspiring vegans and vegetarians. They are informative and educational as well as entertaining to watch. The most powerful documentary I’ve watched is Earthlings, which uses hidden cameras and never-before-seen footage to showcase the daily practices of animals’ use for food, clothing, entertainment, and scientific research. Cowspiracy, Food Inc, and Forks Over Knives, are other moving documentaries that will be sure to change the way you view what you eat.
2. Phase out
Eliminating meat, seafood, and dairy overnight is pretty intense and unrealistic for most people. Start with Meatless Mondays and then gradually phase out seafood, then dairy. Set goals for yourself whether they be weekly or monthly. Also, get a friend to try veganism with you so you can hold each other accountable!
3. Surround yourself with fellow vegans
Although it might not seem like it, there’s a whole community of vegans out there, you just have to find them! Good places to meet fellow vegans are clubs at school or vegan festivals in the area. I always love talking to other vegans and hearing their journeys to veganism. They inspire and motivate me, as well as remind me that I’m not alone in my passion for animals and the earth!
4. Make eating a plant-based diet easy
If you’re ever looking for vegan-friendly restaurants, happycow is the yelp of vegan restaurants and is a great online resource and app. Pinterest is also a good place if you want to make your own vegan recipes. Never has eating vegan been so easy.
I'll be honest. When I was younger, I absolutely loved steak, chicken, and salmon. I didn't give up my favorite foods like eggs and milk because I stopped liking them. I did it because there was a cause bigger than myself that I believed in enough to change my lifestyle. I suggest educating yourself on the consequences of your diet and if it aligns with your values. Then, you will have the knowledge necessary to make an informed decision on how you want to live. And if you choose to go vegan, I love you.