On February 15th, 2018 I decided that I was going to make the transition to a vegan diet. I had watched quite a few YouTuber’s stories about going vegan and had even tried it myself the year before for a few months. I have also been vegetarian on and off since I was a teenager. I started to research more about the diet and how to ensure that you are getting the proper nutrients without sacrificing your health in other ways. That day I decided to jump into it cold turkey and if I made some mistakes along the way, they would be my learning curves.
I didn’t live in a household with any other vegans or even vegetarians, so I knew that it would take some work and basically consisted of me making most of my own meals nearly all of the time or using pieces of what my family ate to make something of my own. Luckily, I live in a Spanish household so there are usually cooked beans at my disposal, which is my #1 protein source in my diet.
As I was researching the diet, I came across a lot of articles that seemed very cutthroat about going vegan and pessimistic about any other diet. I don’t want to be that type of voice online. I want to simply share with you why I went vegan, what I learned while eating vegan and why I think everyone should at least try it. I sometimes make mistakes or don’t have any other food available and eat something that vegetarian or even meat in tiny portions at times… and I don’t think that that means that I am suddenly not vegan anymore or a horrible person… we are all human! I think that it’s a great effort if you try to make a change to your diet for environmental, ethical or health reasons. Even if you only eat vegan 1-3 days a week- something is something and you’re still making a huge impact!
I went vegan honestly because I wanted to see if I could do it. I was not a huge fan of meat, but I did eat a lot of dairy. I didn’t think that I would be able to go months without eating dairy but I wanted to give it a shot. I also was surprised to learn the environmental impact of a normal American diet and I was interested in doing whatever I could to minimize my impact by eating less meat or even none at all. Another aspect of veganism that attracted me was a decrease risk of heart disease and other health issues whose odds are increased by eating a meat-heavy diet.
Eating a vegan diet has taught me a lot of things about the way I was eating before making the change. I realized that I was eating so many dairy heavy meals. I would literally put cheese on everything! Since going vegan, something that I thought was impossible happened- I stopped craving cheese! Yeah, I know… it’s crazy but true! I actually became more and more averse to the thought of eating cheese as time passed.
I also realized that I used to eat A LOT of meat in a day. I ate meat or dairy in every meal and when I ate meat, I would eat huge portions. Eating vegan taught me that you don’t need as much protein in your diet as you would think. I also realized how much protein can be found in other foods you’re eating daily like quinoa and beans! This taught me that when eating a balanced and healthier diet, you don’t need nearly as much meat as the average American consumes in a day. That being said, if this article inspires you to make any dietary change, at least reflect on your meat consumption and all of the environmental and ethical issues there are behind it! I know that not every person wants to give up meat 100% but you can make simple changes like ordering your salad without chicken or ordering your burrito bowl with double beans instead of meat next time! This is even easier to do when you are making your own meals at home! Simply buy less dairy and meat and try to incorporate alternatives!
I realized that I had so much more energy after switching to a vegan diet. I was eating much more of a variety of vegetables and other foods. Eating vegan pushed me to make different recipes that I hadn’t ever made before. I had to be resourceful because eating that same thing can get very boring and almost everything I was eating previously was wiped off the table.
Here I am four months later and I do not want to go eat a burger or devour a plate of chicken tenders. Honestly, I don’t have any cravings for anything outside of the vegan diet. I think it’s crazy how many products use animal products that are unnecessary. There are so many foods that could easily be vegan but aren’t, which is so upsetting. I understand that some people love meat and would never want to try a vegan diet, but I think that we could all use a little detox from animal products to realize just how much excess of these foods we are eating every day. I think that if you tried a vegan diet, you would realize these things too.
I have partnered with Nature Has Flavor to show you how easy it can be to transition to a vegan diet. NHF offers a full line of spices, oils and vinegars that you will need to make all of the meals in their cookbook! Their cookbook gives you a 21- day meal plan as well as educational resources crucial for when you’re transitioning your diet. I think this is the coolest thing because I had to search around the internet to find the information that their cookbook provides.
I definitely recommend NHF product to anyone who is even remotely interested in trying a vegan diet. When going plant-based, seasonings are key to make delicious meals that don’t make you feel like you’re eating the same thing all the time. My family loved these meals and they were so easy to make! Another thing to note is that the ingredients to make these meals are really affordable! Given that you don’t have to search for any of the spices, vinegars, or oils, it is so easy to plan your grocery lists for these meals!
The 21-Day Vegan Cooking Kit includes all of the spices oils and recipes you will need to be successful at trying a vegan diet! I think once you try it, you won’t be able to turn back!
These recipes are so delicious! The avocado toast above was so delicious that it compared to avocado toasts that brunch spots would charge a minimum of $10 for in NYC. It was a life changer to be able to make this at home!
I also was able to make a delicious falafel pita with homemade hummus for the first time. I’m a huge falafel fan and would go to the NYS fair yearly just to be able to get a delicious falafel pita from my favorite spot.
The Nature Has Flavor cookbook is my favorite vegan cookbook by far because the recipes are so simple to follow and allow me to add sophisticated dishes to my diet that I wouldn’t have otherwise tried.
I think this would be the best gift for someone who just bought a new house, got a new apartment or is going off to college. It is the perfect spice and oil starter kit for a kitchen and will make life for them so much easier. I also have an exclusive offer for you to purchase your own cooking kit! The first 20 people who order will receive 10% off with code MIDTOWNDONNA10 at checkout! I’m so excited about this offer and hope you will give the vegan challenge a try- I know you will love it!!
Thank you so much for reading and I hope this post inspired you to at least think more about your diet and become more conscious about what you’re eating! Please let me know if you have any questions in the comments, I would LOVE to help!