I wanted to address my most commonly addressed struggle lately:
“I don’t know how to get started with veganism.”
Certainly in this day and age it is easy to get overwhelmed with the knowledge being thrown our way. A simple “vegan” search on any platform will direct you to thousands and thousands of resources. It’s a beautiful thing to have this many resources at our disposal, but it is also daunting to a new vegan. I remember being like whoa!!! What!? Where!? How!? Huh!? I need a friend to guide me!! I knew no one who was vegan, and to my knowledge, vegan mentoring wasn’t a thing. So one evening in bed staring at the ceiling & worrying (as I often find myself).. I thought wait. Why am I doing this? A weight lifted off my shoulders as I spewed out my ‘Why’.
I am vegan because I contracted Lyme disease and an intolerance to red meat, called Alpha-gal Syndrome after being bit by a Lonestar tick. Eating red meat with this syndrome makes me very ill & caused some serious digestive issues. Sounds nuts, but it’s a real thing & one of the best things to ever happen to me. Once I couldn’t digest red meat any longer I started viewing all other animal products differently. If steak could make me feel this way, what makes chicken any different? I fell into veganism & while it wasn’t graceful, it was one of the most beautiful times of my life.
My ‘Why’ statement started short, with an intolerance.. but has blossomed into a beautiful list:
I am vegan because I love animals.
I am vegan because I don’t support factory farming.
I am vegan because I am a feminist.
I am vegan because I want to reduce harm for every living being.
I am vegan because I don’t support the stripping & depletion of our beautiful earth.
I am vegan because I want to reduce my carbon footprint.
I am vegan because I believe in living sustainably.
I am vegan because I believe in fair work for all.
I am vegan because it fills my heart with joy.
So what is your why? I encourage you to write it down whether it be on paper, on your phone, on social media, posted to your fridge or somewhere in your car. Keep your ‘why’ statement somewhere handy. We are creatures of habit and we thrive off of reinforcement. This is a great way to keep a little reinforcement with you at all times! Before you know it you’ll have to update your ‘Why’ statement because the reasons are endless! & before you know it, two three even four decades have passed while you’re living your vegan lifestyle.
Realize your intention. Record that intention. & only look back as a way to see your progress.
As always, I’m here to help you along the way! Just say the word!
If you’d like to learn more about Alpha-gal Syndrome, click here.
Veganism/Animal Rights in the News:
- The Animal Rights National Conference will be held in Washington, DC this year, July 25-28. I will be in town for Saturday’s (27th) events and would love to meet up with anyone attending. (link)
- National Geographic Traveller Food has revealed its top 10 vegan-friendly cities, and singled out the restaurants putting them on the map in 2019 (link)
- The new minister of culture of El Salvador has announced that she will remove all the animals of the National Zoo and take them to better environments for them, so the park can be transformed in a cultural center without animals. (link)
- Snoop drove the Beyond Meat Truck around for a day (link)
- Macklemore mentioned on his Instagram story that he’s been meat-free for 30 days and is “in it for the long game”. (link)
- These Vegan Sausage Brands Are Smokin’ (PETA blog)
- IKEA develops Swedish ‘meat’balls (no link)
o “Swedish furniture giant IKEA, known for serving Swedish meatballs in its store restaurants, said it is developing a plant-based version to do its part in helping produce the 70 percent more food that will be needed by 2050 to feed the world’s growing population. ‘It is a really exciting industry. Looking at the quality of the products that we have been tasting, I am looking forward to serving a delicious plant-based meatball made from alternative protein at IKEA. I hope that the many meatball lovers out there will like it as well,’ Michael La Cour, Managing Director at IKEA Food Services AB, said in the release. The first customer-facing tests of the new plant-based meatball are planned for early next year. Some IKEA markets are already serving local dishes with a plant based alternative protein as an ingredient.”
- Lightlife puts veggie burgers in meat aisle at thousands of stores (no link)
o “Greenleaf Foods’ Lightlife Foods unit announced new plant-based products including the Lightlife Burger and Lightlife Ground, will be sold in the meat aisle at thousands of stores across North America. Retailers include Acme, Albertsons, Haggen, Jewel, Pavilions, Safeway, Vons, Wegmans, and hundreds of natural foods stores in the United States. Other U.S. retailers will begin carrying the new Lightlife products throughout the summer, including Whole Foods in July. In Canada, these items will be on shelf in over 3,400 stores, including Federated Coop, Loblaws, Longo’s, Metro, Save-On-Foods and Sobeys.”
- [UK] TACO BELL LAUNCHES VEGAN MEAT MADE FROM PULLED OATS (link)
- Burger Buffs Pick the Top 10 Vegan Burgers in the U.S. (PETA blog)
- Try These Vegan Fast-Food and Chain-Restaurant Options on the Go (PETA blog)
- Moving Mountains: ‘Bleeding’ vegan burger team make a meat-free hot dog (link)
- New vegan ice cream suitable for both dogs & their humans launches in OZ (link)
- THE ULTIMATE DAIRY-FREE GUIDE TO OAT MILK VEGAN YOGURTS (link)
- How to Eat Vegan at Subway (PETA blog)
- Enlightened Ice Cream Adds New Dairy Free Line (link)
- The Best Vegan, Cruelty-Free Eye Creams and Where to Get Them (PETA blog)
- How to Use Vegan and Cruelty-Free NYX Products for a Stunning Look (PETA blog)
- Find These Cruelty-Free Beauty Brands at Sephora (PETA blog)
- Enter your cutie in the 2019 Cutest Vegan Kid contest for a chance to win a prize pack filled with vegan snacks, books, and more. (PETA blog)
Peace, love, and vegan ‘whys’
Vegan Sarah Marie