The number of eaters on this earth is increasing year by year. Whether people are going vegan for ethical, health or environmental reasons, a plant-based diet has a massive effect on your life, and it’s important to know what side effects you should expect!
When I went vegan the first time, it happened rather unexpectedly and without a lot of thought. Being tired of my constant health issues, skin breakouts and sluggishness after every meal, I decided to detox for a month and completely cut out animal-derived foods.
Yes, a vegan diet excludes any calorie source that was living and breathing at one point or that involved animals in the making. That’s a big “no” to cheese, eggs, milk, honey and all theother delicatessen favorites we grew up believing to be of vital importance to our health.
A couple of weeks into my new diet, I noticed a few changes in my health as well as my behavior and social life, that I so did not expect but simply couldn’t ignore.
Needless to say, it was my first and last time going vegan, because I’ve only just celebrated my fifth “veggie-versary” and am looking back at years of rocking a cruelty-free diet while maintaining fantastic health and living a life on the road between Berlin, New York and Bali. I’ve even started to blog about my journey!
Now that you know my vegan backstory, make your own! Here are reasons you should think twice before saying no to going vegan!
5.) You’ll Make a Lot More Trips To The Bathroom
And, yes, that’s a good thing! A balanced vegan diet – and, no, we are not talking about a doughnut in each hand – is naturally high in fiber. Our body needs fiber, as it speeds up food’s transit through the intestines and removes waste and toxins from our body.
Fiber can be found in whole grains and starchy vegetables, which are quite common in a vegan diet. Eating these regularly will naturally improve your digestive system. Omnivores often don’t have enough fiber in their diet.
In addition, the body digests animal protein much more slowly, which results in digestive issues, bloating and irregular bowel movements. So going vegan can be very advantageous in this respect.
4.) Social Gatherings Will Become Awkward (For a Bit)
Embrace yourself and your new way of eating … and get ready to answer many weird questions. Some people will be coming from a place of honest curiosity, others will be rooted in disbelief. A few people might even think you’ve gone mad for going vegan and won’t try to hide it.
Those who have never tried a proper vegan meal will assume that it tastes terrible. Those people are easy to win over. Just have them try one of the delicious new creations that you just added to your repertoire.
Start cooking for supportive friends and family members and work your way through to the skeptics. If you’re invited to a family event or party, don’t just assume they will think of you. Bring your own drool-worthy snacks – and make sure to prepare enough for everyone else to try them …
3.) In Going Vegan, You’ll Learn To Read Between The Lines
Grocery shopping is going to become a real task when you’re going vegan. Who would have thought that beer, pasta, pesto, bread, potato chips and even peanuts can contain animal products? You’ll learn to read the fine print and ingredient list of everything that lands in your shopping cart.
Even when you’re ready to order lunch at your favorite salad and soup place, you’ll notice that chicken literally goes in everything. Meat is hiding everywhere. You’ll have to learn to ask your way to a delicious meal and sometimes become resourceful, having to create a completely new dish.
After a while, you’ll figure out which restaurant have greatvegan options, and things will become easier. You’ll learn to use smart apps such as HappyCow and VanillaBean to your advantage and to do your research before heading out for dinner with friends. As a bonus, you’ll also develop master chef skills and take on every challenge to “veganize” meals. I once spent an entire day in the kitchen to fabricate a vegan meatloaf made with chickpeas.
We all know that feeling when Sunday morning hits us like a brick wall, and we crave pancakes or French toast. With a few solid vegan recipes in mind, you’ll get over it really soon, I promise.
Looking for inspiration? These mouthwatering delicious vegan dessert recipes will convert anyone!
2.) You Might Have To Buy New Clothes
Your weight will change, one way or the other. For most people, weight loss or weight gain is part of the journey when going vegan. Most plant sources of protein are lower in calories than meat, which could result in weight loss.
Mindless snacking will also get a little harder, as it’s not always easy to grab a quick bite on the go. But, of course, whether your favorite pair of jeans will still fit or not very much depends on how you eat.
That’s because going vegan doesn’t always imply eating healthily. You could very much continue a junk food diet of processed foods, high in carbs, sugar and fat. Oreos are vegan too … just saying! As long as you are being smart and makebalanced, healthy choices, you should see the pounds drop, especially if your previous diet was high in saturated fats and processed foods.
1.) Your Taste Buds and Cravings Are Going To Evolve
A few weeks without meat and cheese will do wonders for your taste buds. Your sense of taste will enhance, and certain foods will suddenly bring you a lot more pleasure than they used to. What came as a pleasant surprise to me? My hard-to-tame sweet tooth pretty much disappeared.
And, last but not least, going vegan is going to make you feel so much better.
To be completely honest, switching to a vegan diet will put some people through the negative effects of detox at first. You might feel crappy for days. Just keep in mind that that’s normal and will pass.
I went cold turkey on quitting meat and dairy, but that way of converting is definitely not for everyone. Find out what works for you and don’t give up when you make a mistake. It’s natural. And remember that each body is different. If you feel something is not right, talk to your doctor.
Have you tried to go vegan before? What were the unexpected challenges you were faced with? Share your challenges and triumphs with us in the comments below!