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How to start a vegan diet without losing your mind

Are you thinking of starting a vegan diet but don’t know where to start? A vegan diet means that you don’t eat animal products: meat, dairy, fish, and even eggs.

However, for many people, the idea of ​​eliminating all dairy and meat can definitely be overwhelming, especially if you like to eat out and are not a genius in the kitchen.

One option that works for many people is to start gradually. The following 8 tips will make the transition easier and smoother, making the change more likely to follow through:

1. Start by cutting the red meat

The first step should be fairly straightforward. And for many people that starts with cutting red meat (it seems that we are not as attached to it as we are to our cheese).

Start by eliminating all pork, beef, lamb, and other red meats from your diet. Still, indulge in white meats like fish, chicken, and shellfish.

You can also start trying meatless versions of bacon and other meats that you can find at your local grocery store or health food store, just to see which versions you like. When you start to feel comfortable not eating red meat, you can move on to the next stage.

2. Chop the chicken

Cut the chicken, but include shellfish and fish such as tuna, salmon, shrimp, etc.

You can also start trying to make some vegan food recipes (you can find a lot online, and they are often reviewed by other vegans as well, so you can find the ones that REALLY taste good).

3. Eliminate shellfish and fish

By now, you are practically in the vegetarian stage, congratulations! Now is the time to cut up the shellfish and fish, but keep trying other meat alternatives like soy-based patties, etc.

Your protein will also come from legumes like lentils, chickpeas, and black beans. There are also whole grains, vegetarian ground beef, vegetarian patties, some other meatless products such as vegan bacon.

4. Goodbye to cheese

Well, this could be the most painful part for many of us. We love our cheese. But there are cheese alternatives like rice cheese and tofu. You will have to experiment here to find what kind of cheese is right for you.

For example, I can’t stand tofu, but there is a rice-based cheese that I can buy in my supermarket that is fantastic, it even melts like real cheese!

5. Eliminate the eggs

This can be a bit challenging too, mainly because eggs are used in so many baked goods and recipes.

But there are many alternatives to egg that you can use to bake your treats. Some people use gelatin and water mixtures (which are fine for recipes that use fewer than 3 eggs).

Other options include apple sauce and egg replacement powders that can often be found in many specialty health food stores.

6. Cut the cream and butter

Again, this can be challenging as cream is often used in coffee and butter is often used in baked goods recipes.

But the good news is that there are great vegan alternatives. Coconut oil makes a great butter replacement in recipes (it’s basically a 1: 1 replacement ratio). You can also use olive oil if you are cooking dinners like stir fry dishes.

And for cream there are some great non-dairy alternatives like soy milk, coconut milk (very thick and creamy), or even coconut butter.

Look around your grocery store as there are specially formulated non-dairy creamer options in the health food section. (Sometimes regular coconut milk or almond milk separates in your coffee – these creams no spread in your coffee).

7. Let go of the milk

This may sound difficult, but you have a LOT of options here, so it’s not really that bad (in fact, I found cheese to be much more difficult!).

Vegan milk alternatives include rice milk, soy milk, coconut milk, and nut milks such as almond or cashew milk.

You can also use these milks for baking or cooking, eat them with your cereal, or you can just drink them out of a glass.

8. Find the best vegan recipes and restaurants

Good news: you are now completely vegan. But you still have to live your life without being chained to your kitchen.

And you need to maintain a social life, which means eating out!

Now is the time to start looking for more recipes that you love (so you can make them to keep on hand throughout the week). Usually I choose a day like Sunday and prepare all the food for the week, freezing the meals that will be used towards the end of the week.

Also, start researching what you can eat in restaurants. Depending on your area, you might find a vegan cafe or restaurant.

Not sure what to eat at a certain restaurant? Most places have their menus online so you can search what’s on the menu. You can also call ahead and ask what they could eat for you. Many restaurants are more than helpful if you let them know (they want your business after all).

So those are 8 steps on how to start a vegan diet without losing your mind. Some people like to go gradually.

However, if you prefer to jump on both feet, another option is to use a vegan food delivery service for a month or two. This will ensure that you will eat delicious food (so the transition is not so difficult) and you will be able to slowly learn the lifestyle at your own pace.

Going vegan can be challenging, but there are ways to make it a lot easier. We hope these tips have helped you. In no time you will feel healthier and stronger! Good luck and cheers!

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