I am coming clean; I am a guilty vegan.
Guilty of falling off the wagon, and guilty of being lazy. This causes me trepidation in my day to day life at the moment, and I am writing this for other guilty vegans out there who may be experiencing the same.
Being vegan is undoubtedly good for your health, spirit, and overall wellness. But sometimes, life gets in the way and makes it easier for you to slip and make simpler food choices.
People usually go vegan for one of three reasons.
Firstly; their health.
Cutting out meat and dairy can help you lose weight, increase energy levels, reduce the risk of cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, and numerous other ailments. This is merely through getting all the nutrients you need by researching which plants and natural products can give you all the stuff you would usually get from meat or dairy; iron, protein, calcium, etc. Animal products have all the nasty fats and cholesterol so aren’t suitable nutritional choices, despite what is commonly thought. Animal products are gross. They are contaminated with poo, blood, puss, and other bacteria. Watch Fork Over Knives to find out more.
Secondly; the environment and food poverty.
For everyone on the planet to be able to eat the same diet as the average westerner, we would need three whole planets. We only have one, and it is dying. Animal product consumption (meat, dairy, eggs, leather) is the leading cause of climate change. Due to the amount of land used to farm animals and the amount of water they need. Deforestation, pollution, and water waste are the biggest threats from animal agriculture. Eating meat also means grains that could be used to feed people are feeding animals instead. Meat is for the rich, and uses the food of the poor in its creation. Watch “Cowspiracy” to find out more.
Lastly but by no means least; animal welfare.
By going vegan, you can save the lives of over 100 animals every year. The bottom line is there is no ethical way to produce meat, eggs, and dairy. We are abusing sentient beings for our desires. We have evolved past the need to slaughter innocent beings for our welfare, we are smarter now, and can get all we need from plants. Animals used and abused for our dining experience, are just as intelligent as the ones we call pets. You can’t call yourself an animal lover if you eat animal products. It is an ultimate paradox. Watch Earthlings to find out more.
So, with all these compelling reasons, why is it that I have slipped back into old, deplorable habits?
My only excuse is laziness. Until veganism is the norm, not the exception, it remains undeniably difficult for those who live a busy life. When I first started out over two years ago, I put in some serious effort to learn where to get my protein and iron and perfected some recipes to reflect that. After tiring out those recipes, I lost momentum and the willpower to create more. I bought numerous cookbooks, which I have never opened and ended up just sticking to the good old vegetable curry with chips and rice. The bottom line is, it got boring. My eyes have been opened, but ignorance is bliss, and it was surprisingly easy to conveniently ‘forget’ all I had learned.
Yet, I still label myself a vegan.
The vegan community would not be happy with this if they saw what was currently in my fridge. I guess I am a flexitarian. I still believe in veganism 110%, (so much so I have peace, love, and veganism tattooed on my wrist), but I just struggle to practice it. The way I see it, I am another enlightened person, sharing my view of how the world should be, to make it better for animals, people, and the planet. This is the start, and the biggest hurdle, breaking down taboos and misconceptions around veganism. It is cheaper, healthier, and better for your soul, but with all those benefits, of course, it is hard work. That is the part the militant vegans don’t tell you, it is supposed to be easy once you are ‘enlightened,’ but it isn’t.
It just so happens at the moment I am unable to follow my own ethical code. As humans, it is impossible to be perfect all the time, and putting that pressure on yourself is detrimental to your mental health.
So, to all the other ‘guilty vegans’ out there, this is for you; you are not alone. You are already leaps and bounds ahead of the majority, so don’t be so hard on yourself.
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