Changing the way you consume is never easy, how to sort through all the information and where to start are recurring questions. To make your life easier, we asked Héloïse to share her experience.
The beginner's guide to vegans
Hello to you, my name is Héloïse, I am a student and vegan since September 2015! Becoming vegan is easy, but at the time questions quickly arose in my mind: Am I going to be healthy? How to eat vegan well?
Where to find vegan products?
Do I have the financial means? How will communication go with those around me? This is why I am going to share with you some tips that seem useful to me for a successful change in consumption patterns.
Is being vegan dangerous for your health?
The answer is no
, for adults, but here are some points not to neglect when you are starting out: (for growing young people and seniors: increased attention or help from a nutritionist is reasonable)
Are you afraid of becoming a vegetable?
Good news, it's not on the program! If you adopt a balanced vegan diet
, you run no risk.
I advise you to discover the basics of nutrition to understand where to find macronutrients: carbohydrates (sugars), lipids (fats) and proteins as well as micronutrients such as iron and calcium. You can go to the Vegan Pratique
website which has a nutrition section dedicated to key foods for a successful vegan diet.
Why consume vitamin B12
Vitamin B12 will be your best friend!
? This vitamin is not present in any food other than products of animal origin. Supplementation is therefore recommended. But what is it for? Vitamin B12
is essential in particular for your nervous system but it also plays a role in the formation of red blood cells and in the repair and synthesis of DNA and RNA. Don't forget your thyroid either! If you do not consume seaweed or table salt regularly, it is also better to take iodine for its proper functioning.
Every year it is best to ask your general practitioner to prescribe a complete blood test as well as a urine test for methylmalonic acid (vitamin B12 ) to check if everything is going well. It only takes a few seconds so no excuses! To conclude, you just need to change the organization of your plate a little, take a small pill ( food supplement with vitamin B12 ) once a day (or twice a week, or twice a month depending on the dosage) and 'a little injection per year.
Some links to make your research easier:
- For vitamins, I recommendvitamin B12 + Iodine and Selenium Argalys Essentiels . One capsule every 3 days will give you the recommended dose of 1000µg of vitamin B12 ! Made in France and eco-friendly, this brand has everything to please you .
- On social networks, subscribe to the Facebook group “Long live B12!” » for health advice and to be able to exchange with other vegetarians and vegans .
- If you prefer videos then watch those of Dr Bernard-pellet. Health advice and recommendations are given in his videos.
Being vegan at home
Are you going to break the bank by being Vegan?
Second good news, being vegan does not cost more
, on the contrary! Even if you have a small budget you can thrive in veganism. The key is to eat unprocessed and local foods (in bulk for zero waste). Rice, pasta, canned legumes will be your best allies. They can be the basis of your diet
and you can cook them with different vegetables and sauces according to the seasons. However, it is true that imitation meat and dairy products can be expensive or even very expensive, but it is really not necessary to consume them on a daily basis.
Household products: Vegan or not?
You will also discover that everything and anything is tested on animals
( therefore not vegan
), especially what we clean our house with. I therefore advise you to use white vinegar, sodium bicarbonate and lemon for cleaning and Marseille soap for the base of your laundry.
Concerning cosmetics, I create my own moisturizing cream based on aloe vera, oils and essential oils, and my masks based on clay and vegetable charcoal, it's more economical and you can adapt your mixture to the nature of your skin. There are also French brands which offer an interesting range of solid shower products and deodorants at affordable prices. Finally for clothing, second hand remains the best option from an economic and ecological point of view because it promotes the circular economy.
My favourites :
- the vegan-pratique.fr site: advice, recipes
- the Daily Dozen application is perfect for guiding you on the composition of your recipes
- the essentials that I eat throughout the year: chickpeas, coral lentils, tomato pulp, coconut cream, spices, cashew nuts, plain or flavored tofu
- the Aroma-Zone site is Ali Baba's cave for raw materials for cosmetics
- Clémence and Vivien soaps are my favorites
- great and long-lasting Schmidt's deodorants
- Vinted the application to sell and buy clothes
- Avesu is my favorite site for shoes but you need a small budget
Being vegan in society: a challenge?
Lesson #1: Being vegan: a choice
Don't be surprised if your family or friends don't feel the same way about veganism
as you. For my part, I thought that when I talked about it to those around me, everyone would be quick to do the same research to initiate a change in their consumption patterns. This wasn't the case AT ALL with my friends but my parents and especially my father were very receptive.
Lesson #2: “ego battle” discussions you will avoid.
Don't waste your time and energy on sterile debates. As I told you above, being vegan is a very personal philosophy, you have to accept that not everyone understands it.
Lesson #3: Choose your moment wisely to start a discussion about veganism.
Wanting to share your experience is legitimate and I encourage you to do so. You might inspire vocations! But choose your moments to do it. Avoid meals: the person in front of you will not necessarily be receptive if you criticize the food on their plate. Favor face-to-face meetings: This makes discussion and listening easier.
Lesson #4: Bring your food to high school, to college, to eat at work.
This will save you the option: fries, bread, apple and above all, it will save you money!. To conclude, a little advice: try to get closer to animalist associations to allow you to exchange ideas and meet people who share the same ideology as you. This will allow you to vent your bag to individuals who will be interested in what you say and who will be able to share their experience and advice to help you, especially at the beginning.
My favourites :
- my favorite associations: Anonymous For the Voiceless, Sea Shepherd
- I like listening to the Carencé podcast
- I like watching youtubers Jihem Doe and Gurren Vegan, iamvegan.tv on Facebook
- HappyCow app helps me find places to eat all over the world
I hope Héloïse’s testimony was useful to you! You can find her on Instagram
or contact her by email at the following address: Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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