5 Tips For Vegan Newbies
As newbies to the vegan World my partner Blanaid and I have learned a lot over the past couple of weeks. I feel like we’ve both become more curious and we have found ourselves questioning thing’s a lot more over the transitional period. Our curiosity has led us to uncover a few tips that are proving to be extremely useful in our day to day life. So, we thought we’d share them in hope that they can prove just as useful to other vegan newbies.
1. Carry Soy Milk
After many disappointing visits to coffee shops which didn’t stock soy milk, we took some initiative and decided to start carrying a carton of soy milk around with us. It may seem like a weird thing to do but most baristas wont ask any questions and will make your brew of choice no problem. We’ve even found that this little trick will often knock some money off your bill too!
A delicious cappuccino made with a bottle of soy milk we took into a cafe.
2. Make a meal from side dishes
Unless your lucky enough to be within distance of a vegan restaurant you’ll have noticed that most other general food spots offer a poor range of options. Often I’ve found myself checking menus and walking on in search of something else but sometime’s you will find your in a desperate situation where it’s not possible to go elsewhere. We had this problem one morning when we were stuck in the airport waiting for our flight.
But all hope is not lost, if you check the side’s section of a menu it’s more than likely you’ll be able to conjure up your own meal from a few random plates. In times of desperation we have even settled for just a plate of rice and added soy sauce.
This looks like the most boring meal ever and I 100% agree it is, but we have been thankful for this meal in times of desperation. It’s not the worst thing in the world once you add a little soy sauce.
3. Cholesterol isn’t vegan
This one is plain and simple. Cholesterol can only be found in animal products, so if a nutritional label says the product includes cholesterol it most definitely is NOT vegan.
Top Tip – Eggs, meat and dairy are all very high in cholesterol.
4. Join an online group for support
The vegan lifestyle can seem daunting at first, you’ll have a lot of questions and for us personally we didn’t know many vegans especially being on the road backpacking. We decided to join a few vegan groups on Facebook which have been really great. They are filled with so many helpful people who have a wealth of knowledge and advice, all your questions will be answered and more so.
One of our favourite vegan Facebook groups is Vegan 101.
5. Respect others and don’t judge
It’s true that becoming vegan changes your perspective and you now look at meat and dairy products in a totally different way. But in some cases I’ve noticed that people can become really judgemental towards meat and dairy eaters and begin to preach, forgetting that they once ate those things themselves. I don’t know about you but personally I hate being preached to about life choices and just like I wouldn’t like to be grilled for not eating meat or dairy I wouldn’t like to grill someone else for their choices.
On a positive note, it’s quite refreshing when people do ask genuine questions out of curiosity. Not everyone understands or cares about the subject and it all comes down to information and educating. So when genuine questions are raised it’s a good opportunity to inform people on the scientific and ethical reasons behind why I have made these life choices. If it makes them think a little differently great, if not that’s okay.