How to transition to a vegan lifestyle

So you want to start taking the steps to becoming vegan, but don’t know where to start? Transitioning to a vegan lifestyle can seem a bit daunting, but taking it step by step, making one change at a time, your progression to a vegan lifestyle will arrive quite naturally. 

It’s important to approach this at your own pace with a method that works best for you. This guide will help you structure your transition to veganism, just tailor each point to your own specific needs.

Learn about veganism and the movement

When first starting out on your vegan journey, learn as much as you can about the movement. This will really help you feel prepared and knowledgeable as you move forward. 

  • Vegan documentaries, books, magazines, websites, blogs, people. They all can offer valuable information and support about veganism. 
  • Start reading every ingredient list you see. Within no time at all, you’ll have the eyes of a hawk able to spot those bold letters that say ‘milk’ or ‘egg’.
  • Find your own reasons for wanting to do this. Whether it be the ethical reasons behind the production of animal foods, the improvement of health on a plant-based diet, or environmental factors, there are loads to choose from!

Add foods before you replace or remove them

Just cutting out foods without knowing what to replace them with is going to leave you in a bit of a sticky situation. Adding new plant-based foods to your diet is the best way to replace foods. Don’t think about a meat substitute for your chicken stir fry, get a block of tofu and create something amazing from that.

To help you along, we recommend collecting and experimenting with vegan recipes that appeal to you. When you’ve had a go at a few, find a few different quick and easy vegan meals that you enjoy and get comfortable preparing them.

Switch out milk is a great start too. This is an easy switch for most people but there’s a lot of options, so experiment to find which you like best. (honestly, us and most of the general public agree oat milk is the best!)

Combat your food cravings

Struggling to cut out a certain food or craving a food you love is completely normal! Most vegans stop eating animal products for ethical reasons, not because they don’t enjoy the taste of certain foods. It might surprise you to find out that most vegans love cheese and steak.

Too often, people will shrug off the idea of following a vegan diet for the fear of missing out on their favourite food, or end up giving up due to that food. It’s important to start this journey at your own pace, so if you can’t cut out a certain food straight away, we have a few pointers below:

  • Learn the production methods of this certain food, this can give you the drive to cut the food out.
  • Try some vegan alternatives. We don’t know anyone who doesn’t love a Beyond Burger! For some items in particular such as cheese, you may want to give it a few more weeks before experimenting with substitutions. Many people find that the longer it’s been since they’ve had the “real thing”, the easier it is for a vegan substitution to satisfy their craving.
  • Leave these ‘barrier’ foods to the end of your transition. Cut out what you can first, you’ll make a lot quicker progress and enjoy your journey into veganism.

PS… Vegan junk food is absolutley amazing, drop us a DM on Instagram and we’ll happily recommend some places near you!

Keep positive

Rather than thinking about all the foods you are giving up, think about the exciting new opportunity to discover a whole range of new foods. You will surprise yourself time and time again every time you discover something new. 

It can also be really easy to veganize your old recipes. Simply switching out a few things, you won’t even be able to tell the difference. Making a spag bol with soy mince is unbelievably tasty!

You’re doing this for a reason too. Remember why you started, everytime you choose a vegan meal you’ll feel that bit prouder that you did something for the animals and the environment.

Remember why you started 

As stated above, you’re doing this for a reason. There is a big difference in adopting a fully vegan lifestyle and going on a diet. When you learn about the benefits of a vegan lifestyle and the effect it has on both the environment and animals, and you know you want to take up a vegan diet, you won’t want to stray from your new lifestyle. 

Once you’ve taken the time to open your eyes to the real effects animal products have on our lives, you’ll be proud to say you follow a vegan lifestyle!