Transitioning to a vegan lifestyle
If you read my story, you would’ve learned that my transition to a vegan lifestyle was extremely quick. It was an overnight transition… after much research of course.
Before I dive right in, I would like to note this is from my own personal experience. This is what I did when I first began my journey and is what worked for me.What works for one person may not work for another. For most people, a slow transition would be the best option in order to achieve the highest rate of success. Whereas others, an overnight transition may be better because jumping right in may prevent them from being half-assed and immediately gain the full experience.
Regardless of what type of transition I suggest first doing your research. Research the information, the facts, the various point of views and widen your perspective, your thoughts and opinions; be curious and challenge yourself. During my research, I came across videos of others who have gone through this particular high carb low fat vegan experience and have advice, and their opinions to share. For me personally I like to know a little bit of what I am getting myself into before diving right in so I was thankful to have had a number of people to look up to. Do not be afraid to reach out to people either. If there is someone you follow or look up to, contact them and ask them questions. I am sure they are more than likely to give you some advice. They may be bloggers, instagrammers, youtbers, etc.
One thing I would like to touch upon are the potential effects and experiences during this transition. For those who may not have been the healthiest in the recent past such as eating lots of processed or junk foods for examply may experience more unwanted and negative symptoms, which are called detox symptoms. This may be seen as feeling sick and experiencing cold or flu-like symptoms. For more information on detoxing and detox symptoms click here. As a result, I would suggest a slower transition. During my transition, I had already been eating a fairly healthy diet and so I did not experience any detox symptoms, at least I did not notice any.
Within your research you should be asking a lot of questions. Not only should you be questioning the information and facts, but you should be asking yourself questions. I highly recommend a period of self-reflection and asking questions like “What is the purpose?”, “Why do I want to do this?”, “What do I want to achieve?”. It is really important to set out the foundations, especially if you want to succeed and make it a positive experience.
Once you have done your research and know a general idea of what the experience might be like. I suggest planning ahead. Create a tentative plan outlining steps that you may want to follow. For example, on your list may be to start adding more vegetables into your diet. Next may be to consume meat only once a day, and then once a week. This may be followed by adding more fresh fruits into your routine, such as making more smoothies in the morning. Another goal may be to try out a new vegan recipe a few times per week, etc. Making small achievable and realistic steps or goals may be very helpful to create a smoother and more successful transition. For those who decide on an overnight transition, these goals are still important, they may just all happen all at once or in a shorter period of time.
After creating a general plan or a list of goals, I suggest documenting everything throughout your journey. When I first started, I had a notebook where I wrote down everything that I ate that day, how I felt, my activity level etc. I also used CRON-O-Meter which is a calorie counter. Yes in general I do not believe in calorie counting… however I used it to make sure I was eating and consuming enough calories. It was also fascinating to see the amount of nutrients that I was consuming through just eating fruit and vegetables. I definitely recommend it when starting out, especially when you are not familiar with what nutrients can be found in your foods. Documenting everything will also allow you to reflect back at your journey to see how far you have come and what you have learned along the way.
Last but not least I suggest finding and getting support while you embark on this wonderful journey and experience. Whether that is sharing it with others around you, such as family and friends, or connecting with people through social media such as through Instagram, Facebook, YouTube or through forums and other sites. Or perhaps going on sites like meetup.com and looking for gatherings and meet ups with others that may also be on the same journey or live the same lifestyle. I find it so helpful as this not only is very motivating but can hold you more accountable as well.
In summary, here are my top five tips for a successful transition.
- Do research.
- Create goals.
- Document everything.
- Get support.
If you want more personal or one-on-one help with transitioning, please feel free to contact me and I would be happy to help!