Going vegan can be daunting. However, with the right attitude and a support system in place, the plant-based lifestyle can become accessible to anyone.
Veganism snuck up on me: One spring morning after an invigorating yoga practice the instructor mentioned that spring is the best time to do an internal cleanse. He suggested a juice fast. After trying this for more than a week, I felt amazing. I had more energy than ever.
I also experienced great mental clarity and focus like never before. After trying similar cleanses a few more times over the next six months, I could no longer go back to eating animal products.
To me it felt like the equivalent of cleaning and organizing your house, enjoying it for a few days and then carting all the crap you cleaned out right back in. It no longer made sense to me so I had to make it a permanent lifestyle change.
It took patience. I grew up eating the SAD (Standard American Diet) and loving each and every bite, even though it left me feeling sluggish, sick, and carrying extra pounds.
When exploring the idea of going vegan, I had to take a hard look at the foods I was eating, which were mainly processed foods full of sugar and fat. I knew that if I had any chance of being successful with this lifestyle change, I was going to have to take the foods I was already eating and make a vegan conversion.
Some classic American dishes I’ve converted to vegan include burgers, sandwiches, wraps, mac n cheese to name a few.
Sometimes vegan food gets a bad rap for being bland, which is no bueno in my book! I loves spicy and flavorful food, so I always punch up the flavor by using herbs, seasonings, peppers and spices to
keep the food tasty, colorful and interesting.
If you’re thinking about going vegan for health reasons or looking for new meal options, here are four easy tips I’ve used to convert any recipes vegan:
- Ener-G brand or Bob’s Red Mill Egg Replacers
- Silken tofu
- Bananas & Applesauce (for baked goods)
- Vinegar & baking soda
- Flaxseed whipped into water
- Tofu (extra or super firm)
- Beans & Legumes
- Nuts & Seeds
- Nut & Seed milks (almond, cashew, hemp, flax or macadamia)
- Soy milk
- Coconut milk
- Coconut butter
- Any non-dairy cheese (Daiya is my favorite)
- Non-dairy cream cheese
- Earth Balance All Natural Spread
- Follow Your Heart Vegan Gourmet Organic Sour Cream
Healthy Oil Upgrades
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Coconut oil
- Sunflower oil
- Walnut oil
- Sesame oil
- Grapeseed oil
- Safflower oil
Vegan food doesn’t have to be difficult, bland or boring & you don’t have to sacrifice flavor or give up all the foods you love. Vegans typically consume less fat & fewer calories than non-vegans so this is
a great way to lighten up your favorite recipes.
Have fun with it!