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shelly2525
Oct 28th, 2011, 06:23 PM
Hi all,

I have been thinking about going vegitarian and/or vegan for a while now and watching the movie Earthlings pushed me over the edge. After I watched that a few nights ago I got rid of all the meat in my apartment but didnt get rid of the cheese or yogurt yet..

you see I have this problem where I start something .. a diet, a book or whatever and I am really passionate about it in the begining then life gets in a way or really busy or stressful and i give in or give up. I just wanted to know what strategies you guys could reccomend for someone who wants to go vegan.. I havent had meat in a week so thats a small start but I want to eventually go completely vegan.

I come from a very meat, processed food, fast food family. I know they will probably pick on me for going vegan but I dont care. I really care about the animals..I have a fish and my heart breaks even when I see him stressed from transfering him to clean his bowl. so I dont want to be a part of the speciesism that is going on right now.

Does anyone have a reliable complete list of vegan and non-vegan companies/products?

Also does anyone have good begining vegan meals that are affordable? I am a college student and cannot afford to buy a wide variety of food either.

thank you all ! Im glad i found this site:)

FaerieSuzy
Nov 3rd, 2011, 12:24 PM
Hey Shelly,

I found the best way to commit was to throw out all of my non vegan food and start from scratch, but I appreciate that isn't for everyone.

Start by veganising some of your favourite dishes, such as spaghetti bolognese (use TVP instead of mince) curries, chilli.... look at eastern foods and recipes as many of them are traditionally plant based recipes anyway. You should find eating vegan is also very inexpensive as long as you don't buy lots of substitute meats and cheeses etc which can be costly!

I'm also the type of person to give up quickly, but 7 months on, I'm doing better than ever at finding interesting and tasty meals :)

As I'm from the UK I don't think my list of products and companies will be relevant to you though!

Maître
Nov 3rd, 2011, 12:47 PM
My advice is to take the opportunity to get into proper cooking, it's so satisfying when you can cook your own delicious vegan meals which are super healthy and cheap as well - the money saved and the knowledge that you're eating healthily can provide a lot of motivation to stick to a vegan diet, on top of the obvious reasons. And also it's often a way of making others consider a vegan lifestyle, once they realise that lots of the misconceptions they have about vegans/vegan food are false - many people say they'd like to be vegan but can't afford it (it's cheaper to be vegan), or they enjoy tasty food too much (spices and oils are vegan, and they are what give most food it's taste anyway).

Korn
Nov 3rd, 2011, 12:54 PM
Link: Tricks to stay vegan


(http://www.veganforum.com/forums/showthread.php?27081-Tricks-to-stay-vegan):)

AzureAngel
Nov 3rd, 2011, 01:12 PM
HI Shelly and welcome to a better life!

I have only been Vegan for almost a year now (will be Nov 21) and I remember all too well how hard it was in the beginning. Especially since I am very health and fitness conscious. The first point Korn's link brings up is the "get enough protein" and that is important. What is also important to note is to get enough complete protein. The thing with veganism is that you need to diversify your eating, which is actually a good thing. The body needs diversity. That might sound like it is going to cost you more, but it doesnt. I understand the student budget very well and trust me, just cutting out meat will help so much on the old pocket.
A good place to start is to make sure your meals has each of the following : a protein, a grain and lots of veggies. Personally I prefer geen leafy veggies. Brocolli you cannot have enough of either and eggplant is fantastic for memory and thinking. Especially seeing as you are studying. The grain that I find is the best to use is quinoa. It is a rare complete protein as well as being a great source of magnesium that will help with headaches that come with cram sessions. A grain to avoid would be couscous as it has little good to it.
Now there is one pitfall to avoid. Make sure you do not overdo it on the insoluble fibrous foods. A lot of starting out vegans go nuts on eating heavy fibre rich foods and do not realise that what fibre can do is actually restrict a lot of nutritional intake into the body. Thats why you should vary your meals and change the grains up, having pasta, rice (brown is best) and things like that. But you will soon get used to all this, just please do not get disheartened if you feel a little uncomfortable digestive wise at the start. It happened to me and it does to most people. It is our bodies going through detox.

But as to your point about a complete list. I would not bother too much about that just yet. Find your feet first and check foods at the supermarket to make sure they dont contain the obvious animal products. That said, you can just do what I do and buy fresh and not worry as much. Even if you do that, you still come out cheaper in the end if you find a good market or supermarket and buy for the week. If you are careful and do a little research you can plan your meals so that your food never goes bad over the course of the week.
Another thing that was said to me at the Farm Sanctuary this year (A glorious get together of vegans in the States), is to not get too intense about it and end up making yourself go a little crazy. We are all doing the best we can and things like our image and how we are an example to others will ultimately help the Vegan cause a lot more than you excluding yourself from everything that might have had something to do with an animal at some point. So go and hang out with friends, go to restaurants and enjoy life. You can always find a Vegan meal at even the strangest place. The chef will almost always be willing to facilitate, even if it is just a salad. Afterwards you can snack on nuts and fruits if you have to ;)

Thanks for reading and hope this has helped. If you ever want to, I can give you some really cheap and easy recipes to begin with that you can find the stuff for anywhere. Just give me a PM and I will respond asap.

theveggiemonster
Nov 4th, 2011, 03:39 PM
Soy (Silk brand), almond, and rice milk are pretty available in the US (I'm from Chicago) so I wouldn't worry about milk at all. Veggie burgers are also easy. Rice, beans, etc. you can get anywhere. Vegan condiments like mayonnaise, butter, etc. you might need to order online or make a special trip to the health food store but you don't need to buy these every week so that's not a big deal.

As a new vegan (one month) the biggest tip I can give is to always be stocked up on food. The only time I was tempted to cheat was based on availability, not on actually wanting non-vegan foods. If I had had my kitchen full to the brim with choices instead of dangerously low there would have been no temptation whatsoever.

Good luck! :-)

sandra
Nov 5th, 2011, 06:16 PM
I really care about the animals..I have a fish and my heart breaks even when I see him stressed from transfering him to clean his bowl. so I dont want to be a part of the speciesism that is going on right now.

What you said above sounds like you will stick to being vegan! :)

VeganAthlete
Nov 5th, 2011, 10:24 PM
Hello Shelly from Wisconsin!

Welcome to the forum :) Props on your decision! I was in your situation a few years ago. Broke vegan college student taking over 20 hours a semester, working at night, living in a dorm, etc. Sucks! But we deal the best way we know how. Anyway, here are a few tips. Instant brown rice (either Minute or generic brand) is good to have. Hopefully you have a microwave (not the safest or best appliance to use but perfect for the broke busy college student). Get some canned beans (unless u have a stovetop or slow cooker). Rice, beans and a few species can go a LONG way. Add craisins, raisins, veggies, a vegan patty, nuts, dried fruit, etc. It's super low in fat, high in protein and good carbs, VERY high in fiber so be careful. Too much fiber can lead to discomfort.

Also, check out peta.org. I am not sure what your personal stance with PETA is, but I find their pdf's, blogs and website the most informative. They have information about pretty much ALL the vegan products in the states. There is a 12 page PDF file that they constantly update with all sorts of products. Most of the stuff is relatively cheap.

TVP is another great thing to have. Pop some water into the microwave and pour it into a container with TVP and let it rehydrate. Add some spices, salsa, nuts and make yourself a taco or a burrito. The possibilities are endless. I make the weirdest meals but even my omni friends eat it.

One last thing before I drive you off the wall...most retaurants will cater to your needs...don't be too trusting and DO your research before hand. Apparently, pizza hut in the states is pretty vegan friendly!

Best of luck to you Shell & look forward to hearing from you!!!
Glad you found the forum as well!

CoolCat
Nov 5th, 2011, 11:05 PM
I am not sure what your personal stance with PETA is, but I find their pdf's, blogs and website the most informative. They have information about pretty much ALL the vegan products in the states. There is a 12 page PDF file that they constantly update with all sorts of products.

The PETA "vegan" list isn't vegan at all. PETA states that some added animal ingredients should be allowed by vegans and that vegans shouldn't be so fucking uptight and should stop caring for monoglycerides, D3, and other "minority" ingredients.

shelly2525
Nov 5th, 2011, 11:10 PM
Thank you all for the replies! Theres some great advice and information here.. and yeah ive looked at that peta product list..This is kinda off topic but has anyone heard about peta killing dogs and cats? idk i saw this one website when i searched peta on google.. petakillsanimals.com
but it might just be false info.. its hard to know the truth these days..

CoolCat
Nov 5th, 2011, 11:11 PM
Peta runs(/ran?) shelters that kill animals... think that is true. They kill(/ed?) at higher rate than other kill shelters from what I heard.

VeganAthlete
Nov 5th, 2011, 11:31 PM
The PETA "vegan" list isn't vegan at all. PETA states that some added animal ingredients should be allowed by vegans and that vegans shouldn't be so fucking uptight and should stop caring for monoglycerides, D3, and other "minority" ingredients.

Holy crap...Coolcat, is that what their "disclaimer" on the site is? I've seen the little link on there...but never really clicked it. I go through their lists to check if candies or beverages are vegan. I'd never buy a product that actually states monoglycerides or diglycerides....ive taken nutrition and dietetic courses...I now what those ingredients are...yuck. Screw that...in that case, I am "f**king uptight...It's a good start off guide, but apparently not the most reliable. Thanks CC!

Yeah, you're right about PETA...they did stuff like that a while back...the Humane Society is not as humane as we think. Maybe you're thinking about the Humane Society? They totally euthanize animals left and right :(

Risker
Nov 6th, 2011, 01:53 AM
I'd never buy a product that actually states monoglycerides or diglycerides....ive taken nutrition and dietetic courses...I now what those ingredients are...yuck. Screw that...

Uhm... those can come from vegetable sources.


The PETA "vegan" list isn't vegan at all. PETA states that some added animal ingredients should be allowed by vegans and that vegans shouldn't be so fucking uptight and should stop caring for monoglycerides, D3, and other "minority" ingredients.

I get your point and agree that PETA's list is crappy and wrong, but I should also say you can get vegan vitamin D3 now (though admittedly it's very unlikely it's used in any processed food products) and as above, monogylcerides can be from vegetable sources.

VeganAthlete
Nov 6th, 2011, 06:53 AM
I am aware that monoglycerides and diglycerides can be animal, plant or synthetic. Unfortunately, manufacturers don't really indicate what sort of glyceride is used in the product. I do avoid purchasing products with mono or di..call me weird...I guess I am more comfortable avoiding ingredients that "may be non-vegeterian"....so prob not vegan.

CoolCat
Nov 6th, 2011, 01:21 PM
I get your point and agree that PETA's list is crappy and wrong, but I should also say you can get vegan vitamin D3 now (though admittedly it's very unlikely it's used in any processed food products) and as above, monogylcerides can be from vegetable sources.

That was indeed not the point. The PETA list doesn't differentiate in the origin of those ingredients. Ingredients are listed most used first and when an animal derived ingredient is far enough down the list of ingredients PETA labels the product erroneous/deceptively as vegan.

VeganAthlete
Nov 6th, 2011, 04:05 PM
PETA's stance is this "We discourage vegetarians from grilling waiters at restaurants about micro-ingredients in vegetarian foods (e.g., a tiny bit of a dairy product in the bun of a veggie burger)." This is the disclaimer sort of statement attached to their "accidentally vegan" product list. Their goal is to reduce animal cruelty by supporting companies and products that eliminate or reduce animal cruelty by putting less animal-derived products in their lists. PETA prefers reduced animal cruelty rather than outright animal cruelty. I suppose they believe that by supporting companies and products that use less animal ingredients, there will be a slow transition to completely eliminating animal-derived ingredients. From my understanding PETA is big on political campaigns and rallies. They pack a punch with their political agenda.

I am not knowledgeable enough in the food manufacturing industry so I am somewhat ignorant on this matter, but I assume companies will use whatever ingredients are cheaper and easier to use in food processing. So if an animal derived emulsifier is cheaper and more readily available than plant or synthetic emulsifiers, they will opt for the cheaper source. Companies that promise to use plant based ingredients have to abide by their mission statement and produce products with no animal derivatives (despite the cost).

Going off on a tangent: I think the matter we are discussing is perhaps subject to interpretation by vegans with varying degrees of strictness. Some vegans might consider honey and gelatin permissible ingredients in their diet. Others may aggregate kosher or halal restrictions to their vegan diet/lifestyle.

It's a complex topic, but a very relevant one (in my opinion).

On a random note: I am half-asleep and Daylight savings just ended last night so clocks have been moved back but my suprachiasmatic nucleus and my circadian rhythm is out of whack so adjusting is going to be loads of fun. :no_expression:

CoolCat
Nov 6th, 2011, 04:28 PM
Going off on a tangent: I think the matter we are discussing is perhaps subject to interpretation by vegans with varying degrees of strictness. Some vegans might consider honey and gelatin permissible ingredients in their diet. Others may aggregate kosher or halal restrictions to their vegan diet/lifestyle.

Gelatin is made from cow- and fish bones... vegans don't eat things made from animal bones. Nor do they eat honey, that has already been discussed to death and the conclusion was that vegans don't eat honey as it's an animal product obtained from exploitation that is easily avoidable. Not sure what exactly you mean with kosher or halal... but there are kosher and halal animal products, no vegan would use those.

VeganAthlete
Nov 6th, 2011, 05:48 PM
I've read somewhere that some vegans do eat honey (and still consider themselves vegan). I personally don't agree as my vantage point is different and perhaps more strict. Yeah, you got it. There are vegans that also respect halal and kosher restrictions...as in their plant-based products, salts, etc have to be kosher. What I meant is that on top of following a vegan diet/lifestyle, they also follow halal/kosher restriction. Of course they would not eat/use animal products.

AzureAngel
Nov 6th, 2011, 06:14 PM
Listen, not to be rude guys, but this thread was from someone relatively new to being Vegan and I am sure they did not want a big debate or argument to spread forth from it. There are plenty more threads where we can do this.

VeganAthlete
Nov 6th, 2011, 07:08 PM
You're right!! Got carried away. Sorry Shelly :-)

Risker
Nov 7th, 2011, 01:14 AM
That was indeed not the point.

I was agreeing with you, just didn't want people thinking that all monogylcerides were from animal sources.

shelly2525
Nov 7th, 2011, 01:18 AM
thanks Azureangel, and its ok veganathlete.. I was actually curious about the whole peta stance on things anyway.. but i have another question.. I am going on a road trip with family next week.. what are some ready to eat vegan snacks or meals I could bring with me on the road so im not tempted to eat drive thru abused and murdered animals

Blueberries
Nov 7th, 2011, 01:28 AM
I am going on a road trip with family next week.. what are some ready to eat vegan snacks or meals I could bring with me on the road so im not tempted to eat drive thru abused and murdered animals

I'm sure there's a thread about that here somewhere, but ideas that immediately come to mind are to fill a cooler bag in your car with sandwiches, chopped-up veggies and houmous, salads of any kind, your favourite snacks. :lol:

Risker
Nov 7th, 2011, 01:40 AM
Couscous and roasted vegetables
Cold pasta and sauce
Cold pizza
Mixed bean salad and lettuce

AzureAngel
Nov 7th, 2011, 04:30 AM
You all said it so well. Yes invest in a cooler bag and fill it up with good salads in containers and some stuff you can make salads from even. Tinned beans (chick peas, 3 beans, just remember to rinse them well) etc are your friend. Even chilli beans and then just buying bread where you are make for some filling meals for lunch etc.