View Full Version : How has the change to a vegan diet affected you?

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Jan 9th, 2009, 05:40 PM
I don't like Kale or spinach or any dark leafy greens. Or eating. I can't eat many nuts or beans cause I have IBS so when I eat them it's excruciatingly uncomfortable or painful. I can't eat fake meats or seitan or bread or a lot of other grains because I'm allergic to it. I also can't eat tomatoes (a total staple in recipes), potatoes (another staple), eggplant, peppers, chilis and on and on the list goes. *sigh*.

So I basically live off air and water. This is probably why I desperately try to prop myself up on B complex and iron pills and feel weak and shitty and tired and EXTREMELY cold all the time. :(

Sarabi: Same here! It's amazing how many people just don't have vegan in their vocabulary and when you try and explain they think you are actually joking. And then once they realize you aren't, they think you're overally emotional, ignorant about nutrition and the world and get angry or just laugh. I have had so many people just ask me to convert because I'm being "difficult". I also get so many people challenging me. So I just keep it quite now and pretend that I don't eat things due to allergies to meat and dairy. The worst part is at restaurants when people don't speak fluent english.

"Is there milk in this?"
"milk? oh....uh...yes yes milk is here, I bring you milk"
"No, is there milk IN this recipe?"
"Yes, yes, hold on, I bring milk"


Then you have people who try and trick you and bring you food that is "vegan" and when you ask again there is magically non vegan items in it all of a sudden. *amazing*

And then there is just people who go on and on about how much they love steak and would go and kill things for the fun of it just to upset you when all you said was, "I'm vegan".

Jan 9th, 2009, 08:59 PM
Hi Nyx,

I can relate. I have food intolerance to wheat, soy, carrots, fruit, yeast, alcohol, garlic, onion, beans, nuts,... They cause itch, diarroeha, sleeplesness,...All I can eat is rice and some very well cooked or steamed vegetables. I guess we are in the same boat.
I have tried everything without any result, but I keep searching...
I also find eating out as a vegan difficult. The more of us, the more vegan options will become available. When I first was a vegetarian about 16 years ago there were no veggie burgers or spreads, unless you went to a small bioshop in the city , where you had a couple of tasteless things. Now it is readily available in every supermarket.

Jan 9th, 2009, 10:19 PM
my asthma is basically gone, my bones dont ache, my nose isnt sniffly and sneezy 24 hours a day, my allergies have gone down significantly, my skin glows, and i can wake up in the morning without feeling horrible.

Jan 9th, 2009, 11:08 PM
Aww Wendy, sorry to hear that :( That REALLY sucks!

I have a food blog that's gluten free and almost sugarcane free, it might however have things you can't have but I always think there is an alternative method to making everything so if you like any recipes but can't have it for some reason, let me know and we'll figure it out :)


Jan 12th, 2009, 03:12 PM
So far so good but it's too early to tell.
I'm learning to bake really yummy stuff so that's great.
And I love veganizing traditional recipes so I still feel like I'm eating
pretty regular food .

But a couple of things have been puzzling me.

Been a vegetarian 12 years. Not a problem. I almost never ever
had gas. Flatulence wasn't an issue.

2-3 weeks a vegan and "gas production" has been mad.
Where does it come from ?

Also, I use the toilet much more often so I worry I'm going to lose
weight and I'm thin already.

I'd just like to know :

1. WHAT is it about being vegan that makes such a drastic difference ?

2. Does it get better with time (for those who didn't have this problem before) ? I mean, could it just be a transition issue?

3. I also had mild stomach cramps. Again, something I NEVER had before. I wonder if it could be all the soy I'm taking and that I NEVER drank when i was a vegetarian. How do you find out if you can't tolerate soy ?

Or could it be again just part of the transition ?

Thank you...

Jan 12th, 2009, 08:46 PM
I think it could be that you are adjusting to a better diet. Cutting out dairy can give withdrawel symptoms. You should stop eating all soy for a few days and see if your symptoms better. Then reintroduce the soy and see if your symptoms come back. Then you know if soy is the culprit. You can use rice milk, oatmilk,...
But how long have you been a vegan, because it can cost your body some time to adjust to the different food.
Good luck!

Jan 12th, 2009, 09:31 PM
I think Wendy is right and agree on both possible transition but keeping an eye on the soy.

I also have heard that using soaked beans (from dry), so soaking them overnight as opposed to using canned ones will greatly reduce the amount of gas they produce.

Also, how much processed food are you eating? Watch your intake of these (fake meats, dairy alternatives, etc) because they can cause indigestion (I believe carageenan can be a culprit as well) which is found in a lot of fake meats as a binder/thickener.

I have always had IBS well before being even vegetarian let alone vegan and haven't noticed much difference.

Watch your nut intake as well. Nuts can cause digestion probs.

Hope that helps.

Jan 20th, 2009, 10:28 AM

I went vegan for ethics, not for health reasons, but I am also a health nut and an athlete so I am pleasantly surprised with the improvements in my health. I expect to live much longer now that I am vegan, since my immune system seems to be far superior to what it was before. I think something non-vegan that I was eating was stopping my immune system from working properly.

I don't know if this makes any difference, but I don't eat soy and don't consume much gluten. I also make easy things like raw cashew "cheese" with nutritional yeast, as opposed to eating processed store-bought rice or soy "cheese" (which I understand somtimes has casein in it).

I think the people who experience drops in their health when they go vegan are just not doing it right. Maybe they are only eating soy products and lettuce or something!

I also believe that it's not about blood types and stuff. If you are of a certain blood type that evidently doesn't work out with veganism, find out exactly WHICH nutrient you need more than other people, and then find the vegan sources for that nutrient, instead of immediately going back to omnivorism.

Jan 24th, 2009, 07:45 AM
Veggie for 20 years, went vegan 6/7 months ago. My health has been rubbish. But I actually thinkit is because I was trying to get a lot of my energy intake from soya milk - up to two litres a day. My T4 thyroid test results have drooed lower each of the 3 times I was tested, I am anaemic, my skin is very spotty, and my periods have become so painful I was taking co-dydramol!!! All these things have been linked to excessive soy, and coupled with the fact that my diet wasn't varied enough apart from this.
I have posted in a couple other forums because I wanted to see if other people have had similar experiences. So sorry if I am irritating anyone by popping up everywhere!!
Thankfully, my GP is lovely - very supportive of my veganism and gives helpful advice. So I have switched to rice/oat milk, and am eating different stuff and paying attention to protein, etc. Also taking kelp for iodine. I really want to be a good advert for my beliefs, not someone that puts would-be vegans off 'cause I am such a wreck!;)

Jan 24th, 2009, 04:48 PM
Do you have enough vit B12 and vit D?
Maybe you could read "Becoming vegan" from Davis Melina

Jan 25th, 2009, 06:56 PM
Hi Wendy, Apparently my B12 is fine. I have no idea about the D.....Anyway, thanks for the book tip - I will look on Amazon. Guess I thought it would be much easier to be healthy than it is, but I guess in time I will learn!!

Mar 10th, 2009, 09:07 PM
Best unexpected thing was my excema clearing up!

Also I rarely get so much as a sniffle, even when those all around me are getting miserable with colds and the like.

Mar 27th, 2009, 02:12 PM
I've just realised that I have not taken a day off sick in almost a year. I put that down to being vegan :thumbsup: All of my work colleagues have had time off sick this year alone

Mar 27th, 2009, 05:26 PM
^ Me too! It allows me to take sick days when I'm not sick :devil: I mean, they expect you to get sick once in a while so why not use it to your advantage :o:D

Sep 14th, 2009, 07:31 PM
I haven't been vegan ong enough to notice long-term changes, but so far the short-term benefits for me are clearer sinuses and more frequent/healthier digestion (to put it politely) despite my previous digestive habits were very good.

Sep 15th, 2009, 07:07 PM
After only 3 weeks I'm already feeling healthier and fitter (I used to be very tired every day, not anymore though).

Apr 30th, 2010, 06:51 AM
my improved a little, I think the main reason it didn't improve a lot is because I don't eat enough with vegan diet, well, it's not like I eat enough when I was not vegan though lol. yep, need to eat more!!

Aug 27th, 2010, 01:24 PM
When i was a meat eater i was always underweight, but since turning vegan i'm a heavy weight, and have finally filled out a bit as now i have the energy to exercise regularly.

Aug 27th, 2010, 04:04 PM
I have notived excess weight has gone without me having to worry about dieting. Apparently others have noticed an improvement in my skin. This was confirmed last week when a girl who I got chatting to at the gym (who turned out to be mid twenties like me) presumed I was "A 16 year old school leaver". Best. Moment. Ever.For. Self. Esteem. *smugsmugsmug*

Generally I feel a lot better in myself and have become far more 'in tune' with my own body especially with things like cramps, headaches etc which previously I would have j I ust coped with now I know what I have done to cause this feeling and what I need to change to sort it out..even if its just a big glass of water or a piece of fruit.


Aug 31st, 2010, 07:31 AM
compliments are nice, however random, my nan recently remarked that i now have shoulders.

VT Winter Veggie
Sep 13th, 2010, 02:57 PM
Switching to a vegan diet wasn't easy with a family of omnivores, since I live at home. I became vegan after being vegetarian for about a year and 6 months. I did it for health reasons, but the ethical reasons are obvious, they are just not what made me switch.

I dropped from the 140-145 lbs I had been since becoming a vegetarian (which dropped from 150), to 128 this summer (I am 5'8 1/2). Personally all this weight loss was junk from inside and I lost quite a bit of body fat. I put on muscle though, the vegan diet has made me so active and confident physically, my muscle over all is much more defined and I'm much stronger than i was on any other diet. (I do eat cleaner than ever too though, but that can't really be done on a non-vegan diet anyway)

Other than my physical shape improving, my mind is very clear, and it's really obvious that my whole system is very clean. I've never experienced any deficiencies in two years of being vegetarian and seven months of being vegan. The only supplement I take is a B vitamin and simply to make sure that I am getting those, not because the diet can't supply them, but because I can't always count on me eating things that do. As far as leather shoes and things like that, all leather things I have (maybe my two pairs of shoes, my wallet, and my belt) are from either before I was even vegetarian or right after. I don't purchase anything animal based or derived. I will not throw out clothes and items I have that are leather and such, simply because the wasting of them, in my mind, is less "vegan" than keeping them.

Anyway all in all, I am fully behind the vegan diet and the vegan way of life, I tell my friends whenever it comes up that becoming vegan is the only way to truly make a difference for yourself and the world, vegetarian is a gateway, but vegan is what you want to be moving towards.

Sep 14th, 2010, 03:04 PM
I've been a vegan for nearly five years now and I haven't noticed any changes I would say have anything to do with my diet. I lost some weight for a couple of months right after becoming vegan but I did gain some weight over the years (not dramatically) but that happens to all sorts of people. Other than that I feel exactly the same as before.

I don't take any supplements and blood tests confirm that I am healthy. Oh, now that I think of it I realize that I used to have iron deficiency before I went vegetarian and then vegan. Now, however, I don't have that problem anymore.

Sep 15th, 2010, 08:31 PM
Its nice when the blood tests confirm that you're healthy, especially when the doctor warned you that going vegan would be unhealthy and that i'll be deficient in this and deficient in that.

Sep 15th, 2010, 10:46 PM
Absolutely. Especially with my doctor who told me "you will have deficiencies" beforehand... And when the test came back he kept ranting about vegetarians! How his nephew (who was about 8) wanted to be a vegetarian because his teacher told him that meat is made from animals and that this is so bad that the family now wants to sue the teacher because she shouldn't tell children stuff like that. Especially since you can't be healthy being a vegetarian... And he said that to me although my blood test had just confirmed that I am healthy "although" I am vegan...

Sep 16th, 2010, 05:51 PM
Absolutely. Especially with my doctor who told me "you will have deficiencies" beforehand... And when the test came back he kept ranting about vegetarians! How his nephew (who was about 8) wanted to be a vegetarian because his teacher told him that meat is made from animals and that this is so bad that the family now wants to sue the teacher because she shouldn't tell children stuff like that. Especially since you can't be healthy being a vegetarian... And he said that to me although my blood test had just confirmed that I am healthy "although" I am vegan...

And that man calls himself a doctor. :mad:Maybe he can tell you what is so incredibly healthy about meat that makes it impossible to live without?
And he should be glad that there are some people like this teacher who are at least honest to children and don't try to hide the truth. It is not like she showed the children pictures of slaughter houses or something.:rolleyes:

I voted My health and/or sense of well-being has improved a lot
And got ill the day after. :eek:I am still not feeling 100% now. But my dad had to stay in bed for several days and was coughing way more then me.

After I turned vegan I got less headaches, better digestion and more energy. I still get ill sometimes but it is milder.