Hardest part of transitioning?

lion

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I'm curious to know what was the hardest part of transitioning for you? Was it giving up a particular food? Finding restaurants that serve vegan food? Explaining yourself to others?
 
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Cyprus

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I may actually stay in transition forever! the hardest part is giving up meat which I love dearly. I have figured out where to shop for the veggies I need and the options I have. The internet has been helpful with information too.
 

Damo

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Dairy.

Not because I love it but because it's in EVERYTHING, I'm over exaggerating but it's in a lot of foods that I thought were free from it.

Restaurants is kind of an issue for me too, there's not a lot of places that serve vegan friendly food other than chips... But just because a restaurant doesn't have anything for me doesn't mean I'm going to order anything that's not vegan friendly there's always going to be something.
 
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Blaine

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I think having to explain to others why I made the switch is the hardest part. Not everyone will understand or appreciate your decision and one question will just lead to the next. There are just some people who will try to maybe convince you that you made a wrong decision.

Finding a place that serves my kind of food is also another struggle. From where I live we have fast food chains all around the area and the only option is to prepare your own food. This would bring me to my other post which is trying some food available in my area that looks and tastes like meat but in reality the food is made from vegetables.
 

Josie

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At first, it was pizza lol. It was my guilty pleasure. So basically cheese. Some foods were very hard for me to give up even though they make most people ill, whether they know it or not. Once I saw how the animals were treated (which I highly recommend everyone doing whether they plan to change their diet or not.. so many movies and undercover footage expose these horrible practices).. anyway, once I saw them, it was no longer hard for me. The minute I knew, I couldn't live with myself just thinking about all the hurt I contributed to over my lifetime when I didn't have to, just because "that's the way it's always been". My transition was super quick after that. Haven't touched or even craved cheese or any other animal product since. I wish I could do more.
 
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Connie

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The single hardest part has not actually been food related at all.

I'm one of those people that buy things to last a life time. I don't buy a duvet and expect to replace it in a couple of years. I have mountaineering equipment that I purchased 20 odd years ago knowing that for what I do it would last me decades. I don't really see why when I bought something that is not considered to be suitable for a vegan way of life, not a vegan diet, that I should dispose of it and replace it with a vegan suitable replacement if indeed one even exists especially when I bought it before I was even considering being a vegan! I have items of woollen clothing that are several decades old. Now I follow a vegan lifestyle, I no longer purchase these items, but I don't really understand why some vegans think I should replace these items. Why dispose of a perfectly good woollen blanket when the alternative is a fleece blanket made of petro-chemicals? OK a cotton blanket might work but my woollen blanket still has plenty of life left in it, so why replace it before it has 'died'.

Like I said, the food side is not really an issue for me, it is the ethical side of living with items that have decades of life left in them but simply don't met the 'ethical' pay off vegan living in some cases.
 

LilAnn

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Right now everything about it is difficult. I'm brand new at this so I have so much to learn. People asking why I want to do this is the only part I haven't had trouble with. When they ask, I say 2 little words, "my health". They'll usually leave it at that. Other than that I am completely overwhelmed and clueless, and hungry.
 
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Kamarsun19

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I'm curious to know what was the hardest part of transitioning for you? Was it giving up a particular food? Finding restaurants that serve vegan food? Explaining yourself to others?
The hardest part was just believing that it can be done. there is so much negative energy in this country about food. Once I believed in myself, it was just mind over matter from that point, it's been over three years since our household had meat, and results are well worth it. one of, if not the best choice we made in our lives.
 

Connie

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Right now everything about it is difficult. I'm brand new at this so I have so much to learn. People asking why I want to do this is the only part I haven't had trouble with. When they ask, I say 2 little words, "my health". They'll usually leave it at that. Other than that I am completely overwhelmed and clueless, and hungry.
Are you transitioning to becoming vegetarian or vegan?
I ask because you haven't indicated (although this thread is in the vegan area) and I am wondering what it is you are finding difficult because there may be others here, like myself, who can offer you advice, if we knew what it was you were having issues with.
 

Michelle

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I'm curious to know what was the hardest part of transitioning for you? Was it giving up a particular food? Finding restaurants that serve vegan food? Explaining yourself to others?
Honestly, for me the hardest part is the availability and price of vegan alternatives to food. I live in a major city, but I still have to drive about 25 minutes to get to Whole Foods and about 35 minutes to get to Trader Joe's. Those are the best places that I've found where I can find high quality vegan food. There are, of course, health foods scattered around nearby but I can't pay $14 for a package of Daiya cheese. If money were no object, I'd be vegan tomorrow. And I know that vegetables and rice and other staples found everywhere are vegan, but I live with people who I cook for who would never subsist on asparagus and pasta alone.
 

Josie

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Oh wow.. if asparagus and pasta were my only options, I would have lost my mind by now. Veganism isn't an easy transition, I get that. But I have more than enough to eat and I don't even eat processed foods. Everything a company can make, you can make yourself. You should (air quotes there, you don't have to do anything lol) be doing all the processing at home for optimal health anyway. Vegans even make their own cheeses. I go without completely now, I'm fully adjusted there, but if you scour the net, you'll find the most amazing meals for vegans that don't require gimicky stores and unhealthy vegan alternatives.
 

Andrea Phillips

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The hardest part of transitioning for me was to realize there are many, unhealthy "vegan" practices. Since I became a vegan to improve my health, I had to avoid these. I am speaking of eating too much processed food, and especially ridding my diet of refined oils and sugars. So, it was challenging, but so life changing in improving my health.
 

LilAnn

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Are you transitioning to becoming vegetarian or vegan?
I ask because you haven't indicated (although this thread is in the vegan area) and I am wondering what it is you are finding difficult because there may be others here, like myself, who can offer you advice, if we knew what it was you were having issues with.
I'm transitioning to be a vegan. I don't believe I have ever fixed a meal that wasn't built around the meat. Not to mention all the milk, cheese, butter, what have you. When I go to the grocery store or walk into my kitchen and I start to figure out what I was going to my mind pretty much goes blank. I have no clue where to start. My favorite snack has always been a combination of different cheeses melted on a tortilla. I have never finished a bowl of red beans and rice because once the smoke sausage is all picked out of it, I'm done with it. I'm 34 years old and my diet has never really changed since I was a child. I'm sure that once I get used to this picking out dinner or a snack will be second nature. Ill know what i can eat and i'll know what my preferences are. Until then, though, I'm getting stuck on figuring out my options.
 

Rizwani

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Committing to the new lifestyle, understanding which nutrients and in what quantities i should consume, discovering and researching vegan sources of those nutrients, finding nearby stores where such vegan foods can be found, budgeting, replacing old craving foods with vegan alternatives, informing friends!....the list is seemingly endless. Still working on it though :)
 

Connie

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When I go to the grocery store or walk into my kitchen and I start to figure out what I was going to my mind pretty much goes blank. I have no clue where to start
You clues are all around you. There are tonnes of recipes both on the internet and in dedicated vegan books that will give you ideas. If you like Indian food, most of that is actually vegetarian, (I mean proper Indian food and not what is served in a lot of restaurants who have laced everything with meat because they are catering for a non-vegetarian customer base) and it is a great place to start. Also have a look at cookbooks, those paper things, look on Amazon and the likes because they are going out of fashion and the paper versions are great because they are cheap and all the recipes are in one place of often a book is themed. I may have been an IT Engineer, but I still find it easier to use paper. If I find a recipe on line I like, it gets printed and if it makes the first cut, it gets into my cookery book with any personal modifications written on it!
There are a number of vegan cafes in the US that have some great cookbooks as well which are also very good to look at and experiment with. Plus a lot of stews and casseroles and often soups as well can be made vegan by using a suitable stock and switching the meat out for TVP (soya chunks). I prefer to use TVP in these situations over Tofu because Tofu often does not stand up well under prolonged cooking such as casseroles. Also switching the meat for kidney beans or any of the multitude of different beans that are out there (the more you look, the more you will find!).

Don't be scared of dried beans - they are not going to bite you. They need a little bit of planning to use from dried and have much more flavour and are far cheaper than the canned options, but turning vegan is not something you can do without planning and consideration. You can't just expect to know what to do, you have to research it and this means sitting down and planning meals, going out to purchase set items for that week and sticking to that week's meal plan.

OK - I have 3/4's of a life time of experience at veggie and 1/4 at vegan, so it is easier for me, but you need to start reading and buying a few books for ideas and you will find it suddenly gets so much easier.
 
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Daisy Huck

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Becoming vegetarian was so easy that it scared me a little bit! Becoming a vegan, on the other hand, was much harder. I adored sour cream and cream cheese. Those were probably the hardest foods for me to give up!
The little things were hard too, i.e., the foods that I had no idea had dairy or eggs, but still had to give up anyway.
My peers also contributed to the initial struggle I faced. The endless teasing and judgement was obnoxious and hard to withstand. But now that they see me at a healthier weight, with a more energetic disposition and a clearer face, the comments have dwindled.
It was also hard on my family when I made the switch. I would chastise the meat-eaters and remind them of the daily torture animals endure, and we could not really have family meals anymore. But they have come around, and even adopted healthier lifestyles!

In the end, being a vegan is extremely rewarding, and I don't regret it for a second!
 

LyraLyra

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There was no hard part for me when I turned vegan, I suppose a few people jibed at me and tried to make me feel silly, but I am well aware that is only because by going vegan I'm kind of pointing out someone may be wrong with their way of eating and they aren't comfortable with that so they make fun of the way that I meting instead.
Other than that there was no real difficulty in going vegan for me whatsoever, the hard bit came when I tried to go mainly fruitarian in the British wintertime, with no experience, that, was hard.
 

Carol

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Giving up chocolate and cake is hard. I've only been vegan a few weeks, so I still have a fair few slip ups. I never have the urge to buy non-vegan things but at work a lot of the time people bring in cakes and stuff and its Right There and it's Free, so that's when I think '**** it' and take a slice. So I really need to work on that.

Another hard thing is when other people forget, and they buy you something non-vegan or make a meal and then you get torn between ethics and not wanting to be rude or upset anyone. Depending what the food is, I would just accept it and say thank you, and maybe remind them the next time. Depending on the situation. But that's if it's non vegan, not non meat. I probably wouldn't eat meat whatever now.
 
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MyDigitalpoint

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When it comes to veganism, the hardest part of transitioning comes from confusing this with vegetarianism.

Closely the same, veganism and vegetarianism are different concepts and it is not until one has learned to differentiate what fits in which of them is that things start going easier, whether you are a former meat-eater or shifting from vegetarianism.
 

Mickella18

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Definitely resisting the urge.

I can find myself chowing down on a veg but I cannot say the thought of chowing down a piece of burger has never crossed my mind. Resisting that urge is quite difficult.
 
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