Need advice about how to go vegan

StopFactoryFarms

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Because I am aware of animal cruelty in factory farms I wanted to ask some questions about how to succeed at going vegan.

The main question I have is how do I give up my mom's really good cooking since I live with my parents and find alternative food that would not take significant additional time for me to make since I am quite busy. I could still accept the fruit and vegetables from my mom, but would need alternative protein source. Maybe nuts, protein bars or non dairy protein shakes (if that exists). Do you have any input?

How do you respond to objections that giving up meat is unhealthy because plant based proteins can't adequately replace animal proteins? I have been informed that the lack of protein could be bad for brain health. Do you have any info that would prove that going vegan can be healthy?

I still might be okay with humanely raised organic products. However the question could be raised if buying cage free or humane products would result in more demand for humane products causing an increase in price, which could lead other people to buy more lower priced conventionally raised factory farm products. Or would the opposite be true and if more people bought organic humanely raised products, that the price of those products would go down allowing more and more people to buy humane products? This will help determine whether I want to go full vegan, or still be okay with humanely raised products. The documentary food incorporated exposes factory farms and recommends organic products. I realize that I am technically not vegan if I still eat humanely raised cage free organic products, but I can still say I "go vegan" whenever I eat vegan to avoid conventionally raised factory farm products.

Is there any more recent documentaries or videos made exposing animal cruelty in the food industry than Food Incorporated? Or websites I could share with people? I don't prefer info from PETA though. Also is there information out there that cows in the dairy industry are treated inhumanely? I am familiar with the fact that chickens and cows in factory farms are treated cruelly, but what about cows in the dairy industry?

How can you put up with the difficulty of going to restaurants where you can't eat anything from the menu but have to order a la carte fruit or salad items, and tell the server to put no cheese on anything? I have seen that some restaurant workers could disrespect you or look down on you for your commitment. It seems like it could be difficult to enjoy yourself at a restaurant having to eat vegan with how limited your choices could be.

Also I'm going on a retreat with a group to a retreat center/campground where meals will be served and I may want to relax my restrictions so I can not be a burden to the server and enjoy the trip more. However I think maybe I should still stick with the vegan identity.
 

silva

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Diet for a New America--John Robbins
The Face on Your Plate
eating animals by jonathan safran foer
How Not to Die, Dr Michael Greger
Becoming Vegan, Brenda Davis RD


I could go on and on and on...
This book really explains just how badly we've been exploited to eat what we eat:
Nothing to do with whats good for us, or what we might be "meant" to eat--it's what makes money
 
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silva

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To me, the biggest reason to be vegan/plant based, is simply that it's the best for our own health, the environment, and the animals
The only downside is the transition can be hard
Cows have been bred to be the slaves of the dairy farmers. A natural cow, which still may exist somewhere in Isreal I believe, only produces enough milk for her babies, she doesn't need to be "milked".
Going dairy free is the hardest for many. I totally lost my taste for Mexican food without cheese. Mid eastern, Mediterrean restaurants are good choices.
I know many people whose doctors have suggested they go off dairy and they swear by the changes. Arthritis relief, heart health, cholesterol improvement--dairy is very inflammatory. It isn't the bone builder it's advertised to be! Eat your greens and beans for that!
 
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Lou

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Because I am aware of animal cruelty in factory farms I wanted to ask some questions about how to succeed at going vegan.

Yay. my favorite subject.
first off welcome to the forum.
and congrats on taking your first step on the Vegan Journey.
The main question I have is how do I give up my mom's really good cooking since I live with my parents and find alternative food that would not take significant additional time for me to make since I am quite busy.

Depending on your mom the easy answer it to get her to be vegan too. Now for various reasons that may not be possible or maybe not possible right away but I think maybe you need to start the discussion. Do you live with anyone else besides your mom?

Give us some more info and maybe we can chart a path. Depending on your mom there could be many approaches. Bribery, guilt, education...

I could still accept the fruit and vegetables from my mom, but would need alternative protein source. Maybe nuts, protein bars or non dairy protein shakes (if that exists). Do you have any input?

We have been taught that protein is like this really important nutrient. Now, I'm not saying its not important but it is Not a roadblock on your vegan journey. Most Americans are sort of brainwashed into thinking we need way more than we need and that only animal products have protein.

as you get Vegucated you will come to realize that its not really such an important issue. Coming here is a great place to start. You should explore the site some. I'm a big proponent of public libraries and your library probably has a whole shelf of vegan nutrition books. You can probably start there. I'm reading the Idiot's Guide to Plant-Based Nutrition right now, but there are plenty of other good ones to get.

Don't rely too much on nuts. the recommendation is just a handful a day (or 2 tbsp of peanut butter). There are lots of vegan protein bars. Cliff are vegan, available everywhere, and not too expensive. Some store bought shakes are vegan. you can check at your grocery store.
How do you respond to objections that giving up meat is unhealthy because plant based proteins can't adequately replace animal proteins?

This is my favorite short essay on that subject.


I have been informed that the lack of protein could be bad for brain health. Do you have any info that would prove that going vegan can be healthy?

I haven't seen That one before. But there is plenty of studies that have shown that vegetarian diets and vegan diets are not only not un-healthy but are healthy. If you like Documentaries you should watch Forks Over Knives and/or What the Health. I think What the Heath is still on Netflix. Watch it some of these documentaries with your mom.
I still might be okay with humanely raised organic products.
Don't worry about that. Humanely raised is an oxymoron. Its simply some kind of marketing ploy. I could point you to like a hundred articles about it. I like this one because its short.

Is there any more recent documentaries or videos made exposing animal cruelty in the food industry than Food Incorporated?

Oh my god yes!
Food inc is great but its not really about veganism and its what, 10 years old?

Cowspiracy (also on Netflix) really does not focus on animal cruelty. it would be great to watch (maybe with mom) unlike Forks Over Knives, which sometimes is sort of dry, this one is interesting.

This is a good list.
but... I would skip Earthlings. I found it to be un-watchable. and I tried.


Here is a bit longer a list


Or websites I could share with people? I don't prefer info from PETA though.

yes of course. Actually almost all the films above have good websites.
also I bet you don't have a valid reason on avoiding PETA. they get a lot of bad press but mostly its attacks from Big Food. Their websites have some of the very best information.

I can honestly say that I would not be vegan if it wasn't for PETA. oh full disclosure: I do volunteer work for them

Also is there information out there that cows in the dairy industry are treated inhumanely?

Oh my god yes. Hey these are all softballs.
For cows I'm going with the video "Dairy is Scary" I'll post the link at the bottom.
Oh, and as long as you are checking out Erin Janus she also has videos on chickens and eggs. Check them out. and maybe her Humane Slaughter Debunked too.

I am familiar with the fact that chickens and cows in factory farms are treated cruelly, but what about cows in the dairy industry?

It can be argued that the dairy industry is the cruelest. The movies and videos I have already recommended do a great job there.
How can you put up with the difficulty of going to restaurants where you can't eat anything from the menu but have to order a la carte fruit or salad items, and tell the server to put no cheese on anything? I have seen that some restaurant workers could disrespect you or look down on you for your commitment. It seems like it could be difficult to enjoy yourself at a restaurant having to eat vegan with how limited your choices could be.

I hear this problem a lot. and I don't have that problem at all. Of course as someone here once pointed out to me that it probably is because I live in California. (and not in Ohio)

First off you might need to check out the menu online or make a phone call before you go. And some types of restaurants are just better choices. I love Asian food and where I live there is like 6 Asian restaurants within a two mile radius. Asian restaurants almost always have a vegetarian section of the menu. And they never invented cheese so there is nothing to leave out. Bonus: they invented tofu.

Mexican restaurants are also pretty easy. Just order the vegetarian burrito and have them leave off the cheese and sour cream.

My last choice is a sandwich place. You can order a ham and cheese and have them hold the ham and cheese. but they still charge you the full price.

I have never had a restaurant worker disrespect me. (maybe another Cali thing?) but why would they. Best case scenario I would just leave. Worst case is I would report them. Personal anecdote: For a birthday party my sisters and I went to a fancy restaurant. I check out the menu before going and spotted a vegan dish I really wanted. we went there for lunch and I had inadvertent checked out the dinner menu. My dish wasn't on the lunch menu. When I expressed my disappointment to my sisters, the waiter overheard and came over and said that he would ask the chef but he expected I could order that off the dinner menu.

Another time I went to a greek pizza place and there actually wasn't anything vegan on the menu. I just asked the waiter for a bowl of spaghetti and olive oil. it was pretty good!

When I go out for pizza I get the vegetarian special without cheese.

There are also some good articles and videos on this subject. let me know and I can look them up for you.

I'm going on a retreat with a group to a retreat center/campground where meals will be served and I may want to relax my restrictions so I can not be a burden to the server and enjoy the trip more. However I think maybe I should still stick with the vegan identity.

That is up to you. but you might bring it up before you go. maybe they will be happy to make accommodations. There may even be other vegans there. At least 1 out of ten people are vegan or vegetarian nowadays.

another personal anecdote. I did one of those for a week with like 200 people. I told them in advance that I was vegan and my food was specially prepared for me. by the end of the week all the people at my table were asking if they could become vegan.
:)