New to vegan-ism, kinda

ChefMel

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Hey guys. So my name is Mel, im from the UK, and ive been a chef for 10 years. I am thinking of trying to get back into vegan-ism again. I grew up as a vegetarian on and off, with both my parents being vegetarian. They never forced it on me- if i said i wanted ham or chicken, my mum would buy me some, but my mum was a fantastic cook, and so generally being vegetarian for the majority of my childhood until i was about 15/16 didn't seem like a big deal at all.

When i was 15, and to be honest getting very skinny and into dieting, i tried veganism for about 1/2 a year. It was also because i decided i wanted to be a chef, and i figured if i go into the restaurant trade, and someone came in my restaurant and wanted a good vegan meal, i thought the best way of learning how to cook good vegan food was to become vegan myself for a bit! However, when i became a chef at 16, i very quickly realised the "V" word was a gazillion times worse than the "C" word when it came to the attitudes of chefs, and so i stopped vegetarianism/veganism and started eating meat.

That was 10 years ago now, and i dunno what it is, but i would love to try and be vegan again. Its a big mixture of reasons. 1) I love animals, and deep down i've always found it difficult to separate animals suffering with eating them. 2) Ive been trying to lose weight- i've lost a stone and a half recently and am now a healthy weight, but i havent been doing it in a healthy way- my diet is attrocious! Its all caffeine, booze, fags, and disrupted meal schedules. As a chef i can go days without eating, and then i will pig out on mountains of pasta and noodles and crisps and things. I dont just want to lose weight- i want to feel healthy! I dont want stomach aches all the time. And i remember just feeling really GOOD when i was vegan. Its not a weight thing but a feeling healthy thing. 3)I feel now is a good time to look into veganism again, because unlike 10 years ago when i tried it last, it is so much more popular. Its fashionable! saying your vegan doesnt mean your a hippie freak anymore, it means you are trendy, lol.

Ive stopped my milk delivery with my milkman, and starting wednesday i am going to be trying my best to be vegan. My biggest challenge will be my boyfriend- he is south african (very carnivorous!), and refuses to eat a meal without meat, so i'll have to make seperate meals. He'll hate the idea of me being vegan. I'll just say "im trying to be healthy".
 

Jamie in Chile

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It is hard to separate meat and suffering since choosing to eat meat is causing sufffering. Go ahead with the vegan diet despite what others think. Good luck!