Well Being

Why I’m Still On The Fence About My Vegan Diet

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I have a love/hate relationship with the vegan diet.  What do I mean?  Some days I love it and other days I want cheese.  Oh man, do I want so much cheese!  I started experimenting with the diet about two years ago, and since then, I've seen some fantastic benefits.  Buuutt, doing it has definitely come at a price.  So I've finally come to the conclusion that living a healthy and balanced lifestyle is more beneficial than trying to be extremely on one side.  To help you get inside my brain — where I know all readers want to go — I've listed a few pros and cons below that I encountered over the course of my journey.

PRO:  I LOVE Variety In My Food

Vegan-Variety-Heart-Veggies-Fruits

Experimenting with a vegan diet opened me up to so many new fruits, vegetables and protein sources.  These types of foods rarely found their way on my plate 2 years ago.  Nowadays, I search the produce aisle like a man on a mission for everything green!

CON:  I Love Ice Cream

Multi-Colored-Ice-Cream-With-Fruit

I also love Greek yogurt and sushi (not at the same time).  There are many healthy foods that I would miss if I decided to be 100% vegan.  I mean, I can never have another grilled cheese or lobster roll again?!

PRO:  I Do Not Miss Meat

Hamburger-Classic-Meat

One of the more important reasons that a vegan diet works for me is the fact that I do not miss meat.  Although I still consume meat on occasion, I do not have cravings or the need for it.  I've never been a large meat eater so I truly feel I could give it up and not look back.  Even though, these healthy cheeseburgers do look amazing!

CON:  I Hate Tofu

Tofu-Square-Cubes-Vegan

This so called “food item” just doesn’t do it for me.  I’ve tried it prepared many different ways, but I can't seem to get over the fact it reminds me of a wet sponge.  For those looking for alternative protein sources, I suggest trying tempeh instead.

PRO:  I Have An Increase In Energy

Energetic-Man-Suit-Happy-Jumping-For-Joy

Cutting out animal products and replacing them with quality foods has increased my energy dramatically.  Green smoothies for breakfast have cut back my need for coffee and lighter meals allow me to still be chipper after lunch.  Did I just use the word chipper? Yes, yes I did.

CON:  I Prepare Food ALL. WEEK. LONG.  

Cutting-Lettuce-Preparing-Food-Vegan

My new found energy is spent preparing meals for the week like chili, veggie burgers, and soups.  Since fresh fruits and vegetables don’t have a great shelf life, it requires trips to the store several times a week.  Because, I would prefer not to eat bags of frozen curly fries for dinner… Actually that sounds delicious.

PRO:  I No Longer Have Digestive Problems

Digestive-Health-Problems

I noticed this instantly with the change in my diet.  By eliminating items like butter and milk, my system seems to run more efficiently.  Previous stomach issues that were occurring regularly have now disappeared.  I'll spare you the details.

CON:  I Can't Enjoy Dining Out

Dining-Out-Woman-Man

This is probably the hardest thing and biggest reason as to why I'm on the fence about my vegan diet.  As we know, most restaurants don’t cater to vegans with special menu items.  And no, I don’t want a bowl of iceberg lettuce with croutons.  Butter, milk, and cream all tend to be hidden inside food on the menu.

PRO:  I Support Planet Earth

Earth-Love-Soil-In-Hand-Heart

Adopting a vegan lifestyle can be healthier for our planet.  Environmental costs are higher when it comes to eating animal products and we also require the use of more resources by doing so.  It ain't easy being green but it's worth it.  Just ask Kermit the Frog.

CON:  I Still Suffer From Peer Pressure

Peer-Pressure-Chalk-Board

Although I feel like I'm doing my good deed by eating a vegan diet, pressure from friends can be tough to deal with.  There are always comments, jokes and constant questions that come up.  “Why are you so skinny?”  “Where do you get your protein?”  “How does that kale burger taste?”  Hmm, on second thought, maybe I need some new friends.

(Photo: Shutterstock)

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