Friday, May 3, 2013

Conquering Veganism One Weak Moment At a Time

While we were walking through the grocery store one evening, my eyes began to wander down aisles that we hardly visit anymore. There was a whole section of frozen pizzas, pizza bites, and every other frozen food that I used to eat before switching to my plant-based diet. I used to eat all of that without even really thinking about how bad it was for my health, or how much weight I would gain by eating all it (30+ lbs., which I've completely lost in 6 months). 

The funny thing is, I had just bragged to my husband that I had "conquered" veganism. And by conquered, I meant that it was "so easy" for me to eat plant-based. I'll tell you that it is easy to eat this way physically and financially. Conquering your eating habits mentally is another thing altogether. As we walked through the store, he saw me gaze at the forbidden foods, and I said, "Oh man, this is hard to walk by all of this food..." He jokingly said, "I thought you had conquered that whole veganism thing."

The truth is, I haven't. I'm not about to tell you that I'm not longer vegan—I totally am. What I mean to say: It is tough to walk by all of the things I used to eat. I don't really have the urge to tear open the packaging and eat it, I just have some serious memories of eating as an omnivore. And I should, as I lived as an omnivore for 24 years of my life. However, I will tell you that I have never been more happier, healthier, and more content with my life as I am right now. I feel so lucky to have regained my health at my age. Even at 23, I was battling high cholesterol, and that's downright terrifying. 

I'm here to tell you that it's totally normal and fine to have that weak moment where you look at that item of food and think about when you used to eat it. I don't intend to ever eat that way again and plan to be a vegan  until the day I die. And it's fine if you mess up! Get right back on track the next meal, not the next week or month. Don't ever let anyone else make you feel bad about what you are doing or why you are doing it. If you're eating healthier and are working towards a plant-based lifestyle, congrats! I'm here for you if you ever need any guidance or just need a friend to support you in this. 

We're creatures of habit, and while it can be tough to look at that [insert name of omnivorous food item here], don't forget why you're doing this, and what the end goal is (better health)! Keep in mind that this will probably be a lifelong battle, and figure out what is more important to you: your health or your cravings. We're not perfect. Heck, we had a Tofurkey pizza the other night. (Don't judge me!) We're eating healthy, plant-based foods 90% of the time and more importantly, we're doing what we feel is right for our bodies, the environment, and all of the animals we share this earth with. You'll conquer your veganism too, one weak moment at a time! Hang in there and stay strong.

Kelsey is a passionate vegan living in Houston, Texas, spreading the word about the benefits of eating a healthy, plant-based diet. She's also a minimalist enthusiast, a self-proclaimed financial guru of her household, and founder of The Little Red Journal.

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