Why I follow a vegan lifestyle
In this post I am going to share my journey, which went from eating meat, to consuming vegetarian food, and then making a shift to a vegan diet.
I find it interesting to hear what motivates others to change what they eat, because the reasons are often very different. In addition to this, many of us follow things to different degrees. I'll go back to this thought later on. :)
Eating meat as a child
I used to eat meat until I was about 11 years old. This would have been at the child-minder's home or at school when I had a school dinner.
I'm not sure what happened to trigger the change, but when I was about 11 years old, I decided that I didn't agree with killing animals for food, so I stopped.
Was I a 'proper' vegetarian?
Some would say that I wasn't a 'proper' vegetarian because I continued to eat eggs.
This was mainly through ignorance because I didn't understand why I shouldn't eat them! I tried to find out why my friends and family didn't eat eggs, but they either couldn't explain, or their reasons weren't based on facts, which I could validate.
The delusion I had as a vegetarian
When I was vegetarian, I thought I had reached the end of my journey. I thought that I was eating in a way which involved the least amount of violence possible. I was so wrong!
I thought being vegetarian was enough.
I didn't realise that there was any cruelty involved in being vegetarian.
I had no idea what being vegan meant but I'm so glad I found out.
The discovery of the cruelty involved in vegetarian foods
I watched a video about dairy production and I was devastated. Suddenly I realised that there was a whole world of death and cruelty that I had no idea about and I wasn't happy to be part of it, so I pretty much made the shift to a non-dairy diet that day.
The harm beyond dairy
As I researched further, I realised that bees are harmed when honey is gathered; silk worms are killed during the production of silk and I recently found out that sourcing wool involves suffering too. Thus I no longer buy clothes, shoes or accessories that are made from materials which hurt an animal of any sort, and I don’t buy or consume products with honey in it.
How do I feel about this shift?
I feel great!
My conscience feels lighter.
I feel healthier, which is something I didn't expect.
I feel like I have less to think about. More minimalist, if you like.
If I know there are certain foods and drinks, which I won't consume, then this saves time and effort when I'm planning what to buy and when I'm doing the actual shopping.
I feel like I eat better because I eat less processed foods and I feel less sluggish because I eat food that doesn't sit and take ages to digest.
I feel less complicated and more aligned! :)
What will I do next?
As new information comes to light, I reflect on it, decide if it aligns with my ethics and then I decide what to do next.
What made you think about making the shift?
"Being vegan helped me realize I can say and do what I believe is right. That's powerful. Nothing's changed my life more. I feel better about myself as a person, being conscious and responsible for my actions and I lost weight and my skin cleared up and I got bright eyes and I just became stronger and healthier and happier. Can't think of anything better in the world to be but be vegan."
- Alicia Silverstone