Alice from Magic Freebies kicked off 2019 by taking part in Veganuary, and she loved it so much she has stayed vegan. She shares her story about why she felt going vegan was a necessary step towards helping protect the environment.
“I first developed an interest in green living whilst at university – there are so many resources out there for learning about what’s happening to the world around us and it’s hard to ignore all the doom and gloom! My interest for it came from a wish to eradicate any hypocrisies in my way of life – how could I say I care about the rise of ocean plastic and the welfare of animals, whilst continuing to throw away and eat animals like there’s no tomorrow.
It’s not easy to make changes in your everyday life when ways of living are so engrained, so I started small! I started by investing in the more obvious products, like reusable water bottles, coffee cups, handkerchiefs and travel cutlery. Once I felt I had got used to using these, I was ready to introduce more radical alternatives, like a safety razor, menstrual cup and more recently, adopting a vegan diet!
I grew up in a family of meat-eaters, and never really questioned this until recent times. My boyfriend and his entire family are vegetarian, and when I moved in with them I quickly adopted a veggie diet incorporating foods like Quorn to make life easier – only eating meat when I visited home. This is such a great way for meat-eaters to ease themselves in – in fact I’d warn that going Vegan from a Carnivorous diet cold turkey (no pun intended!) could do more harm than good. This is because it can be a shock to the system and could ultimately make you feel unwell and put you off trying it in the future.
The biggest thing I noticed when I went vegan was that I felt lighter and more energetic! At first, switching from eating loads of dairy to no dairy at all, did leave me feeling hungry. This lasted about a week and after that I noticed my appetite shrunk considerably. Now I eat much smaller portions of food, which cuts down on food waste, keeps my weight down and saves me money!
The foods that have really helped me to go vegan are (I’m ashamed to say) vegan substitutes for meat and dairy. I love Violife cheese, Beyond burgers, Chippa May-o and loads of other plant-based delights.
It turns out that it’s a myth that it takes us between 21 and 22 days to change a habit! According to a study, it actually takes the average person 66 days to make a change that sticks. For this reason my advice to anyone who feels guilty about not going vegan, would be to not feel guilty at all! Take your time, go at your own pace….
The best thing about making the transition to a zero waste and vegan lifestyle is that I’ve saved so much money in the process! Having more of your own resources that you reuse all the time stops you from having to buy new things on a regular basis. Plus, going vegan may seem expensive, but cutting out meat and dairy actually saves you plenty of cash in the long run. Working for a freebie site compliments this new lifestyle too – I’m always the first to know about free food samples, and free books with recipes and plenty of guides to changing diet.
If you’re looking to find out more about going Vegan for the environment, check out Cowspiracy which can be found on Netflix – it’s a great documentary if you just want to know about the basics for how Veganism can help the environment.”
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