The Vegan Way

Veg­an­ism can be con­sid­er­ably health­ier than a nor­mal diet. In 1996, the Amer­i­can Dietetic Asso­ci­a­tion con­cluded that a Vegan lifestyle may sig­nif­i­cantly reduce risk of heart dis­ease, colon and lung can­cer, osteo­poro­sis, dia­betes, kid­ney dis­ease, hyper­ten­sion, and obesity.

This new way of life evolved from the same con­cept behind veg­e­tar­i­an­ism. Veg­ans choose to stay away from any ani­mal prod­uct includ­ing meat, eggs, milk, leather, fur, and cos­met­ics tested on animals.

Although it may seem very restrict­ing, tran­si­tion­ing to the vegan lifestyle is eas­ier than most peo­ple think. Much of the food we con­sume each day is already vegan. Sal­ads, smooth­ies, bagels, PB&Js, and oat­meal made with soymilk are all exam­ples of vegan-friendly foods that are prob­a­bly already in your pantry. At the gro­cery store, try to look for prod­ucts labeled with the Cer­ti­fied Vegan logo. These are sure to not con­tain any ani­mal prod­ucts or byprod­ucts tested on animals.

In order to get the right amount of pro­tein, make sure you get at least one serv­ing of beans or peanuts com­bined with a grain. Cal­cium can be found in for­ti­fied orange juice, broc­coli, and tofu. You will also need to take vit­a­min B12 supplements.

As men­tioned above, veg­ans also avoid prod­uct made with ani­mals such as leather and fur cloth­ing. To avoid­ing leather and other ani­mal skins, try synthetics.

Cos­met­ics can be more chal­leng­ing to switch. Urban Decay, MAC, and Tarte offer vegan makeup and Aveda offers high-quality syn­thetic makeup brushes. Look for cos­metic prod­ucts that don’t list beeswax, lano­line, elastin, silk deriv­a­tives, or propo­lis as one of their ingre­di­ents. Go for pack­ages that state “not tested on ani­mals,” or “against ani­mal cruelty.”