I was on Instagram live the other day talking to my peeps (come follow me on there so we can connect, too!) about how and why they should start a vegan journey.
One of the ladies asked if it's normal to start and then "fall off the wagon" only after a few weeks.
This is pretty common! Maybe you can relate.
Before I became vegan in April 2010, I tried it earlier that year, but only lasted about two weeks.
I lived on fruit, sunflower seeds, and water during that time because I had no idea what to eat, cook, or how to vegan grocery shop.
I was sooo overwhelmed!
These days there are a million resources, ingredients replacements (homemade and store-bought) and support, so there's no excuse to not incorporate healthier and more compassionate options.
Even if you tried to do this before, you should never give up!
BEING VEGAN IS TOO EXPENSIVE
What do potatoes, spinach, black beans, corn tortillas, bananas, apples, rice, spaghetti noodles and canned tomatoes have in common?
All of these items are vegan and very affordable.
I will admit that our grocery bill spiked when we started this journey, but that was because I was buying all organic for a family of 5. These days, I do buy some organics, but overall I just focus on what we can afford. Period.
Don't let a tight budget be the reason you don't stay on this vegan journey.
Quick Tips to Keep Your Grocery Bill Down:
*Buy as many whole ingredients as possible - it doesn't take a million hours to cook from scratch. I promise!
*Think about how you can make enough for leftovers (soup & chili recipes are perfect for this) to save both and time.
*Only shop at Whole Foods (AKA Whole Check- chile!) for speciality vegan products that you can't get at a regular grocery store. Do the rest of your grocery shopping at your regular store. You can also save some coins using Thrive Market
*Buy what you need - I know this isn't popular advice, but in my experience, you will waste money buying produce in bulk because it's hard to eat it fast enough before it spoils.
*If you prefer to buy organics, see if you can get a better deal at the farmer's market. Also, my grocery store has store brand organics that are super affordable. See if you store has this option.
VEGAN LIFE IS TOO MUCH TIME-CONSUMING
I can understand why this is a struggle for many people.
We're all used to grocery shopping and cooking at some level - The problem is, most of us aren't used to writing a detailed meal plan and paying close attention to what we buy while grocery shopping.
This is the reason vegan life can feel time-consuming in the beginning.
I promise once you get used to those uncomfortable feelings (by pushing passed them) and get into a routine, all of this will become easier.
Hang in there!
RELATED: Here's an episode from my podcast with tips on how NOT to spend all weekend on meal planning.
VEGAN FOOD IS BORING & TASTELESS
Before I was a vegan, I thought we could only eat salad and smoothies. I promise this isn't the case at all!
I love variety just as much as the next person. I wouldn't be on this journey if I felt limited by my food choices.
You can make or buy everything vegan.
Sometimes vegan meals have a reputation for being bland and boring. Vegan life is what you make it!
I don't know about you, but I'm not interested in blah meals. I live for flavor! Some of the most common spices/seasoning I use: Salt, black pepper, cumin, garlic and onion powder, cayenne, smoked paprika, and oregano.
RELATED: Blog post and audio with more information about pantry and spices basics here
VEGANs DON'T GET PROTEIN
Some people think you can only get protein from chicken, beef, fish, eggs, etc. but this isn't the case at all. There are sooo many plant-based options that can easily replace the meat on your plate.
Grains: quinoa, brown rice, couscous, barley, cornmeal, wheat flour, oat brans, etc.
Beans: black beans, tempeh, kidney beans, chickpeas, tofu (made from bean curd), etc.
Nuts/Seeds: pumpkin seeds, almonds, cashews, pecans, peanuts, walnuts, etc.
There's also a protein in spinach, apple, grapefruit, tomatoes, etc.