Guest Blogger: Shana Moore: Becoming a Vegan

March 13, 2018

Guest Blogger: Shana Moore: Becoming a Vegan

September 29, 2018

So, you’re interested in going vegan but don’t know where to start? Well, I’ve got a few tips for you! My name is Shana Moore and you can find me and all of my plant-based foodie enthusiasm on Instagram @shanalmoore, or on Youtube at www.youtube.com/shanamoore.

So, you’re interested in going vegan but don’t know where to start? Well, I’ve got a few tips for you! My name is Shana Moore and you can find me and all of my plant-based foodie enthusiasm on Instagram @shanalmoore, or on Youtube at www.youtube.com/shanamoore.

I’m passionate about my lifestyle because it has helped me to completely transform my life! Gone are the days when I restricted, calorie counted, used food scales, and negatively self-talked myself for “cheating” on a diet I could never maintain. Also gone are the days when I used to stress about my weight and the obesity-related health concerns that followed, once tipping the scale at 250lbs at 5’3’’! People choose to go vegan for many different reasons; while I love animals and care for the environment too, my transition was mainly motivated as a result of poor health, low energy, and being offered medication to manage my high cholesterol (at 28 years old). 2.5 years later, today I am thriving and contribute much of that success to my vegan “diet” and lifestyle. I couldn’t be prouder of my transformation story, and I hope that sharing my journey will inspire others to transform as well!

I’m grateful to partner with Kip's, a local vegan-friendly brand, to share five pieces of advice that helped me transition my lifestyle, in case you choose to do the same.

1. Educate Yourself & Know Your Why. Before we even begin, ask yourself why changing your lifestyle is important to you. Whatever that reason may be, make sure it’s truly meaningful to you because you will need to remember it during those times of low-motivation. If you are unsure of that reason, definitely take a moment to educate yourself using the plethora of resources available to us via documentaries (“What The Health”, “Forks Over Knives”, “Cowspiracy”, “Earthlings” …), books, etc. Pro-tip: when I chose to put my health first, everything else seemed to fall into place on their own (including finding /maintaining my healthy weight and embracing more of the ethical sides of veganism)! Also, use platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Meetup to find and befriend other like-minded individuals in your community.  

2. Forget the labels. I know I know, I’ve used a few terms that may be confusing. You may be asking yourself what the difference between “plant-based” and “vegan” is. In sum, both terms are used to indicate one’s choice to not consume any animals or animal bi-products. Though for now I’d suggest to not worry about putting a label on yourself. I’ve found that when I did, especially in the beginning, I’d feel extreme guilt and shame for “messing up” and that type of pressure helps nobody! Try to stay positive! Oftentimes I felt like (and did) quit out of feelings of failure, which leads me to my third tip…

3. Go Slow. For an entire week, replace one of your daily meals with a plant-based alternative; I suggest starting with breakfast because there are SO many yummy options like: fruit, smoothies, oatmeal, pancakes, toasts, dairy-free yogurts perhaps with Kip’s granola bark sprinkled on top! The following week, replace two of your daily meals with a plant-based alternative, and so on. You’ll be fully plant-based before you know it!

>Pick one day out of a week to go completely plant-based. An already popularized one is called “Meatless Monday”. The following week, add another full day of plant-based meals, and so on…

>Take your standard meals but begin to “crowd out” your plate by adding more and more plants (and less of the meat for example). Or, you could have a smoothie before breakfast and a salad before dinner, so that you’re literally crowding out your stomach (a.k.a. getting full) off of delicious nutritious plant-based foods first.

>Take a 30-day challenge and do it with a friend! You may be surprised by how much better you feel by day 30 and choose to continue incorporating plant-based meals in your life. Additionally, having the support of a transitioning friend may make the challenge even more fun!

4. Taste the Rainbow. When I first transitioned, I ate a lot of processed foods like Oreos! While I still love Oreos, my body feels so much better when I consume whole foods instead, like: legumes, grains, fruits, and vegetables. When transitioning, consuming processed meat-alternative or cheese-alternative products may definitely come in handy however we’d get the best nutrition and energy by consuming a colorful variety of whole plants, most of the time. This also means that cooking from scratch is key, so have fun in the kitchen trying out new recipes found in cookbooks, blogs, etc. Additionally, develop time-saving techniques (like meal-prepping on the weekend, or cooking a batch of grains for the entire week) so that it’s rare to not have a whole foods plant-based meal nearby, which also leads me to my final point…

5. $$$. Eating whole foods does not mean you have to spend your “Whole Paycheck”, aka shop at “Whole Foods” grocery store. Going vegan does not mean you need all those super food potions and powders either. There is a common misconception that eating plants is expensive but it’s actually quite the opposite, especially if you shop local and in season! Even if a farmer’s market is not available to you, simple whole plant foods are the cheapest foods we can find; it’s not until we add the milks, cheeses, meats, and processed goods (including the meat-alternatives) that the grocery bill begins to spike! Additionally, while shopping organic is superb, conventional produce is fine too, so just do the best that you can and avoid the newbie pitfall of buying all the fancy stuff.

Thank you so much for tuning in! I hope these tips and words of encouragement will help you explore the life of veganism that you may have been thinking about. Good luck starting your journey!

xoxo,

Shana

READ ALL OF OUR BLOG STORIES: