I Ate A Vegan Diet For 6 Years – Here’s 3 Things I Learned
I’ve been eating a vegan diet for 6 years now. And when I came into veganism, oh man, was I inexperienced and had no clue what I was up to on my journey.
So if you’re a new vegan or if you’re a person thinking about becoming a vegan and you want to know what lays ahead of your journey – which kind of benefits and obstacles you can expect, you should read this article to the end right now.
Are you ready? Let’s just dive, right into it.
1st lesson, and this will be super obvious for every new vegan on the get go, is to accept the fact that suddenly..
.. everyone around you is a nutrition specialist.
Or an amino acid scientist. Or a calcium researcher.
Or a philosopher explaining you the importance of adhering to the circle of life.
I found it super funny that when I was a meat eater and frequenting McDonalds, eating Big Macs, no one bat an eye.
But switch Tofu with chicken and oh man, that’s one step too far.
Supporting factory farms and the mass murder of sentient beings: You’re good to go.
Switching from meat, to fake meat, that tastes similar yet doesn’t involve the said atrocious practices: What an extremist.
That was quite a funny realization.
Lesson for you is to take all the advice around you from people with a grain of salt. Ignore the news and ignore most of the influencers that are flip-flopping from one diet to the next online.
The rule that I follow is to only take advice from people that are 1. Where I want to be or Proven experts in their fields and 2. Have my best interest in mind.
2nd lesson: Veganism helps reduce acne.
I remember one time I was travelling to Thailand, shortly before being vegan. I was sitting next to the pool and wanted to take a cool picture from the back.
So I went to the camera, put in the timer function, rushed to the pool and waited anxiously for the perfect shot.
Once I heard the sound of the shutter, I rushed back looked at the screen and was devastated.
I saw then and there, in full HD definition that my entire back was full of acne. From the bottom to the top.
I’d love to share some pictures with you but honestly, I just deleted all of them that were taken. That’s how insecure I was feeling about it.
When I went vegan this did improve, but not to the extent where I was suddenly completely acne free.
Lesson for you: Realize that veganism will help you with your acne, but it’s not a magic pill. You’ll see improvements with your skin but keep in mind that acne does have a big genetic component.
3rd lesson: Protein is not as important – but it still is kind of important.
Before I went vegan I was eating 1g of protein per lbs of body weight of protein. A ridiculous high amount.
I’m talking about 1 lb of meat on a daily basis. Bland, unseasoned chicken. Milk. Yogurth. All that nasty, nasty non-vegan stuff.
And then I switched to the other extreme.
During the early years of being vegan, I thought that protein doesn’t matter at all.
So I switched to the other extreme and ate an extremely low amount. Not ridiculously low, but protein that is required for a sedentary individual and not for an advanced strength-training athlete.
I’m talking about 1g of protein per kg of body weight.
I didn’t lose muscles really in that time but I felt I was not progressing as much as I do right now.
Today, I aim to have about 1.5g of protein per kg of body weight. Nothing severe. I get this in on a daily basis due to a good amount of oats, beans, tofu and if this is not enough. I’ll aim to get a protein shake on top of that.
Lesson for you: Don’t overemphasize protein but also do not underemphasize protein if you’re aiming to be building muscle. If your goal is to just be healthy though and muscle building is not a goal of yours, then you really must not worry about protein at all.