O.M.G, did I just say the V word?! Here we go, I’m going to start sharing obscene videos containing animal cruelty on my timeline, wearing “I HEART SOYA” socks on my unshaven ankles and, hey guess what? I’m a vegan by the way. Well, sorry folks, but are you really going to tell little Sandra to pipe down when she’s gasping “I HAVE A NUT ALLERGY!” through her swollen gullet? No? Okay then, let’s move on then, shall we?
Without pandering too much to your “veganazi” stereotypes, I would like to take a moment to talk about my personal benefits of the first cruelty-free days and allow you to consider the possibility of trying it yourself. Although I have been already been vegetarian for 2 years, I’m brand new to this and have only experienced the first 12 days of my new lifestyle.
I made the change after watching Kip Anderson & Keegan Kuhn’s Cowspiracy.
Despite being vaguely aware of the environmental impacts, I was totally shocked with the information that I was learning and completely befuddled by the fact I hadn’t thought that consuming animal based products was an issue earlier. Being a huge fan of all things cheesy, I was initially in denial, stating that “The treatment can’t be that bad. At least they’re not killing the animals.” However the more I thought about it, the less I wanted to postpone the issue; I wanted to change my mindset.
My boyfriend had also recently made the transition a few days earlier and so it made it easier for me knowing that I wasn’t alone in discovering the benefits of a cruelty-free diet. I’m not going to lie, some vegan products cost a pretty penny, and so it was also reassuring knowing that food costs could now be split between the two of us. With the price of our pasta increasing by 20p for half the weight of pasta containing eggs; a clean conscience can make for a cleaner bank account. However, despite it’s difficulties, I feel like I am already harvesting the rewards 12 days in:
Having ditched the pizzas, chocolate and frothy coffees, I have found myself and my (usually dainty) partner swapping our usual fancies for a stir fry, oaty biscuits and cow-free tea. We have traded the usual feeling of still eager to eat more after our large margherita for feeling fuller for longer, whilst discovering new flavours-something other than the safe tomato and basil combo. Salads have begun to accompany our main more frequently and hummus, which is always good, joins the party.
However it’s not all beans’n’lettuce; our house favourite, the Oreo, is vegan friendly and tastes great dunked in an oaty-brew. And why jettison your favourites? With a simple dough, tomato base, fresh basil leaves and soya cheese- you’ve got yourself a lil’slice of beatitude. Vegan friendly chocolate? Soya cappuccino? Hey, everybody has a cheat day.
The Origin of your Entrée
Food is without a doubt one of the most important aspects of our lives. All cultures have their own rituals based around it; it’s a peace offering, a romancer, a comforter and a necessity, and the day is split based on when people eat during the day.
Therefore, with it being so crucial every day, it must be important to know where your food comes from, right? With so many people opting for free range eggs and british milk, this would suggest that people do care about the origin of their products and the treatment of their chickens. But what happens when these animals stop meeting these demands, even on a free range farm? Which dairy farmer is going to keep Daisy on the farm when she ain’t got no more lactosin’ love to give? The thing is, you can never truly know what happens after that milk goes in the bottle and at the end of the day it comes down to the profitability of the animals, whether they’re kept in a cage or a premier inn.
That’s why it’s refreshing to know that when you’re buying your apples and strawbs, they’ve been raised with love and a whole lot of sunshine- no hidden info, no ambiguous small-print, especially fairtrade products.
From Meat-Free to Cruelty-free to Guilt-free (yippee!)
Most importantly for me, I can sleep better at night knowing that I am contributing to an ever-growing movement of individuals who are saying “no more” to a dishonest and unequal lifestyle. It’s a community that is centred around compassion; and, no matter how much you dislike that one friend who speaks to the waiter for half an hour about the contents of the menu and spends hours in supermarkets reading the allergen warnings, you can be sure there there is a whole load of love coming from their pickiness. I can begin to feel closer with the other species sharing the globe with us and feel good that I’m taking the steps that I need to feel good. So not only do I feel physically healthy, but I have a healthy conscience too.
And to my vegetarian friends; why stop there? Extend your love for animals and the environment further. It is such an easy step, especially going from a meat-free diet, I mean, what are you sacrificing really?
It’s just the beginning of my guilt-free lifestyle, and it feels exceptional.