The 5 reasons why I went vegan and stayed vegan… the second time.

I thought I would share 5 reasons why I went vegan and stayed vegan with everyone.

We all have our reasons: better health, reducing animal cruelty, allergies, etc. And there is usually one big reason why most people go vegan and stay vegan.

When I went vegan the first time it lasted under a week. I did all the wrong things: I ate very little because I wasn’t prepared to start it on a whim. I second guessed myself. I didn’t have a Why.

The second time I went vegan: it stuck and I haven’t looked back!

Why?

Reason #1: 

The main reason I wanted to go vegan was to help alleviate allergic reactions and sensitivities that plagued me, and in turn my family and my work. I am allergic to chicken eggs, beef, cow milk, and sensitive to chicken eggs, amaranth, soy, wheat and other foods. Yes, I am sensitive AND allergic to chicken eggs!

When I was exactly 1 month post-partum, with my now-5 year-old daughter, I started getting crazy bloating, stomach pain and what I now know as fatigue and brain fog. The fatigue was so bad that I would just plop down on the couch after work and my husband would take care of our daughter, clean and make dinners.  This was unfair to my amazing husband.

I also had brain fog so bad that I thought I still had insane Mommy Brain. I felt like an idiot a lot of the time, I was so forgetful. This affected my work most especially. No one said anything to me but I know I had to sound super out of it because I couldn’t form coherent sentences most of the time.

The bloat was so bad that I looked 4 months pregnant most of the time. I thought it was post-partum belly fat.

I removed foods from my diet to find the allergen before I had been tested. One food I could attribute to my bloat, fatigue and brain fog was wheat. Even a crumb of a cupcake would bring on crazy bloat and fatigue.

Then I got tested. I had an EGD, AKA, esophagogastroduodenoscopy, to test for celiac disease as my mother is celiac. I then did the skin scratch test (not awesome) and sensitivities blood test. I don’t have celiac (thank the goddess) but, we found what I thought was a gluten intolerance was actually a chicken egg allergy and sensitivity. Chicken eggs and wheat go hand and hand, for the most part, in processed foods. When I found this out, I eliminated chicken eggs and wheat.

Saying I felt much better is woefully inadequate. No more debilitating fatigue, stupefying brain fog, and painful bloating!

My first vegan fast food. Next Level, Bend, OR.

Reason #2

I was in the right mindset to start the second time.

If your whole heart and soul is not into changing how you use food then going vegan probably won’t work for you until you are because going vegan is a mindset change, it’s a paradigm change and it’s a life change.

Eventually, changing the way you think about and use food will become an amazing lifestyle because you took action and wanted that change. Being that change will get you to where you want to be.

When I went vegan the second time, I wanted to be vegan. There was no second guessing it. I wanted it. I wanted to feel better.

Reason #3:

Education was another reason I stayed vegan.

I looked up vegan everything. I started following vegan social media influencers and dumping any non-vegan pages. I started reading food labels more closely for those pesky hidden animal products. I found articles in magazines.

There are so many wonderful books, magazines, E-Books, cook books, and everything in between dedicated to veganism at your fingertips right now!

But, I read 2 amazing books that changed how I view food and nutrition forever: How Not to Die by Dr. Michael Gregor (He also has amazing resources at nutritionfacts.org, too) and The China Study by T. Colin Campbell PhD. and Dr. Thomas Campbell. These books are mind blowing and are completely changing the way we look at and think about the food paradigm in our society.

These are MUST READS!

I highly urge you to start reading books on our broken food systems. If you are short on time and fall asleep within a page or two you could get “books on tape” (am I dating myself with that reference?). I have Audible on my phone through Amazon. It may not be the best but it works for me and my daily hour commute.

Another absolutely amazing resource is notmilk.com. This website has been going for over 20 years and is probably your best resource online for dairy education. I’ve read almost every post here between the years of 1999 to 2005. This was right after I found out I was allergic to milk. Robert Cohen exposes the dairy industry lies with sound research. It can be mind-blowing what you read on this website. I don’t think they are adding any new content but what they have is not outdated.

Reason #4:

I didn’t want to die an early, painful, over-weight, diseased death.

I am what is called an “older” mother. I had my daughter a few months shy of 35. I knew that I had to stay healthy for her to keep up with her life. I wanted to stay a “MILF” for my amazing hubby and I want to feel and look good to my own self. How you feel about yourself is so damn important. Its everything.  

I have to stay healthy so I don’t get the “Disease of Affluence”. It’s a thing. Look it up. The Disease of Affluence, in my opinion (and you can search online for the “official” and woefully inadequate definition according to present science) are chronic, non-communicable diseases such as diabetes type 2, hypertension, cardiovascular diseases, and that damn pesky killer, cancer. It is the downstream affect of consuming too much animal products and not enough nutrient dense foods.

The processed foods that are marketed to the public are aweful! They are created in a lab with fake synthetic crap with long names that were originally discovered for non-food related purposes. There is so little nutrition in packaged meals that we have to eat more of it to come close to the recommended daily value of nutrients, vitamins and minerals our bodies need.  This in turn packs on the excess fat on our bodies. Even vegan packaged food is like this. Though, vegan packaged food is not created with animal product, a lot was created in a lab and still has flavorings, sodium, sugars, palm oil and fillers.

There are so many studies that have been ignored by mainstream science on this topic that its pretty mind-blowing! If you want a good book that talks about mainstream science and nutrition check out “Whole” by T. Collin Campbell.

Reason #5:

Reason number five of why I was successful the second time around was that I had support from my family and friends. My In-Laws and the extended family are some of the best people I know. They accepted my dietary changes by always having side-dishes free from dairy products. And, of course, we make the mashed potatoes every thanksgiving. Which means we have control over what ingredients go into it. LOL!

I know a lot of vegans out there that do not have the amazing support like I have had. It makes me sad to know there are a lot of people out there who can’t accept change; in themselves and others.

One way to combat unsupportive family is to find your vegan tribe outside of your home. Look up Vegan groups in your local area! Our local group held potlucks before Covid-19. Because I am a runner, I also found a vegan running group in my area, too! How cool is that?

Also, a great way to find your vegan tribe is to go to social media. Not everyone loves social media but there are a lot of groups on Facebook, Instagram, Yahoo Groups and more. “How To Vegan” and “Forks Over Knives Official Plant-based Group” are popular groups that I follow. I also follow local-to-me groups as well: “VegNet Bend Group” and “Vegan and Plant-Based Redmond OR Group”. So, if you are in the Central Oregon area you can follow those two.

Another way to grow your vegan tribe is to go to festivals. Locally, in Oregon, we have VegFest Portland. Vegandale Festival is a traveling festival that I hope to get to when they travel close to Oregon again. Search online for your local-to-you vegan festivals.

Veg Out Portland 2019

I have been vegan for close to 3 years and I couldn’t be happier. I am slowly converting my husband to veganism and he and our daughter are vegan at home. One day soon we all will be vegan all the time. 

I hope these 5 reasons I went vegan and stayed vegan can help you.

Leave a comment below if this spoke to you and share your why with me!

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Author: opalvegan

Helping women transition to a vegan and gluten-free life.

One thought on “The 5 reasons why I went vegan and stayed vegan… the second time.”

  1. Great information. Things I did not know about how you went vegan. I have started eating vegetarian and a few vegan meals. It’s a start. It’s hard to change everything you have known as good nutrition, is the most unhealthy way you can eat. I’ll get there with the help of my lovely daughter!

    Like

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