Published on March 21st, 2011 | by Becky Striepe30
Eating Vegan: Why I Love Being Vegan
Every once in a while an anti-vegan article makes the rounds, bashing veganism as an unhealthy, unyielding, and unethical lifestyle choice. After running across one today, I felt like it was time to look at what’s great about being vegan.
Just to be clear here: I understand that a vegan lifestyle isn’t for everyone. It’s a big change from the lifestyle we’re raised on, but it’s one I’ve chosen along with many people that I know. Not vegan? I’m not judging you. I just love being vegan, and here’s why!
Why I Love Being Vegan
It’s compassionate. For most vegans, compassion is at the top of the list. That means living a cruelty free lifestyle that doesn’t harm animals, but for many of us that notion of compassion goes much further. That means being kind and being tolerant. It means making mindful choices about the food and products that we buy, and it goes beyond just avoiding animal products. Most of the vegans I know support small farmers, organic agriculture, and fair labor as well as animal rights.
The vegan community. There is a strong, kind, supportive worldwide vegan community, and I am happy to be a part of that!
For my health. Yes, it’s easy as (vegan) pie to live on vegan junk food. Potato chips are vegan. So are french fries and most white bread. If junk food is what you’re after, you’re going to find it no matter what your diet. Health was one of the driving forces when I chose veganism. You can tell me that animal fats aren’t that bad for you all day long, but when I went vegan, my cholesterol went from the mid-200s to a normal level, and it’s been that way ever since.
Helping animals. Animal rights are at the center of veganism. No matter how humanely you raise that cow, it’s tough to argue that killing it is humane.
It’s delicious. I love food, and I have to tell you that there’s no way I could have gone vegan if it weren’t for tasty vegan food. I don’t mean fake meat and vegan cheese. I mean mashed potatoes, roasted veggies, lentil burgers, quinoa, good dark chocolate, mashed potatoes, and all of that other vegan food that I cook, enjoy, and share every day.
I feel like there’s a misconception that veganism is this exclusive club, and that all vegans are quietly judging you for what’s on your plate, and I just don’t think that’s true at all. Sure, there are some douchey vegans out there, but it’s unfair to judge all vegans based on one or two interactions. There are some meat eaters who have been pretty cruel to me about my lifestyle, too, but I don’t think all meat eaters are jerks because of a couple of ruined meals. We’re all people trying to be our best selves. I just don’t see the need for hostility.
Are you vegan? I’d love to keep this list going! Tell me what makes veganism great for you.
Image Credit: Creative Commons photo by kyntharyn74