About a year ago, I published 60 Day Vegan Weight Loss Meal Plan: Overview- Support- Meals. My goal was to help and encourage people on their journey to veganism, and to this day, that piece is my most read and shared piece- thank y’all!
I wanted to republish the piece with updated insight and information because, there are things that I am aware of now, that I wasn’t aware of before. In my initial piece, I didn’t realize that many consider veganism a privilege, that some people can’t cook where they sleep, and that many stores in many neighborhoods don’t have a vegan section and outside of apples- no vegan options.
This piece will incorporate lots of information from the last piece, and some new insight. The journey to veganism is easier now, in my opinion, than it was when I started 10 years ago, but still, veganism is a journey and some need guidance. That’s why I’m here and so happy to be!
Is Veganism a Privilege?
Sage Journals says:
“While vegans are privileged in the fact that they are able to make food and lifestyle choices, this is not unlike nonvegans who are also capable of making food and lifestyle choices.”
Jessica Beth Greeneblum, of the Humane Society says:
“I propose that veganism itself is not a privilege, but rather the ability to make food choices is ultimately the privilege.”
I say, it depends on what we are talking about. Veganism in diet or veganism the lifestyle. I believe that veganism in diet is achievable just about everywhere, and where it’s not, maybe the below insight and information can help. Important to note that lifestyle incorporates so much like: no animal products in clothes, shoes, furniture, lotion, shampoo, conditioner, etc.
The full vegan lifestyle is difficult as heck in so many places in the world. That is a topic for another day, for now, lets attack veganism by way of diet.
Navigating Food Deserts
Sistah Vegan defines food deserts as: urban neighborhoods and rural towns without access to fresh, healthy, and affordable food. Instead of supermarkets and grocery stores, these communities may have no food access or are served only by fast food restaurants and convenience stores that offer few healthy, affordable food options.
MSP Fitness has these tips for navigating food deserts:
- Non-perishables: canned fruits and vegetables.
- Coolers: for those that don’t have a kitchen in their home, a cooler can help.
- Know your menus: if they have it on the menu- they can create a meal (that’s my statement and firm belief). MSP Fitness says “make informed restaurant and menu choices, make intuitive eating selections.”
- Order from online grocery stores
- Check out farms and farmers markets in your area.
- Ask the stores in the area to stock their shelves with fresh options- reminding them that people have medical conditions and allergies that require fresh food options.
- Plant your own seeds and grow your own- plants heal and growing your food has positive soul impacts.
Veganism for Weight Loss Intention
This piece has heavy focus on veganism for weight loss. There will be pieces coming from the other Writers on the blog, that will talk about Veganism for the environment, for spirituality, and for a host of other reasons.
I’ve tried many things over the years. I even let go of veganism- went back to pescatarian and gained half of those pounds back. I was able to lose them again by going vegan- then fell off and went back to vegetarian. Yep, you guessed it- gained weight again. So, I am vegan forever now- it’s what works for my mind and body- it’s where I grow and flourish- so, I am here to stay!
The tips and meal ideas in this piece are what worked for me and so, I offer them to you. They may of may not work and so because of that- you’ll find stories from others below. The guides at the end of the piece all had their own journeys into vegetarian and veganism- and lost a bunch of weight.
- This is a totally vegan meal plan– no animal of any kind. Nothing that comes from animal- so- no eggs, dairy, butter, gelatin, no lactic acid, etc. If it came from a heartbeat- it doesn’t belong.
- Many of these ideas are meant for meal prep: soups, certain salads, certain bakes, etc.- those pans will last for a few meals- taking prep and thought out of a few of your meals 😊.
- Portion control- we are all different and so, I cannot tell you how much will make you feel nourished and satisfied- but I trust that you know when you are doing the most. At the end of the day, you will get out of this what you put into this.
- These are tips, from my experience- this plan isn’t a guarantee that it will work for you- but hopefully it will aid you and help you get to your goal.
- If you have certain medical conditions and concerned about the plan- please discuss with your doctor.
- No vegetable oil on this journey. Coconut oil and grapeseed oil only.
- Regular or sugar free plant milk (these are the ones that are usually 60 calories per serving or less).
- When you feel hungry- drink water first. Many times, we think its hunger but, many times it’s just our bodies asking for water.
- Please drink water. It’s the first thing that should go in your belly.
- You can always do what works best for you- meaning, you can use lunch ideas for dinner and vice versa- you can eat dinner for breakfast and breakfast for dinner- live within these means but design it in ways that make you happy.
- Before you eat- ask yourself- “am I really hungry?” Meaning- are you eating because you simply “can eat” or are you eating because your body “needs to eat”?
Meal Guide for the Journey to Veganism
Journey to Veganism- FAQ
Why is this plan basic and nothing but fruit and veggies? Because- this is what your body needs. You also need to eat with purpose. All of these ideas are fruit and veggie at the core because those 2 are life- energy- water- vitamins- minerals. However, but you should be consuming sea moss for minerals… it has 92 of the 102 in the body.
Will I be hungry? Maybe for the first week, depending on your current diet. Your body needs a little time to adjust. If you are hungry- remember to evaluate your water intake- you may be thirsty and not hungry. If you are truly hungry- eat. Eat a fruit or a veggie. They are always safe. People have this whole idea that fruit is sugar and bad for you. Stop it. Unless you have a condition where fruit hurts you (and that is way beyond my knowledge), don’t be scared of eating fruit every time you are truly hungry.
Will this be expensive? I know! These groceries are high as heck! It shouldn’t break your pockets because it’s mostly produce. Make the selections that work best for your budget. The dollar tree has frozen fruit and veggies. Aldi’s is always a win. Food banks usually provide beans and canned veggies. Farmers markets are also pretty affordable with really good selections.
What if those around me don’t support me? Some have zero choice in their living circumstance. I recommend telling your household that you are going to be on a journey and that you need support. No tempting tactics- no “oh you don’t need to do that”- tell them that love to you means support from them. It’s ok to set those boundaries. If you have choices- change up your social environment. Unsupportive people are dangerous and that’s why I have a support circle for you!
I really can’t cook/don’t have the time to cook; how will I do this? By trying, by being intentional, by picking you first, by planning, by loving yourself so much that how can/will you is no longer a thought. Reach out us- we have solutions.
Journey to Veganism Tips from a Tribe
“Drink water! 32 oz before 9 am- you can do it! If the Earth relies on the rain for hydration, so do we! We rely on that same rain to fill the springs from which we receive ours. Receive the rain!”
“My weight loss journey started with a new mindset to set small goals. I realized that in order for me to be successful I had to do what it takes to get there. Small steps and changes: create a banging music playlist list that will make you want to move, tacos on taco Tuesday- swap sour cream for guacamole and instead of taco shells have a taco salad, they already stuff chips in your face at the table- just grab a couple and crush in salad, and place yourself in a healthy circle that supports your journey. This may hurt friendships and relationships in the process but sometimes separation is needed to attain the weight and healthy lifestyle you desire.”
“Growing up I’ve always struggled with my weight but once I saw 293 on the scale, I knew enough was enough. About 2 years ago I decided to make a lifestyle change by eliminating animal products from my everyday routine. Within 2 weeks I was already feeling better and losing weight! My favorite motto is “there’s nothing to it but to do it!” Often, we find ourselves scared to make such drastic dietary changes in our lives because we’ve become accustomed to the everyday lifestyle of a carnivore but, taking those small steps towards a healthy lifestyle is well worth the reward. JUST DO IT, there’s nothing to lose……but weight!”
“It took me a very long time to start losing weight, but the minute that I began to eat healthier- I started seeing results; and when I say healthier, I mean I cut meat and dairy out completely- plant based baby! I lost 25 pounds! The journey hasn’t been easy, but it’s been worth it and if I had to give anyone advice it would be that you have to change your mind set as well as your eating, be open to new things, and inform yourself. It’s all about the journey my beautiful people! Wish you guys the best in yours, wish me luck on mine! ✌️&❤.”
“Eating a plant-based diet has helped me to gain mental clarity, more energy and glowing skin. I lost over 70 lbs. I am fully vegan or plant based but my family is not. Usually I cook a vegan version of the meal that they are having for myself. My husband and three boys are mainly vegetarian throughout the week and I dedicate at least 2 fully vegan meals for the entire family. This helps to cut down on the time I spend in the kitchen and helps cut the grocery bill down.”
I wish you all the very best on your journey to veganism! We are all here so please reach out. It takes a village so, let’s be here for each other!
Written by: Veronica Castillo
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