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How do I go Vegan?
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Lifestyle

How do I go Vegan? 

FAQs on going Vegan

  1. How do I go Vegan?
  2. Are there any substitutes for Cheese, Milk, Butter, Meat?
  3. Where do I get my protein from?
  4. How can we make Cake, Pastries?
  5. How do we know which brands are vegan?
  6. What are the sources for Vitamin B12 and Vitamin D?

These are some of the questions we ask ourselves and search for solutions online. We will be discussing these points in this article and much more. Since you have decided to go vegan, you are already aware of the harmful impacts of meat and dairy industry, but for those who are not then it’s best you give THIS ARTICLE a fast read.

Great so first step is to find a self help group, people who are vegan and join them in discussions and take their suggestions and form a network. This gives a huge help and saves you a ton of searching time because everyone is readily there to help out. Few of the facebook groups to join are listed below –

  1. Vegans in India
  2. India Vegan Revolution
  3. Truth is Vegan
  4. Plant Based Recipes and Transitioning Support
  5. Delhi-NCR Vegan Support
  6. Vegan India Movement
  7. Vegan Indian Recipes

These are just few of the groups but to get help search facebook for your respective region/country groups. They have meetups and you can go introduce yourselves and become familiar with events in your city.

Next is to join whatsapp group for cooking support and queries. This can be done either via asking facebook groups or connect with some vegans who will guide you to take appropriate steps. If you are unable to get help, post a comment in this blog and I’ll send the respective links to help you out.

KNOWING YOUR SUBSTITUTES

Alright, so once the basic step is done, you need to know about substitutes.

  1. Milk – Milk is for babies. Every mammal produces milk when the baby is young and unable to eat. Simple! So no dairy, then what? We have Almond Milk, Cashew Milk, Soy Milk, Rice milk, Coconut Milk, Sesame Seed Milk and many such. To learn how to make these, visit this post of ours – HOMEMADE MILK. Through the 2 videos shared there, you will get a good idea on how to make these at home.
    If you are in a hurry, go for Soy Milk Powder (Amazon- Bionutrients), Sofit Soy Milk. Almond Milk is also available in tetra pack but its easier and cheaper to make at home. Coconut Milk powders are also available but fresh ones taste just yum! Also, keep note of ingredients, Maggi Coconut milk powder has Dairy Milk Powder in it so its not vegan.
  2. Butter – We use butter in almost everything. Cakes, Fillings, Toast bread, Chappati/Roti, naan, Frying on pan etc. So this is among the essential ingredients you will look for. No worries, there is a solution to everything and 5 ways to make butter are listed in THIS ARTICLE of our blog. Go through it and thank me in the comments 😛
  3. Cheese – Now this is tricky bit. Majority of people I met had problem leaving cheese. There are very few substitute brands in India as of now. But I am working on a cheese spread variant which will be out soon and subscribe to keep track of that announcement. But till then, to work on your own version of cheese follow THIS ARTICLE. By then end of this post, if you go through the linked content as well, I will have taught you how to cook even if you have never done it in past! In general vean cheese made out of cashew. Its upto your taste preference I think, so you may use Chickpea and Almond as well.
  4. Paneer – If you are a vegetarian, Paneer is like your go to dish, in major cases. For me Paneer was like a lifesaver in each and every party. But the day I found out the truth, Paneer was the first thing I left on the next day. I did miss it initially but didn’t make much of a difference because a life is more valuable than a seconds taste. I didnt have to miss it for long, I can across TOFU! Similar pricing and now increasingly available in your local grocery stores. Make it the same way you made paneer dishes but just replace with TOFU – Tofu butter masala, Shahi Tofu, Tofu Lababdar, Palak Tofu and you get my point! If you are allergic to soy (used to make tofu), then you may have look for alternatives. Paneer can be made out of Almond as well but that will be tiny bit expensive to buy. But to get more information on this, kindly join the above facebook groups to clear your doubts.
  5. Meat – Now non-vegetarians will have limited options currently but there are a few companies like VEZLAY which have Soy based Vegan Chicken, Vegan Seekh Kebab etc. Then there is restaurant called Loving Hut in Gurgaon. Such places are coming up in a lot of places to do a google search to get your location specific restaurants or I may make a post about the list later.

Mainly these are the substitutes everyone is looking for. For making all these at home, you may refer to simple recipes shared under the RECIPES MENU of this website. It will host recipes for desserts, milks, main course, snacks, drinks and juices. Pretty much covering all of the basic items.

SOCIAL INFLUENCERS & LINKS TO FOLLOW

Next we come to learning and getting inspiration from influencing social media accounts. Whom to follow? I am listing a few known names comprising of influencer’s from Youtube, Instagram, Facebook who have a ton of recipes –

  • Minimalist Baker
    186-EASY-VEGAN-CHRISTMAS-RECIPES-minimalistbakerMy goto blog honestly. Such great recipes and tips. I think they have millions of views everyday from vegan and non-vegan users. They are on quite a few social media platforms so just google specific one based on your preference. (Image Source – Minimalist Baker)
  • Vegan Eats Please – Instagram (@veganeatsplease) – Recipes here are good and homely.
  • VeganRicha – This user has multiple social media accounts under this name. Millions of followers and ton of recipes.
  • Foodiesandearthlings – Well, this is our handle on facebook and if you are reading this, you are already on our website. You may follow our Instagram , Pinterest accounts as well. A lot of earth based, health based and recipe articles are shared here as cumulative. So ya subscribe and follow to get your updates!
  • FullyRawKristina – 1 million followers on Instagram and she shares her recipes on eating raw, that is considered to be the best form to get all nutrients and avoid cooking.
  • I Love Vegan Website – Lots of recipes again. Definitely follow.
  • Loving It Vegan – website with recipes.
  • SimplyVeganBlog and SimplyVegan Websites.
  • BOSH.TV – This is a must youtube channel to follow for mouth watering recipes.
  • Cheap Lazy Vegan for people who dont like to cook – Youtube Channel.
  • NutritionRefined Youtube Channel – One of my first and main source of recipes. Watch how to make Pizza in the link below.

I think these are enough to get you started and become comfortable with cooking and inspire you to try your own things.

How to check if product is Vegan?

Next we discuss how to know if an item is vegan or not. Rule of thumb – anything that says – Gelatin, Milk Powder, Beeswax, Honey, Casein – avoid. Check ingredients and for health purposes avoid that have many ingredients as additives. Bread also have milk, not all of them, so keep a check on the ingredients. Biscuits, Rusk that we take in general has milk powder so again check the ingredients – Hide and Seek original is vegan, oreo has palm oil which is a grey area in veganism so you see if its not milk powder loaded before purchasing. Wheat biscuits are vegan in certain cases. Chocolates generally are non-vegan but don’t worry, I am working on a Vegan Chocolate and Chocolate Nut Spread which will be out in a little while. The tastes have been tested and the spreads are loved by all, chocolates will be dark or nut based which we are working on. Subscribe to get updates on this.

NOTEWORTHY POINTS

Palm Oil – Its among the cheapest oils available and a lot of products use this. Avoid it as much as you can for health and for Orangutans. These ape family members are losing their home because of palm oil requirement.

B12 – This is made by bacteria in soil. So a person on vegetarian diet can also be deficient in B12. Now, there are lot of vegan B12 supplements that you have to take! Deficiency can result in permanent nerve damage. Vit D powders are easily available as well. So ya, keep asking people about this but this just a heads up that you need these 2 definitely.

Protein – Lentils (Dal), Black Beans (Rajma), Broccoli, Green Vegetables have a lot of protein compared to non-vegetarian items. These are more easily digested in our body.
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So in this article, I have listed a few people you can follow for guidance, recipe links, social media groups to join, substitutes for common items. This will get you started in no time. It’s a conscious effort to make yourself healthy, noone else is going to do for you. This isn’t difficult but just an awakening that “Buddy, get up and take care of yourself and your surroundings” – This will definitely take some effort opposed to living a carefree “YOLO” type lives 😛

See you soon!

 

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