I entered into veganism at the end of high school after being vegetarian for approximately three years. I found veganism to be almost a spiritual awakening and has brought me a lot of happiness in aspects that I would not have foreseen before making the switch. Initially going vegan I bought loads of cookbooks and more recently I have found a lot of recipes on Instagram and Pinterest which I think has allowed veganism to become as mainstream as it is currently. Veganism, in general, has given me a great body confidence and respect for what I eat to power my body. I don’t feel the desire to eat shitty food and therefore I do not feel shitty. It literally goes back to you are what you eat. Becoming vegan I have embraced nature more as well. I have always been a passionate animal lover, however, I am now also a nature advocate and am studying forestry as a result.

However, even with veganism where it is today, there is still a stigma against vegans as being too opinionated and that “aggressive vegan” stereotype. This is a constant annoyance. People will also crack jokes about being a vegan. I am hundred percent happy answering questions about what I eat and if I feel healthy however when it dips into jokes its borderline offensive. I have had many experiences with this especially when living or travelling around smaller communities where vegan is not commonplace.

My advice for anyone interested in becoming vegan is to stay committed. The learning curve can be steep but if you give it the time it gets easier. Also, it is important to be informed. Take an active role in your health, take blood tests, daily vitamins, etc. to ensure you are not negatively impacting your health while adjusting to the new lifestyle. This is also helpful when eating out so that you do not get frustrated…doing research in advance makes restaurant selection and meals easy. 

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