10 tips about living as a vegan in a non-vegan environment
So you live amongst non-vegans? In many ways, we all do, but the issue becomes much more challenging if you all happen to be under the same roof either at home or at work. Life can’t be easy being the odd one out, but it doesn’t have to be a constant battle either.
Life can’t be easy being the odd one out, but it doesn’t have to be a constant battle either. Here are a few tips you can use for surviving as a vegan in a non-vegan environment:
Don’t judge them. Educate them!
If you want to live in a supportive and stressless environment, then don’t judge them and educate them. If they see you don’t try to make them feel guilty about the way they eat, then you will avoid a lot of negative conversations.
Help out with shopping and cooking
The best way to engage the conversation and make them feel at ease with your diet is to go shopping and cooking with them. Letting them know you want to help them is important because as soon as they start to struggle themselves, it will turn into anger and frustration which can then be very hard on you.
If you’re invited, bring your own foods to avoid any awkward moments
If you want to avoid stress to the host or award moments because there is cream in something that shouldn’t have, then bring your own food and make a big batch so you can share with people! Also, take the opportunity to suggest a dessert made yourself. Firstly, you will be sure to eat a good dessert but secondly, you will be able to let them taste what is vegan dessert like… and probably make them love yours better than the non-vegan version one.
Know your vegan facts
“Where do you get your proteins? Plants feel pain too, right? What do you eat except salad?”
This should be a given but you should know your basic facts about veganism. The more you know, the more you may be able to help others you live with understand that you’re not killing yourself and experimenting with a fad diet.
If you go to a restaurant, make sure to check the menu first
Check the menu to know directly if it will be easy to order or if you need to do a bit of gymnastic to create a great meal for you. If you’re not sure, call the restaurant directly and ask them.
Outline the products you avoid
Be clear about what you don’t eat and what you eat. Highlight what you like eating and finish with this positive note so people will keep it in mind and not emphasise what you don’t want to eat anymore.
Tease them with your mouth-watering foods!
If you don’t know already, being vegan means colourful and tasteful meals all day everyday! This is actually the best opportunity to show them your food and make them curious about what you have on your plate.
Find accidentally vegan foods that your friends/family might like
There is plenty of products that are accidentally vegan such as oreos, chips, ritz crackers and more! Peta.org made a great list about accidentally vegan food and snacks so check this out!
Don’t try to force others to change
One of the most important tips in this list would be probably this one. Diet is something really personal so don’t try at any time to force your environment to change. No-one forced you to decrease your meat consumption or to be fully vegan so don’t do it either. Respect your environment and they will respect you too. However, if they ask you some tips and advices to decrease their meat or diary products consumption then be a mentor and show them how to process in this wonderful journey. 🙂
Yes, breathe! It’s not easy to be vegan in a non-vegan environment but it’s manageable. Don’t let being a vegan in a non-vegan house get you down. Try and remain as positive and focussed as possible. Everything is going to OK! 😉