Should you become a vegan?

It seems like every day there is a new diet trend. A new way to lose weight faster, better and more glamorous than ever. It is overwhelming to hear about no carb, no meat, no dairy or all liquid diets. Which one will work? And which one is right for me?

Recently my aunt and uncle (who are what my grandma calls “well-fed”) embarked on another diet. They went vegan; a trendy diet that is sweeping the Hollywood sect. And you know what? They lost. A lot of weight.

It made me think about going vegan, not necessarily for myself, but in generally. Vegetarians do not eat meat. Veganism is one step further than vegetarianism. Vegans do not eat any animal by-products. No meat and no dairy. Vegans also don’t eat gelatin as it derives from bones and animal tissue. So no Jell-o. The hard core vegans do not even use products that have any animal products like leather accessories, anything made from wool and silk (because silk comes from silk worms, technically an animal).

So why would you become vegan? Many become vegan because they are looking for the great weight loss benefits. However, it will be less of a diet if you make up your calories with other fatty foods like treats. Others become vegan because of the unethical treatment of animals or because of other environmental reasons (some say meat production uses more energy than produce production).

Becoming vegan is not as simple as just cutting animal products out of your diet. While you are cutting out a lot of cholesterol and saturated fats (that really bad kind of fats), you are losing out on protein and iron. You must find those nutrients from another source like beans like legumes.

Whatever the reasons you decide, know that becoming a vegan is a big lifestyle change. There are many things that traditional vegans cannot eat such as honey (it comes from bees, technically considered an animal).

If you decide to temporarily become a vegan for weight loss, think about this: while you can work the weight off, it is all about maintenance for your to keep your weight off. If you decide to discontinue being a vegan, you have to focus on not just going back to all the same old habits, which will lead you back to your same old weight. Diets are most successful when they are not diets. They work when they become lifestyles. You know what happened to my aunt and my uncle when they stopped their vegan diet? They gained all of the weight back. They only temporarily stopped their bad habits. So keep that in mind if you are thinking about starting this trend. However, becoming vegan can be a great way to kick start a new lifestyle.

Like with any new exercise or diet program, utilize your low cost health insurance and make an appointment with your doctor. Other factors may need to be considered when starting any new health program.