Like most people, I didn’t adopt a fully vegan diet overnight. Instead, I replaced animal products for plant-based options one by one, pledging to try one new vegan recipe a week, or one plant-based meal a day. I knew that being vegan was the right thing to do, and I genuinely wanted to end the cognitive dissonance that came with living a life that contradicted my beliefs and values, but it took a little time to make the complete transition.
In retrospect, switching to a plant-based diet was actually very easy, and now that I understand the true horror of animal agriculture, I wish I had become vegan overnight. However, I completely understand how it doesn’t feel that way in the beginning. Please don’t let that stop you from taking the first step! The animals and the planet need us to at least try. As one of my favorite animal activists, The Joyful Vegan, always says:
“Don’t do nothing because you can’t do everything. Do something. Anything.”
The following FREE resources will guide, support, and inspire you one day and meal at a time:
- 7-Day Plant-Based Kickstart, Center for Nutrition Studies
- The Joyful Vegan’s 30 Day Vegan Challenge
- The Vegan Society’s 30 Day Vegan Pledge
- Vegan Easy’s 30 Day Vegan Challenge
- Veganuary’s Vegan Starter Kit
- New Leaf’s Vegan Mentor Program
“New Leaf’s free international program will connect you with a trained mentor for one-on-one individualized support. Whether you’re committed to vegan ethics and protecting animals or you’re seeking a healthier, more earth friendly diet, New Leaf’s mentors will help you reach your goal. They’ll answer your questions, share information and resources, discuss challenges and celebrate your successes. They’ll help you with shopping, meal creation, dining out, nutrition, networking, communicating with others, and more. And they won’t stop at 30 days or six weeks. New Leaf mentors work with mentees for as long as needed, because they’re here to support lifelong change.”
My Favorite Cookbooks & Food Blogs
- Addicted to Dates
- Bosh TV on YouTube
- Deliciously Ella
- Lazy Cat Kitchen
- Nora Cooks
- Oh She Glows
- One Arab Vegan
- Minimalist Baker
- Post Punk Kitchen
- The Full Helping
- The Viet Vegan
- Vegan Richa
- The Homemade Vegan Pantry: the Art of Making Your Own Staples
- Veganomicon: the Ultimate Vegan Cookbook
- Vegan Richa’s Indian Kitchen
For a brief introduction to vegan nutrition, click here.
Compelling Quick Reads
- 5 Reasons Why Animal Rights Are a Feminist Issue, by Aph Ko
- Eating Reading Animals, by Jennifer Armstrong
- Slavery. It’s Still a Thing, by Christopher Sebastian McJetters
For a longer list of vegan literature (some fiction but mostly non-fiction), click here.
Podcasts & Documentaries
If you can’t bring yourself to watch the process, can you really be okay with eating the ‘product’?
Dominion uses drones, hidden and handheld cameras to expose the dark underbelly of modern animal agriculture, questioning the morality and validity of humankind’s dominion over the animal kingdom. While mainly focusing on animals used for food, it also explores other ways animals are exploited and abused by humans, including clothing, entertainment and research.
“The truth is, there is no humane way to kill someone who wants to live. It is not a question of treatment, or better ways of doing the wrong thing. We take their children. We take their freedom. We take their lives, sending them healthy and whole into a slaughterhouse to come out as packaged pieces on the other side, and we tell ourselves that somehow, along the way, something humane and ethical happened.”
For those of us who eat animals or drink their milk or eat their eggs, or wear their wool, fur or skin, or buy non-cruelty-free products, or watch animals for entertainment–rodeos, zoos, races, or otherwise–I absolutely believe it is our moral obligation to watch Dominion: Documentary.
If you absolutely cannot bear to watch, read the transcript.
If you cannot or will not do either, ask yourself why.
The following documentaries examine a variety of issues, from health and nutrition to the environment and the intersection of food and racism.
- Forks Over Knives
- The Game Changers
- The Ghosts in Our Machine
- The Invisible Vegan
- The Last Pig
- What the Health
The Joyful Vegan’s Food For Thought podcast addresses all aspects of living healthfully and compassionately; and her Animalogy podcast explores the animal-related words and expressions we use every day and how they reflect and affect our relationship with animals.
Our Hen House podcast offers intelligent and thoughtful content that is also entertaining, hopeful and supportive. As someone in my New Leaf Vegans group described it: “When you feel alone or defeated, listen to the recent and past podcasts and focus on the new information that shows we are making a difference. It’s an easy listen that is fun and light but unappologetically vegan and treats listeners as smart, contemplative individuals without fear mongering.”
The Disclosure podcast is hosted by the phenomenal vegan educator Earthling Ed. I so admire Ed’s thoughtful, philosophical and patient demeanor. I wish I had this guy’s chill! Throughout this podcast, Ed explores different aspects surrounding veganism, morality, ethics and the environment, as well as engaging in conversations and debates with guests about these issues.