If you need your danish in the morning, a candy bar in the afternoon, and dessert after dinner, you may be at least mildly dependant on sugar. Also, suppose your meat is based on either meat or dairy, and you are increasingly concerned about how animals are raised for milking or slaughter and the impact of meat consumption on the environment. In that case, you may consider adopting a plant-based diet.
Health and Ethics
The issue of foregoing sugar and becoming vegan may be somewhat linked and also distinct. Cutting back on sugar may involve ethics as a fair trade issue, but generally, it is a health consideration. In addition, sugar can be highly addictive. A recent study shows that 75% of Americans eat excessive amounts of sugar, and often addiction is to blame for this excess.
The issue of eliminating or reducing animal products from the diet concerns both health and environmental and humanitarian issues. Eating a plant-based diet has been connected to lower cholesterol levels, heart health. According to a Mayo clinic study, those who ate no animal products at all had lower cancer rates than those who ate meat and dairy frequently or occasionally.
Many millennials are going vegan, but the main reason is not so much their health as animals and the planet. Factory farming is increasingly upsetting to people as there is increased awareness about how our food is sourced. In addition, veganism is an essential aspect of environmentalism since raising livestock consumes significant resources, including water, fuel, and clearing of land added to the methane gas produced by cows.
Is It Difficult to Go on a Sugar-Free and Vegan Diet?
We eat so often that many of us don’t think about what we eat and when. And therein lies the problem. One of the purposes of a sugar-free and vegan diet is to become more aware of what we eat and the impact of food on our bodies and the environment.
Adopting any new habit is different, particularly if the body becomes used to certain foods. Sugar is particularly tricky because it doesn’t just involve things that are sugary like sodas and cakes. Most processed food and fast foods contain some degree of sugar. To control the sugar one consumes, it may be a good idea to cut out processed foods or only buy brands at a health food store.
Going vegan requires meal planning. It may be hard at first to imagine a meal without a meat or dairy entree. Speak to vegans and get advice about where to shop, and ask for recipes. This dietary change can be an exciting adventure if it is greeted with the correct attitude.
Tips for Success
- Shop at a natural food store
- Plan meals carefully
- Look for alternatives
- Expect challenges
- Don’t be upset if you slip up
- Carry healthy snacks
- Get support
Shopping at a natural food store will automatically give you a healthy selection of what you can eat and reduce unhealthy choices. Plan your meals ahead of time because thinking about food in a new way can be challenging at first. Find alternatives for food you miss, for instance, juices instead of smoothies and meat replacement items instead of steak or chicken.
Don’t get upset if you slip up. We all make mistakes. Just get back on track with the next meal. To avoid these slip-ups, carry healthy snacks with you to reduce temptation. Also, seek out support virtually or in real life with other sugar-free vegans. They can give you tips about where to shop and great company to share meals with.
Getting Started on a Vegan and Sugar-Free Diet
If you are thinking about going sugar-free and giving up meat and dairy, why not give it a try for just a month. After that, you can decide whether this is something you want to incorporate into your lifestyle long-term.