Experience: I cut down on eating meat and ended up going vegan

Experience: I cut down on eating meat and ended up going vegan

by Charlotte Ndupuechi.

I went from being a huge meat eater to being plant based and haven’t looked back. Like many others I was consciously trying to reduce my impact on the planet. For years I had been recycling and trying to find more local produce. I had changed my shower-head and had a little sand timer in the shower so I could try to reduced my water usage. When I learnt that it takes 660 gallons of water to make a hamburger, I realised that I was totally wasting my time worrying about the length of my showers, then going out and eating a hamburger.

When I started looking more into it, watching a couple of documentaries, the penny dropped. What the Health and The Game Changers are two documentaries that I would really recommend.

I did this thing called Challenge 22. It really worked for me. I never intended to go vegan, I wanted to see if I could cut down on my animal products and find some alternatives that I like. This really helped, taking it one day, one product at a time. I knew cheese would be really difficult for me as I absolutely loved it. I felt physically sick after cutting it out, shaking and sweating. But realising just how addictive it is made me more determined to cut it out of my diet.

There is so much choice and variety out there now. I’m not a huge fan of replacement meat products, but they totally have their place. Even Weatherspoon’s now has loads of vegan options.

I enjoy cooking and have found some amazing chefs that I follow on YouTub that have been so helpful. Rachel Ama, Gaz Oakley, Pick up Limes, Bosh and Wicked Kitchen were my go to choices, especially in the early days.

I constantly slip up, sometimes unintentionally eating crisps that I don’t realise have milk in them (amazing how many products have animal fat added) And occasionally on purpose eating a chocolate. I don’t beat myself up about it and I don’t go mad reading labels. I feel I have a happy balance.

For anyone out there thinking of giving Veganuary a go, what have you got to lose? It doesn’t have to be forever, but maybe you’ll find some changes that you’ll be happy to keep. It could be better for you and better for the planet.



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