Food for Thought Series: We Are All Vegan-ish… Even YOU

Hear me out: while you may read this title and vehemently disagree that you could have any association with the “v” word, please take a breath and flow with me here for 3 minutes…

Do you want to live a healthier life? 

Do you love animals?

Do you have a dog or cat who is one of your best friends?

Do you ever opt for the salad instead of the potato au gratin?

Do you hate to see anyone or anything suffer?

Then you are at least vegan-ish, my friend, and you shouldn’t be afraid to identify with this movement. While you may have a preconceived notion as to what a “vegan” looks like, how he/she acts and what he/she eats, take a look in the mirror and realize that you are one too. (There isn’t a single person on this planet who could say “no” to every question above, and there aren’t even a ton of questions to turn the tide in my favor ;)

Being vegan is about so much more than just not eating meat or animal-based products; it’s about caring for everything around us and making even one, small decision with someone or something else in mind. It’s about embracing compassion and realizing the power each one of your decisions holds. And you don’t even have to make vegan-ish decisions all of the time; even just one a day counts and makes you a part of this wonderful movement.

Remember that time you saw a dog run-over in the street and you decided to give a little money to the SPCA the next time you saw a donation jar?

You are vegan-ish.

Remember that time you couldn’t eat a third hot dog and you decided to have an extra side of potato chips?

You are vegan-ish.

Remember that time you bought an organic apple instead of the conventional one?

You are vegan-ish.

Remember that time Michael Vick was arrested for abusing hundreds of fighting dogs and you couldn’t begin to imagine your dog in that situation?

You are vegan-ish.

I think you get the point. What I’m trying to say is, as a full-fledged vegan, I can see the vegan in everyone and that makes me feel more gratitude for everyone around me. I know we are all doing the best we can with what we have, and while never eating cheese again may sound like something that is absolutely impossible or something you would never even consider, just remember to never say never.

Raised as a country girl who ate meat and drank a glass of milk with each meal, I can tell you that I never even knew not eating meat and drinking milk could be an option. Who would even consider not slamming down a bacon sandwich with milk for breakfast? But I always loved animals, and I always believed they should be treated with love and kindness; so even back then, I guess I was a little vegan-ish.

Today, what I would like to invite is becoming aware of the decisions you make and understanding why you make them. And perhaps thinking of all of the positive reasons associated with making that decision. For example:

I am choosing not to have a third White Russian during happy hour.

  • Benefit #1: I’m not taking in more fattening calories.
  • Benefit #2: I’m starting to sober up so I can get home in a few hours.
  • Benefit #3: I don’t need all of that cream in my body- for caloric (and maybe logical/ethical?) reasons.

I see vegan-ish as mostly about including anyone who wants to live a more mindful existence with the entire world around us. Though some have come up with definitions for the term and even misspelled it with one extra “g” in there (vegganish), I believe it can be used as an inclusive term to engage the vegan inside each one of us.

I promise I’ll never call you a vegan in public if you promise not to shout it at me. Let’s all just be kind, happy, healthy and mindful!

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*Healthspiration*: See the positive in everyone and every decision around you. Even the ugly stuff has a reflection from a nearby window which bounces off and emits something bright. And if you can’t see it, make something up that’s positive.

*Opportunity Discovery*: Catch yourself making a mindless decision regarding a meal or purchase. Can you pause and think of each of the benefits of that decision and tie one of them into this vegan-ish concept? Flat out make something up if you can’t think of a real reason. (For example: think of all of the unborn unicorns you are saving by eating the entire can of cinnamon rolls.) How is that decision helping you reach your health goals, and how is it helping the planet around you? Embrace your inner vegan (and don’t admit it to a single person you know so they don’t think you are crazy! ;)

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If you would like to share your new-found inner vegan, please share how a seemingly unconnected decision you made did, in fact, turn out to be vegan-ish. How creative can you get?

Unlike the Flexitarian Lifestyle which mainly pertains to diet, the vegan-ish lifestyle includes all of our purchasing decisions. What are your thoughts on expanding the vegan concept outside of the diet realm?

Interested in working with a health coach to meet your goals? Contact Lorna at Finding Healthfulness to set up a consultation and learn more about the coaching process! And your goals don’t have to veganish at all! ;)

*lovelighthealth*

XXXOOO

-Lorna