Vegan Challenge Anyone?

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Julia (@collinsj2009)    1 year, 7 months ago

For the past two years (roughly) I have been a vegetarian and at this point in my life would never consider going back to consuming meat. But within the past few months I have become very curious about veganism and have decided to give it a shot for one solid month. My main reasons for doing this are…

1. The positive environmental impact of adopting a vegan diet is significant… (If anyone wants cited evidence just pick up a book or do a little online research! Also, there is a great Netflix documentary called available right now.)http://movies.netflix.com/WiMovie/Vegucated/70245084?locale=en-US
2. I have heard many reports of how amazing people feel (mentally and physically) after going vegan, so I am curious how that will translate to my experience.
3. Many spiritual-minded individuals also claim that ingesting animal-based foods negatively affect spiritual growth, so I would like to see if that is my truth as well.
4. I just would like to experience veganism for the sake of experiencing it. It is becoming more and more popular as a lifestyle choice and I have been curious about it, so why not adopt this diet for 30 days and just see what it’s like?

I also realize many of you HEthens are content with your current dietary choices and if so that’s great, but this thread is not meant to be a discussion about why going vegan is a “good” or “bad” choice… Instead, I am challenging anyone who is interested in trying out this lifestyle for 30 days to join me for the month of January. Ideally, we could document how we feel physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually throughout the month and compare results with one another. Soooo…Is anyone in?!

4 votes, posted 12.26.2012 at 11:36 am
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river (@wordgarden)1 year, 7 months ago ago

For the month of November I took my own vegan challenge, after having been on the paleo diet for about a month. I was mainly interested in how diet affects mood. I don’t consider myself a poor eater, but by the end of the trial, I was constantly happy, even though I was going through a high stressed time. My body also felt considerably lighter nearer to the end of the month. I guess it takes some time to get rid of the animals products from your body or for you to get used to it. But please, if you’re going to do this–do plenty of research! I willingly went back to eating animal products by the end because I felt like I was missing some nutrients. I’m definitely going to get back into it some day though.

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Razique (@razique)1 year, 7 months ago ago

@wordgarden, as long as the calorie total intake is sufficient, then from a plant and whole-food based diet, you consume all the nutrients necessary (micros but also macro)
the Traditional Chinese Medecine explains a transition come goes from several months to years in order to “rebuild” your body, depending on the type of diet you previously had.

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Dimitris (@cubilone)1 year, 7 months ago ago

I’ve taken up becoming vegan for a month having started on the 1st of the new year. I’m enjoying it thus far, only today I had a kind of strange bloating I can’t attribute to anything. Do any of you other guys have your digestive systems react strangely to this new habit?

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Razique (@razique)1 year, 7 months ago ago

@cubilone, well it depends on many factors, but simply put, yes it the diet changes big-time then some biological adaptations over time will be required in order to assimilate and metabolize nutrients coming from a plant-based diet. The cell structure of meat resembles to ours, making the metabolism of the nutrients from meat simpler. Digestion, nausea, bad sleep, emotions, are some of the symptoms that could manifest during a transition. That last can last from months to years depending on the type of diet you had previously.

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amyecummings (@amyecummings)1 year, 7 months ago ago

@collinsj2009, I am a vegetarian as well, I experimented with a vegan diet for about 3 months and loved it. The only issues I had dealt with the expenses of having this diet as well as eating with friends. I was inspired by a book called “Skinny Bitch” by Rory Freedman and Kim Barnouin. It’s a great read, I highly suggest it! Good luck to you!

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Julia (@collinsj2009)1 year, 7 months ago ago

@amyecummings, thank you! I appreciate that and I will definitely check out the book today.
When you stopped being a vegan did you notice any dramatic differences?

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James (@ilooklikeawaterbottle)1 year, 7 months ago ago

@collinsj2009, @razique, http://zenhabits.net/plants/

This is a great post from one of my favorite blogs. This info can really help you with your transition! Good luck!

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Razique (@razique)1 year, 7 months ago ago

@ilooklikeawaterbottle, thanks a lot the article is great and covers pretty much everything. I like that website too. The only thing is, actually, saturated fatty acids are good for the body. I think a moderate consumption (from 25 to 30% of the daily intake should come from fat and on top of that, around 5/10% from saturated fatty acids). The only type of fat everybody should stay away from are the transfat, but I never saw them at the moment since I’m vegan, and all organic stores have substituted that oil for vegetal oil in general (hemp oil for instance) for chips, peanut butter, etc :)

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Kip Goeing (@kipgoeing)1 year, 7 months ago ago

Veganism is stupid. Yes, I’m going to lead with that. People need meat to be healthy. We are predators. The greatest hunters on the planet. Nature has not designed us to survive without animal products. You don’t need to eat vegan to feel good. Just eat a balanced diet and exercise. Beef, poultry, and fish are great healthy foods. If you’re concerned about animals or the environment then you need to learn to hunt or farm your own food. Wolves aren’t evil for eating dear, the just want to exist like every other creature and nature says they have to kill the dear to survive.

In modern day humans may be able to survive as a vegan, but that’s not natural. We can’t change hundreds of thousands of years of genetics in a few years just because we decide we want to be nice to the environment. And is life about surviving or thriving? because you’re not going thrive on vegan food. Ever wonder why India is nearly the biggest country in the world, yet they don’t have anyone at the olympics winning medals? It’s because they have too many vegans and vegetarians. They’re all skinny and weak. Even if most modern Indians eat meat, their grandfather and great grandfather were vegetarians and so no they have no chance of making it to the Olympics. Do you want you grandchildren to be weak and slow like those Indian children and not have any shot at the Olympics? Well that’s pretty much what youre doing to them by being a vegan.

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Razique (@razique)1 year, 7 months ago ago

@kipgoeing, wow on of the best answer there.
“People need meat to be healthy” I’m myself a lifter AND vegan, I don’t feel like I’m missing something. What makes you think that?

“We are predators” : history showed we indeed hunted, but what does the history showed us, maybe that we killed when we were unable to find other edible food around. I don’t think we are the best predators, we just run like chickens when there is a tiger around man. Nature designed us, we evolved, the brain evolved much quicker than any other species, we lost some teeth, and we lost our fur. History showed us that we ADAPT. And that is the keypoint of biological evolutions. Changes through decades (nervous ones, metabolic one, physical ones, which all aim to maintain our survival.)

“You don’t need to eat vegan to feel good” Well, do YOU need to eat meat in order to feel good? Cook some freshly killed animal on the fire and tell me if you enjoy it, that doesn’t sound like a good argument.

“If you’re concerned about animals or the environment then you need to learn to farm your own food” Definitely agree with that statement :)

“Nature says they have to kill the dear to survive”. Nature says it’s all about the least effort. Running after a zebra is more difficult than picking an apple from the tree. But I see you are in good shape, so maybe you know as I do how conservation mechanisms work and what human biology is about when it comes to health and nutrients disposal.

“In modern day humans may be able to survive as a vegan, but that’s not natural. We can’t change hundreds of thousands of years of genetics in a few years just because we decide we want to be nice to the environment.” Interesting question, but again, it’s all about an organism within its environment. Did nature designed mass slaughtering, animal exploitation, markets, food distribution chains?

“And is life about surviving or thriving?” Depens on where you want to be I guess :)
“because you’re not going thrive on vegan food” Again, what is your backup for such statement?

“Ever wonder why India is nearly the biggest country in the world, yet they don’t have anyone at the olympics winning medals?” I like that website http://www.greatveganathletes.com/

By the way, I enjoyed Brendan Brazier’s book :)

I can’t wait to read a bit more about the sources of your claim, especially the death all vegans are facing on a daily basis

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Timmy (@timschirmer)1 year, 7 months ago ago

@collinsj2009, Hey Julia. On January first my resolution was to follow a vegan diet for the entire month. I am on day nine! I have tried and failed many times, have never made it this long. The biggest thing is your mind set, at some point you have to realize that being a vegan isn’t entirely about you and your enjoyment of food, but it’s about eating in a way that is conscientious of animals and the planet. Make sure you give yourself as many options as possible for meals and snacks, otherwise you will feel limited and hungry / dissatisfied all the time. Good luck!

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Kip Goeing (@kipgoeing)1 year, 7 months ago ago

@razique, People do what they want.

Veganism is plausible today because you can have produce shipped in from all over the world at any time of the year. That doesn’t mean it makes sense to be a vegan just because it is now possible. It wasn’t possible 200 years ago, and yet people live all over the world. Do you think the Inuit people have evolved to be vegans of the past 5000 years? Na. None of us have.

Adaptation happens slowly and, the way our modern society is structured, forward adaptation is grinding to a halt. There’s no survival of the fittest anymore. Welfare and medicaid enable the least fit to keep breeding, mixing weak, sickly, and stupid genes back into the general population. We are not evolving into vegans or anything else. We are probably devolving, if anything.

Being healthy means being natural. History dictates that veganism is not natural for our species.

You say you’re a vegan lifter, well I bet I’m stronger than you.

We don’t have a moral responsibility to keep animals from getting farmed. If we didn’t farm them they wouldn’t exist. Saying you don’t believe in mass farming is like saying to millions of animals, “I wish you were never born.” Animals get eaten. It’s just how it is. If you don’t like it, take it up with Mother Nature or God or wherever you feel your argument wont fall on deaf ears.

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Julia (@collinsj2009)1 year, 7 months ago ago

@kipgoeing, No one is saying you HAVE to eat vegan to feel good. So I am not really sure what your intention is behind what you have written so far. To be “right”? To persuade others to not try out veganism for one month?

Also, I started this thread to be a discussion for those who wanted to try out veganism… but it doesn’t sound like you want to do that. It also doesn’t sound like you would are willing to open your mind that there might be another effective and healthful diet that exists, other than your own. And “You say you’re a vegan lifter, well I bet I’m stronger than you.”? Really?

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Julia (@collinsj2009)1 year, 7 months ago ago

@timschirmer, thanks Tim! Goodluck to you too ( :. I am on day 9 as well and I feel great so far: extremely clear headed (not sure if this can be attributed to the change in diet to other factors) and have a ton of energy. Let me know if you experience any major changes in the next few weeks!

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Kip Goeing (@kipgoeing)1 year, 7 months ago ago

@collinsj2009, lol. what? He (@razique) was asking for it by saying that he was a lifter, as if that was supposed to mean something to me.

Anyway, it’s called having a discussion. This is an open thread and everything I’ve said relates to the topic. Why are you asking what my intentions are? So what if it’s to persuade? What world do you live in where it’s not okay to try and change a person’s mind? Don’t be bitter. Everything I’ve said makes sense.

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Kip Goeing (@kipgoeing)1 year, 7 months ago ago

@collinsj2009, I’m sorry that I sound closed minded to you, but I’ve already done veganism in the past for several months and it sucked.

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Julia (@collinsj2009)1 year, 7 months ago ago

@kipgoening, I totally understand you have had your experience with veganism and it just wasn’t for you. But don’t you think everyone has there own truth? By making statements like “Veganism is stupid” and “people need meat to be healthy” (which is totally not true but that’s a whole different topic) you are discounting other’s beliefs and lifestyles just because it isn’t not the one you have chosen for yourself. Honestly, I am not entirely sure if you realize how negative, impolite and impulsive your previous comments have sounded but they aren’t adding anything positive to this discussion whatsoever… and that is why I asked about your intentions. But I would love to hear about why veganism didn’t work for you and your actual experience if you were willing to share that.

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adam (@adamd)1 year, 7 months ago ago

@kipgoeing, Thank you for responding to this post :)

Who says humans need meat to be healthy? All scientific evidence points to the contrary; that humans do not need meat to be healthy. Why do we have teeth of herbivores? (So-called ‘canines’ are not meat-eating teeth) Why do our jaws move side to side the same way cows and horses and goats do but not up and down very wide as cats and dogs and lions and crocodiles do? Why is the ratio of our GI tract:torso length more similar to herbivores than to carnivores? Why do we not have claws or any other way built into our bodies to kill a decent sized animal. We must use tools/our brains (persistence hunt) in order to kill an animal. Why do we have a pH more similar to herbivores than carnivores? Why do we secrete an amylase in our saliva(hint: meat contains no carbohydrates)? These are merely questions worth considering.

Who says we are predators? We are humans, we adapt to anything we can. We did not originate in the areas surrounding the poles, so the Inuit are a poor example. They are a perfect example of human beings remarkable ability to adapt to anything. You say that is natural? Then why do they have to wear clothes? No other animals that exist around the Inuits wear clothes!

Beef, poultry, and fish all contain cholesterol which clogs human arteries if consumed in excess. Cholesterol does not clog a cat’s arteries. Why is that if we are so perfectly adapted to meat eating?

I don’t believe anybody said wolves are evil, did they?

Who’s to say what is and what is not natural? What is your definition of natural?

Indians live on ghee, so I wouldn’t really use them as an example of model vegans, lol :P Also, they have an interesting situation where there are lots of poor people. I don’t really know a lot about them, but I know the kids there are not given an optimal situation for training for the olympics. Nothing like western nations. How many Inuit win Olympic medals? Many of the Indians who are wealthy enough to even have the possibility of receiving the training needed to go to the Olympics still live with the old idea that fat=wealth, so they stuff their faces all day long haha!

Ever heard of Scott Jurek? Carl Lewis? Mike Arnstein? Just to name a few. You mentioned something about slow vegans. Check out those dudes. They are caring men who have won a few races.

Who says veganism was impossible 200 years ago?

“Being healthy means being natural. History dictates that veganism is not natural for our species.”
Again, who says what is natural? “History,” only covers the past, what, 10,000 years? How long have humans existed on this planet in what we call prehistory? That is the part that we know almost nothing about. The large majority of human “history” is pure 100% speculation based on what anthropologists can gather. What is interesting is how well things preserve in cold climates. In cold climates, it is obvious that there would be less vegetation for humans to consume and more animals. Being that humans are remarkably adaptable, of course they ate meat. What about in warm climates? Well, things don’t preserve very well in warm climates. And, if it does, bones will preserve much better than dried figs! I am not trying to say I am some expert anthropologist, but you must think deeper, my friend. There is more than meets the eye.

“You say you’re a vegan lifter, well I bet I’m stronger than you.” Somebody got defensive! You stronger than this guy? http://www.veganbodybuilding.com/?page=bio_avi

“We don’t have a moral responsibility to keep animals from getting farmed.”
Do what feels right for you.
“If we didn’t farm them they wouldn’t exist.”
Possibly the worst logic I’ve ever heard for keeping a species alive, but whatever works for you!
“Saying you don’t believe in mass farming is like saying to millions of animals, “I wish you were never born.””
Lol.
“Animals get eaten.”
Nice one ;)
“It’s just how it is.”
You’re damn right!
“If you don’t like it, take it up with Mother Nature or God or wherever you feel your argument wont fall on deaf ears.”
Or, just live the way you feel is right and live passionately, and others will always follow. When living with passion, people *always* follow.

“Everything I’ve said makes sense.”
It’s easy to say things that make sense to yourself! Trust me, I do it allll the time!

“several months”
Ahhhh, it all makes sense ;)
“it sucked”
Good to see you thought hard on your experiences.

All in fun, my fellow food eater. I enjoy discussing this. I hope you enjoy this food for thought!

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Avatar of Kip Goeing
Kip Goeing (@kipgoeing)1 year, 7 months ago ago

@adamd, Wow, man. You really went all out trying to come up with a snide retort to every single little thing that I said. Good job.

“All scientific evidence points to the contrary” Really? All of it? And that’s your final answer? lol. Herbivores have eyes on the sides of their head. Ours are on the front like all the other land predators. And those animals that need big k9 teeth don’t use hands or tools to eat. Humans have been using tools since before we were even humans. Why would our teeth evolve that way. Think a little bit before you make ridiculous statements like that, please. Animals have to eat their food as fast as possible in the wild. People don’t need to do that because we have hands to carry our food back home.

That bodybuilder guy is a modern vegan. He lives in the age when it’s possible to get huge and still be a vegan. Don’t you tell me he would have been able to do that 200 years ago before food got shipped in from all over the world. Show my a bodybuilder who is a third or fourth generation vegan.

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Kip Goeing (@kipgoeing)1 year, 7 months ago ago

@adamd,
“several months”
Ahhhh, it all makes sense ;)
“it sucked”
Good to see you thought hard on your experiences.

What does that even mean? I don’t know what you’re trying to say.

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Timmy (@timschirmer)1 year, 7 months ago ago

@collinsj2009, ‘Clear-headed’ is definitely how I feel as well; especially in the morning. I am feeling a little more tired than usual in the evenings, but in the mornings and during the day I feel great. I think the clear-headedness definitely has something to do with cutting dairy out of one’s diet. At the end of the month, I may consider eating fish once or twice a week, as I have a hard time getting all the protein I need, and I am least ethically conflicted about eating fish.. but, we will see. It’s been an interesting vegan trial-period so far.

In regard to some of the things I’ve read in this thread: people can argue all they want that we need meat, and that it’s good for our health (this may be true) but most are ignoring the fact that the meat we eat is not ethically sourced, the animals live in awful conditions and have worthless lives. The bottom line is MONEY! How to get the meat to the people for as cheap as possible. And unless you’re checking out the farm where you buy your meat from, you have no Idea..

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Anonymous (@)1 year, 7 months ago ago

@collinsj2009, I’m actually on day 11? (I started a couple days before the 1st), and I just recently went through some weird emotional rollercoasters. What seems like raging females hormones, but it has subsided. I feel about the same physically and mentally. My focus and energy levels are normal. I have felt a few moments of near euphoria, just random complete happiness, and I’m getting a lot of bad-for-you carb cravings. I’m eating a lot of greens, rice, beans, and nuts.

@kipgoeing, If you would have read the OP… “this thread is not meant to be a discussion about why going vegan is a “good” or “bad” choice…”

You are more than welcome to start your own debate in a new thread if you are that passionate about discussing the topic. However, I can’t let this one slide…

“We don’t have a moral responsibility to keep animals from getting farmed. If we didn’t farm them they wouldn’t exist. Saying you don’t believe in mass farming is like saying to millions of animals, “I wish you were never born.” Animals get eaten. It’s just how it is. If you don’t like it, take it up with Mother Nature or God or wherever you feel your argument wont fall on deaf ears.”

Not to feed fuel to this unnecessary fire (can’t help it), but no vegan in their right mind (who is vegan for animal rights) WANTS animals to be BORN into a farm factory life. Call me cruel, but yes, I would wish they were never born than the endure the suffering they go through. It is beyond me how incredibly terrible the industry is, but that obviously that does not phase you one bit. Also, animals WOULD exist without farms. I’m pretty sure they were doing just fine before we came along and started fucking shit up.

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jamst215 (@jamst215)1 year, 7 months ago ago

@collinsj2009, I’ve been a pescetarian(eats fish time to time and personally only wild and light fishes, the ones without mercury traces.) for 2 years and would like to take up the challenge but right now I don’t control the grocery shopping and it was enough of adjustment for my parents creating non meat dishes for me (which I’m grateful for!). So who knows, when I move out or go to college I definitely want to try out veganism but eat more organic and be more healthy in general.

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jamst215 (@jamst215)1 year, 7 months ago ago

@timschirmer, If it helps whole grain breads and nuts usually give all the proteins you really need. Just try to include some sort of beans or nuts in at least one meal a day.

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Timmy (@timschirmer)1 year, 7 months ago ago

@jamst215, Thanks! Yes, I have been eating lots of nuts. I’m not a huge fan of beans, however, but maybe I can work on changing that..

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