Here in the UK “veganuary” is a really big thing. Thousands have signed up to avoid animal products for the entire month of January.
I know it’s a big thing because yesterday I saw a major shampoo company advertise their product as vegan.
Even British retailers have joined in. Sandwich shop Pret A Manger has several vegan offerings. Clothes and food store Marks and Spencer have a vegan section on their ready meal aisle. Greggs the baker have launched a very tasty vegan sausage roll.
I started my veganuary late in the month, last Friday lunchtime in fact. Today is my fourth full day of dietary veganism.
I’ve tried veganism before and seldom go beyond a couple of days. The main problem is that I’m not keen on nuts, seeds, beans or soya.
This time the first couple of days were made much easier by Marks and Spencer’s vegan ready meals. I had spaghetti bolognese one day and a tofu teriyaki dish the other. In between I had their delicious lentil and tomato soup, and a sandwich with too much avocado in it from Pret A Manger.
The other problem I have with going vegan is that it’s too easy to become a processed food junkie. A surprising number of sugary or salty carb based products are vegan. And even healthy looking, veg based vegan ready meals have preservatives in them.
I’ve read that when you’re vegan you become much more conscious of nutrition.
Possibly the reason people say that is that without animal products we become much more aware of what’s left on the plate. When I eat a nice, juicy beef steak anything else in that meal becomes secondary. I don’t think about whether there’s MSG on the fries as they don’t attract my interest.
Back to my experience this week. I think I’ve been eating too much processed food. Over the next few days I’m going to try for a much simpler diet. Less sugar, less salt and less microwave.