1) Why did you go vegan?
Megan- It started with a plant based diet. I was watching Forks Over Knives and it scared me out of touching dairy again. I was already a vegetarian for health reasons. I initially wasn't sure how to tell people I had made this “radical” change so I said I was going Vegan to “cleanse” myself for 30 days. Then I did a ton of research and also started feeling so good I really never went back. Almost 7 years strong now! Also I quickly learned how good it was for the environment so that morally stuck with me as well.
2) What positive changes have you seen since going vegan?
Megan- Omg the first thing I noticed was that after about 3 months my nails were so strong. Like, way stronger than before. This really got me hooked because I knew that hair and nail health is a huge indicator of how many vitamins and minerals you are consuming. Well, actually the first thing was I lost 10 pounds which I hear is super common but I was for sure a really healthy vegan when I was starting. I learned to cook when going vegan because I refused to use any meat substitutes and only wanted to cook with what was in a normal American kitchen. I got SUPER creative!
3) How did your closest friends and family react?
Megan- They probably thought it was a phase and I’m pretty sure they thought I was going to die from a lack protein. Idk why... all I ate before was buttered pasta anyway. LOL, and that was easy to veganize. (Thanks Earth Balance!)
4) Favorite dish?
5) How was adjusting to cooking vegan?
Megan- I learned to cook when going vegan because I refused to use any meat substitutes and only wanted to cook with what was in a normal American kitchen. I got SUPER creative and learned so much about spices. Now that I’m not afraid of using alternatives as well as having a good handle on whole foods eating I kinda kill it!
6) Are your skincare and hair products vegan too?
Megan- I am BIG into skin care. Not gonna lie this was the last thing I thought about when I went vegan. I definitely only buy mainly vegan products now but that took a while for me, faded away again from pressures to be more “normal” and then I started going back to vegan products again. I am not a snob if some products use honey (so call me a flexitarian, WHAT EVER!) But I definitely stay away from anything with collagen or other animal ingredients. We all started somewhere! Veganism isn’t about being perfect, it’s an effort in a non-vegan world! Also, I use some cosmetic injectables... I've had lip filler and botox. Even though the ingredients are vegan, ANY FDA approved medication is tested on animals. So even though its something I OPT to partake in, I don't feel its any worse than a vegan college student who decides to take a prescription drug to help study for a test. Even illegal drugs are HORRIBLE for the environment and deforestation which hurts animals. I'm not perfect and chances are the rare, preachy ones aren't either.
7) How about Clothes
K, so... I may be controversial here but I still wear leather. Don't freak out, my leather stuff is ALWAYS second hand. (TBH I have maybe 2 really nice gifts made from leather as well.) I honestly am vegan with the intention of not only helping my health, but also for the environment. So plastic leather is NOT for me. If I want cute boots, I go to buffalo exchange, cross roads, or online to Depop, Poshmark, Thread Up, or The Real Real. You guys, before I fell in love with vegan cooking, I was obsessed with fashion. I even went to school for it before changing my major to business. Second hand fashion gives me a way to wear designer fashion I love with out condoning leather to the brand by directly giving say... Gucci, my money. Plus its a killer deal for me. Also did you know that leather is a byproduct of the Meat industry? So, as less and less people consume meat, the more pressure the fashion industry will have to create better technology for plant leathers. I hear mushroom leather is a thing now!
9) Best advice for someone considering going vegan?
Megan- Take your time. If you go from full omnivore to vegan overnight you will likely fail. Do you research while being a vegetarian or giving up dairy and then when you are ready just go for it. I told myself I would be vegan everyday except holidays. Of course that didn't happen, my palet changed. It's not like non-vegan food repulsed me all of a sudden or anything, I just don’t consider it food. It’s just like a piece of plastic or something to me.