Vegans can be really annoying. They share the grossest videos on social media. It is nearly impossible to get through a complete conversation without them saying something about why they feel amazing since giving up dairy. When someone calls himself or herself a vegan, the immediate picture that comes to mind is a scrawny hippy with a bumper stick on their eco friendly car that says “MEAT IS MURDER.”
That kind of behavior seems absurd, and in reality it paints a picture of some really crazy people. Demanding to know what goes in your body and taking care of it is not that crazy. Most of the time going plant based is more about finding the things we were supposed to thrive on rather than a list of dos and don’ts.
I have been eating plant based on and off since the end of last school year and if I’m honest I’ve spent a lot more time off. It’s hard in college, especially when the cafeteria doesn’t label things well enough for me to know what is in it half the time, but most of the time I do try to limit my intake of most animal products. And I can tell you there are a lot of lies about vegans out there that probably should be fixed.
Lie #1: “Being vegan is too expensive.”
Most of what our bodies need to survive can be found in bananas and potatoes and maybe some legumes. That’s not me telling you to only eat thirty bananas every day. Half the fun of changing your lifestyle is getting creative and playing around with it. You don’t need the super expensive overly processed food that’s supposed to look like meat, just eat things that have nothing to do with meat.
Lie #2: “Vegans can’t be athletes”
Mike Tyson is a vegan, enough said. Venus Williams became a vegan after being diagnosed with an autoimmune disease and is still a record holding tennis player in her 30’s. There are internationally recognized ultra-runners and body builders who are all proudly plant-based. Just Google them and you’ll be amazed at how many you can find. There are also countless other celebrities and academics who have hopped on the vegan train. Leonardo DiCaprio, Albert Einstein, Steve Jobs, Betty White, and Anne Hathaway are just a few.
Lie #3: “You can’t get enough protein”
This one is just silly. What our bodies need is so much more complicated than the vague category of protein. In fact when we eat dairy it blocks our ability to absorb protein. If you are really worried about it, you can use an online diet tracking app. You will be amazing at how quickly vegetables fill up all your required nutrients. Most people are lactose intolerant. After infancy all other animals give up milk except for humans. Now I know it taste amazing, I love cheese, but at some point the supposed benefits that the agriculture industry has told us about just don’t add up and our bodies really struggle to handle this substance. Perks of being vegan is also getting to eat a ton more food than normal when you eat the things that are really good for you. Honestly when I’m not eating animal products, I can eat all the time.
Lie #4: “God gave us the animals to eat”
Read Genesis 1 – “Then God said, ‘I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food. And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds in the sky and all the creatures that move along the ground—everything that has the breath of life in it—I give every green plant for food.’ And it was so.”
We really were supposed to just eat plants. Instead we have fallen into the ways of sin and decided that our pets looked tasty.
I am an awful vegan. I will admit it. In fact, I think that those hippy “Meat is Murder” people would say I’m not a vegan at all, but I do believe in taking care of myself and eating more of the things that build up my body rather than tear it down.
— Erica Browning, Staff Writer