Happy Earth Day!!! Today is one of my favorite days of the year. I love participating in Earth Day actives, talking to people about how they work to reduce their impact on the planet, and where they're looking to learn or do more.
Every year on Earth Day since I joined social media, anyway, I post the following George Carlin quote, it's sad and it's accurate, but what I always add in my post, is that it doesn't have to stay that way.
“Oh Beautiful for smoggy skies, insecticided grain, For strip-mined mountain's majesty above the asphalt plain. America, America, man sheds his waste on thee, And hides the pines with billboard signs, from sea to oily sea." - George Carlin
I haven't always been so optimistic, believing things don't have to say that way. In fact, in some aspects of my life I am very much not an optimist, but I truly believe in the power we hold as individual consumers when we profoundly change and move away from how we've "always done things." Let's also be honest about something, even if we are currently or soon to be the only vegan we know, we're influencing those around us, whether we intend to or not. Once you tell people you're vegan, there will be those who pay attention to you because they want to "catch" you doing something "not vegan" and there are others that just quietly observe, learning from you, seeds are planted and sometimes, they grow into new vegans.
Going vegan saves the following resources every day
1100 gallons of water
30 square feet of forest
40 pounds of grain
20 pounds of CO2
1 animals life
You can fill in the calculator to see the impact you could have over the rest of your life if you go vegan today. Play around, see what and who you'll have saved after having been vegan for 10 years!
Here are some tips to get you started:
Be open to looking at your plate differently. A balanced meal does not have to mean, protein, carb, veggies in 3 distinct piles on your plate. Embrace meals that tie it all together - Dahls, Buddha Bowls, stir frys, tacos, pasta dishes...etc.
Challenge yourself to try a new fruit or vegetable each week
Give into the cravings with a vegan option. You may find that you're missing a dish you've loved since childhood or your go-to dish that saves you time, there's a vegan version for everything. Either made with whole plants or some more processed items. For example, if you have a hankering for a cheeseburger and you haven't quite yet mastered making your own, don't beat yourself up for grabbing a Beyond Burger and some vegan cheese from the grocery store (Follow Your Heart Gouda is my recommendation)
Ask questions - find a vegan and ask. That's why I'm here! (and if you don't want to talk to me, no hard feelings - I know other vegans I can connect you with 😉)
In case you do want to talk with me, you can schedule a free discovery session - these aren't sales calls, we spend 30 minutes having a conversation.
Sign Up for my signature class Veganize It! (Next class is this Sunday, 4/24)
Visit a local Farm Animal Sanctuary, meet the animals who were lucky enough to be saved (some saved themselves) from the animal agriculture industry, learn their stories, and witness how they get to live now.
Spend time thinking about why you want to go vegan. Dig deep, change is always easier and longer lasting when something meaningful to us is the catalyst.
Here are some resources to get you started:
Check out some vegan cookbooks from your local library - then keep a recipe box of your favorites or buy a copy of the cookbook and write your notes directly in there (that's what I do, my favorite cookbooks are full of writing and sauce stains - that's how you know they're loved)
Follow vegan bloggers who also share recipes like Isa Chandra Moskowitz, Vegan Richa , It doesn't taste like Chicken, and Toni Okamoto. I've linked Toni's instagram page as she posts her recipes on there and when she offers it, if you comment on the post she'll send you the recipe via DM.
Visit my site for some free resources
Catch the replay of the latest The Vegan Stew episode - we cover timesaving kitchen tips. If you're concerned about having to cook more as a vegan, we've got some great ideas for you.
I hope this feels to you like a good place to get started, what's one vegan step you'll take in honor of Earth Day?