Tips, Facts and Updates For Vegetarians and Vegans From the Nation's Favorite Online Store For Meat Alternatives!

How To Get Your Carnivorous Family On Board With Going Vegan

Choosing to adopt a plant-based lifestyle is a lot easier if you have all the support you can get – especially from your family. However, it hardly works out the way we expect it too. Predominantly, vegetarians are at risk of feeling somewhat outcast during family gatherings; or even dinner. And combined with the slight ridicule you are likely to experience for not eating meat from strangers, the experience can prove more daunting than you envision.

Here are a few tips on getting your families support, even if they are omnivores –

Understand That They Might Misunderstand You

Going in, it is important to be acutely aware that very few people know what it means to be a vegan or vegetarian. The result is often a few snide comments and criticism. Your best defense is to be prepared and not get emotional about them.

A good way to think about it is to know that your family doesn’t mean any harm, and in an attempt to look out for your best interest, they might insist on their way – only because it is the only way they know. If you are thrown a banter of questions from “where do you get your protein from?” to “but aren’t vegans malnourished?” , your best chance at getting out from beneath the pile of arguments, is to respond with calm, clear and concise answers.

Some other times, their opinions are not based on ignorance but rather out of a guilty conscience.  If your family already knows that meat is linked to health problems and are aware of the environmental destruction, leading by example is usually the best course of action.  Once your family sees how easy it is to give up meat,  they might be encouraged to make the switch themselves.

Don’t Explain Yourself

When you announce that you are going vegan, don’t try to explain why.  While this goes against pretty much all the advice out there which tells you to prepare with a lengthy list of reasons supporting your decision, it will only make you seem preachy if you start answering questions that nobody has asked. A much better move would be to wait until they ask you why. 

You Can, However, Explain What You Will and Won’t Eat

Make it easy on your family by clearly explaining what you will and won’t eat. You’d be surprised how many people still don’t know what vegan means – and this is why every time everyone sits at the table, they aren’t quite sure how to take care of your own needs.

Assure Them That You Aren’t Against Their Personal Preferences

Nobody wants to be made to feel as though the choices of others are attacking their lifestyle. So be clear about the fact that your family can eat meat around you. However, insist that they are respectful of your decisions – because, just because you have taken the moral high-road, doesn’t mean your family must too.  Unfortunately, you can’t demand something as steep as “don’t eat meat around me anymore.” That would just be a recipe for disaster.

Volunteer to Cook

If you aren’t living alone you may want to volunteer to take over the cooking once in awhile. Once they figure out that vegan food tastes good, who knows, they might even start cooking vegan too. Get some vegan cookbooks, pick out recipes together, and cook the meal together.  Instead of tearing your family apart, going vegan might bring you all together.

Many times volunteering to cook might prove counterproductive if you’re not quite sure what to buy and where to shop – Vegefood.com is a good place to start. With a wide range of meat alternatives and health food products, you will have confidence knowing you have plenty of great tasting vegan/vegetarian products to experiment with.

Posted 8 weeks ago

7 Strange Habits Every Hardcore Vegan Has

Apart from being relentlessly adamant about avoiding animal products vegans have a few habits that are considered quirky, and just a little strange to non-vegans. It sets vegans apart in more ways than one in a way that the typical omnivore might find utterly ridiculous, but with good reason. For long-time vegans, a few of these are just regular habits picked up on their vegan journey; but if you are looking to go vegan, you might want to be aware of these weird habits, and realize there’s nothing you can do to dull down the weirdness. It comes with the territory.

  • Shop Very Meticulously

How do you identify a vegan from a group of shoppers? They are probably the only ones hunched over their vegan food items, closely studying their labels in absolute concentration. Most omnivores skim through the fine print – but vegans can’t afford the ‘luxury’ of eating just about anything, and they are not taking any chances.

  • Use Unusual Kitchen Gadgets

There’s always a familiar humming sound coming from the kitchen of a vegan. It could be anything from the dehydrator which is frequently in go-mode while making some tasty eggplant bacon or drying out some vegan meat strips into vegan jerky, to a wheat grass juicer that is probably whipping up some banana ice cream – even though the juicer often looks like a medieval torture device. And that is only two, out of the 10,000 possible kitchen gadgets used to make a little vegan magic.  

  • Make Their Own “Cheez.”

Mid conversation with a vegan, you will find that they use strange looking phrases like “I have some cashews soaking to use for pizza tonight”; which should sound like quite a string of strange words to the average omnivore. Even though vegan “cheez” isn’t exactly like dairy cheese, you probably won’t miss the real stuff once you start experimenting with recipes.  Cashew cheese (made by soaking cashews and then blending them with fresh herbs) is probably the easiest and most popular, and there are also dozens of recipes for vegan cheese made from nutritional yeast.

  • Keep An Impressive Jar Collection

Think about it, how many vegans do you know that throw out jars from things like pickles and olives? Probably none. This is because the jars often come in handy for storing weird staples bought in bulk. Everything from rice, lentils, flax meal, and the different types of seeds you’ll probably need for making vegan meals, all need a good jar to sit for a while in the cupboards.

  • Travel with Stockpiles of Food

Veganism is popular, and vegan food just as well, but finding GOOD vegan food while on the road isn’t always easy, so vegans tend to hit the road with entire arsenals of food. You will find that the average vegan has a flax meal stashed away somewhere, and maybe some soy milk and killer vegan pancakes – but no vegan wants to go hungry. Most especially because, they don’t want to be tempted to negotiate their veganism.

  • Cook, Saute, Grill… Just About Everything

Being vegan often means that you have to become a lot more experimental with food than most omnivores. Besides having a vegan cook book handy, it is important to blend in at social functions without feeling too left out.  So, don’t be surprised if vegans show up to a BBQ and start throwing things like pineapple slices and papaya onto the grill along with the kind of yummy veggie burgers you can find at vegefood.com

  • Talk About Poo without Shame

Bowel movement problems are a rarity with vegans, all those fruits, vegetables, brown rice and whole wheat pays off in seamless trips to the john. So don’t be surprised if you stumble on vegans chatting quite freely about their bowel movements. If you had good bowel movements, you would probably know that some poos are worth talking about.  

Posted 11 weeks ago

Five Common Mistakes People Make When Switching to a Vegan Diet

Being a brand-new, fresh-out-of-the-box vegan has it’s down side. You are wide eyed, undamaged and oblivious to possible hazards of restricting yourself to a vegan diet. If you made the switch because of the narrative that a vegan diet is the answer to all of your health problems, you might certainly be disappointed.  

Sure, a vegan diet will provide more benefits than you can number, but this advantage is limited by the fact that it is possible to become an unhealthy vegan if you don’t make an educated effort to maintain an well balanced vegan diet.

So, is there such a thing as an unhealthy vegan diet? Absolutely!

Here are some of the most common mistakes you should avoid making whether you are a newbie or a long term vegan.

Not Eating Enough Healthy Plant Based Protein

Even though there is no reason NOT to remove meat and animal products from your diet, there are only a limited number of vegan foods that can provide you with an adequate amount of protein. Eating plenty of green leafy veggies and healthy grains is essential for a optimum health and a vibrant life but it is important to be sure to include a good source of protein in your diet from beans, nuts, and substitute meat products.

Not Eating Fats (altogether)

Most vegans consume foods naturally low in fat. While this can be beneficial somewhat, it can also be a double-edged sword, because of some fats like Omega 3 fatty acids and DHA, which are quite healthy and beneficial to the body. However, while Omega 3 fatty acids can be found in nuts and seeds, DHA production is also hindered by the abundance of Omega 6 – also found in the same nuts and seeds as Omega 3. Your best bet would be to select a few good options which are high in Omega 3’s but low in Omega 6. A few of which are flax seed, chia seeds, and beans.

Not Scrutinizing Your Food Labels

Vegan food has become so popular that stores are abundant with products with glaring “VEGAN” labels on them. However, just because it is labeled vegan, it doesn’t mean it is healthy.  Taking your time to read and study the label, will help you make informed decisions in that regard. And this doesn’t apply strictly to vegetarians alone. If the ingredients have preservatives, artificial flavors and a lot of long words you can’t pronounce, you probably should avoid it all together!

Choosing White Flour Over Grain

Whole grains are an excellent source of iron, as well as a few other nutrients like zinc, magnesium, protein, fiber and some B vitamins. It is important to choose whole grains instead of enriched or refined grains which are stripped of vital nutrients.

There is a little confusion about what ‘whole grain’ means. A whole grain isn’t ‘whole’ unless it has all three parts included – i.e. the Bran, Endosperm, and Germ. If you eat a diet high in refined white flour, you will find your self at a risk of nutrient deficiency.

Eliminating the Meat, and Dairy but Sticking to Your Regular Diet

A balanced, healthy vegan diet is a far cry from just eliminating meat and dairy from your diet. It is a lifestyle that is all encompassing. It is common to become bored with the choices available to you when starting out with your new healthy lifestyle. After all veggies, fruits, beans, nuts, grains and seeds can seem a bit simplistic. 

Thanks to the tasty meat alternatives available at vegefood.com  including vegetarian, vegan, gluten free, soy free and non-GMO food items, it is effortless to transition to a vegan diet. There are even vegan chicken, hot dogs, and sea food available. Everything is easy to prepare and tasty. But whatever you do, it is important to achieve balance. Vegans need to compensate for the lower levels of iron, calcium, fatty acids, and certain other nutrients in their diet by eating more fresh veggies – especially greens. 

The best advice you’ll probably read here is to buy a vegan cookbook and start experimenting. This happens to be one of the benefits of going vegan.  Cooking will find you trying all sorts of yummy new foods that you’d never even considered before

Well, if you’re guilty of making any of these mistakes; not all is lost – Start stocking up on fresh veggies and meat replacements, especially if you want vegan food to be anything like the one-size-fits-all solution that you were told it was.

Posted 12 weeks ago

5 Things Vegan Food Does For You

Vegan meat was once notorious for being cardboard like and bland; the assumption had been drawn, based on the false conclusion that meatless food cannot be tasty.

However, in recent years, more and more people are deciding to go vegan and are choosing to turn to meat alternatives - a blatant discredit to the tastelessness of vegan meat, and a testament to the fact that adopting a vegan diet has benefits that are desirable.

Besides the numerous health benefits of eating vegan food and meat substitutes – adopting the diet also translates into less stress on the environment and more efficient ways to use resources, but you probably are already aware of that. So what are the other things that vegan food does for you?


#1. Vegan Food Slows the Aging Process

Vegans look and feel younger – and there’s a reason. The vegan diet promotes collagen production. Collagen loss as we age makes the skin appear thinner and saggier and causes those defiant wrinkles.

Several vegans bear testament to the fact that their healthy, bright and glowing skin is a benefit of their mostly plant-based diet. And if you think about it, almost all the vegans you know have remarkable skin and look great without makeup.

It all makes sense, eating a plant-based diet often means you’re taking in more vitamins, antioxidants, and minerals than most people. But it’s not just skin that stands to benefit,   all that Omega-3 and vitamin A and B, results in healthier nails and fuller, healthy-looking hair.

#2 Vegan Food Translates To More Energy

Eating vegan food usually means that your digestive system has a lot less work to do. If you overwork your digestive system, you feel lethargic and low on energy, which means you are less productive throughout the day.

You automatically have tremendous amounts of energy because your body can tell the difference, and it certainly appreciates it.

#3 Vegan Food Decreases the Risk of Cancer

Research suggests that about 1/3 of all cancers are preventable, and can be influenced by factors within your control; including your diet.

Eating legumes, for instance, may reduce your risk of colorectal cancer by up to18%

Eating seven portions of fresh fruits and vegetables per day may lower your risk of cancer by up to 15%.Vegans eat more legumes, fruit, and vegetables than non-vegans. Which explains why vegans may benefit from  the 15% lower risk of developing cancer

Vegan diets also contain more soy products, which may offer some protection against breast cancer; And the list goes on.

#4 Vegan Food Promotes  Healthier Skin and Eliminates Body Odor and Bad Breath

Many people who switch to a vegan diet notice a remarkable reduction in skin blemishes as well. But it doesn’t end there. Eliminating dairy and red meat from their diets also significantly reduces body odor. So, eating vegan food means smelling better

They have the vitamins A and E from vegetables to thank for their role in nourishing the skin, so vegans will usually have good skin health. To top things off, eating vegan food means you will experience a reduction in bad breath – Imagine waking up in the morning and not having morning breath!

#5 Vegan Food Helps You Sleep Better

Having more energy by day usually means you’ll get better quality sleep at night.

It has everything to do with what you’re eating by day. By excluding meat, eggs or dairy – you end up eating a lot of nuts, fruits, and vegetables instead.

Plant-based foods are high in vitamin B6, magnesium and potassium, which aids in the production of serotonin and helps to relax the body and mind.

Vegan food provides a wide array of health benefits proven in many scientific case studies around the world. Switching to a vegan diet it can help you live longer more fulfilling life. Visit our store for a great selection of vegan products and more at www.vegefood.com

Posted 13 weeks ago

5 Quick Tips For Delicious Vegan Food – Every Time

Every vegan cook is faced with the somewhat daunting task of making meatless meals that taste great. This might prove to be quite a challenge, especially if you are hosting a mixed crowd of herbivores that are insistent on an absolute animal-free meal, and carnivores that simply are unwilling to negotiate the quality of their food; which is usually imparted by animal-rich flavors.

Everybody wants inside scoops – backstage passes for…pretty much everything, and with vegan cooking – there is an abundance of tricks and tips. These tips are often the only thing standing in between you and great tasting vegan meals, or the undesirable alternatives.

Here are five cooking secrets that will make cooking a vegan meal a breeze … and a delicious one at that!

Build A Balanced Meal

To begin with, choose a menu that is rich in a variety of nutrients. For instance, combining protein and fiber sources will help you feel fuller for much longer. A noodle salad, for example – that gets protein from edamame and fiber from carrots, seaweed and peppers is a  rich and thoroughly balanced option.

Don’t Be Afraid To Mix Things Up

There is something about diced, roasted sweet potatoes in a raw salad and fresh orange slices tossed with lightly steamed greens are everything that your vegan guests long for – and then some.

By combining raw and cooked ingredients, you can bring a meal to life. It creates some interesting textures and flavors. However,  the combination’s most significant impact is that it alters the energy of the dish and makes it feel lighter.

Mixing cooked ingredients with raw ones elevates the dish by creating antagonistic temperatures which can, along with texture differences, make a dish sparkle. It’s a great and utterly simple way to keep things from getting boring!

Slow Roast

By choosing to slow-roast food, you reduce the amount of water it contains, thus intensifying the flavors and making the texture chewier.

Cooked meat contains about 55-65 % water. While it sounds like a lot, compared to veggies, which are 80-95 % water.

Roasting tomatoes for the lasagna sauce make the sauce taste more deep and savory.

Include Glutamate Humans can detect glutamate in foods. This gives food an appeal that is neither sweet, salty, sour or bitter. Most people know glutamate from monosodium glutamate. However, it is also a naturally occurring and safe compound found in meat—as well as many other foods.

The process of fermentation improves the glutamate content of food. This explains why soy sauce and aged cheeses like Parmesan are so “savory.” Vegetables high in glutamate include asparagus, seaweed, peas, and onions.

Shop Smart

Don’t believe everything you hear  – not everything that poses as ‘vegan’ truly is.

If you are looking to improve your odds of making great tasting vegan food, your best bet would be to find reliable stores with high-quality vegan foods, meat alternatives, and seasonings that would improve your odds of having a hassle free cooking experience.

Vegefood.com provides a wide variety of meat replacements including vegetarian, vegan, gluten free, soy free and non-GMO food items.  And with a selection of over 100 plant based food items, you will certainly not run out of ideas to impress your guests.

Simply put, vegefood.com gives you VIP access to that backstage pass you’ve always wanted.

Posted 16 weeks ago