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Why I Chose to go Vegan

People choose to go vegan for lots of different reasons. Some do it to help the world's farm animals, some to save the environment, and some to protect their health. Here's why I chose to go vegan.

My Early Experiences with Veganism/Vegetarianism
Growing up, my parents had gone vegan and vegetarian a few times throughout the years to try and improve their health, but each time they did, I pushed against it. I never wanted to join them. I loved my meats and cheeses and that wasn’t going to change. For that reason, there was always a little bit of chicken or cheese in our kitchen, and so we never had a fully vegan or vegetarian kitchen. It made foods like meat and dairy a lot more accessible when cravings hit, especially during the holidays, and after a few months, it's no wonder why my parents decided to stop being vegan.

Challenging Myself
Fast forward to a few months ago, I think it was a surprise to everyone in my family when this time I agreed to join my parents on their new plant-based journey. They had just been to the doctor and felt that they could be living a healthier lifestyle. Thinking back to a time when they felt their healthiest, they decided to go back to veganism, starting with the Engine 2 7-day Rescue Challenge.

If you’re interested in Engine 2, here is the plan we followed (loosely):
Engine 2 7-Day Rescue Challenge

My Mindset Change
With Engine 2 as our kickstarter, we did a lot of research on veganism and the plant-based diet, and in our research there were three Documentaries/Docuseries on Netflix that really made an impact on my decision.

The Game Changers Directed By Louie Psihoyos

The Game Changers really showed me how veganism could improve my health, particularly when it comes to cholesterol. When they did an experiment where they compared the clarity of different athlete blood samples before and after eating plant-based, I knew it was time for a change. It was also really cool to see how body-builders could improve their energy levels and thrive under a plant-based diet. While I don’t plan to get into heavy weight-lifting anytime soon, if there’s any way I increase my energy during exercise, I'll take it.

Explained - “The Future of Meat” - Season 2 Episode 3 Produced By Christophe Haubursin

This short episode of my favorite Netflix docuseries Explained, was really interesting because it went into the history and realities of the meat industry and revealed how eating plant-based can help protect me from meat-based illnesses like Salmonella.

What the Health Directed By: Kip Andersen and Keegan Kuhn

Lastly, something I found interesting about What the Health, was how the directors revealed a clear relationship between health organizations and the meat and dairy industries through sponsorships. I thought it was interesting to learn that some medical research is being funded by the very industries that may be causing some of the diseases they are researching.

My Ultimate Decision
As with any major lifestyle change, I think it was super important for me to do my research and to really understand what I was getting myself into with this plant-based/vegan diet. So in the end, I decided to go vegan because I wanted to reduce my cholesterol, boost my energy, and lower my susceptibility to meat-based illnesses.

Ultimately, what started with a week long challenge became my current lifestyle, and I honestly feel better than ever.


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