Author: Francesca - Mr Lee's Team
Welcome to the first post of our new blog! With Veganuary coming to an end, many of you may have recently switched to plant-based eating and some of you may be considering fully adopting this lifestyle. Either way, the idea of removing all animal products from your diet may feel a bit overwhelming and you may like some help in the process.
Veganism has grown tremendously in the past years and is becoming a more mainstream trend amongst society. The Vegan Society found that the number of UK residents self-identifying as vegans quadrupled between 2014 and 2019. According to Google Trends, interest in this phenomenon soared during 2019, being four times more searched than vegetarian and gluten free diets. The reasons to switch to veganism vary, from animal rights and personal health to environmental concerns but its benefits are undeniable. So, whether you have just started transitioning and need some inspiration, or you simply want to broaden your knowledge and learn more about this trend, we’ve put together a list of resources which can help you in your journey. From reasons to go vegan, to tips on how to transition and ideas for plant-based meals, this list can help you make the most out of this lifestyle.
There are a vast array of books related to this topic, whilst some will change the way you think of animals or the planet, others will provide original ways for spicing up your tofu.
One of the most popular books in the vegan community is How not to die by Michael Greger. This book provides relevant information on how different foods impact your body and overall health, helping you to learn what your body needs and how to adequately nourish it.
If animal welfare is one of your main motivations to turn vegan, Some We Love, Some We Hate, Some We Eat: Why It’s So Hard to Think Straight About Animals by Hal Herzog is all about the psychology behind the way we interact with animals. The book offers a whole new perspective on the relationship between humans and animals.
Eating Animals focuses on the workings of the meat production business. In this book, Jonathan Safran Foer explores the moral dimension behind eating certain animals and not others.
Bosh are the go-to recipe books for many vegans out there who need some mealtime inspiration. If cooking is one of your worries, their books will become your best friend. Ian Theasby and Henry Firth, founders of Bosh, will definitely help you get more plants on your plate in an easy and extremely tasty way. I received Speedy Bosh as a Christmas present and I have to say it’s amazing, perfect for those of you who have not got much time to dedicate to the kitchen.
If you are interested in the health aspect of veganism, Forks over Knives is one of the most popular documentaries out there. Released back in 2011, the film advocates that food is medicine. What the health also delves into the health benefits of adopting a plant-based diet and the detrimental effects the consumption of animal products can have on our bodies. Both these documentaries will open your eyes to the importance of diet in our everyday life.
You can also learn about real life experiences with The Game Changers. The film delves into a variety of stories of plant-based top athletes and follows them as they prepare to compete in sports events.
Veganism is not only good for health reasons, it is also beneficial for the planet. Cowspiracy focuses on the link between animal agriculture and climate change. This film will widen your perspective and may make you reconsider your food choices. Available on Netflix or purchase it directly from here.
If you don’t know where to start when it comes to plant-based food, don’t let this stop you as there are many apps out there that can help you in the process.
21-Day Vegan Kickstart offers 21 days of vegan meal plans created by nutrition experts as well as a library of recipes from all over the globe, nutrition tips and grocery lists. With this app your transition to a vegan diet will be smooth and easy.
Not sure whether you will be able to sustain a diet without eggs, bacon or cheese? Not to worry, Veggie Alternatives will find animal-friendly alternatives to replace your favourite ingredients so that you don’t worry about limiting your food choices. Available on both Apple and Android.
If one of your worries is not having like-minded people around you, Meetup is a great way of getting to know people who share the same interests. Search for vegan, animal rights or environmentalist groups in your city and share your experience with them. Although covid-19 restrictions may make in-person meetings difficult at the moment, the app also allows you to join virtual events.
When travelling is allowed again, download HappyCow on the Go and find vegan, vegetarian and vegan-friendly places to eat in over 180 countries around the world. Don’t let travelling to a new location scare you, with this app you will find somewhere to eat vegan for sure!
Plant-based food products
The demand for vegan products has increased so much that companies have really worked towards putting out products on the market that satisfy this need and it is now easier than ever to find vegan options. We have selected a few of our favourites:
Deliciously Ella, which started off as a personal blog by Ella Mills, has now become a household brand offering a range of plant-based foods, recipe books and a mobile application, amongst many other things. If you are looking for healthy and flavoursome snacks, these products definitely tick both boxes.
If you are looking for a good dairy alternative, Oatly is the answer. Their plant-based products include a range of drinks, yoghurts and cooking cream all made from oats. Ginny, the Mr Lee’s Marketing Manager, who has been a vegetarian for almost 20 years, swears by their Greek-style yoghurt.
If you think you will have to stop eating ice-cream and chocolate because you are now vegan, you are completely wrong. Booja Booja make melt-in-the-mouth vegan chocolate balls and ice creams which are great for satisfying your sweet cravings. Their products are made with real organic ingredients and are available in a range of different flavours.
It can be tempting to rely on imitation meat products when first going vegan, but part of the fun of the vegan lifestyle is branching out into new things. This is definitely what our Financial Accounts Manager Jimmy thinks. He loves the flavoured Tofu and the soybean Tempeh from The Tofoo Co.
At Mr Lee’s we’ve also got you covered! Our two vegan flavours of noodles are registered with The Vegan Society. Mr Lee’s Zen Garden Vegetables and Dragon Fire Vegetables are the perfect quick lunchtime meal, with real freeze-dried vegetables and packed full of protein.
Instagram has a big community of vegan influencers that give advice to those who need it. From those who actively fight for animal welfare or post about their lifestyle to those who are avid plant-based foodies, these accounts can be of great help.
Michaela Vais’ account is used to share her love for cooking healthy and nutritious vegan meals. Her mouth-watering kitchen creations are sure to inspire you and give you new ideas. You can follow her on @elavegan
If you want to learn more about veganism, Ed Winters is the person to follow, a vegan activist who uses his account to share his love towards animals and the planet in an educational format. Find information, debates and positive discussions on his account @EarthlingEd
Jess Beautician’s account comes with a balance of both lifestyle and food. You can find cruelty-free beauty tips, sustainable and second-hand fashion recommendations and a range of plant-based recipes. Her content also covers topics such as home, travel and family.
Last year we also got the chance to speak to three people who were following vegan or vegetarian diets, you can read all about their journey in our Big Vegan Interview.
Following a vegan lifestyle or a plant-based diet is anything but difficult when there’s such a variety of helpful resources available out there! With this list you don’t need to panic about saying goodbye to animal-based products.
Whilst you’re digesting all this information and putting your resources into action, you can always start with our range of vegan noodles available to buy from us here or if you prefer you can also find them at Holland & Barrett.
We’d love to hear how you get on - [email protected]