Why I Stopped Being Vegan

I have just failed my second attempt at being vegan. Well, I say failed, however I could have continued. But I decided not to. There are many reasons why, let's go into them….

CHEESE

Honestly though, cheese is the one. Cheddar? Red Leicester? Feta? B.E.A.UTIFUL.

VEGAN JUNK FOOD

When going Vegan, one of my first thoughts was deprivation. I like me some rubbish food, but I have been saying I want to lose weight for so long so I figured it can only be a good thing…. Boy, was I wrong!

There is something imbedded in us as humans, that when we are conscious that we can’t have something, we want it even. more. So when I hear “Oreos are vegan!”, “Hobnobs are vegan!” “This cake is vegan!” “Look!! Vegan Sausage rolls!” and so on… I feel like I HAVE to have them, because I’m soooo deprived.

So when I thought going vegan would save my waist line as well as the animals, that was a lie. I actually put on more weight being a vegan, than being a vegetarian! This could be down to me eating more nuts and the like to ensure I’m getting certain nutrients that I would have been getting from dairy products and eggs…. But mostly I think it was down to the vegan junk food.

LACK OF CHOICE

This may sound like it goes against my previous point, but the lack of choice as a vegan is still fairly difficult in terms of choice and diversity of foods.

There are only so many Oreos I can eat… and don’t get me started on trying to plan a meal out! Attempting to find a restaurant that caters well for vegans is A. PAIN. IN. THE. ARSE.

I know most vegans are out there saying how it’s “so much easier to be vegan now”, but I think that relates more to the vegan junk food as mentioned above, not necessarily actual meals. The amount of times people moaned to me about trying to accommodate me frankly became annoying.

CHEESE

Did I mention how good cheese is? Halloumi salad? Camembert and crusty bread? Brie on crackers?

Look. At. It.

IT JUST LOOKS AND TASTES SO DAMN GOOD!

WILL POWER

The main thing with going vegan is you have to have will power. Having morals is a strong part of this, but watching other munch away on their scrambled eggs, their cheese salad or see the ease in which they can grab a coffee to go was hard.

I’ve never been good at the whole will power thing, one of the reasons I’ve struggled to lose weight in a healthy way (and that is a whole other topic…) or to quit smoking, I well and truly suck at it.

I managed to maintain the vegan diet for around eight months, but my will power over that time decreased majorly, particularly around the Christmas holidays…. Not being able to enjoy a snow ball drink or dig into the selection boxes in the office wasn’t exactly enjoyable. So, slowly but surely my will power just disappeared until finally I caved.

My morals however, are still there, which brings me to my final point…

THE STRUGGLE WITH STOPPING A VEGAN DIET

I am fundamentally an animal lover. I have been vegetarian for most of my life, and feel genuinely sad hearing of animal abuse, farming and about the dairy industry.

This is why the thing I battled with most when deciding to give up on the whole vegan thing, as I hate thinking of the industry I am contributing to by consuming dairy and eggs. I was out there preaching, granted no where near as much as the hard core vegans, but I was still preaching it. And then here I am going against everything I said. I still believe everything I said, but if my decision is affecting my mental health and giving me a daily struggle it just wasn’t worth it.

I guess I deal with it now with a kind of “out of sight, out of mind" type mindset. Which I am aware isn’t great, and something which gave me further anguish over as VEGANS. ARE. SCARY.

Honestly, the biggest thing I had to battle with when making this decision was my fear of other vegans. They saw me out there living the vegan life, preaching and raving about my new vegan diet. Then I switched it all and starting chomping on blocks of cheddar (not literally, but I came close…) — I felt like they would see it as a slap in the face.

I am very lucky in that I actually haven’t received a lot of back lash, and generally people are pleased I’m back to being a plan old veggie as it’s easier for them. But I am aware there will be people out there who hate me for this, and I may get some form of backlash for this article. However, fundamentally it is my decision and right now, the veganism life isn’t for me.

Who knows, maybe I’ll go back in the future, when my willpower is stronger and the availability of food is better… but for now I’m sticking to vegetarianism.

Shout out to the Vegans out there who find it easy and are smashing it for the animals though!

A part time writer, studying for my BA (Hons) Degree Creative Writing. My interests include mental health, politics, LGBT rights, fiction, poetry and many more!

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