Advertising
Advertising

From Omnivore To Vegan: 12 Vegan Health Benefits That Surprised Me

From Omnivore To Vegan: 12 Vegan Health Benefits That Surprised Me

Going from an omnivore to a vegan is a pretty difficult and radical transition to make. On the face of it, it seems easy, but there are cravings and foods that just taste so good some people find them hard to give up (bacon, for example). Personally, I had a lot of trouble giving up double decker tacos at Taco Bell. If you need a little motivation, here’s a reminder of the vegan health benefits.

1. You’re probably going to lose weight

Cheese, meat, and eggs all have one thing in common: they’re high in fat. That bacon cheeseburger tastes really good but it also contains a bunch of fat. The average bacon cheeseburger has nine grams of saturated fat and a whopping 20 grams of regular fat. Never mind the cholesterol, we’ll talk about that in a minute. When I went vegan, I went from 210lbs to about 170lbs in 15 months. It’s not as dramatic as some people, but still pretty good.

2. You’ll feel less bloated

This was the first thing I really noticed when I went vegan. When you eat more fruits, vegetables, and grains, you’re eating more fiber. Fiber helps move things along down there and keep your digestive tract healthy. The result is feeling less bloated. It’s a really nice feeling too.

3. You’ll have more energy

Advertising

vegan health benefits

    When you switch to being a vegan, you inevitably eat more fruits and veggies. This provides you with natural carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals, which help boost your energy. Many people have reported that they wake up, have their morning smoothie, and are bouncing off the walls before too long. Of course, you should also be careful. The change can also give you too much energy and give you a case of insomnia. Make sure you’re working off that extra energy!

    4. Your skin will clear up

    Meat means grease and grease getting into your pores will give you the kind of acne teenagers have nightmares about. You’re consuming less fat, which means healthier blood vessels, which in turn means your skin is getting more oxygen, which is important. Let’s not forget all those vitamins and minerals in the fruits and veggies that you’ll be eating instead of meat, either. Most of those have various skin-improvement properties.

    5. You’ll get sick less often

    I’m not talking about cancer or heart disease, because we’ll talk about those later. However, thanks to the increase in nutrients and decrease in fat, grease, and things that are bad for you, you’ll have a stronger immune system. That means fewer colds, fewer flus, and you’ll be less likely to catch those nasty bugs everyone is getting. You’ll also be far less susceptible to things like food-borne illnesses because you can’t get sick from eating undercooked chicken if you don’t eat chicken.

    6. You’ll have a reduced risk of heart disease

    There are studies out there that do state that a little bit of animal protein is good for you. However, people generally eat entirely too much meat and that’s why so many people are getting heart disease. Vegans eliminate the risk of overeating meat entirely and thus they have a lower risk of contracting one of the major diseases associated with overeating meat.

    Advertising

    7. You may have a reduced risk of a bunch of cancers

    Studies have shown that you can reduce the risk of many types of cancer by switching to a vegan diet. There are a myriad of reasons but the baseline reason is that you’re getting more nutrition overall and that includes more fiber, vitamins, and minerals. You are also eating less junk food and less processed foods, which have also been loosely linked to contributing to cancer.

    8. You’ll be reducing the bad things

    vegan health benefits

      Most vegans eat whole foods and that means they don’t eat processed foods. Refined sugars, refined grains, trans fats, and other things that come from processed foods have been linked to everything bad under the sun. When you go vegan you’ll be cutting these things almost entirely out of your diet and that means you’ll be healthier overall and at risk of fewer diseases.

      9. The culture will likely lead you to improve in other ways

      When people go from omnivore to vegan, they learn that there’s a culture associated with it. Once they quit the processed food, they quit the smoking, become more health conscious, and exercise more frequently. While quitting the processed foods is a huge deal, quitting smoking and exercising have an equally impressive list of health benefits. When you go vegan, you may as well join the culture because it can be as equally good for you as the diet.

      Advertising

      10. It’s an easier diet to follow if you have diabetes

      When you have diabetes you have to stay on a certain diet so you don’t aggravate your condition any further. According to a number of sources, a vegan diet helps keep your numbers where they need to be and it’s easier to adhere to (for some people) than the diets suggested by the American Diabetes Association.

      11. You may be able to prevent macular degeneration

      While fruits and veggies won’t prevent time’s natural way of making your eyesight worse, a vegan diet consuming plenty of them can make the process take place more slowly. More importantly, it can help you prevent diseases of the eye such as macular degeneration. Especially if you eat leafy greens, carrots, pumpkin, and sweet potatoes.

      12. You’ll probably live longer

      vegan health benefits

        While studies seem to have conflicting information about how long the vegan diet will extend your life, pretty much all of them agree that it will. Of course, as we talked about earlier, there is that culture that makes you quit smoking and exercise more too. Between that, those healthy veggies, and eating less toxic foods, you end up with a whirlwind of tangible health benefits that logically add up to living a longer life.

        Advertising

        There are plenty of arguments to use a certain diet and vegan is no different. Just keep in mind that a lot of these health benefits don’t just come from the fruits, veggies, and grains but also from not eating as many processed foods. If you have any other awesome health benefits, let us know in the comments!

        Featured photo credit: Cook Eat Delicious via cookeatdelicious.com

        More by this author

        Joseph Hindy

        A writer, editor, and YouTuber who likes to share about technology and lifestyle tips.

        12 Inspirational Speeches That Teach You the Most Valuable Life Lessons 10 Benefits of Sleeping Naked You Probably Didn’t Know 15 Most Effective Cool Down Exercises For Every Workout 10 Things Guys Love That You Didn’t Expect 20 Google Search Tips to Use Google More Efficiently

        Trending in Health

        1 10 Weight Loss Tips to Help You Lose Weight the Easy Way 2 How to Get More Energy for an Instant Morning Boost 3 15 Most Effective and Nutritious Healthy Foods to Lose Weight 4 5 Reasons Why Overusing Hand Sanitizer Isn’t Good For You 5 5 Best Calcium Supplements That Work Beyond Bone Health

        Read Next

        Advertising
        Advertising
        Advertising

        Last Updated on September 15, 2020

        4 Ways to Deal With Big Life Changes in a Positive Way

        4 Ways to Deal With Big Life Changes in a Positive Way

        Life changes are constant. Whether it’s in the workplace or our relationships, nothing in life ever remains the same for long.

        Regardless of the gravity of change, it can always be a little scary. So scary, in fact, that some people are downright crippled by the idea of it, causing them to remain stagnant through anxiety.

        Have you ever noticed how much of life’s transitional periods are riddled with anxious vibes? The quarter life crisis, the mid-life crisis, cold feet before getting married, retirement anxiety, and teenage angst are just a few examples of transitional periods when people tend to panic.

        We can’t control every aspect of our lives, and we can’t stop change from happening. However, how we respond to change will greatly affect our overall life experience.

        Here are 4 ways you can approach life changes in a positive way.

        1. Don’t Fight It

        I once heard one of my favorite yoga instructors say “Suffering is what occurs when we resist what is already happening.” The lesson has stuck with me ever since.

        Advertising

        Life changes are usually out of our control. Rather than trying to manipulate the situation and wishing things were different, try flowing with it instead.

        Of course, some initial resistance is natural if we’re going into survival mode. Just make sure you are conscious of when this resistance is no longer serving you.

        If you’re feeling anxious about impending life changes, it’s time to practice some techniques to address the anxiety directly. These can include meditation, exercise, talking with friends about how you’re feeling, or journaling.

        If you’re worried about a big life change, such as starting a new job[1] or moving in with your partner, do your best to control your expectations. It may help you to talk with people you know about their experiences going through similar changes. This will help you form a realistic picture in your mind of what things will look like post-change.

        2. Find Healthy Ways to Deal With Feelings

        Whenever we’re in transitional periods, it can be easy to lose track of ourselves. Sometimes we feel like we’re being tossed about by life and like we’ve lost our footing, causing some very uncomfortable feelings to arise.

        One way we can channel these feelings is by finding healthy ways to release them. For instance, whenever I find myself in a difficult transitional phase, I end up in a mixed martial arts studio.

        Advertising

        The physical activity helps me channel my emotions and release endorphins. It also helps me get in shape, which generally increases my mood and energy levels.

        Exercise is important in cultivating positive emotions, but if you’re struggling with anxiety in particular, it’s important to cultivate a regular exercise routine as opposed to a one-off workout. One study found that “Aerobic exercise can promote increase in anxiety acutely and regular aerobic exercise promotes reduction in anxiety levels”[2].

        If exercise isn’t your thing, there are other, less intense ways of cultivating positive emotions and reducing anxiety around life changes. You can try stretching, meditating, reading in nature, spending time with family and friends, or cooking a healthy meal.

        Find what makes you feel good and helps you ground yourself in the present moment.

        3. Reframe Your Perspective

        Reframing perspectives is a very powerful tool used in life coaching. It helps clients take a situation they are struggling with, such as a major life change, and find some sort of empowerment in it.

        Some examples of disempowered thinking during life changes include casting blame, focusing on negative details, or victimizing[3]. These perspectives can make awkward transitional phases much worse than they have to be.

        Advertising

        Meanwhile, if we utilize a more positive perspective, such as finding a lesson in the situation, realizing that there may be an opportunity for something, or that everything passes, we can come from a greater place of ease.

        4. Find Time for Self-Reflection

        Having time to reflect is important at any stage in your life, but it’s especially important during transitional periods. It’s quite simple really: we need our time to step back and get centered when things get a little crazy.

        As a result, big life changes are perfect for doing some self-reflection. They are opportunities to check in with ourselves and practice getting grounded for a few minutes.

        Take a look at this reflective cycle adapted from Glibb’s Self-reflection guide (1988):[4]

        Use self-reflection when facing life changes.

          Self-reflective exercises include meditating, yoga or journaling,[5] all of which require some quiet time to get yourself together.

          Advertising

          One study found that journal improves “self-efficacy, locus of control, and learning”[6]. A healthy sense of self-control can make the process of change easier to bear, so that in itself is a great reason to try self-reflection through journaling.

          To learn how to start journaling, you can check out this article.

          Final Thoughts

          Big life changes may rock us for a little while, but they don’t have to be as bad as we initially perceive them. If handled in a positive manner, transitional periods can pave the way for some serious self-growth, reflection, and awareness.

          Cultivate a sense of positivity and find ways to diminish the anxiety around life changes. Once you make it to the other side, you’ll be grateful that you made it through in the best way possible.

          More Tips on Facing Life Changes

          Featured photo credit: Alora Griffiths via unsplash.com

          Reference

          Read Next