In this superficial world of selfies, an abundance of personal trainers and plastic surgeons, there’s no doubt that the rise in veganism is in some way due to its new branding focus of self-transformation.

With celebrities like Russell Simmons, Bill Clinton and even Beyonce trying their hand at vegan lifestyles, it is officially cool to eat a mainly plant-based diet.

There is now a huge vegan scene erupting in our restaurants and it is easier than ever before to find a delicious meal that doesn’t leave you feeling like a grazing cow. As you’ll find should you choose to embark on the journey to veganism, the main battle is just finding somewhere affordable! Everything from pizzas, to pastries are available with plant-based ingredients, so the good news is that you don’t have to live off of salads alone.

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With a richly diverse assortment of ingredients at your disposal, the recipes are endless and your diet doesn’t have to become repetitive. You can even ease yourself in with meat substitutes and junk food or opt to go dive right into raw veganism, which means eating foods cooked at a temperature lower than 48 °C.

Close-up Of Beautiful African American Woman Eating Salad At Home

So what are the physical benefits? Increased energy, weight loss and more youthful-looking skin, and the highly sought-after ‘vegan glow’ are among the most popular of physical changes noticed by most who begin the transition to a vegan lifestyle. It also prevents a long list of chronic diseases and helps to keep symptoms at bay for pre-existing conditions. More importantly, a well-planned plant-based diet is high in protein, iron, calcium, essential vitamins, minerals, fiber, anti-oxidants and is low in saturated fat. Going vegan also allows you to avoid the harmful carcinogens found in meat that can cause diseases and cleanses your body while helping you become more in tune with your own needs.

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Not only will your body thank you for leaving meat behind, so will the planet. As it stands, the production process of meat and animal products causes a heavy burden on the environment. The sheer amount of crops and grains needed to feed the animals for slaughter means that poorer communities are focusing more on fattening up animals than feeding themselves. Deforestation, habitat loss and species extinction are also a result of this process. In contrast, only a third of the land needed to grow these crops for meat production is needed for a vegan diet. Turning vegan also means that less animals will be disposed of for not producing enough bi-products like dairy and eggs.

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Veganism is not just about the food you eat, it also affects the choices you make when it comes to products tested on animals, fabrics made from animal skin and the way in which you choose to spend time with animals. All in all, the vegan way of life is surprisingly empowering and can make you feel better within yourself and happy that you are helping to change the world for the better.

For some tasty recipes to kick-start your journey into veganism and personal transformation, click here.

-Megan Saad

Photo Credit: All4Women/TheColorfulKitchen