Let us help you answer the most common questions all vegans needs answering
1. Why is it so hard to give up cheese?
A recent survey conducted by Violife found that 45% of Brits want to go vegan, but don’t want to give up cheese. It’s crazy but it really is that addictive.
There are so many vegan cheeses out there now that the job of replacing cheese in your life is getting easier. However, most people find quitting cheese and going ‘cold turkey’ is the best method for eliminating it out of your mind.
2. Is honey vegan?
In short, no it’s definitely not. But it’s not a stupid question to ask. The thing that defines honey as not being vegan is that it is made by an animal: the bee.
Honey takes bees a long time to make, it’s part of their life’s work. Not only is honey bee regurgitation, but so many bees can get harmed in the extraction of the honey from the hive. It’s all good though as there are so many natural sweetners out there now, such as maple syrup.
More information on honey and why it’s not vegan
3. Are eggs OK to eat from backyard hens?
Once again this would be stealing something that an animal has produced, so it would definitely not be classed as vegan.
There has been a lot of speculation in recent times about the health properties of eggs. But nutrition aside, eggs are best left to the hens who will eat the eggs (that are produced not as often as in the egg industry) for their own nutrition.
More information on backyard eggs not being vegan
4. Are there any hidden ingredients in food I need to watch out for?
If life were perfect then all vegan food would be labelled ‘vegan’. But there are thousands of products out there that aren’t, most of which which we call ‘accidentally vegan’.
The most common mistake vegans make when shopping is assuming that 1) free-from products are all vegan – they’re not, and 2) all non-vegan ingredients are highlighted in bold on the label – they’re not.
5. If the label says ‘May Contain Milk’ is it still vegan?
You would think that if the label is saying that it may contain a non-vegan ingredient then it might not be vegan? Well not really. This common ‘May Contain’ label is more about putting a warning out there for people with allergens.
Most of the time this warning goes out because the factory where the product was made also manufactures dairy or egg products. The Vegan Society has deemed all these products vegan still as if they do contain any dairy it will only be traces.
6. Do I need to be taking a B12 supplement?
This is a good question and the simple answer is “yes, if you are deficient in vitamin B12”.
The best thing you can do is get some blood tests done and see what your levels of B12 are. Your body can store it, but only so much. So as well as supplementation, keep an eye out for foods that are fortified with B12, such as nutritional yeast.
7. Where do vegans get their protein?
If you are new to veganism, it’s a valid question. But most older vegans will shrug this question off as it is not really a concern you need to be worried about. Why? Because almost all foods contain protein.
In fact some foods in the vegan world contain very high levels of protein, such as tofu, tempeh and seitan. What you really should be worried about is getting ‘too much’ protein rather than too little.
8. Is being vegan expensive?
This question should be rephrased to ‘are fruit & vegetables expensive?’. The bones of it is that if you ate the healthiest version of a vegan diet, then it’s very cheap, effectively the lowest costing diet on the planet.
Processed vegan foods can be very expensive, but they should be enjoyed as a treat. Fill up on whole foods, like beans, lentils, fruit and veg, and you will have the most reduced shopping bill of your life.
9. What is nutritional yeast?
It sounds like something that you would have to be forced to eat, but the reality is it’s quite the opposite. Nutritional yeast or ‘nooch’ as some vegans call it is the consistency of fish food, but tastes like cheese. It gets some vegans very excited.
It’s quite cheap to buy, fortified with vitamin B12 and you can literally sprinkle it on all your savoury meals. What’s not to love?
10. Why didn’t I go vegan sooner?
This rhetorical question gets asked by 99% of vegans after about a month of living a vegan lifestyle.
Going vegan opens up a whole new world that’s almost completely guilt-free. Not only are you not contributing to the suffering of animals, but you are doing the planet and potentially your health the world of good.
Vegan Food UK has a YouTube channel that is solely dediated to showcasing the easiest vegan recipes – Subscribe for free here