Stay Chat: High Suggestions for Easy methods to Go Vegan for Veganuary


On this Stay Chat, Sharon Palmer, the Plant-Powered Dietitian shares her personal private plant-based journey, in addition to her greatest ideas for find out how to go vegan for Veganuary.

The brand new 12 months is an thrilling time and an important alternative to make constructive adjustments. We’re refreshed from the thrill of the vacations. And the prospect of a contemporary begin in January additionally invitations us to replicate upon our targets. How can we construct well being and happiness transferring ahead? One solution to reap the benefits of this momentum is to rejoice Veganuary, which is a well-liked motion that encourages folks to strive going vegan for one month in January. Taking a month-long vegan problem is a enjoyable solution to take a look at out how a plant-based way of life works for you. And, collaborating in Veganuary can profit your well being, the setting, and animal welfare. Whether or not it’s a steppingstone to committing to a extra plant-based way of life past January, or only a short-term experiment to kickstart the brand new 12 months, collaborating in Veganuary can set you up for achievement by supplying you with perception into find out how to plan a vegan food regimen, in addition to find out how to get pleasure from wholesome, scrumptious vegan meals. 

Normally in my Stay Chats I’m the host asking the questions. At present’s episode is somewhat totally different; dietetic intern Adele Secrest is asking the questions and I’m giving my private insights alone plant-based journey and distinctive, skilled plant-based vitamin experience. You’ll be taught why I went plant-based, my views on why proper now is the most effective time to go plant-based, and my sensible recommendation on find out how to eat vegan and keep it up for those who’re so inclined. Try my Stay Chat beneath, in addition to a transcript from my interview, my favourite plant-based sources, what you’ll be taught from this interview, and my greatest Veganuary recipe. 

Try the Stay Chat on Consuming Plant-Primarily based for Veganuary right here. 

What You’ll Study in This Stay Chat:

  • Sharon’s private plant-based journey
  • Sharon’s professional vitamin recommendation on find out how to eat a balanced, wholesome plant-based food regimen
  • Sharon’s prime tips about find out how to go vegan
  • The advantages of vegan and plant-based diets
  • Easy methods to deal with among the hindrances for consuming plant-based
  • How Veganuary will be the impetus for transferring to a extra plant-based food regimen, even for those who don’t need to go fully vegan endlessly. 

Sharon Palmer’s Plant-Primarily based Sources

Live Chat: Top Tips for How to Go Vegan for Veganuary

How To Go Plant-Primarily based for Veganuary with Sharon Palmer, The Plant-Powered Dietitian

Q: How do you view Veganuary and the way can folks get began in it?

Sharon: I believe it’s an important alternative, as a result of analysis has proven that as much as 50% of persons are involved in consuming extra plant-based diets, relying on what survey you’re . An increasing number of persons are slicing again on their meat consumption. Veganuary is this chance for people who find themselves interested in this way of life to provide it a strive. And even for those who solely need to do it for one month, you possibly can scale back your environmental footprint considerably. You’ll be able to have well being advantages, and it may possibly additionally introduce you to a life-style with out making a long run dedication.

To share somewhat bit about my story, I began consuming vegan as a month lengthy problem but it surely wasn’t throughout January. It was through the summer season. However I had been consuming a vegetarian food regimen for a lot of years. I used to be raised in a semi-vegetarian house. And in analysis for my first e-book, “The Plant-Powered Weight loss plan,” I made a decision I actually wanted to know what it was prefer to be vegan, even when I didn’t need to keep it up completely. I made a decision I’m going to do a one month problem, as a result of how can I be a vitamin professional and never expertise that? 

In order that problem actually satisfied me that it wasn’t actually that tough. It felt nice. I simply felt so good about my place on the earth, as a result of I knew that my food regimen not solely had decrease environmental footprints, but it surely was additionally offering me with well being advantages. I felt actually good about myself due to the sensation that together with your food regimen you’re doing the most effective you possibly can. You’re bettering animal welfare since you’re not contributing to the struggling of animals. You’re decreasing your footprint on the planet. I felt actually good about that.

Q: So what was going by way of your head main as much as deciding to tackle that problem? I do know you stated you have been engaged on a e-book. Was there something particular on the forefront of your thoughts going into the problem?

Sharon: Effectively, I’ve to say at the start, as a result of I used to be consuming a vegetarian food regimen earlier than, at the start it was extra like a journalistic vitamin professional kind of a problem, as a result of I felt as a dietitian professional that I actually wanted to know this from private expertise. I imply, I really feel like we are able to’t actually assist the general public and our purchasers till we expertise issues ourselves. So to expertise the food regimen actually meant I knew what the challenges have been going to be like for folks, and I knew precisely what folks have been going to should undergo on the grocery retailer. It got here from wanting to know the point of view. 

After which I discovered that I actually love the life-style. So I simply went full bore, and I had been taking part in round with the concept of making an attempt veganism for a very long time. I’ve been a vegan now, occurring 11 years. And I used to be a vegetarian earlier than that.

However at the moment veganism was not as socially distinguished. It was nonetheless somewhat bit on the margins. There was kickback that I acquired, particularly from the vitamin world. However now there’s simply a lot extra acceptance with increasingly more analysis popping out on this way of life. It’s actually simpler in the present day than it ever was to start out a plant-based problem.

However there have been a variety of issues that I actually wished to expertise, and I had been eager to strive veganism. However I used to be just a bit bit afraid, and I believe lots of people are. There’s somewhat little bit of worry in regards to the social acceptance, about how arduous it’s going to be and the way you’re going to really feel. And I discovered that I used to be in a position to meet these challenges. AndI actually get pleasure from this way of life. I might by no means return.

Q: How has the point of view of veganism shifted in most people and with vitamin professionals? How would you clarify that cultural shift?

Sharon: The point of view completely has shifted. 10 or 15 years in the past it was actually not as accepted as it’s now. The analysis on veganism has actually simply piled up within the final 2 a long time. It’s actually began coming ahead. However traditionally, within the dietary world, veganism was at all times checked out as scary and never secure, since you may miss out on vitamins you want. It was checked out virtually like a fad food regimen. You’ll nonetheless see a few of that, but it surely’s altering due to the analysis that’s exhibiting advantages. 

So in the present day it’s simply so fascinating as a result of I used to be invited to talk for a complete week lengthy in Hilton Head at a well being resort over the autumn on plant-based consuming, and these are folks from all around the United States coming into this well being resort. And I met so many individuals from around the globe. Their physicians had mainly instructed them, “I would like you to go on a plant-based food regimen due to main well being points.”  So that is actually altering, it didn’t used to occur so actually. They got here to fulfill with me for a complete week as a result of their physicians instructed them to try this. So it’s encouraging.

Q: In a wider context, what sources do now we have to go vegan now that make it simpler than it was? Or is there something that’s nonetheless complicated?

Sharon: That’s an important query, and there are such a lot of extra sources now, and I believe most individuals have observed this. I keep in mind after I wrote “The Plant-Powered Weight loss plan”, my first e-book on plant-based consuming, you’d have tofu, soy milk and almond milk. And also you had some small quantity of plant-based cheese, possibly some shreds. And now you see all of it within the grocery store. You have got a complete part of other dairy merchandise. You have got so many alternative meat options. So it’s a lot simpler due to all these merchandise. And that additionally brings up social acceptance, as a result of on daily basis persons are seeing these merchandise and shops. Now it’s not so uncommon to seize a carton of soy milk or some almond yogurt or some meat options, as a result of everyone’s consuming them.

It’s way more mainstream. There are extra sources. Folks have learn the experiences on advantages. We have been speaking about Veganuary. The web site has tons of sources about challenges, and now you may have different organizations that present sources. PCRM (The Doctor’s Committee for Accountable Drugs) is a superb useful resource for handouts, challenges, articles. I like the Vegetarian Useful resource Group as nicely. And my very own weblog at has tons of sources, like a free toolkit for making an attempt a vegan food regimen. So there are a variety of nice sources on the market.

I do need to be sure that folks go to good sources for info. If you happen to do need to strive a vegan food regimen, be sure you’re searching for scientifically sourced sources by a vitamin professional, somebody like a registered dietitian or a nicely revered group like PCRM. There may be a variety of quacky stuff on the market. I see some vegan vitamin info that I might not belief. 

Be sure to’re searching for good, respected sources if you’re going to strive vegan diets. It’s necessary to eat a balanced food regimen. One of many worst issues folks can do, and I see this on a regular basis, is strive a vegan problem, however they don’t do it in a healthful means. After which they really feel dangerous, after which they provide it up and say, “Veganism was not for me.” As a result of they didn’t do it nicely, and that’s simply such a wasted alternative. 

So actually one of many solutions I’ve, if you wish to actually strive a vegan problem, take one week earlier than you truly do the problem to get your self organized and do some studying. Don’t simply begin tomorrow with out being ready. It’s a must to get your kitchen stocked with the proper meals. And it’s important to have an thought of what you’re going to be consuming on daily basis, and it’s important to meet your nutrient must really feel wholesome and nicely.

So take per week to get your self organized earlier than you truly begin. As a result of you then need to do it nicely, so that you simply truly get the advantages of it.

Q: So what else would you say to any person who’s involved in going vegan and needs to make it final? What else can they do in addition to planning? How can any person go vegan and keep vegan?

Sharon: So my first tip was to get organized, after which my second tip is to arrange your pantry for achievement, which is a part of that planning thought. Actually begin understanding what meals you’re going to be consuming. For instance, the plant proteins are actually the most important space, since you’re mainly eliminating animal proteins and consuming plant proteins. So familiarize your self with what these proteins are going to be like. You’re going to be consuming pulses on daily basis.  This consists of beans, lentils, chickpeas, and peas. You’re additionally going be consuming tofu, tempeh, nuts and peanut butter. These are your protein sources. And you then’re going to be consuming extra entire grains which additionally contribute protein, after which a lot of greens and fruits. So simply be sure you inventory your pantry up so that you simply’ve received these meals obtainable.

Additionally get some very easy recipe concepts that you could simply make as a go-to. For instance, certainly one of my very favourite breakfasts is a porridge of metal lower oats with no matter fruit is in season with some nuts and soy milk.

An influence bowl is one other factor that I like to advocate, as a result of an influence bowl is sort of a deliberate meal in a bowl, so that you don’t have to consider what you’re consuming. You’ve received your entire grain as the muse. Then you definately add some plant protein. Possibly that’s tofu, tempeh or chickpeas. Then you definately add tons of veggies and a flavorful sauce. So there’s no planning. That’s simply a simple meal that you would have for any lunch or dinner. So create some very easy meals that you realize you’ll have able to go.

Then additionally do some studying about find out how to plan your food regimen nicely, so that you simply’re assembly your nutrient wants.

And one different factor I prefer to advocate is to take a look at your group. Look and see what shops have the most effective plant-based choices. Lots of your pure meals shops are inclined to have extra. Discover a farmer’s market in your group, relying in your season. I dwell in California. Right here, the farmer’s market is 12 months spherical. You’ll have a lot enjoyable consuming all these seasonal fruits and veggies. Additionally search for eating places in your group. Discover some actually good eating places which have some vegan choices. Then you definately get to deal with your self somewhat.

Q: The place do you advocate folks go to search for wholesome recipes?

Sharon: I’ve tons on my website at I put up recipes each week. You’ll be able to join my e-newsletter on my homepage at, and also you’ll get recipes delivered straight to your inbox. You too can simply go and search. There’s a class search button there, so I’ve received recipes for simple meals. I’ve received recipes for breakfast, lunch, salads, desserts, all the pieces. However there are many nice blogs on the market which are plant-based and plenty of nice books. I’ve cookbooks too. “California Vegan” is my newest cookbook that has a variety of recipes, too. Today there are such a lot of nice recipes. 

I don’t need folks to suppose that being in challenges is actually arduous, it doesn’t should be. I don’t need you to really feel like it’s important to prepare dinner all these particular meals on daily basis. As a result of for some folks that’s a barrier, they suppose, “Oh, I don’t have time. I work full time.” It doesn’t should be any extra time consuming than your present means of consuming. It’s just a bit little bit of group: discovering some straightforward meals you possibly can meal prep on Sunday or no matter day you’re not working.

It may be tremendous straightforward issues like: a sandwich with peanut butter and jelly, or baked tofu, with lettuce and tomatoes, a grain bowl, tacos with black beans. It may be straightforward. It doesn’t should be overly difficult.

I do know it does take time. However anytime you’re committing to your well being it’ll take somewhat bit extra time than simply going to eat quick meals. Though I prefer to problem folks as a result of I’ve a variety of 30 minute meals. I prefer to say, “By the point you order quick meals and look forward to it to get to your home, you would have completed cooking a plant-based meal. And you’d save some huge cash, and have much less packaging going to the landfill.”

Q: What would you say to any person who’s involved in going vegan for the animals or for the setting, however is fearful they received’t be wholesome on a vegan food regimen?

Sharon: Effectively, initially, analysis exhibits that individuals who eat vegan diets are inclined to have decrease dangers of all of the continual ailments, and this has been fairly nicely borne out in analysis. The landmark “Adventist Well being Research” from Loma Linda College, the place I went to high school, have been the primary to establish these advantages of plant-based diets. They discovered that typically the extra plant-based the food regimen was, the upper the extent of advantages for situations like hypertension, excessive ldl cholesterol, coronary heart illness, irritation, diabetes, weight problems. So, even for those who have been vegetarian, you probably did higher than the omnivores. However the vegans did the most effective general. Now, different research have confirmed these outcomes.

After all the principle factor is consuming a balanced vegan food regimen. Today you possibly can eat vegan junk meals similar to another food regimen. French fries and coca cola are vegan junk meals. So it’s all in regards to the healthful plant-based food regimen crammed with entire plant meals as a lot as potential.

It may be executed. You simply should do some planning. And you may get well being advantages. Even youngsters have advantages from consuming vegan diets.

Q: What different messages do it’s important to most people? What kinds of issues do you suppose persons are simply typically confused about with veganism or methods for going vegan?

Sharon: One of many issues I touched on is the social side, and I believe that’s actually necessary for folks. It may be somewhat isolating. You’ll be able to really feel totally different, and I even have a few blogs on my website at with recommendation on the social features of going plant-based.

For instance, lots of people I do know who’re going vegan don’t need to trigger hassle. You don’t need to go to a meal and have folks exit of their solution to make one thing particular for you, and that feeling of being totally different will be actually arduous for folks.

I do know you don’t need to make a scene, you don’t need to ask something particular, however your host typically goes to need to know for those who’re invited to one thing, and you’re on a vegan food regimen.

The worst factor that may occur to them is for those who present up, and you then’re sitting there with an empty plate. So don’t really feel dangerous. Simply properly say what your dietary preferences are after which volunteer to convey one thing so that you simply take the stress off them.

That’s my technique every time I am going out. I simply say, “Oh, by the way in which, I eat a plant-based food regimen. However I wish to convey an entree.” Usually, it’s the greens and the facet dishes that you’ll find vegan choices. I’ve been doing this for years, and folks love what I convey, and it introduces my food regimen to different folks. They understand “Oh, that is stunning. It tastes so good.” 

I used to be at an enormous celebration earlier than COVID and I introduced certainly one of my vegan lasagnas, which is filled with tremendous colourful greens. It’s actually scrumptious. It’s the Mediterranean baked lasagna on my weblog. And I put it proper subsequent to an enormous meat lasagna. And guess who’s lasagna went first? It was the vegan one, and no one even knew. I didn’t say a phrase. I simply put it there. Mine went earlier than the opposite one, and no one even observed. They only all have been speaking about how scrumptious it was.

There are methods that you simply’ll be taught to navigate the social facet of veganism. It’s additionally actually nice to seek out your tribe, your group, even if in case you have any person to go on the problem with. Diet, consuming and meals are an enormous a part of our lives, and we need to get pleasure from that.

A decade in the past I might be the one vegan at an occasion. Now it’s so frequent residing in California. I’m not often the one vegan at an occasion now. On the naked minimal there will probably be a number of vegetarians or semi-vegetarians preferring to not eat animal meals. So I’m by no means the one one anymore. It simply exhibits you this trajectory. The most recent surveys have proven increasingly more persons are consuming a plant-based food regimen. So this has been a development, and it’s persevering with to be a development.

Q: How are you going to make a vegan food regimen finances pleasant?

Sharon: Folks suppose it’s going to be costly. I believe it’s as a result of they really feel like they should go purchase all these very costly components, like various meat. However the least costly protein supply on the planet is beans. It’s the most affordable plant protein, or protein supply generally. Tofu can be cheap. So for those who’re consuming issues like beans and tofu, you’re gonna get monetary savings. 

And I do know greens will be costly. However for those who use seasonal greens and use frozen greens, you can also make that cheaper. Entire grains are discount too. If you happen to’re consuming extra easy plant meals, you’re going to save cash.

Sharon’s Vegan Glow Bowl

Listed here are a few of my favourite fast and simple plant-based recipes that will help you reach Veganuary:

About Sharon 

Often known as The Plant-Powered Dietitian, Sharon has established an award-winning profession within the area of plant-based vitamin and  sustainability. As a widely known registered dietitian within the world group, Sharon is an achieved author, editor, blogger,  writer, speaker, professor, advisor, and media professional. Specifically, she has gained recognition for her experience in plant-based vitamin  and sustainability. Sharon has authored over 1000 articles in a wide range of publications, together with Higher Houses and Gardens, Oprah  Journal, and LA Instances. Her e-book The Plant-Powered Weight loss plan: The Lifelong Consuming Plan for Attaining Optimum Well being, Starting  At present (The Experiment, July 2012) was a important success, which was adopted by her second e-book Plant-Powered for Life: Eat Your  Option to Lasting Well being with 52 Easy Steps & 125 Scrumptious Recipes in July 2014. Her newest e-book, California Vegan: Inspiration  and Recipes from the Folks and Locations of the Golden State, was printed on March 15, 2021. And her fourth e-book, The Plant-Powered Plan to Beat Diabetes, is obtainable for pre-order now. 

Sharon additionally has contributed to a number of e-book chapters on vitamin and sustainability. She serves because the vitamin editor for At present’s Dietitian, adjunct school within the MS of Sustainable Meals Methods Program at Prescott Faculty, vitamin advisor for a number of organizations corresponding to AICR and Oldways, and co-founder of Meals and Planet. Sharon presents steadily at conferences, and is a weekly contributing vitamin professional within the media, together with print, on-line, radio, podcasts, tv, social media, movies, and movie. Sharon enjoys organizing farm and sustainability excursions the world over, together with her collaboration on her Italian Alps Sustainability Meals Tour. Sharon just lately accomplished her Grasp of Science in Sustainable Meals Methods from Inexperienced Mountain Faculty in Vermont. 

And she or he nonetheless has time to weblog on daily basis for her well-liked on-line group (400 Ok members robust and rising) at, The Plant-Powered Dietitian. Dwelling within the sustainability mecca of Ojai, California along with her husband and two canines, Sharon enjoys tending to her personal natural backyard, visiting the native farmers market, volunteering in native environmental organizations, and cooking for family and friends.  


For extra plant-powered inspiration, take a look at a few of my different Plant Stay Chats and Plant Chat Interviews:

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