Fulfilling way of life

Vegan diet brings many benefits

Veganism+can+present+many+advantages+to+those+who+decide+to+commit+to+the+no+animal+products+diet.

Photo by Macy Maynard

Veganism can present many advantages to those who decide to commit to the no animal products diet.

Story by Gracie Tucker, staff writer

“You could never do it!” my mom said when we were talking about being vegan.

Immediately something did not sit right with me. I have never really been a competitive person, yet my mom saying that, along with other family members, made me feel a sense of competitiveness.

I wanted to prove them all wrong, but most importantly, my mom.

So, I went straight to the internet and decided I was going to go full vegan. No halfway doing it, I was going to fully commit. By fully committing, I would be cutting out all animal products. I could no longer order the three-piece chicken finger meal from Raising Canes, so now I could only have the fries and a Coke.

A whole year went by, even though it didn’t feel like it; however, I surprised myself and others who doubted a once meat lover could cut out the bloody, juicy meat completely.

Many of the benefits of my vegan lifestyle are mentioned below.

Skin and Sleeping Habits:

Researching the benefits of veganism, I realized it could help my acne and skin. When I started my year of veganism my skin was breaking out all over, as well as the oiliest it has ever been. A few weeks after the diet change, my breakouts cleared up, along with the oil around my face. Another positive benefit after my diet change was the deeper, more refreshing sleep. I have never been someone who could go straight to sleep when I first lie down — I have to take melatonin at night an hour before bedtime to get the full eight hours my body requires. However, when I changed my diet, I found myself relying on melatonin less and less. 

Mental Health:

While mental health in today’s world has many umbrellaing definitions, it’s most commonly defined as a person’s condition with regard to their psychological and emotional well-being. For me, I struggle with stress and anxiety. My whole life I have added unneeded pressure onto my life because I have felt the need to excel in everything. So, when I read that the stress and anxiety that has always been in the back of my brain could maybe dial back, I thought, “Why not try it?” It was hard to notice at first, as it was slowly fading away, but when I finally released that unwanted pressure, I felt a million times better. I am not perfect, and most likely will still be picking my fingernails or biting them. However, I was exponentially better than I had been my whole life.

Focus:

My whole life I have had pretty good focus, though I am still a teenager who struggles sometimes. The lack of animal products allowed me to focus even more. My grades rose due to the amount of focus I possessed. To me, focus is the key to being successful in anything. Never will anyone say with an unfocused brain you can always succeed. No, it is always said focusing helps to make your dreams a reality. So, when my focus became a lot stronger, my dreams of getting into a good college became a little clearer. 

Even though being vegan benefited my life in many ways, I am no longer on that diet. Many reasons built up to the point where I stopped being vegan. The most important one was that in Texarkana few vegan restaurants exist.

Every time my family and I would go out to eat I would struggle to find a meal, so most of the time the meal would have to be fries or chips and salsa. Not exactly grade A nutrition, but it was the only vegan option.

After a long decision-making process, I decided to stop the diet, yet not completely because I still eat vegan meat along with regular meat. In the future when I move to a bigger city, I can see myself becoming vegan again and succeeding even further in that lifestyle.