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  1. 10 Tips for Going Vegan the (Almost) Easy Way

    10 Tips for Going Vegan the (Almost) Easy Way

    Even if you are already vegetarian or eat next to no meat/fish whatsoever, that final hurdle into going totally vegan can be the most challenging of all.

    The good news - perseverance pays off. Not only this, but the trials, errors and personal experiences of millions of vegans can provide a source of inspiration along the way.

    With this in mind, here’s a brief overview of 10 of the most helpful tips, pointers and guidelines that could make your transition to the vegan way of life at least slightly easier:

     

    1. Reverse Your Viewpoint

    First and foremost, it is impossible to make positive life changes if you view them in a negative way. If you see going vegan as something of a punishment or an unpleasant lifestyle adjustment you’re not totally into, it jus

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  2. The Ultimate Vegan FAQ: Top Questions Answered

    The Ultimate Vegan FAQ: Top Questions Answered

    Looking to learn more about the plant-based way of life?

    Detailed below, you’ll find concise answers to a series of important and often asked questions on veganism and plant-based nutrition:

     

    Q. Is a vegan diet healthy?

    The short answer is yes – a vegan diet can be exceptionally healthy at any stage of life. Excluding animal-based products does not have to mean adversely affecting your intake of key nutrients in any way.

    This is why vegan diets are not only approved, but are actually recommended by many leading public health authorities worldwide.

     

    Q. Is a vegan diet safe for kids?

    Again, the answer is yes – a vegan diet can be safe and healthy for kids. From toddlers to teens and everything in between, a healthy diet means

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  3. The Vegan Kitchen Pantry: Seven Everyday Essentials

    The Vegan Kitchen Pantry: Seven Everyday Essentials

    The initial stages of transitioning to a vegan diet can be tricky. Sooner or later, you’ll find yourself in a position where you make shopping and cooking decisions instinctively. In the meantime, you may find that shopping for groceries and meal-planning in general require a little more forethought. If you're struggling, just remember why you're making the change. Veganism offers all kinds of benefits for your health, the environment and, crucially, the animals. If you are in it for all the right reasons and enthusiastic, you should have no trouble making the switch and sticking with it permanently.

    The good news is, finding yourself in a position where you have no inspiration in the kitchen whatsoever is unlikely. As long as you keep yourself stocked with the right vegan essentials, you will have no trouble coming up with all the savoury and sweet dishes you’ll ever need.

     

     

    The Staples You Need in Your Kitchen

    While there is no blueprint for the ‘perfect’ plant-based pantry, there are certain staples you absolutely need to keep in your kitchen at all times. As long as you have each of the following in your arsenal, you will always find yourself with plenty of scope for creative culinary concoctions to enjoy:

     

    1. Beans and Legumes

    Along with being a fantastic and delicious source of plant protein, beans and legumes are also versatile in the extreme. They are bursting at the seams with nutritional goodness and can be used to create thousands of inspiring dishes. Hence, keeping a stockpile of beans and legumes (dried and canned) will ensure you have the basis for a wide variety of satisfying recipes.

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  4. Celiac Disease FAQ: Should You Go Gluten-Free?

    Celiac Disease FAQ: Should You Go Gluten-Free?

    Q. Should Healthy People Go Gluten-Free?

    The fact that the term ‘gluten-free’ is thrown around so liberally these days can make it difficult to know what gluten intolerance is all about.

    On one hand, there is no reason to suggest that those who can tolerate gluten perfectly adequately could benefit from eliminating gluten from their diets. Unless excluding gluten is necessary, it is not something nutritionists typically recommend.

     

    Q. How Many People Are Gluten Intolerant?

    At the same time, it is estimated that up to 80% of all cases of gluten intolerance are undiagnosed. In which case, millions could be living with a sensitivity to gluten they are entirely unaware of.

     

    Q. What Is Celiac Disease?

    Celiac disease is a particularly severe form of gluten intolerance. More accurately, it is a serious and debilitating genetic autoimmune disease, wherein the consumption of gluten causes severe damage to the small intestine.

    Ensuring celiac disease is diagnosed at the earliest possible stage is of the utmost importance, in order to ensure the necessary dietary changes are applied.

     

    Q. What Is Gluten?

    Gluten is a protein found in rye, barley and wheat. It is therefore present in any and all food products that contain these ingredients in varying quantities.

     

    Q. What Symptoms Does Celiac Disease Cause?

    To dat

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  5. Six Longstanding Myths About Organic Food

    Six Longstanding Myths About Organic Food

    Research organic food online and the first thing you will learn is just how hotly debated the subject is. Even at this point in time, debate continues to rage as to whether or not it is really worth bothering with organic food.

    For every study that highlights the potential benefits of organic, you have a slew of doubters and conspiracy theorists casting aspersions on the whole thing.  Unfortunately, we live in a day and age where opinions published on social media are assumed to have the same authority as scientific facts.

    Subsequently, it is no real surprise that organic food is a subject swarming with myths and misinformation. Some examples of which can be more harmful than others, but in all instances make it tricky to know whether paying for organic produce is the way to go.

    To help shed light on just a few

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  6. Yes - You Can Go Vegan on a Budget

    Yes - You Can Go Vegan on a Budget

    One of the most common myths regarding veganism is that it is a comparatively expensive lifestyle. If not, entirely too expensive for most households to stretch to.

    This is largely to do with the fact that many specialist vegan products on the market can appear overpriced in comparison to non-vegan equivalents (which is something many vegans can relate to) and there are many reasons for this. A lot of specialist vegan products are manufactured by small independent companies who do not benefit from the same economies of scale as large mainstream producers. Further to this, Government subsidies keep prices artificially low on many animal products and ingredients. And a cynic might argue that there are some producers and manufacturers - especially large mainstream companies with little or no interest in the ethics - who use the ‘vegan’ label as little more than an excuse to jack up the prices of the food they sell. 

    But this only applies to a select segment of the market - not the vegan product market in its entirety. In fact, there is no reason why going vegan cannot be comprehensively affordable.

    It’s simply a case of shopping smarter and taking a few tips from those who know how to live a healthy and enjoyable vegan lifestyle on a budget.

     

    1. Buy in Bulk

    One of the best ways to make the most of your money is to buy in bulk. Many (if not most) of the staples you will come to rely on can be purchased in larger quantities and stored in your pantry indefinitely. Examples of which include rice, pasta, polenta, beans, oats, lentils, chickpeas and so on - all of which cost next to nothing when you buy plenty at once.

    Cans, jars and bottles also become much cheaper when purchased in bulk - wholesale shopping is, therefore, the way to go where available.

     

    2. Watch the Seasons

    This is a tip for affordable shopping that applies across all dietary preferences without exception. By familiarising yourself with the products in season from one time of year to the next, you can plan both your shopping and meal preparation accordingly.

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  7. Why Organic Food Is Better for You (and Everyone Else)

    Why Organic Food Is Better for You (and Everyone Else)

    For many years now, the ‘organic’ label has been used as something of a badge of honour by growers and producers worldwide. To such an extent, in fact, that the whole meaning of organic has been somewhat lost in translation for many.

    More than ever, it can be difficult to know which products to choose when shopping for groceries and everyday staples. To say we are spoilt for choice would be something of an understatement, compounded by the fact that we’re bombarded with slogans and marketing messages from all angles.

    Truth is, pretty much every product you see on the shelves is designed with the same basic purpose in mind - to feed you and satisfy you. With such a vast range of price points (varying from the sublime to the ridiculous), we often base our decisions purely on cost-effectiveness.

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  8. The Easy Way to Eat Less Meat (Without it Becoming a Punishment)

    The Easy Way to Eat Less Meat (Without it Becoming a Punishment)

    One of the few things most meat eaters have in common is how they react to the suggestion of eating less meat. Rather than an interesting and perhaps enjoyable endeavour for their benefit and that of the planet, they interpret the whole thing as a punishment.

    Immediately, the idea is pushed to one side as something unpleasant and avoidable – at least for the time being.

    Nevertheless, research suggests that more people than ever before are making the conscientious decision to cut down their consumption of meat. Some are motivated by the environmental impact of meat production; others are more interested in improving their health and wellbeing. 

    Either way, there’s a growing trend among meat eaters to eat at least a little less.

     

    Reducing Meat Consumption Without the Drama

    Good intentions are one thing, but actually going through on them is something else entirely. This is where things start to get tricky for some, as attempting to change habits that have always been part of your lifestyle isn’t easy.

    Where most of those attempting to cut down on meat get things wrong is by viewing the whole thing as a punishment. Seeing it is a challenge is fine, but negative connotations will make it impossible to stick with.

    With a positive and proactive attitude, it can actually be quite easy to eat less meat without even trying. We’re not necessarily talking about going fully plant-based, but nonetheless making a major reduction to the amount of meat you consume.

    Here are seven tips from the pros on how to increase your consumption of plant-based foods without making any major efforts whatsoever:

     

    1.    Extend Your Meat-Free Mondays

    If you have already got on board with the meat-free Mondays trend, you’ve clearly demonstrated that you can survive without meat. In which case, why not extend it into a second day of the week?

    Wednesday and Thursday are ideal days to go alongside Monday, enabling you to space out your vegetarian meals and enjoy meat in-between. Or if you’re already cooking vegetarian meals on Monday, why not simply make more and eat the leftovers on Tuesday?

    This one extra day means you’re effectively doubling your efforts to eat less meat, without making any real difference to your lifestyle.

     

    2.    Eat Vegetarian During the Day

    Without even realising it, quite a lot of people eat meat with every meal.  Perhaps supplementing their three main meals with meat-based snacks throughout the day. If this applies to you (even in part), you could make a major difference to your diet and your health by kicking meat at breakfast and lunch.

    If you reserve animal-based products exclusively for the evening, you’re effectively reducing your consumption by two thirds. Combined with a meat-free Monday, it’s a great way of going partially plant-based without going fully vegetarian.

     

    3.    Save Meat for the Weekend

    This is an approach many nutritionists swear by, which embraces the best of all worlds. Monday to Friday (or Sunday to Thursday if preferred), you eliminate the consumption of meat to the best of your ability. Your body thanks you and you do your bit for the environment, after which you get the green light to eat whatever you want (within reason) at the weekend.

    This opens the door to restaurant meals, your favourite takeaway dishes and anything you care to whip up in the kitchen. Rather than approaching plant-based as a punishment, this reverses the whole thing to make meat more of a treat.

     

    4.    Try the Latest Meat Replacement Products

    If you have not yet had the pleasure of trying an ‘Impossible’ burger or some kind of equivalent, you’ve no idea what you’re missing. These really are the closest approximations to meat the world has ever known, which is some instances are practically indistinguishable from the real thing.

    Even where you can tell the difference between real meat and advanced imitations, they’re incredibly delicious and just as satisfying as meat. Reducing meat consumption does not mean having to cut back on your favourite dishes and recipes. It simply means you have to get a little more creative with them.

     

    5.    Eat Smaller Portions of Meat

    This may sound like a no-brainer, but is nonetheless a method comparatively few people experiment with at home. Rather than cutting out meat entirely, why not simply make a conscious effort to reduce the amount you use?

    If making spaghetti sauce or a chilli con carne, use 50% less minced meat and add extra veg or lentils. Cut the size of your usual steak down by whatever measure you can cope with and pile your plate with your favourite vegetables.

     

    6.    Batch Cook Vegetarian Meals for Convenience

    One of the easiest ways to help yourself to eat less meat is to batch cook and freeze a whole bunch of delicious vegetarian meals. This way, you’ll have a stockpile to dive into when you have neither the time nor the inclination to cook meals from scratch.

    Cravings for convenience food can often take precedence over good intentions – particularly when time is a factor and energy levels are low. The more quick and easy vegetarian meals you have at your disposal, the better.

     

    7.    Set Goals and Reward Positive Progress

    Last up, perhaps the biggest mistake you can make when attempting lifestyle changes like these is to simply make things up as you go along.

    You wake up one morning, you decide to start eating less meat and you make completely random attempts to do so. And you fail, as this is a strategy that almost never works.

    Instead, you need to set meaningful and realistic goals you can wor

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  9. 8 Surprising Health Benefits of Eating a Gluten-Free Diet

    8 Surprising Health Benefits of Eating a Gluten-Free Diet

    Over and above all other eating fads, gluten-free has become the dietary trend of recent years. Debate continues to rage – should those who do not have a gluten intolerance choose to exclude it from their diets? And yet still, this has not discouraged millions from getting on board with the gluten-free lifestyle.

    Away from those who exclude gluten from their diets voluntarily, there are those who have no choice in the matter. Celiac disease, wheat allergies and gluten intolerance are all surprisingly common conditions. And that’s both here in the UK and on a global basis.

    For those affected, excluding gluten is an absolute mus

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