Five unexpected side effects of doing Meat-Free MayMay 8th, 2020
It’s Meat-Free May! People all over the world are taking part by cutting out meat for the month and embracing the delicious and healthy alternatives available. Some are going the extra mile by cutting out animal products altogether, including dairy and eggs. We all know this is a great move for the planet, our health and of course the animals, but Meat-Free May comes with a warning – there may be some unexpected side effects.
1: Your taste buds will change
At first, you might find that plant-based alternatives to animal products taste a little different and take some getting used to. You may need to try ten different plant-based milks to find the one that tastes great in your coffee, or five different plant-based cheeses to find the one that melts perfectly on your pizza. Not to mention all of the plant-based meats on offer at the supermarket!
But when you do find your new favourite swaps and get used to them, it’s not unusual to find that your taste buds have changed and your old animal-derived favourites taste, well, ‘wrong.’ This is common particularly with dairy products. Accidentally getting a cows’ milk latte when you’ve been drinking oat or soy milk for a month can be udderly alarming and you could find yourself thinking ‘how did I ever drink that?’
2: You’ll discover a world of new recipes and ingredients
We humans are creatures of habit. We tend to love the kind of food we grew up with and stick to the same tried and tested recipes that our tastebuds are familiar with. It’s so easy to get stuck in a rut with cooking. Even ordering something other than the same dish every time you eat at your favourite restaurant can be a challenge!
Now think about the excitement of discovering your new favourite meal ‒ the kind of meal that you know is a keeper the moment it hits your tastebuds! Times that by 31 (if you’re fully embracing Meat-Free May) and you’ve got a whole new repertoire of delicious plant-based recipes.
Embracing plant-based eating opens our eyes to so many new ingredients, textures and flavours. Still craving your old favourites? There is sure to be a plant-based version that tastes the same or better.
3: You’ll feel happier
You’ve heard the saying ‘you are what you eat.’ Makes sense when you think about it.
When you’re eating only plant-based foods, the little voice in your head (your conscience) stops nagging you and starts congratulating you instead.
The knowledge of the good you are doing for the planet, for animals and of course your health is enough to make anyone feel happier! And if you’re looking for science to back this up, there have been multiple studies that link plant-based diets to improved mental health.
4: You might have a lightbulb moment
Ahhh! That moment when everything clicks into place and feels right. You’ve been thinking about going plant-based for a while now, but this time you know it’s for good. You’re armed with your new repertoire of recipes, you’re more motived than ever, after learning about the benefits to your health, the planet and the animals, and it JUST. FEELS. RIGHT. You are now ready to fully embrace a new way of eating that aligns with your values. What a feeling!
5: You’ll make new friends
Vegans have a way of finding each other and bonding over our shared experiences. Yes, there will be some people who don’t agree with your decision, but there will also be people who will bend over backwards to help a new vegan in need. That distant Facebook friend you didn’t know was a vegan is now sending you recipes, and that vegan workmate you hardly talked to before is now your personal plant-based mentor. Anyone who’s ever had a hard time feeling accepted will understand the importance of good friends and finding your ‘tribe.’ Your new tribe members could become friends for life.
Still thinking of giving Meat-Free May a go? Sign up to our free Plant-Based Challenge during May, and you’ll receive recipes, tips, food swaps, nutritional information and all of the help a new vegan could need!
Plus, everyone who signs up to the Plant-Based Challenge during Meat-Free May will go into the prize draw to win the latest Revive Café cookbook. What are you waiting for?