Sunday, November 1 is World Vegan Day, and November is World Vegan Month, and as a start we encourage everyone to celebrate with a glass of vegan wine! 100% of the wines in our portfolio are vegan-friendly, and most are Certified Vegan. There are no animal byproducts used in the production of any of our wines. Animal-based fining agents are often used in conventional winemaking to produced a polished finish.
Common fining agents include hydrolyzed wheat gluten isolate, casein (milk protein), gelatin (an animal protein), egg whites, isinglass (made from the swim bladders of fish), and natural bentonite clay. All Natural Merchants wineries use only bentonite, a natural earth clay, or vegetable protein in the fining process. Some wines are unfiltered or fined altogether. Our wines clearly state Certified Vegan or Vegan Friendly on the back labels.
But what would it take to transition completely to a vegan lifestyle? We asked blogger Sarah Jones to give us her take on embracing a vegan diet.
Transitioning to a Vegan Lifestyle: What You Should Know
Making the transition to a vegan lifestyle can be easier than you think. Often, the scary part is the idea that you will have to incorporate huge changes that mean cutting lots of food and drink items out of your diet. With a vegan diet, there are many alternative and tasty substitutes for just about anything, including cheese, drinks such as vegan wine, meat, dairy products, and many others. Try making one change at a time for better success and progression.
Vegan – Educate Yourself
One of the best things you can do is to learn all there is to know about becoming vegan. Discover what foods your new diet has, why these types of food are a good choice, the benefits of the lifestyle, how to utilize a plant-based diet, what ingredients there are that are good for vegans, and which are the best stores to get these food items. With the increasing popularity of the vegan lifestyle, there are tons of recipes online. There are also many stores that have ingredients and food that support veganism.
Alternative Options – Including Vegan Wines
Another important factor when transitioning to a vegan lifestyle is to add substitutes to your diet before you start cutting items out. Adding greens, beans, and whole grains into your meals can help ease the transition and make it run smoothly.
Items like coffee is a good vegan staple that you won’t have to remove, and there are many vegan wines which are excellent for your heart and brain. Don’t forget that both are generally gluten-free. Know how to store these items and how long their shelf life is because many plant-based foods can spoil quickly. Try using soy or almond milk and know what other substitutes are on the market for vegans.
Planning is the Key for a Vegan Lifestyle
Switching diets suddenly and without any preparation or knowledge can fail. Planning your new vegan lifestyle is key to success. Removing all meat can be done in phases to ease the transition. Add in more legumes and plant-based items as you subtract meat. You can do this by food group or by item, and you can set alerts on your calendar or do it by schedule.
Also, start looking at labels and ingredient lists. There are usually substitutes for everything, including meat in the vegan diet, but it is a good idea to plan out meals and to make yourself aware. Some products, such as wine, have hidden animal-based ingredients or production processes. A good source for finding vegan wine, beer and liquor is Barnivore.
Transitioning to the vegan lifestyle depends on one thing – you! Are you ready to jump right in? Go ahead. It is important to make the change as you feel comfortable, but make sure you do some research and know what is available to you.
Sarah Jones is the author of Simmer and Zest. She wants to share what she’s learned about food to help others enjoy their meals while maintaining a healthy diet. #Worldveganday