Back in October, I shared my responses to some common myths about going vegan. In that post I talked about how it’s not expensive to be vegan, how eating meat is not necessary to get enough vitamin B12, how we don’t need to drink dairy milk to get enough calcium, how vegan diets are safe for kids, and more. There are a ton of myths about veganism, so today I thought I’d share some more of my responses to a few more myths!
This is sort of a continuation of my first “vegan myths” blog post, so that’s why I’ve started with myth #11!
Myth #11: We’re meant to eat meat because we have canine teeth.
I don’t know about you, but my “canine” teeth are about as useful as all my other teeth. We’re supposedly omnivores, right?! Well, some people try to use our canine teeth as evidence that we are. But if you compare our canine teeth to, say, a bear’s or even a chimpanzee’s canine teeth (who are also considered omnivores), they’re not quite the same. And, frankly, I don’t really understand the connection. I mean…I think most meat-eating humans are not tearing meat off the animal directly with their teeth. Most use a knife and fork to cut it into chewable pieces. So, in my humble opinion, our “canine” teeth are not proof that we’re made to eat meat.
Myth #12: Eating meat is necessary to get enough iron.
Eating meat is not necessary to get enough iron. In fact, there are many other healthier sources of iron, other than meat, that you may not have realized you’re already eating! Healthy sources of iron include grains (like breads, brown rice, quinoa, oatmeal, and cereals), legumes (like beans, chickpeas, lentils, tofu, soybeans, etc.), nuts and seeds, tomato sauce, collard greens, raisins, prunes, vegan meats, and more. Plus, eating/drinking a source of vitamin C (like oranges/orange juice, bell peppers, berries, etc.) helps with iron absorption. On a well-balanced, plant-based diet, it’s super easy to get enough daily iron…but without all the cholesterol and other unhealthy stuff in meats.
Myth #13: Vegans are aggressive and judgmental.
Okay, let’s be real: there are aggressive, rude, and judgmental people everywhere; so I’d be kidding myself (and you) if I said there weren’t vegans with these qualities. But, I fully believe that the majority of us are not that way at all. We’re all about having compassion for animals and seeing them for what they truly are (living beings), rather than commodities. I’m going to be honest here…I think a lot of people have a hard time swallowing the harsh information and reality about animal agriculture that they hear from vegans (typically online or during public outreach), and it’s taken as a personal offence (I know this from my own experience). It’s hard to hear about the mass suffering and animal cruelty that happens every second of every day, how we all contribute to it, and how it’s not necessary to continue contributing to it. It’s really easy to start feeling attacked and defensive, but that’s because people don’t want to believe that their own actions (such as paying money) are the reason for animal suffering. The feeling of judgment, I would say, usually comes from within oneself. It doesn’t always come from another person who’s just trying to share real information. So while, yes, there are aggressive vegans (I’ve definitely seen some), the majority of us are just trying to live cruelty-free, as well as inform and educate the masses about what animals used and killed for food/fashion/entertainment experience.
Myth #14: Being vegan is hard.
It’s really not. I honestly thought the same thing before I went vegan last year. I didn’t know how I was ever going to be able to do it…I didn’t even think I’d ever be a vegetarian, but it’s been more than 6 years…! It does take some effort (especially in the beginning), but now — even after a little less than a year — being vegan is just who I am. I really think it helps to transition at a pace that’s right for you. There are vegans who would disagree with me, but I think it’s better to be heading in the right direction than not at all. Some people are able to go vegan cold
turkey tofu, but some (like myself) start by making small changes and build up to living a vegan lifestyle. Luckily, it’s getting easier and more convenient for people to go vegan these days! There are all kinds of vegan milks, cheeses, meats, and anything else you can think of. Plus there are a lot of cruelty-free brands that are starting to make their products with vegan ingredients because that’s what more and more people are asking for these days. Veganism is about choosing compassion for animals and just trying our best to live as cruelty-free as we can. Being vegan is not nearly as difficult as you think it is…don’t ever let anyone convince you otherwise.
Myth #15: Vegan diets are a fad that will go away.
I don’t for a second believe this myth! Veganism is not a fad (never has been) and it’s not going away anytime soon. More and more people are learning about cruel factory farming and animal agriculture and are no longer wanting to be a part of it. More people are turning to plant-based diets for health reasons because animal products are a known contributing factor in countless diseases. And more people are becoming aware of how terrible factory farms are for the environment (worse than all traffic around the world combined). Veganism is not something that’s just going to go away. In fact, I believe, the vegan movement is going to keep growing and growing every year. Only time will tell.
More that 2000 land animals are killed for food every second of every day (plus trillions of fish a year)…which is just unimaginable. Being vegan is easy and it’s worth it to know that I’m doing the best I can to not contribute to animal suffering. I hope my responses to a few more vegan myths has been helpful and encouraging about being vegan!
What are some vegan myths that you’ve heard?