The Student Guide To Veganuary: 8 Top Tips
Veganuary promotes a plant-based diet by encouraging people to follow a vegan lifestyle for the month of January.
This annual challenge is a way for people to explore the benefits of a more environmentally friendly and even healthier diet.
Although vegan food doesn’t always equal healthier, it really depends on what you’re eating.
If you are considering trying veganuary whilst living in student accommodation, we’ve listed 8 top tips within our guide to help get you started – you’ve got this!
Benefits Of Veganuary
Before we get started, if you’re debating whether or not to take up this challenge of going meat and dairy free, then be sure to check out the benefits we’ve listed below.
If these won’t convince you to change your eating habits for the month, we don’t know what will!
- Can improve sleeping pattern
- Can help with weight loss
- Boost your mood
- Boost energy levels
- Improve your digestion
- Lower blood pressure and cholesterol
- Clearer skin
These are just a few of the health benefits from trying a vegan diet for the first month of the year.
There’s plenty of other positives of veganism such as it’s cruelty free and more sustainable, plus you may even save money depending on what plant based alternatives you buy!
To learn more about the 31-day challenge, head over to the official veganuary website.
Now you know the benefits of this annual-challenge, if you’re wondering how to get started, we’ve listed 8 top tips below for you to take on board to incorporate a vegan lifestyle for the month of January.
Let’s get going!
1. Plan Ahead
Our first tip for making the most of veganuary is to plan ahead.
We know January is already in full swing so you may have already kicked off your plant-based diet, but if you’re wondering how to stay on track, a plan will also be helpful.
We’d suggest creating a meal plan per week and shopping for ingredients in advance.
Write down a shopping list before you get to the shops so you know what vegan goodies you’ll be getting.
This will help avoid the temptation to grab non-vegan foods when you’re hungry and short on time.
After all, the more organised you are the easier it will be to stick to the challenge.
Make sure to read labels when you are out shopping for plant based foods, whilst most supermarkets do have a great range of vegan food, you could accidentally purchase a vegetarian product.
2. Veganise Your Current Faves
What do we mean by veganise your current faves?
Well, just because you’re taking on a meat and dairy free diet doesn’t mean you have to say goodbye to all the meals you currently love, just veganise them!
For example, if your fave dish is Spaghetti Bolognese, grab some vegan alternatives like plant based meatballs, pasta and sauce and there you have it.
It’s never been easier to live a vegan lifestyle these days with all the different alternatives out there, with tons of supermarkets like Lidl and Sainsburys offering vegan brands and their own plant based range.
Don’t be afraid to try new things when trying out this vegan diet, you might just surprise yourself.
A vegan diet doesn’t have to lack in flavour, there’s tons of delicious dishes to be made, just go out and find alternatives.
3. Start Small
If this is your first veganuary, then remind yourself that you don’t need to go all-in from the start, we know it can be a bit overwhelming.
You could try a vegetarian diet first and incorporate some vegan products into your diet gradually to see how you feel, such as swapping out dairy milk for plant milks.
Going from being a full meat eater to a completely vegan diet will be hard, so don’t feel bad if you don’t want to jump in the deep end straight away.
Similar to following New Year’s resolutions, any lifestyle change can be hard at first, take it slow and see how you go as it will take some getting used to!
4. Seek Out Inspiration
Rest assured, there’s tons of inspiration out there if you’re struggling with vegan recipes to chef up within your student flat, whether it’s seeking out dishes to make on TikTok, listening to motivational podcasts or scouring the web for yummy meals to make.
You don’t need to invest in vegan cookbooks to cook up a storm, you can sign up for the likes of Gousto.
If you haven’t heard of it, it’s a meal prep subscription service that delivers fresh ingredients straight to your door in a box with recipe cards to follow.
With a weekly meal plan like this you don’t need to think too much about what nice meals you can cook up for your veganuary journey, they do all the hard work for you!
5. Eat Out
Just because you’re doing veganuary doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a meal out with friends or family, or even just a treat for yourself.
There’s so many vegan friendly restaurants out there so you don’t need to miss out on eating good without having to cook it yourself.
So many restaurants these days offer both a vegan menu and menus for those who eat meat, so everyone can enjoy a meal together.
Moreover, if you’re lacking inspiration with what to cook, eating out is a great way to try some amazing dishes which you otherwise wouldn’t have tried.
Or, if you’d rather chill at home, there’s plenty of vegan takeaways out there and these days, even the likes of Maccies do tasty vegan scran so you won’t miss out!
6. Buddy Up With A Friend
Similar to going to the gym with a friend, it always feels better when you’ve got someone jumping on the bandwagon with you, don’t you think?
If your flatmates are wanting to take part in the challenge then you can all do it together, this way you can split the costs of ingredients and take it in turns to cook vegan options for one another.
This way, you’ll be each others veganuary buddy and you’ll be able to stick to the challenge by having someone else to motivate you.
If no-one you know is taking part in veganuary, don’t worry, there’s plenty of online resources to motivate you, and you can push yourself.
Think about why you want to take part in this lifestyle change, is it because you want to be healthier, you want to lose weight, you want to push yourself, you want to be more environmentally friendly?
After all, thinking about goals encourages people!
7. Remove Temptations
If you really want to nail going vegan for the whole month of January, we’d suggest removing any temptations so you don’t end up snacking on any meat or dairy products when the cravings come in.
We’re talking about putting away any of those Christmas chocolates you’ve still got lying around.
Although, it’s important to remember that making mistakes along the way when transitioning to a vegan diet even for a short period of time is normal.
As we mentioned earlier, any lifestyle change can be difficult.
Don’t be hard on yourself if you do give in to any temptations, just get back on track and carry on.
It’s fine to make mistakes, don’t put too much pressure on yourself!
8. Make Sure To Get Enough Nutrients
When you’re doing veganuary, it’s important to make sure to get enough nutrients in your diet.
Whilst certain vitamins can be more difficult for vegans to obtain like vitamin B12, it’s possible for vegans to get enough vitamins by consuming a varied and balanced diet.
If you’re not looking to go vegan in the long term and are just looking to stick to the 31-day challenge, we wouldn’t worry too much about health concerns.
However, still pay some attention to ensure you’re getting enough necessary vitamins and nutrients in your diet like a vitamin D supplement (especially during the winter months), omega-3 fatty acids, and calcium.
You should also ensure you’re getting enough protein in your diet from the likes of beans, legumes, tofu, tempeh, nuts, and seeds.
As we said earlier, a vegan diet doesn’t necessarily equate to being super healthy, but it can if you follow a well balanced plant-based diet.
So there we have it, do you feel confident enough to tackle veganuary with our top tips?
If you’ve already started, we wish you luck and we hope you smash your vegan journey this month.
You never know you might just stick to veganism after the month is over!