The decision to cut animal products from your diet for ethical, environmental, and/or health reasons is totally worthwhile. I say this as someone with a long explanation about why I choose to eat vegan based on my morals. Still, it’s not lost on me that evangelical veganism can be really freaking annoying.
Here are some arguments for trying veganism that won’t make you want to wrap a filet mignon in bacon out of spite — at least not as much.
1. Once word gets out that you’re vegan, a fun new game is counting how many people will tell you they could go without eggs, but “could never give up cheese.” If cows ever find out about this, they will have infinite leverage against us.
2. Your skin clears up. Maybe not completely, but my face pimples have gone down by at least 50%. Plus, I’m now completely bacne free!
3. You feel lighter (even if you aren’t). At least for me, there are enough hummus tubs and pints of soy ice cream in my diet that these curves ain’t going nowhere. Even so, my energy is noticeably higher and my mood perkier.
4. It’s one of the quickest ways to piss off your conservative grandfather. You know, if that’s something you’re looking to do.
5. Trips to the grocery store are surprisingly cheap. Sure, it’s easy to make vegan shopping expensive. If you’re buying frozen organic tempeh burgers and raw cashews by the bucketful, yeah, it’s going to cost more. However, staples like bananas, tofu, spinach, and nutritional yeast are super affordable. Speaking of…
6. Nutritional yeast. It’s a shame that something so delicious and versatile sounds like something we should feed waterfowl. Really, it’s just B12-rich deactivated yeast flakes (okay, still sounds gross) that you can sprinkle in anything savory to make it taste cheesy. Well, my non-vegan friends don’t agree that it tastes cheesy, per se — see #1—but they tell me they still like it, and I’ve forgotten what cheese actually tastes like, so win-win!
7. It helps weed out people who are obsessed with proving some version of machismo that directly correlates with how bloody their dinner is. While vegan lectures can definitely be irritating, the same goes for meat activists. Agree to disagree, bye.
8. Your new lifestyle* is a great go-to topic when you’re panicking that there’s nothing to say on a first date or an unavoidable hallway walk with a coworker. If there’s anything that will quash a lull in the conversation, it’s veganism.
*Be careful if you call it a lifestyle. Might be true, but better limit what you borrow from vegan proselytizers’ vocabulary.