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New vegan would love a little help.

Hello everyone! 

Well, i guess I could start by introducing myself and offer a little insite to why I've decided to go vegan. I would love to hear any advice, tips or suggestions, as i am new to this lifestyle.

Im a 27 year old mechanical engineer tech living in California. Im a single dad to an awesome lil 11 year old daughter who is (surprisingly) willing to take the lifestyle change with me. Heart disease and cancer runs ramped in my family, to which, i have recently discovered i will be fighting the same battle (heart disease). With Crestor, my cholesterol is 424, and triglycerides are at 405. Few more pulmonary test later, i discover partial blockage throughout my arteries. I can't even explain how confusing and frustrating this is. I've never had a "bad" diet. I excersize often, and im extremely active in spare time. From my understanding, i inherited this gift. So this is why im deciding to go vegan. I've read numerous heart patient accounts contributing plant based diets to their well being. I want to be well. 

So here are my questions and concerns:

1) I work a lot. I mean a lot, a lot. I really need this lifestyle to be as convienent as possible. Between work and raising a daughter on my own, i have little time to even sleep. Any advice on shopping/meal preparation would be appreciated.

2) I work for a naval base in the middle of no-where, grocery stores are limited. What are you common, easy to find food staples?

3) is this lifestyle safe for a growing 11yr old?

Once again, its nice to meet all of you. If you have any tips or advice, I'd love to hear them. I'd even be open to communicating through text for on-the-fly vegan crisis questions lol.

Thanks,

Daniel

Hi Daniel!

FIrst off I want to congratulate you on such a healthy decision for you and your daughter. Especially with the heart disease you spoke about, there is no better choice for your health than a plant-based diet. My suggestion for your first question is prepare meals ahead of time. Make frozen meals as much as possible on the weekends and try to make meals that will have leftovers for the next night or lunch the next day. This has helped my husband and I stay on track. Shopping should be done with a lot of preperation in mind: buy grains in bulk and only as much produce as you can eat in a week. Try to see what your local supermarket has in way of an ordering system. We are an Army family and our comissary lets us place special orders, they alsmost always honor it. I would try that if you can. I would also suggest reading several books: The Kind Life by Alicia SIlverstone--she has children and is raising them vegan and they are energetic cuties. You should also read The China Study by T. Collin Campbell. Both GREAT resources. I would say that as long as you nutritionally plan your meals out on the weekends or when you have free time, you will be giving your daughter everything she nutritionally needs. I have a blog filled with tips and recipes. Feel free to use it: foreverfascinated.com. I try to post a new post every weekday. I make generally easy recipes with easy-to-find ingredients. Good luck! Have a great day.

--Kate

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