My Husband Quit Being A Vegan After Two Years

Jenn Leach

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My husband quit being a vegan after two years. Here’s what happened.

First, as far back as I can remember, my husband was talking about wanting to be a vegan. He had a family member who was a vegan and he has always been intrigued about the lifestyle.

The benefits of maintaining his weight, eating more veggies, lowering his blood pressure, and cutting out meat and dairy were what most appealed to him. He had seen documentaries and heard stories of vegans gaining loads of energy, feeling great, sleeping soundly at night and more.

A few years back we did try pescatarianism for an entire year and that went really well. I even lost 12 pounds that year without even trying!

You can read about my journey with pescatarianism.

After that, I decided to go back to eating meat and he turned into a vegan.

What It Was Like Living with a Vegan

Well, I had ventured in veganism myself here and there throughout his time as a vegan but I could never stick with it.

The problem that I had wasn't the lack of meat, it was the lack of dairy.

As an adult, I fully developed an even greater love of sweets and a lot of the delicious treats and bakery items you buy or make have dairy in them, like milk and butter. And of course eggs.

This is a food addiction I just can't shake.

I was never able to fully commit to being vegan but I can tell you what it was like living with one. And, I can share about my husband's experience.

Eating Vegan

First, the food.

When you’re vegan, you eat no animal products. That means no meat, no fish, no milk or dairy including butter, no eggs and honey.

He was a die-hard vegan and he stuck to these rules 100%.

Luckily, today, the society (in the U.S.) is more vegan-friendly than in the past.

That means when you visit a restaurant, you will be able to be served vegan-friendly options other than just salad at a lot of establishments. A lot of popular chain restaurants like Burger King, Starbucks and other places are beginning to offer meat alternatives with Beyond meat or Impossible meat, and other brands.

You might be wondering how it worked at home with my husband who is vegan and me, the non-vegan.

It was a lot easier than I thought. I'm pretty flexible when it comes to food and although meat alternatives are not my favorite, I'm pretty open to trying them and eating them, especially if they taste good.

I would say that about 90% of the time, our meals were vegan. So, breakfast, lunch, and dinner were all vegan.

Snacks were not vegan, for me.

I didn't cook meat in the house except on occasion for my son and he doesn’t even particularly like meat anyway, but he’ll still mostly eat it.

For any baking that I did, I made sure to use egg alternatives and no dairy, so that the whole family could enjoy it.

Here are some staples that we ate on the regular, sometimes every week:

  • Veggie-based soups and stews
  • Lentils
  • Veggie pasta dishes
  • Veggie rice dishes
  • Meat-free burgers
  • Meat-free stir fry meals

My husband loves soups and stews so we had this nearly every week from meat-free chili (which I like better than traditional chili), potato soups, lentil stew, bean stews, etc.

Lentils are super delicious and we would prepare red and green lentils in a bunch of different ways, in soups, seasoned alongside rice or veggies, etc.

Pastas and rice dishes were enjoyed often. Meat-free burgers like frozen beyond burgers were super delicious and meat-free stir fry dinners with frozen or fresh veggies were incredible.

We even ate dairy-laden meals prepared the vegan way, like spaghetti and “meat” sauce, nachos, and macaroni and “cheese.”

Occasionally I would have Chick-fil-a for lunch or eat sushi. I wasn’t vegan, after all. And, my snacks were almost always not vegan and included cookies, ice cream, cheese and crackers, veggies and dip, etc.

Vegan Benefits and Side Effects

Then, were the side effects.

The side effects were good and bad. The good included having regular bowel movements. Daily bowel movements were not something I experienced growing up, but eating mostly vegan definitely kept things moving, which was great.

I loved that I was eating more veggies in my diet. We would blend veggies into sauces that we’d eat with pasta, mix them in desserts so you couldn’t taste them, sneak them everywhere we could, and I loved that.

The bad included low energy.

For my husband, being vegan made him incredibly tired.

We didn’t tie this to veganism until after he went back to eating meat.

He was so tired, he would commonly have to drink energy drinks just to make it through a work day or take workout fat burners to give him energy. If not, he could literally fall asleep at his desk.

I can’t remember what the turning point was for him but after two years of being vegan, he called it quits.

Now, living with a partner that has the same diet as me.

Today, we eat the same diet. We’re back to eating pescatarian and absolutely love it. We include plenty of veggies in our diet and enjoy some of our favorite vegan dishes like vegan chilli and other meals.

When he started eating meat again, his energy fully returned.

And, that’s when it clicked that veganism was contributing to his low energy levels.

It's nice to be eating the same diet. It makes grocery shopping a little easier and our grocery bill has dropped a bit (vegan alternative foods are expensive).

I think everyone's journey being vegan is different. I've started to see more and more vegans turn back to meat for a multitude of reasons. Don't let this discourage you if you're vegan or thinking about embracing a vegan lifestyle.

As I mentioned, everyone has a different experience.

And, this was my husband's story.

What do you think?

Are you vegan or have you changed your lifestyle recently and want to share your experience? Comment below. I’d love to hear about it!

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Millennial entrepreneur and writer bringing you fresh content and ideas about making money, side hustles, personal finance, budgeting, and lifestyle. Connect with me: www.millennialnextdoor.com

Houston, TX
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