I’m Tracye McQuirter, public health nutritionist, author and vegan for 30 years, and it’s my pleasure to welcome you to the
African American Vegan Starter Guide, where we show you simple ways to begin a plant-based lifestyle. So if you’ve been thinking about going vegan, congratulations! It can be one of the most life-changing decisions you’ll ever make. And in this guide, we’ll help you get there. I’m joined by some of my expert colleagues in the plant-based field to answer your most common questions about how to transition to vegan food.
With everything from why to do it, what to eat, how to get all the nutrients you need, how to make it affordable and delicious, how to eat out and socialize as a vegan, and how to raise vegan children—we’ve got you covered.
We know going vegan can seem challenging, but don’t worry. We’ve been there. In fact, in my case, I never thought I’d be a vegan. Growing up, I actually hated healthy food, especially vegetables. In 7th grade, I even wrote a petition against two of my teachers who wanted to make our class camping trip all-vegetarian. (I was overruled.) So what changed for me?
During his talk, Gregory graphically traced the path of a hamburger from a cow on a factory farm, through the slaughterhouse process, to a fast food restaurant, to a clogged artery, to a heart attack. And it rocked my world. For the next few months, I read everything I could about vegetarianism. I was also thrilled to discover there was a large and thriving community of black vegetarians and vegans in my hometown of Washington, DC, who had started the first all-vegan cafes and health food stores in the nation’s capital in the early 1980s. I immersed myself in this community, learning how to cook, where to shop, how to make it affordable, the politics of food and much more.
It’s been a miraculous 30 years since then. I’ve gone from hating vegetables, to drinking daily green smoothies, to celebrating 25
years of showing folks just like you how to go vegan for life and love it! So I know if I could do it, you can do it, too. And it’s my hope that this guide will be an ongoing source of information and inspiration for you on your plant-based journey.
Source: Tracye McQuirter, public health nutritionist