When I first went vegan, I wanted cheese all the time. I had eaten cheese every single day of my life for 39 years. No joke. I can’t remember a day where I didn’t have cheese, sadly.
I Needed Cheese In My Life
I felt like I needed cheese in my life. So, I made every type of vegan cheese I could make and bought all the vegan cheeses I could buy, and while some hit the spot, my mind still struggled with the sudden cut off from dairy for about a month, and perhaps even my body as cheese addiction seems to be a real thing.
But as someone who quit smoking years ago – among other bad habits, I know that letting go of something is usually a battle the mind needs to take on and overcome. So I kept pushing forward.
Find Good Replacements And Problem Solved?
Soon, the panic went away because I found some cheeses that I really liked. My mind was happy and convinced that vegan cheese could be just as good, if not better, than dairy cheese.
But, at certain times of the month – like when I’m stressed or when my hormones are shifting – I still get cravings for a few foods that I used to love with cheese. Foods like mozzarella sticks from a restaurant we used to go, and a layered Mexican dip that had cream cheese mixed with taco seasoning at the bottom and shredded old cheddar on top.
Here’s How I Work Through Cravings For Those Old Foods
This is going to sound simple, and that’s because it is. In my experience, you don’t need to distract yourself or linger in the craving. You just need to get into the right mindset and then satisfy your craving.
1. Remind Myself Why I Don’t Want Those Foods
I have a lot of reasons why I don’t want to eat cheese anymore. I’m sure you will have your own set of reasons for going vegan.
If you don’t have some strong reasons besides ‘just trying it out’, I suggest you research the ethical and health benefits of going vegan so that you can get some of those reasons.
Trust me, when you have a strong conviction over something – like why you don’t want to eat dairy or meat, you will stand by that belief no matter what.
Simply listing off my reasons is enough to help me stop feeling like I need those specific dairy-filled foods.
2. Make A Replacement
As any happy vegan will tell you, there is a veganized version of almost anything you used to eat.
Earth Island’s provolone (also known as Follow Your Heart) works beautifully in cheese sticks (and grilled cheese, and cheesy mashed potatoes, and so many other things), and with a little bit of work, I can whip up a quick batch of cheese sticks at home that hit the spot without the guilt.
I also make a simple version of cashew cream cheese and use that as the bottom of my layered dip mixed with some taco seasoning. And then layer up the dip with so many yummy things that I don’t need the cheddar cheese on top.
Don’t Worry About Cravings Ruining Your Vegan Diet
It’s as simple as that. You may not be able to completely stop the cravings, so don’t beat yourself up over it. We all like the foods we like.
When you get a craving for a food that isn’t vegan, remind yourself why you don’t want to eat those specific foods anymore and then find a way to veganize it and eat it!