Before choosing to become vegan, I did a lot of research. It seemed that I was on YouTube daily watching vegan recipes and lifestyle. I read any book on veganism I could get my hands on. I was completely fascinated by the whole idea of veganism, and I couldn’t get enough.
It took me a year or two of this immersion before finally taking the leap. Honestly, I think the only reason it took so long was that I was scared. I didn’t want to start and fail two days later when a particularly juicy cheeseburger passed by my nose.
While I was in this state of research and fear, I wished there would have been one place I could find a list of the best resources to use. It didn’t seem like there was a compilation that I liked. Over the years, though, I’ve built a mental list of my favorite blogs, documentaries, YouTubers, and books.
My favorites are the ones that have great content but, more than anything, encourage me to stick with it. I especially love the lifestyle resources that prove it’s possible to live a vegan lifestyle.
This documentary follows the lives of three people from different lifestyles as they take on the challenge to be vegan. I love Vegucated because it is so relatable. I watched this before I became vegan, and it helped me to realize that if these people can make the change, so can I.
Vegucated covers most of the basics of veganism without diving too deep, so it’s perfect for someone who wants an overview without being overwhelmed by a million facts. I’ve shown this to my friends who don’t know much about veganism, and they enjoyed watching it.
Length: 1 hr 16 min
Find it on: Netflix, Amazon, YouTube, Vudu, iTunes, Google Play
Cowspiracy deals mostly with the environmental effects of factory farming. This was an eye-opening film for me. I had no idea how much factory farming affects the environment. This is really what helped me understand that veganism is more than just about health and animal rights. It has a bigger impact than we may think.
Through humorously exploring the idea of what the most sustainable way to live would be, Cowspiracy is actually uplifting as well as eye-opening. This is a great film to watch without needing to dive too deep.
Length: 1 hr 25 min
Find it on: Netflix, Amazon Video
What the Health is a documentary I recently watched and absolutely loved. A man is curious about veganism and decides to do some digging. He visits and interviews with different organizations to find the truth behind the food industry’s connection with government, pharmaceuticals, and health organizations.
This isn’t necessarily about veganism for health, however, it does talk about that a bit. I would recommend watching this documentary after you have done a little more research with a film like Cowspiracy and Vegucated.
Length: 1 hr 37 min
Find it on: Netflix, Vimeo, YouTube, Amazon Video, Google Play, iTunes
I love this documentary. The producer of the film, Joe Cross, travels from Australia to interview Americans about their diets. The entire time he films this (until the end at least), he is on a 60-day juice fast. He carries around a juicer with him everywhere and juices vegetables and fruit to receive all the nutrients and calories he needs. My favorite part is when he meets two other people who take up this challenge.
This is a great movie to show to people who aren’t ready for hard facts and just want to feel inspired. There are a lot of people that take up the challenge, and it is something that anyone can do. This is a really great way to introduce friends who think veganism is weird to the idea. I’ve watched this more times than I can count, but I always enjoy it.
Length: 1 hr 37 min
Find it on: Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Video, Vudu, iTunes
In this science-based book, author Joel Fuhrman gives insight into why a plant-based diet is best for everyone through his extensive medical background. The nice thing about this is that the book is actually understandable. I have difficulty reading anything medical, but he manages to make it readable and interesting even.
Along with being able to show veganism isn’t just a hippie movement and is founded in facts, Dr. Fuhrman tells the stories of his patients who have seen incredible success. This is a really inspiring book, but especially helpful when people think veganism has no facts to back it up.
Find it at: drfuhrman.com, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, thrift stores
This is one of the first vegan books I read, and it was a really great introduction for me. Honestly, I was worried I would do it wrong. She eased a lot of my fears and also strengthened my resolve. I had only really seen this diet as kind to my body, which it is, but she went into ethics and why this was kind for everyone.
If you are new to veganism or just want to strengthen your resolve, this is a great read.
Find it at: thekindlife.com, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, thrift stores
I feel like I should preface this section by saying that I spend most of my time getting ideas for recipes on YouTube. Pinterest is my go-to for finding a recipe quickly, but I definitely spend more time on YouTube when I want inspiration or just encouragement.
Ellen has to be one of my favorite YouTubers because of her vegan advocacy, parenting skills, and (let’s face it) her adorable kids. Sometimes I find myself watching a video just because I know her kids will be in it. Her children, Elvis and Sandy, are both vegan and have been from the day they were born. In one of her videos, Elvis gets the chance to explain to others why he is vegan, and it’s not because his mom told him so.
Based in Hawaii, Ellen has day-in-the-life vlogs, parenting advice, and vegan eating for families. If you have a family that you want to encourage to live vegan or you want a family like that, this is the YouTube channel to follow.
YouTube: Ellen Fisher
Alysse, the founder of Raw Alignment, encourages self-love along with providing delicious raw vegan (and a few cooked) recipes. I love to go to her channel when I feel discouraged. For a lot of her videos, she is based in Hawaii, but she travels a bit and even spends some time living in a van. Really, she seems to try anything that is fun and fulfilling which in turn encourages me to seek those things.
YouTube: Raw Alignment
Kate is a raw vegan like Alysse. She has really great “What I eat in a day” videos, and I’m always salivating by the end. As well, she features a lot of lifestyle on her page like LGBTQ life and ballet. Some of her topics are really serious, and I love that she advocates these needed messages to the world.
Kate’s life story is really encouraging, and she tells about how she went from an alcoholic and drug addict to a healthy raw vegan. It’s an amazing transformation and worth the watch.
YouTube: Kate Flowers
Bonny is so cute! Her excitement is contagious as you can see in her videos. She has a lot of really great recipes that I have found really helpful while in college, and she isn’t over the top. The meals are fairly budget-friendly, and you don’t have to have a whole kitchen decked out with the coolest appliances.
YouTube: Bonny Rebecca
What are some I missed? Where do you go to learn more about veganism?