VEGANISM FOR COMPLETE NEWBIES
So, you’ve decided to become a Vegan. Well, it is the latest trend all over the world and with all the delicious meals and health benefits you see online, how can you not be drawn into this way of life?!
Whilst we cannot statistically measure the increase of veganism in South Africa, it definitely has become evident that more and more people are turning to this way of living. In a survey done by The Vegan Society last year, it showed that Great Britain had seen a 360 % increase in veganism over the last decade.
Switching to a vegan lifestyle comes with a lot of questions and concerns. To help you with this, we’ve put together some information that can make this transition a little easier for you.
Where To Start?
Eating a vegan diet can be a healthy way to eat when your meals are full of vegetables, fruits, legumes and whole grains. You need a well-planned vegan diet to make sure you don’t miss out on essential nutrients or end up eating only processed vegan foods.
Make Vegetables the Stars of Your Meals. People often get hung up on what they can’t have on a plant-based diet, instead of what they can. But a great meal does not have to centre on meat. Veggie-packed meals are a winning choice all-around: veggies are full of vitamins (like A and K) and minerals (like potassium), they keep your calories in check and, because they are high in fibre, they can help you feel more satisfied.
Choose Whole Grains. Swapping out refined grains, such as white pasta and white bread, for whole grains, such as brown rice and quinoa, adds iron and B vitamins to a vegan diet (nutrients that are stripped out when the grains are refined). And, the extra fibre from whole grains will help keep you full and may even help you lose weight.
What Are The Differences Between Vegans and Vegetarians?
Chances are you understand vegetarians, and there is a pretty good chance you know a few people who eat this way.
Vegans follow a stricter diet than vegetarians. They don’t eat meat, fish, poultry or any other animal products and by-products, such as eggs, dairy products and honey.
Are There True Health Benefits To Veganism?
A plant-based diet consists of more than just fresh fruits and vegetables – Whole grains, beans, legumes, nuts, and seeds also make up a substantial portion of this way of eating. Vegans rely heavily on all of these staples to receive all of their vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals.
Vegans eat a significant amount of these healthy foods, so they have more access to vitamins B1, C, E, folic acid, magnesium, and iron. At the same time, their diets are low in cholesterol and saturated fats that can lead to adverse health consequences.
A plant-based vegan diet reduces many conditions that Westerners regularly experience such as:
- Cardiovascular disease
- Ischemic heart disease
- Type 2 diabetes
- Certain Cancers
Why No Dairy?
All vegans (or at least true vegans) abstain from consuming dairy products. Some do so for nutritional reasons; others abstain for ethical reasons.
Those who do it for nutritional reasons cite a range of health problems related to the consumption of dairy products, including high cholesterol. Many also have a problem digesting lactose or have a blood-iron or diabetic problem related to the milk protein, casein. In addition to this, milk and cheese often contain small portions of undesirable hormones that are added to dairy cow feeds to increase production.
Those who abstain from consuming dairy products for ethical reasons also have a range of reasons for doing so. Some cite the poor treatment of dairy cows as the main reason for not consuming milk and cheese.
Now that you have a basic understanding of what Veganism is, here are a few tips we’d like to share with you before starting on this journey:
1. Start with an open mind
There’s no surer way to guarantee failure than to go into it with a bad attitude. Unfortunately, this is not something that’s easy for many folks to do. If you think that going vegan is going to be a punishment or that you won’t last, then it will be, and you won’t.
If cooking at home, give yourself extra time to cook, particularly at the beginning. For most people, designing meals 100% around vegetables is going to be a completely foreign concept and one that requires planning and extra time in the kitchen, even for a seasoned pro.
2. You’ll need a B12 supplement
Vitamin B12 occurs naturally only in animal foods, so you’ll want to stock up on a variety of B12-fortified foods as well as a B12 supplement. B12 keeps the body’s nerve and blood cells healthy and helps make DNA, so deficiencies can lead to tiredness, weakness, constipation, loss of appetite, weight loss (the bad kind), nerve problems, and depression. To find out if you need to up your intake, we suggest you visit your GP and get some blood tests done.
3. Take a look at your kitchen cupboards
Is it full of meat-based condiments, dried pasta, rice, potatoes, and the like? If so, you’re not going to have a fun time trying to cook. Make sure your cupboards stay stocked with plenty of beans and whole grains, hearty leafy grains like kale, spinach, and other vegan-friendly sauces.
4. Avoid convenience and processed foods.
If all you live on as a vegan is a frozen pizza, veggie burger patties and ready-made meals, you will not be a happy eater. Meat substitutes are also often highly processed and loaded with sodium and preservatives, so read labels carefully.
Rather take a walk down the produce section. Going vegan is the perfect excuse to load up on all kinds of vegetables that you’ve never regularly eaten before.
5. If you’re going on a road trip, take food with you.
In fact, have snacks and emergency rations available to you at all times. It’s not that you’ll get hungrier as a vegan, it’s just that on the off-chance that you do end up missing lunch or forgetting it at home, your options as a vegan on the road (or in unfamiliar territory) are usually limited. Some fresh fruit, a good salad, or even trail mix can be a lifesaver in those situations.
6. Stay strong.
You won’t just wake up one morning magically vegan – it takes work, so it should also take time. The first few days might be tough, but once you get into the swing of things, it becomes easier and easier.
7. Educate others
The best way to help people and win them over is to teach by action, no lecturing. Bring some vegan food over or treat them to a vegan meal.
If you want to make the change and keep your friends while you’re at it, you have to realise that not everybody is at the same place in their life, and not everybody has the same value system as yours.
If you do choose to take on Veganism as your new lifestyle choice, we can only wish you the best of luck on your new journey. Just remember, don’t be too hard on yourself and take it one step at a time.
The Point Team x
Valentine’s 101: Your date night sorted!
Left the planning for Valentine’s Day a bit late and now you’re stuck with nowhere to go? Not to worry, The Point has got you covered with some great Valentine’s Day date ideas!
The 3 main date themes for the love-struck (in need of some romantic inspiration) are “the traditional dinner”, “the picnic” or “the movie night”!
All that’s left for you to do is to pick one, get romantic and enjoy…
Dinner at the top of The Ritz
If love makes your world go round, then book the ultimate romantic dinner at The Ritz revolving restaurant. Enjoy a seven-course gourmet menu, spanning 3 hours, with a glass of bubbles whilst the sunset spreads golden light across the ocean.
Its elegant setting and phenomenal views of the Atlantic Seaboard are what makes this a special and unique place to dine.
Cost: R850 per person
Dinner at The Roast and Co
Impress your significant other with a delicious food and wine pairing menu at Roast & Co. with the much-awarded Warwick Wine Estate.
Dive into a feast for two with a 3-course wine-paired menu & welcome drink.
Cost: R795 per couple
Picnic at The Radisson Blu
If a romantic picnic is your cup of tea, then you will love this Valentine’s offer from The Radisson Blu.
With a basket full of only the best gourmet foods, go and relax on a blanket overlooking the sea, sip on a glass of wine and enjoy the magnificent views.
Cost: R745 per couple
Rhone @ Boshendal
The famous rose garden comes to life with a picnic under the stars and entertainment by violinist Renate Riedemann and the fire dancers from Fire Tribe.
A spectacular fire sculpture will illuminate the garden, an Insta-booth will capture your memories, a glass of bubbly and a gift will welcome you to a picnic you won’t forget.
Cost: R750 (basket for 2) – Includes a glass of bubbly on arrival, live entertainment and a Valentine’s gift.
Movie at Rheboskloof
Celebrate your loved one on this magnificent wine farm with a screening of The Holiday under the stars.
Each couple will receive the ultimate movie hamper including a picnic, hay bale for seating, a bottle of wine/ grape juice and a branded wine glass.
Galileo @ Nooitgedacht
If like us you are a love of Galileo and their phenomenal venues, we assure you the Nooitgedacht Wine Estate will not disappoint you this Valentine’s.
The movie “Valentine’s Day” will be featured and you will receive a backrest, blanket, welcome drink and a heart-shaped lollipop…of course.
Cost: R225 per person
Enjoy a delicious Valentine’s Day meal at NV-80
3 COURSE SET MENU
R550 PER PERSON
SCALLOPS | cauliflower puree; sauce soubise; asparagus
BEEF FILLET | pineapple; bordelaise sauce
6 OYSTERS | natural
FLAME GRILLED BEEF FILLET OR RIBEYE
Choice of mash potato; chips; green salad or seasonal vegetables
Choice of mash potato; chips; green salad or seasonal vegetables
Grilled; mash potatoes; sweet soya and sesame dressing
CRÈME BRULEE | hazelnut shortbread
CHOCOLATE FONDANT | Armagnac ice-cream
BANANA SPLIT | vanilla chocolate sorbet; cocoa crunch
NV-80 Grill & Bar
Tel: +27 21 439 7112/4
Address: Shop 8, 1st Floor, The Point Mall, 76 Regent Rd, Sea Point
Our guide to the best beaches in Cape Town!
Calling all sun, sand and sea lovers…
If you’re in the market for a new beach to hang out at or visiting for the holidays and not sure where to go, be sure to check out our favourite spots in and around Cape Town.
1. DALEBROOK | KALK BAY
Dalebrook is still somewhat of a hidden gem, even amongst locals. Those that have discovered it are reluctant to share their findings and it isn’t hard to see why. This tidal pool just off Kalk Bay Main Road, opposite Dalebrook Road, isn’t technically a beach but deserves a mention for providing a safe, yet fun swimming experience for the whole family.
2. SMITSWINKEL | CAPE POINT
If you prefer a secluded beach with a touch of magic (usually only found in great pirate novels), this one’s for you!
This secret bay can only be reached by hiking 15-20 minutes down the trail from the surrounding cliffs – or by boat. These calm, clear waters are great for snorkelling as the remains of several ships that were scuttled in the bay, create an artificial coral reef where numerous underwater creatures have made their home. You can find it next to the Cape Point Nature Reserve with signs marking the trail.
3. SUNSET BEACH | MILNERTON
This romantic beach is perfect for long walks and absorbing Cape Town’s beautiful sunsets.
Melkbos and Blouberg’s lesser-known cousin, Sunset beach, is a quiet beach rated as the third-best windsurfing spot in the world, after Hawaii and New Zealand. Be sure to find it on the Blouberg strip.
4. BIKINI BEACH | GORDON’S BAY
This is a hangout for the young at heart and is popular amongst the students for its laid-back beach lifestyle. Great for surfers who enjoy the fact that the slope on this section of Gordon’s Bay drops down suddenly and sharp.
If you are looking for a thrill and a good tan, this is your best bet!
6. CLIFTON BEACH | CLIFTON
Being amongst the most beautiful four mini beaches in the world it’s no wonder these little gems, nestled under the mountain are a popular set of beaches amongst locals. The white sands and blue waters have been the subject of countless travel photos over the years.
So, if you are looking for a day out, a great beach and an ‘insta-worthy” location, you can consider your boxes ticked!
7. BOULDERS BEACH | SIMON’S TOWN
The perfect location for the little ones this summer, Boulders Beach boasts with a penguin colony, quiet beaches and secluded coves. Pack a picnic and plan to stay a while as this is sure to be one of their holiday highlights.
Check out the great walking trail with your busybodies and cool off in the slightly warmer waters.
8. MUIZENBERG BEACH | MUIZENBERG
Its colourful Victorian bathing boxes have been a hotspot for adverts over the decades but what about the beach?
It’s also a Blue Flag Beach; which means it gets top marks for safety, recreational facilities and eco-consciousness. That ticks every parent’s box and makes it a mecca for the little ones.
With surfing lessons, and food readily available this is the perfect all-day beach. If the beach is too busy or the waves are too strong pop over to the putt-putt course and water slides and let the fun continue!
9. BAKHOVEN BEACH | BAKHOVEN
As the name suggests it’s an intimate sun baking oven perfect for those looking to tan in peace.
The sheltered beach has kelp forests and rock pools to keep little fishermen busy! The large boulders are ideal for tanning and blue waters idyllic to cool off in. Bring your own cool-bag and sunscreen and share the Cape sun and skies with a view of her mountains from this bayside gem.
10. MELKBOS | MELKBOSSTRAND
Popular with locals for water sports, Melkbos is perfect for wind and kite surfing when wearing a wetsuit.
If you are less of a thrill seeker take a long leisurely stroll along the stretch of beach. This special spot is also home to the NSRI’s Station 18.
We are so spoilt for choice with all our beautiful beaches. Please remember to respect them and keep them clean!