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It’s Veganuary, and You’re Invited to Take a Vegan Challenge

It’s Veganuary, and You’re Invited to Take a Vegan Challenge

Celebrate Veganuary this year by taking a 30-day vegan challenge as part of your overall health and sustainability goals for the new year. It’s easy! Learn here about how to plunge into a month of plant-based eating.

The new year just pops with the excitement of fresh starts and new adventures. I kick off each January by celebrating the Veganuary plant-based challenge for the whole month. I invite you to join me! Whether you’re thinking about becoming more plant-based or, like me, you’ve been eating plant-based for years, this is the perfect time to kick up a new focus on healthy, fun, and positive living. Veganuary has helped thousands of people all over the globe to change their lives for the better in terms of their health and the health of the planet. No matter what your eating style or diet, I would love for you to come along with me and try eating plant-based for the month of January. I want to share this lifestyle with you, to give you a taste of it—even if you don’t want to eat completely plant-based forever. For me, this is about introducing you to a more sustainable way of living. Join me and I’ll show you how by breaking it down to basics (it’s really so simple!), as well as the whys behind it. Between Veganuary.com and everything on my site and social media channels, you’ll have access to wonderful resources, inspiration, and community for your month-long plunge into plants! I’m even going to be celebrating with great giveaways! So, make sure to sign up for my newsletter and weekly email and follow me on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest so you’ll get inspiration delivered straight to your email box each week. 

Try this recipe for Vegetable Pot Pie with Whole Wheat Biscuit Topping as an easy dinner solution for Veganuary.

Veganuary’s Roots

Veganuary got its start in late 2013 when its UK-based founders, Matthew Glover and Jane Land were inspired by the Movember movement that raises prostate cancer awareness during the month of November. Why not do something similar for veganism during the month of January, a time when people are making resolutions, which are often healthy goals. The first Veganuary launched in January 2014 in the UK. It’s grown every year since. Last year alone, over 629,000 people signed up for the challenge. It’s no doubt contributed significantly to the more than 600% increase in veganism over the last five years.

This organization strives to encourage people to try vegan with the goal of adopting a plant-based diet to help protect the health of the planet and human health. Research links vegan diets to the lowest environmental footprint, compared to other eating patterns. Vegan diets are also associated with many health benefits, such as lower risks of obesity, heart disease, and type 2 diabetes. 

Veganuary provides guidance and support by way of expert advice and information to help with the basics of how to go vegan, as well as answers to why go vegan. All you do is sign up (it’s completely free!) at Veganuary.com and watch your email for instant access to wonderful resources and inspiration for your transition to a more plant-based lifestyle. Learn more about Veganuary in my interview with Clea Grady from Veganuary; and catch my KTLA5 TV segment where I share my best tips on how to do Veganuary. 

Make easy, family-friendly dinners for Veganuary, such as these Easy Cauliflower Chickpea Tacos.

Why Go Plant-Based?

At a time when our food system is overflowing with ultra processed foods that don’t look like anything that grows from the earth, as well as high levels of animal foods (U.S. is the highest consumers of meat on the planet), it’s perhaps never been so important—if not crucial—to get more whole plants on our plates. Filling your plate with plants that are as minimally processed as possible, means you’re nourishing your body, mind, and spirit with the goodness we require to thrive. Nutrients like fibers, complex carbs, heart-healthy fats, and more vitamins, minerals, and powerful phytochemicals than we could count are abundant in the plant foods we eat. In fact, many of these nutrients are only found in the plant world. They help protect us by fighting chronic inflammation and oxidative stress in the body which can lead to chronic diseases, like heart disease and cancer. A diet rich in a variety of colorful vegetables, fruits, whole grains, pulses, nuts, and seeds are not only delicious, they leave you feeling full and satisfied, which can contribute to a healthier weight. In contrast, animal foods can contain nutrients, such as higher calories, saturated fats, dietary cholesterol, and toxins related to the processing and preparing of meats. Research has tied red meat, especially processed meat, to numerous health risks, from heart disease and diabetes to infections and cancer. 

What’s healthy for human health is also better for the planet. Plant-based diets are consistently linked with a lower environmental footprint, compared to diets that include meat. Agricultural animals, especially cows and sheep, have greater harmful impacts on the planet by taking up huge amounts of water and land, and producing polluting manure and methane. 

A bowl meal, such as this recipe for Pomegranate Farro Bowl in California Vegan, is a great way to enjoy a balanced meal for Veganuary.

So, what are you waiting for! Plunge into Veganuary with my top tips. 

5 Tips on How to Take a 1-Month Vegan Plunge for Veganuary. 

1. Get Educated. Start off by grabbing my free Go Vegan Toolkit. My free downloadable toolkit has everything you need to get started on whatever level of plant-based eating you’re excited about. Learn all about stocking your pantry with plants, planning menus, and balancing your plate nutritiously so that your plant-based challenge keeps you feeling energetic and satisfied. You can also grab my books to help you on your plant-powered journey; in particular The Plant-Powered Diet, which is basically a primer on how to eat a healthy plant-based diet. 

2. Find Your Tribe. Sign up at Veganuary.com and visit SharonPalmer.com and my social media channels (Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest) daily for recipes, nutrition advice, coaching, and community for fun and support. Leave me a comment and let me know how you’re doing! 

3. Pace Yourself. Plant-based and vegan are not diets with “cheats” and deprivation. It’s all about a holistic lifestyle that is wholesome, satisfying, delicious, and beautiful. This also means you can start slowly and find what works for you. For example, you may want to spend your first week trying out a few plant-based recipes, shopping for plant-based foods, and trying vegan options at local restaurants before you dive in. 

Check out this super easy, luscious recipe for this Vegan Chocolate Cream Pie.

4. Have Fun! There’s a whole wide world of irresistible vegan recipes to explore in cookbooks, at the tap of an app, and online. Freshen up your menu! From breakfast entrees to bowl meals to desserts, I’m going to be sharing some of my favorite vegan recipes all month long on my blog and social media! 

Plantify your favorite recipes, such as making a lasagna plant-based. Try my recipe for Vegan Baked Mediterranean Lasagna.

5. Veganize Your Faves. Looking for some culinary inspo? Then simply plantify your favorite dishes. After all, many of your beloved foods and meals are already vegan or close to it. Think bean chili with cornbread, black bean burritos, and chickpea masala. See what I mean? Check out Simple Plant-Based Swaps for Every Meal for more ideas. 


Looking for more help for your plant-based eating goals? Check out the following resources: 

6 Simple Tips for Eating More Plant-Based Meals
5 Top Tips for Greening Your Plate
5 Tips for Plant-Powering Your Eating Style
9 Tips for Plant-Based Eating on a Budget
7 Tips for Powering Up on Pulses
10 Tips for Making a Meal out of Canned Beans

More Tools for Eating and Living the Goodness