The Rise of Black Veganism: Health, Ethics, and Cultural Traditions

The journey towards veganism often begins at the intersection of health, ethics, and cultural exploration. As someone who has embraced a vegan lifestyle for over fourteen years, I’ve discovered that this path is not just about dietary choices but a profound transformation that aligns with our deepest values and traditions.

I remember waking up one day and telling Marsha 🙂 that I didn’t want the delicious snapper she had just brought me as she had done so many times before. She smiled and said she would put it in the kitchen until later when I got more hungry and I heard the words coming out of my mouth “Nah, I am not eating fish anymore…” She looked at me like I was going crazy. A guy who ate fish every day of his life and is just not doing this anymore? From that day in 2010, I have been vegan and never looked back.

Health and Wellbeing Benefits of Veganism

I guess my transition to veganism was motivated by a higher purpose as there was no pre-thought but the soul perhaps knew I had a desire to live a healthier life, and I must say the benefits have been immensely rewarding. The impact on my physical health was noticeable almost immediately. I experienced a surge in energy, my skin became clearer, and my sleep patterns improved significantly. But the benefits of veganism are not confined to the physical. Emotionally and mentally, I have attained a level of peace and contentment that I had not known before.

This peace of mind comes from a conscious choice to nurture my body with wholesome plant-based foods, which are less taxing on the body’s digestive system and rich in nutrients that boost overall health. Each meal is an opportunity to honor my body and the earth, creating a daily practice of gratitude and respect for the natural world.

A Deeper Sense of Connection

Ethically, veganism resonates with my core values of compassion and justice. It represents a stand against the exploitation of living beings, aligning with my broader commitment to living a life rooted in love for all creatures. This ethical stance extends beyond diet and influences other areas of my life, encouraging a more mindful and sustainable lifestyle.

Culturally, embracing veganism also allows me to reconnect with the rich, plant-based traditions of African cuisine. This reconnection is not just about food but about reviving and preserving a heritage that respects and celebrates the abundance of the earth without causing harm or depletion.

Daily Practices for a Fulfilling Life

My daily routine is a testament to the philosophy of “Eat right, think right, do right.” Alongside my vegan diet, I engage in daily meditation and prayer, which reinforce my mental and emotional health. These moments of quietude are essential, providing me with the clarity and peace to navigate the complexities of life. Whether facing challenges or celebrating victories, I approach each with the same equanimity, knowing that all experiences are transient and valuable lessons in my journey.

Embracing All of Life

I’ve learned to embrace both the joys and the trials life offers. This acceptance has led to a more fulfilling life, where losses and wins are taken with grace and strength. My capacity to love deeply and live joyfully grows each day, influenced by my diet and lifestyle choices that prioritize compassion and well-being.

Transitioning to a Vegan Lifestyle

For those interested in exploring veganism, here are ten steps to help you begin:

  1. Educate Yourself: Learn about the nutritional aspects and benefits of vegan foods.
  2. Start Slow: Gradually replace meat and dairy with plant-based alternatives.
  3. Explore New Recipes: Discover the diversity of vegan cuisine to keep meals exciting.
  4. Listen to Your Body: Pay attention to how your body reacts and adjust your diet accordingly.
  5. Find Community: Connect with other vegans for support and inspiration.
  6. Plan Your Meals: Ensure a balanced intake of nutrients.
  7. Stay Informed: Keep up with new research and vegan products.
  8. Be Kind to Yourself: Transitioning can be challenging; allow yourself time to adjust.
  9. Consider Supplements: Certain nutrients like B12 are harder to obtain from a vegan diet.
  10. Reflect on Your Values: Remember the reasons why you are choosing this path.

I invite you to explore not only the flavors but also the principles behind veganism. It is a celebration of life, health, and our cherished African heritage, promising an experience that nourishes the body, mind, and soul. Join us as we continue to explore and embrace the bountiful offerings of a plant-based lifestyle.

With love,


Tell us your thoughts. Where do you hope to see AfriKin go? How do we move forward and evolve while holding onto the rich traditions that make us who we are?