I went vegan by going slow. I find that with most things in life,
if you want them to stick, that's the way to do it.
First I cut out Meat from my diet. Then Eggs. Then Dairy.
I highly recommend everyone to take multivitamins. Not just for us vegans. The chances of getting everything in vitamins and minerals that your body needs every day through what you eat; is almost impossible, and I really should have been taking them even before becoming a plant-fiend.
I find it really helped with my old cravings for things I could no longer eat.
I theorise that your body is used to getting stuff it needs from certain things, and when you suddenly stop eating those things all together, your body is majorly confused and will start giving you cravings for those foods to get those specific nutrients back. If you take multivitamins your body isn't loosing any intake of any vitamins/minerals you need while you're getting used to new foods/finding your new faves, and therefore won't give you really weird meat/dairy craving dreams at night.
(Those really do happen if you don't! xD)
A neat side-effect of getting all your vitamins is that food you used to be "addicted" to, like cheese (releases coke-like dopamine-levels so infants will eat more) will go away, and your taste-buds will adjust. Things you used to find tempting or tasty won't anymore, and I personally feel I can taste more now. It's like my buds were numb before, and now they're awake. I know, I know, I sound like a total Hippie. xD But it's actually true!
There are many good brands to choose from when it comes to vegan supplements, but these are the ones I prefer:
Deva Multivitamin, NowFoods for iron and Shift for D3.
I buy them at IHerb.com and (Shift) locally where I live.
I would like to make it abundantly clear that I wouldn't need to take the iron ones; if only I was good at eating my broccoli.. but as previously stated, ya girl is a junk-food vegan, so I must admit I don't eat as much broccoli as I should... xD
The D3 is because I live in Norway, and in the summer-months we don't get enough sun.
But I assure you, for most people, 1 multivitamin a day is plenty.
Things that are NOT Vegan:
Gelatine - Made from animal-bones. Agar-thickener is a great substitute.
Pearls - They kill shellfish to get them.
Carmine - Sqished bugs to colour things red, found in food and cosmetics.
Dairy - Cows are forcefully bred to prduce milk, calves are killed.
Eggs - Chickens and other birds have their natural rythms disturbed so that they will lay more eggs than normal. This is not good for them.
Feathers - Birds are plucked alive.
Animal-Testing - Animals are put through torturous testing and experiments because it is cheaper than the way more scientifically accurate dermatological tastings.
Wool - Animals are often treated very poorly in the process. Bunnies are 'plucked alive. Sheep are kicked/punched for not complying with shearing at an alarming frequency across the industry.
Silk - Comes from Silk-Worms.
Honey/Beeswax - Comes from Bees. 2 Bees spend their entire lives to produce just a little bit of Honey/Wax, that they need, only to have humans steal it.
Then there's the obvious meat, leather etc.
Here's a great source I use when I shop, to see if the E-Numbers in things are vegan: