If you’re thinking about changing your dietary habits from carnivore to vegan, you’re probably already aware that it is not going to be easy. New York Times Well editor Tara Parker-Pope experienced this reality for herself when tried to make a total diet swap. She gave up shortly after discovering how hard it was to go sans meat and its byproducts. That doesn’t mean that it can’t be done. It just requires some research and tenacity on your part.

In her column, Parker-Pope shares advice from vegan chefs and diners on how to make the transition, including some key points covering what you can use as substitutes for dairy and eggs in your new diet. The bottom-line is to not expect a quick overhaul. Instead, take the time to ease into this new way of eating. Perhaps you can have a few meals per week, suggests Susan Voisin of Fat Free Vegan Kitchen. To turn a recipe vegan, why not start with one that is nearly there in he first place? Other concrete tips include stocking a pantry with vegan-friendly basics like grains and beans.

[via The New York Times]