Being Vegan, Vegan Being: Berto Calkins – What’s Good, Berto?

Tell us a little about yourself.

I’m a New York City based fitness professional and content creator that shares messages of physical/ mental wellness, vegan lifestyle and other messaging that promote making people aware of controllable influences on their life to better themselves and the world.

You can find me on Instagram as @WhatsGoodBerto and Youtube as “What’s Good, Berto?” I have a workout program out called “Pyramids”, I also offer custom vegan meal plans and workout programs for purchase via email and have other merchandise on

What lead you to veganism? How long ago?

I went vegan almost 5 years ago after reading an article from Russell Simmons in which he mentioned that it was bad karma to eat animals. The word “karma” resonated with me because I’m a firm believer in karma and had it tattooed on me at that point in time.

When you first went vegan how did you phase out your non-vegan food, clothing and other items?

I just got rid of everything that I felt didn’t align with my new lifestyle. I donated clothes and shoes and bought things that could easily replace it and was affordable.

Are you a vegan Parent? If so, what are some of the challenges you find raising a vegan child? How have you dealt with this challenges? We would love to share your wisdom with others. If you are not a parent, skip to the next question.

I am a parent, but my child isn’t vegan. She is open to vegan food, but it took some time to find out what she likes, as with many children. You just have to be patient.

Do you believe we should show children the process of how animals are turned into meats?

I think that children should know how animals are turned into meats. It’s the truth.

What does being vegan mean to you?

Vegan means harming animals as least as possible in my mind. It’s a lifestyle that will teach you to be compassionate in other aspects of your life, but I don’t believe in setting unrealistic boundaries that make the lifestyle so strict that it’s unsustainable.

Do you have a favorite movie or videos or your own media that you want to share?

5,000 Calories Vegan What I Eat In A Day

What’s your favorite Vegan restaurant?

NY – Rips Malt Shop

LA – Follow Your Heart Market

PA – Hip City Veg

Please share your favorite vegan recipe?

Creamy Mashed Potatoes (No measurements):

Boil 4 skinned white potatoes

Add unsweetened almond milk

Add vegan butter

Mash together

Mix in Black Pepper, sea salt and garlic powder.

Some encouraging words for new Vegans?

Be patient and don’t fall into the pressures of what someone tells you what a vegan SHOULD be or do. Move at your own pace to make it a sustainable lifestyle. Mistakes will happen, but don’t beat yourself up over it.

What is the vegan scene like in your city?

The vegan scene in NYC is big. We have a lot of vegan restaurants and a few events that happen throughout the year.

What personal recommendations can you make for people to meet other vegans?

Use and search hashtags related to you city and veganism like #nycvegan or #vegansofny on Instagram.

What does living cruelty-free mean to you? Does it extend to the way you as a vegan treats other humans too?

There is no living cruelty-free, but there is harming less and that’s what I live by regarding animals, humans and the planet.

What are you favorite Vegan non-food products or companies?

Plus CBD Oil. Matt and Nat bags. “What’s Good, Berto?” merch 🙂

What is the toughest Vegan item to find that you need?

I can’t think of any vegan items that are hard to find, but I wish that there were prepackaged vegan flan and a vegan salmon would be pretty epic too.

Talk about a time when you struggled with your Veganism?

Traveling in places that are unfamiliar can be difficult at times, especially outside of big cities. I can’t recall a specific time.

Planet Protein: The Best Plant-Based Protein Bar on the Planet

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