Now that I have been vegan for about a month, almost to the day actually, it was time to do a check with my mind and body.
First of all, my taste buds are changing. And yes, I know taste buds change every 10 days physically. However, the connection between my taste buds and my brain is changing!
I am enjoying foods that I previously would have wrinkled my nose at. I haven’t added ANY salt to my food since going vegan and I use oil in a very minimal way.
Here are a few foods that I found repulsing before going vegan:
- French fries without salt – now a nearly everyday staple
- Salad without dressing – add an avocado, mix it for about a minute and voila! You have “dressing.”
- Plain broccoli – it’s delicious, didn’t you know?
I have a food routine of sorts. From what I have been reading, it’s good to eat completely raw throughout the day and then have one cooked meal at night. I do make an exception to this by eating hot cereal in the morning.
This is an average day for me in terms of food:
Oatmeal with a spoonful of coconut sugar, a little bit of rice milk and dried cranberries. While my oatmeal is cooking, I eat a banana or two.
I usually make a smoothie about two hours after breakfast. It can be anything from my chocolate monkey smoothie to my orange-berry smoothie. I also really like mango-banana smoothies, which I should make a recipe post for. But it’s pretty self-explanatory.
Lunch can vary a lot, but this is usually the time that I try to get in a lot of veggies. I can either have a salad with an avocado, tomato, etc. But it really depends on the day and what I have available.
This is the final meal before my dinner, so I try to fill my craving for sweets by devouring a mango or a couple bananas. I may make another smoothie, but I like to actually chew this meal since it is the last raw one I’ll have during the day.
Dinner can also vary a lot from day to day. I like homemade baked French fries (with no oil or salt preferably). I add a lot of no-salt seasoning to these to pump up the flavor. I have a mix of seasonings that has over a dozen different herbs and spices in it like oregano, basil, thyme, lavender, rosemary, etc. I also eat steamed broccoli at this point or a tofu meal of some sort. While I am making dinner, I will often drink some raw organic juice. Sometimes I buy just juice but sometimes I get ambitious and buy some Kombucha.
“Late” night snack*
When I am feeling somewhat rebellious I will make a conscious decision (not a craving/addiction-fueled decision) to treat myself to some coconut milk ice cream. Let me tell you, it’s amazing! I actually find myself during the day saying “I think I’m going to have a few spoonfuls of ice cream later.” That’s literally all I have. I have no sugar addiction anymore so I eat maybe two tablespoons each time that I eat ice cream. Talk about portion control! But what’s important to note is that I haven’t forced myself to stop eating it.
That goes with every one of these meals. I don’t portion control. Because I am filling my body and mind with amazing food all day, I don’t want to limit myself in any way. I have done the calorie-restrictive diets and ultimately I rebound and gain everything back that I lost and then some.
*I am learning that if I don’t fill my body with enough fruit and veggies during the day, I will most likely eat a few bites of ice cream in the evening. Because I didn’t fulfill my carbohydrate need, I am searching for something to fill that void. It’s not a craving really, it’s just a need to nourish my body with yumminess. I also need to be drinking more water so that my body operates like a well-oiled machine.
I am going to attempt to estimate what I am saving, in terms of money, animals and the environment during this past month.
During the month of January (pre-vegan) I spent almost $300 on food. That includes groceries, fast food, and restaurants.
For the last month (Feb. 9 to March 9) I have spent about $280 on food. So the savings in terms of buying food isn’t much, but I also haven’t sought out the cheapest options for fruits, veggies and roots (wholesalers). I have also been experimenting a lot with different foods to find ones that I like. This requires buying more and different types of fresh food that I may not end up liking.
On a daily basis, I would eat at least one chicken breast per day prior to going vegan. So is that roughly 15 chickens that have been saved in the last 30 days? I’d like to think of it that way.
In addition to that, I would eat out at least three times per week, and always ordered something with meat and cheese.
I don’t know the exact numbers on how many animals I have saved or just have not eaten in the past month, but I know that continuing to do this lifestyle will have an impact on this world.
Living where I am now, I have a farm stand about a half a mile away from my house. This is amazingly convenient and I have opted to walk rather than drive on many occasions.
I also have a lot more energy because of the food I eat. When I move back to where I was before, I will try to incorporate biking in my daily activities. Whether it’s biking to the grocery store or wherever, I will try!
Not only will omitting meat and dairy from my diet save animals (including myself) but hopefully my journey will inspire others to do the same. And perhaps those people will document their journeys and they will inspire their friends and family as well.
I have always wanted to foster social change through journalism and although this may be an unconventional form of journalism, I think the former is being accomplished.
In terms of weight loss, I will create another post on that after my appointment with my doctor next week. Stay tuned and follow my blog for an update!