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The reluctant vegan.

Okay, let me start by saying a few things. (That sounds ridiculous. I’m always saying a few things.)

I am not in any way imposing my choices on anyone. These are my personal choices that work for me. Maybe they will work for you too. Maybe not. But please don’t whine to me how much you love your meat and dairy and that ‘real people’ don’t eat squirrel food. That’s bull shit. Okay, my husband has always said I eat squirrel food, so now I’m just living up to his expectations.

I’ve been a ‘vegan’ for 21 days now. I say vegan with ‘ around it, because I still don’t believe it myself. But I will say this- I lasted Superbowl Sunday, a weekend in LA for the Grammys (with a stop at a steak house on Rodeo drive) and Valentine’s day; and I didn’t cheat!! Yay me!

I love food. I love good food. I love really fancy food. Exotic food. I even love crap food. I admit to a Taco Bell burrito now and then. Or a bag of Doritos. Or yes, a bowl of Cap ‘n’ Crunch. So I have no food prejudices. However, I’m learning more and more that food is the gateway to our well being. OH yeah- let me say that again. “FOOD IS THE GATEWAY TO OUR WELL BEING”. Snap. I’m like Oprah.

My friends started this diet before Christmas called the Engine 2 diet. It’s a book all about plant based whole foods. Meaning- nothing processed, no fats or added salt or sugar, no meat, no dairy. Wow, sounds awful doesn’t it?

But I like a challenge and deep down, I mean deep, deep, deep down, I knew I was lactose intolerant in a really bad way. But to take me away from my tea with milk and all my yummy bread and butter- gasp- was it possible?

There’s a gradual way to this diet. But I just jumped in all balls to the wall. Why not? Baby steps would just make me cheat or make excuses, so I headed in and didn’t look back.

You’re asking- am I doing this to lose weight? Duh! Who wouldn’t? Yes, I can afford to lose a few pounds. I don’t have to. But I like when the muffin doesn’t hang over the jeans. I like thighs that don’t squish together when I walk. So sure, losing weight is great. Have I lost a bunch? Five pounds is all. But five pounds is something.

Also- you’re thinking- but how on earth does she get her protein and proper calcium? Well, easy. There’s proteins in whole foods everywhere. From legumes to mushrooms, spinach to grains- it’s in there.

AND- calcium you ask. Well, think about this- we have the largest dairy and meat industry and the highest case of osteoporosis in this country. Hmm, coinkidink? Asian countries where their diets are primarily vegetable based have almost no osteoporosis. Could it be dairy is evil and full of additives and crap that we have been spoon fed by our FDA to think it’s good for us? Okay… forget I said that.

Now ask me how I feel.

I feel great! A little TMI warning here- I don’t have the stomach and digestion problems I had so much. Translation- gas and bad poops. I always blamed food like coffee or the apple I ate gave me gas, or wow, ‘my system really doesn’t like bananas’. NO. It was that it didn’t like the milk or half and half I was having with other stuff.

Do I want to cheat? Sometimes. Like I said, I managed to stick it out through Valentine’s day and a steak house without cheating. Sometimes a hot fudge sundae sounds really good. And maybe one day I will have one. But I also think how awful I will feel the next day. What will I do at Christmas when my mom makes goose and Yorkshire pudding? I’ll probably have some. There’s no diet police. Just my lower intestine talking to me.

I have a new love for almond milk and quinoa granola. It’s amazing how satisfying lentils can be. Who would have thought roasted cauliflower could taste so good? Plus, it’s organic, non GMO and good for you.

I feel so much better. Add the new thyroid medication, exercising a little more, and I might just shun PMS right out of my life.

Well, slow down there pardner- haven’t been through that roller coaster yet. We’ll see what a couple more weeks brings. But my energy is better, and I think I have a few less wrinkles. I’m aging backwards!

Again, just sharing- not preaching. Think about what ails you. Think about what you eat. Maybe there’s a connection.

I will not look down my nose at any meat eaters. I’m not going to throw paint on someone’s fur coat. I might even stray once in awhile to a croissant. STEP AWAY FROM THE FRO YO! Almost forgot myself there.

Oh- and gin and tonics are totally vegan. Just a little is fine.

If you are interested in the book- here’s the link:

The Engine 2 Diet

Doesn't that look fresh and delicious? courtesy of greenwaycafe.co.uk

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Comments

  1. We went vegan for 6 weeks. I did get all the indigestion at first from eating all those veggies. I definitely felt great and kicked up my exercise. But, like everything else it can last only so long before that Taco Bell sign looks mighty tempting.

  2. 21 days!

  3. mmmmmmmmmmmmmmm bloody steak ;j

  4. speaking of achievements, I must quote something I heard tonight @ stand-up
    “so… I’ve been sober for 5 days now. Yes thank you, thank you. But then again, it’s now Friday, time to break that trend and start over”

  5. Go you!! I’ve definitely thought about it…but I don’t know anyone personally who is currently doing it and sticking with it. Please keep sharing!!

  6. You’ve inspired me! I’m not gonna go Vegan though…I was thinking more like “balls to the wall” Carnivore!

  7. I totally agree on the gin’n’tonics. 🙂 Also, yes, you’re right, it continues to amaze me how some people remain disconnected from their bodies and their needs and simply don’t care about what they put inside their bodies. Keep up the feeling good!

  8. good for you…whatever can make you feel better is better. continue…

  9. It is okay to stay vegan, but don’t treat it like another religion. 😛

  10. Wow, good for you. I may need to try this. I went sugar free for two weeks this month, and it felt amazing. I wish I had stuck with it.

  11. That’s great! I was a vegetarian for six years, so I still ate cheese, eggs, and drank milk, but shunned everything else animal-wise. When I married my husband, though, it was very difficult to continue that because he refused to eat vegetarian faire all the time and it was just too much to have to cook meals for myself and him (and God forbid he cook for himself). I will not yell and scream in comment-form about red meat and cheese, because both are not that great for you, particularly red meat (I still do not eat the red meat and don’t allow the kids to). I will, however, argue that you need to drink some kind of milk – even if it is soy or almond. And if you go back to not being vegan, give skim a try. I love it!

  12. Also, in a more snarky comment: I hate people that shove their food agendas down your throat. I’m glad that you didn’t, and made clear that you weren’t – it is just so frustrating! You know about the sandwich conversation with Hello Kitty Toaster where she suggested that some vegetables are not actually nutritious, and she is always shoving her stupid food fads down other people’s throats.

    I recently read this great article “how to eat healthy and not be a buzz kill” … it was basically about how to eat healthy and not be a total food nazi to everyone else around you for their choices. Great read.

    • Ha! Thank you for appreciating it.
      My favorite folks are the ones that down soda and crap and are constantly complaining how awful they feel- then make fun of me for going veggie as if it’s some sign of weakness to not eat meat.
      And to respond to your previous comment- I enjoy all the milks- soy, almond and coconut. They taste good in my tea and coffee.

  13. Yay you! I loved my brussel sprouts and lentils over the weekend. The scale was kind to me this morning and I think clothes fitting well and my curves not coming from my big thighs is better than butter any day! Keep up the good work.

  14. Holy Crap! We may be telepathically linked. I did this in January after watching a string of terrifying food documentaries. I decided not to go totally vegan, but I was only going to eat locally grown meat and organic dairy. And since those things are absurdly expensive, it would be more of a treat than a regular part of every day meals.

    After the first week, I had gas pains so severe that I thought there was an alien growing in there. I decided to stick it out.

    In the third week I was still having the problem and began to think it was possible that I am actually severely gluten intolerant and all this whole wheat goodness was causing my intestines to riot.

    So I began to incorporate some dairy and meat into the mix, and am feeling a LOT better. I still consider what I am doing to be “plant-based” in the literal way, in that I am no longer having meat with every meal, and I am using meat more for flavoring (small amounts with pasta, in chili, and soups) and am only even using meat 3 meals a week.

    Since Lila pretty much refuses to eat all but like 7 things, I tried getting better, organic versions or making my own, and she literally has sat there crying in front of her plate. It’s pretty sad. So I give her a little more meat and stuff she likes.

    My energy is totally better though. Now if only I could force myself to exercise.

    • I am sticking to it and I am still impressed that I haven’t cheated and I feel really good. Now that I haven’t had any meat and cheese my stomach is so much better. I had no idea that was my problem. My husband would die without meat and cheese.

      I think it’s important we start making more educated choices about our food especially for our children. With GMOs out there- who knows what we are in for 20 years from now. Glad you liked the post.