I made one of my 2017 resolutions to try veganism for the month of January. Now it’s been over one month and I actually don’t have plans of stopping. Check out what I learned below!
1. It was really freaking easy for me.
Ok, I think there are a few things I need to disclaim before I dive in:
- I would call the diet I’m describing 97% vegan. I’ll explain later.
- I already LOVE fruits and vegetables.
- I haven’t eaten red meat in about 10 years.
With all of that said, I was still in shock of how easy this transition was for me. I really thought that cutting poultry, dairy and eggs out of my diet would require a huge overhaul of my life but it TOTALLY wasn’t.
I’m not naive; I’m sure there will be difficult moments. So far, though, I’ve barely had any. I also haven’t felt deprived for a moment, but that might be because 3 separate people got me vegan cupcakes/donuts/cookies for my birthday. Whoops.
2. Carb City
In January, I ate far too many carbs. When you don’t plan ahead, carbs like bread, potatoes, rice and crackers can be your only option. I found that when I didn’t plan ahead or went to a restaurant that didn’t have options, I was forced into eating starches and carbs.
Since then, I’ve been making an effort to plan ahead more and avoid restaurants that have so few options.
I feel like everyone’s burning question for me was if I feel really different or lost any weight. Well, here it is: I pretty much feel the same. And guess what? My weight didn’t change, either. While I am trying to slim down for my wedding, I’ll take a “maintain” month over a gain every time. Plus, I think it has a lot to do with the aforementioned learning!
4. Airports suck
I traveled twice this month and learned that airports offer virtually ZERO vegan options. Even vegetable sandwiches had cheese melted on them. While I was good at packing snacks, I was SOL when I craved a meal. When in doubt, Sabra hummus packs will suffice.
5. I ate out a lot
Ok, here’s what I mean by calling myself 97% vegan.
I had a lot of celebrations/client meetings in the month of January that required me to go out to eat. While I made sure to order things that didn’t have meat, eggs or dairy, I wasn’t always hyper vigilant. A lot of the time, I was in a big group and didn’t feel like making a fuss. To my knowledge, the things I ate didn’t have dairy or eggs baked in, but there was a hand full of times I’m not certain about.
With that said, here are some things I ate out (at non-vegan restaurants):
Thai Restaurants: Pad Thai: tofu + no egg (+ extra vegetables)
Japanese Restaurants: Vegetable sushi rolls, edamame, miso soup, salad
Greek Restaurants: Falafel and hummus, lentil soup
Italian Restaurants: Pasta with vegetables
American Restaurants: Beet salad, veggie burgers, hummus and veggies, guac and chips, sweet potato fries, sides of veggies
Bonus– I went to an art fair in Florida! I ate corn on the cob (without butter) and a fruit smoothie
This vegan butternut squash pizza is from True Food Kitchen and it’s TO. DIE. FOR.
6. The pride is real
As I mentioned, people keep asking me if I feel really different. I wish I could report on all of these dramatic changes, but the real difference is that I feel SUPER proud. I am a lot prouder than I thought I’d be.
Over the last month or so, I have eaten and cooked so many creative and delicious dishes. I have made things that even my Ron-Swanson-Like-Fiance said were amazing. I love showing people that “vegan” isn’t synonymous with “gross,” and that making small changes could help you reduce your intake of animal-based proteins.
Best of all, it gives me peace knowing that nothing died for *me* this month. No death has entered my body and as hippy-dippy as that sounds, it really lifts my spirits. I’m not sure I will do this forever, but I really am enjoying it.