Time For An Update ♡

Time For An Update ♡
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If you’ve been following me on Instagram and YouTube I can imagine that you’re asking yourself if I have I completely lost the plot… Wtf is with all this plant-based vegan stuff that I’ve been eating recently and where has this change even come from??

Like (what feels like) the rest of the world, I watched What the Health with Dave a few months ago.  I’d seen it making the rounds on my friend’s Facebook pages and I knew that it was a controversial documentary so it wasn’t high on my to-do list, but I was interested.  After two of my best friends had watched it one Sunday we received SO MANY messages from them saying that we HAD TO WATCH IT!  And they had found the message so convincing that they were cutting out / back on their animal/egg/dairy consumption IMMEDIATELY.  That was pretty incredible, so Dave and I fired up the Netflix and started watching right away.

I’m sorry to say it but all in all I disliked the documentary.  I understood that the presenter had good intentions, but his choice of delivery meant that the message didn’t resonate with me.  I know that a lot of people disagree with me on this point, but personally I didn’t vibe with it.  But with everything, if you’re interested watch it yourself and make your own judgment call on it, cause you could LOVE IT 👌 Dave also wasn’t a fan on the documentary – particularly because the studies that were referenced in the documentary were done so in a bit of a twisted, fabricated manner.  Which is annoying because, again, we knew that he had good intentions in sharing the message he shared (cause it’s an important one!), but all-in-all it didn’t particularly resonate with us.

While our best friends were still full-on making positive changes in their lives (eliminating meat from nightly meals, having almond milk in their coffees, finding gorgeous vegan-restaurants for delicious brunches), Dave and I continued living much the same.  But hearing how our friends were experiencing many positive benefits like; having clearer skin, better quality of sleep and just all-in-all feeling much better, I wondered if we needed to give it a proper go ourselves to either prove or disprove what was claimed on W.T.H.

It wasn’t until a few weeks later we were away together for a weekend that I mentioned to Dave that I’d like to re-watch a documentary I’d seen YEARS previous called Forks Over Knives.  We had spent that day eating massive pork-belly burgers, having multiple milky coffees, and heavy dairy-desserts.  We both weren’t feeling 100% after eating so poorly so we were in the mood for a food/health doco!  I remembered that in Forks over Knives it referenced this book called The China Study which I’d read when I was 18 or 19, and it prompted me to adopt a mostly-vegan diet at the time.  Dave was keen to give it a try and he absolutely LOVED it.  Unlike W.T.H. Doco, we both connected with the presenter and the way in which the message was delivered, which felt to be more balanced delivering facts and less on fear mongering.

Once it was over we both looked at each other and we had the same thought in mind………………………………. maybe it was time to rethink how we’d been eating and to give this plant-based diet a try, or at least, introduce MORE plant-based foods into our everyday??  The next day although we were on holiday we immediately found vegan food options and cut out dairy/egg/meat right away.  – Let me just add here that doing this was SO much easier than I thought, and a super delicious introduction to eating this way! –

Since then we haven’t been perfect vegans by any means, but we have not bought or cooked meat, eggs or used dairy in our house – which has been a massive change for the both of us.  When I think back, I started the day with a big milky coffee, having eggs for breakfast, we were having whey protein shakes one-to-two times a day, snacking on cheese, eating cups of Greek yogurt, and eating meat many nights for dinner.  When you stack all of those up next to each other it’s quite a lot of dairy/meat/eggs that I was consuming on the reg.  Now, when we go out we are both always considering meat-free/dairy-free/egg-free foods instead of what had been our defaults.

What is CRAZY to me is that my boyfriend, an absolute meat lover, has made the switch so seamlessly!  Me on the other hand, I have a bit more experience with vegan and plant-based food because I was doing this on some level years ago… but Dave has been an incredible motivation and inspiration to me watching how he’s making the change!  To be honest, (don’t judge!) we have both had meat/dairy/eggs since we made the decision to transition to plant-based, but that’s only happened a couple of times, it’s definitely not a regular occurrence.  But putting those times aside, Dave has absolutely LOVED trying meat-free dishes and in doing so has found some really yummy and healthier alternatives.  We are now able to navigate a seemingly non-vegan menu to find delicious items!  At our local Indian takeaway we’ve found a vegan-friendly curry that’s made with eggplant, we now have a delicious vegan Chinese takeaway place that does this insane sweet and sour potato (instead of pork) and we don’t miss the cheese on pizzas anymore (SERIOUSLY!).  We never order dairy in our coffees anymore, but have switched (and love) the coconut milk alternative that our café offers – and we are both REALLY enjoying this new way of eating and learning more about the food we eat!

So, what about weight loss without the high protein?  I have yo-yo’d this year, which is pretty standard for me, even though it’s been really frustrating.  I lost weight at the beginning of the year doing BBG and watching my calories (eating HIGH protein and LOW carb).  I then gained it back slacking on the diet, the exercise, and drinking too much (then eating rubbish takeaways the next day).  I’m not following any particular workout plan at present because uni has just been too full-on, so I’ve been focusing purely on eating well (plant-based and vegan) and making sure that I hit my calorie goals (without worrying about macro goals) – and I have been slowly but steadily losing weight AND my body-fat percentage is inching down too.

Let’s be clear here: just because someone is VEGAN doesn’t mean they’re necessarily eating a HEALTHY and nutritious diet.  I’m not making that connection and saying I’m now eating perfectly JUST because I’m limiting my dairy/egg/meat intake.  What has become evident to me is that it’s easy to be a fat vegan 🙈🙈🙈 as there are SO MANY processed food options available from chocolate to cookies to packet noodles!…. Like did you know that Oreos are accidentally vegan? So is the popcorn at Hoyts cinema!  It’s literally quite easy to be a fat vegan if you wanted!  So, my goal is slightly different, it’s to try and eat as much WHOLE FOOD, PLANT-BASED food as possible.  I am trying my best to avoid pre-packaged things that have a million ingredients, and eat foods in their whole state (or as close to as possible).  Another reason for this goal is that I realised I’d gotten to the stage where I’d rather have reached for a processed protein bar, instead of snacking on an apple because I became afraid that I’d go “over” on my carbs for the day.  Just stop and think about that for a second.  Instead of an APPLE I’d eat a manufactured protein bar.  To me that is scary stuff and it shows just how twisted my thinking had become as to what is healthy and nourishing to my body, and what is not.

Regardless of what your feelings are towards this shift I’ve made to my overall eating, I hope that you find the recipes that I’ll be sharing helpful to show sneaky ways you can eat YUMMY, easy to make, nutritious, plant-based foods that still allow you to continue working towards achieving your personal health and fitness goals 😘 there’s nothing wrong with adding in some more greens on the daily!

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