Wednesday, February 24, 2010

How It's Going & Fave New Blog

Howdy, friends! The last post was, uh, a bit serious (and depressing) so I thought I'd lighten things up in today's post and let you know how this whole vegan thang is going. I've technically been eating a vegan diet for a week now (albeit with a couple of hiccups, like the bread pudding a la mode I had last weekend). How am I feeling one week in?

Well, overall, I'm feeling fantastic. Spiritually and emotionally, I am confident in my decision and so thrilled about it, in fact, that it has kept me cheery even in not-so-cheery circumstances. Physically, I'm a bit mixed. On the one hand, I am most definitely lighter. I've lost 2 lbs already, which is remarkable not just because it's 2 lbs, but because I lost them the week of my period, which as you women know, is nearly impossible. The weight loss, I have to say, is a fun bonus, but honestly did not motivate me in any way to do this. Health, however, did motivate me. I have not noticed any difference in my allergies or congestion nor have I noticed any increase in energy. I'm still tired and requiring buckets of sleep, but I've also heard that it's not unusual to sleep a lot when first transitioning. I realize one week is not going to change my life, but I am wondering how long it'll take to see results health-wise. I'm curious, how long did it take you?

The most significant effect this diet has had on my life is the way it has changed my relationship with food. It didn't surprise me one bit that I lost weight because I know I am eating substantially less calories and saturated fat than before. Also? I find that it's really hard to emotionally eat when eating a plant-based diet. Has anyone found that to be true for them as well?? It's the oddest thing, and I can't really describe it, but all the "comfort foods" of my past are no longer options for me, and so I just kind of... ignore it. If I need comfort, I find it somewhere else besides the kitchen. Right before I started this diet, I was on a cereal kick, and almost every night I'd have a bowl of cereal (my faves include: honey nut cheerios {semi-healthy), berry berry kix (not healthy), and cocoa krispies (super unhealthy)) with 1% milk. And not one serving, mind you, but one of those Anthropologie latte bowls filled to the brim. Do I kind of miss that stuff? Yes, admittedly I do, but I do not miss how I felt afterwards. (And yes, I realize there are plenty of healthy vegan cereals that I can eat with soy/rice/amond/hemp milk, but it's not the same for me.)

And then there's dessert. While my cravings for sweets have definitely subsided, they have not disappeared. Luckily, I discovered that those Rice Dream mint pie thingies are actually quite delish (oatmeal cookies? yes, please!!!). I'm also discovering a TON of yummmmmy-looking vegan dessert recipes online that I cannot WAIT to try.

Which brings me to the Voracious Vegan... What a fabulous blog! I've spent the last two days reading through her archives, and she's absolutely right, eating vegan is DELICIOUS. I've bookmarked a number of recipes (including this peanut butter cake and these quesadillas) and will be sure to let you know what I try and how it turns out. She's got me all kinds of excited about cooking new things! I highly highly recommend this blog for any of you looking for delicious, satisfying, and healthy meal ideas. (Seriously - how good do those look???)

And with that, I'm off... I plan to do some cookin' and dessert makin' this weekend, and I'll be sure to keep you posted. Merci again for all your rockin' support!!


  1. OH WHHEEE! Thank you so much, you just put a huge smile on my face! :-D THANK YOU!

    I'm so glad you are enjoying your new life as a vegan, isn't it great? I love how you mention that spiritually and emotionally you feel confident in your decision. That is exactly how I felt when I made the change! It is SO RIGHT, that was the only way I could explain it to people. In fact, I am always in disbelief that I wasn't vegan before, it just seems so natural and easy.

    Physically during the first week or two I remember feeling a little more hyper than usual. Isn't that strange? I'm NOT a hyper person so it was odd. It was quite a big change for me because I had been a huge meat eater and I went vegan overnight, so my body must have been thrown for a loop. But me and my husband's health has been phenomenal for the past 3 years that we have been vegan, and we were already health before.

    I've gone to the doctor to get a total physical, including blood work, etc, and have always had stellar results. And you know what else? Even when everyone around me is so sick, I haven't gotten sick once since going vegan! YAY!

    Okay, you just made my day! Thank you again so much!

  2. I think it took my husband and I about two weeks before we were like, "Hey, I'm feeling a lot better." It definitely wasn't overnight. Some people make this big deal about "detoxing" if you actually feel worse, but I don't really buy that. I think it just takes time for some of us to figure out what to eat and how much. It's hard to feel good when, like many new vegans, one starts out with a very low variety of foods that often isn't healthy (not to mention stressing over what to eat). So, trying a lot of new healthy things is important. We loosened up our budget quite a bit that first month so that we could try some vegan-friendly restaurants, plenty of new fruits and vegetables, and, yes, even some convenience foods.

    I think one of the great benefits is feeling lighter digestive-wise. It's hard to describe, but I don't feel so weighed down like I used to after eating animals -- though I've certainly felt full, sometimes too full when I forgot that plant foods can be even more filling and overdid it in one sitting. I've read a lot about athletes and especially runners who switched to a plant-based diet because, not only did they perform better overall, they didn't feel so weighted down the day of competition because they weren't still digesting meat from a couple days prior.

    Anyhow, your mileage may vary. I think it depends on your diet then and your diet now. Most people will eat healthier going vegan, I think, but some people don't do as well, at least at first. And also it depends on if you have any food intolerances. For example, I don't think I was lactose intolerant specifically, but I think I had a mild intolerance to meat and I never even guessed such a thing was possible. Others, though, find that they're intolerant to certain fruits or veggies, so that works against them.

    My body definitely likes my new diet. My acne went away (after years of embarrassing cysts), my stomach is happy, I'm finally losing a little weight (my husband lost a lot more weight), I'm feeling a bit more energetic and recover from activity faster, and my nails look great -- I keep admiring them because they used to be really awful but now that they've had a few months to regrow vegan they're looking better than I ever imagined they would. And, maybe best of all, the dark circles and puffiness under my eyes that I've had since CHILDHOOD are practically gone most days.

  3. YAY :) This clearly makes me quite happy to hear!

  4. Okay! I've got something for your warm, comforting dessert craving. I've made this a bunch of times and it is so, so good. It's a little odd to make... the whole pouring boiling water thing over the cake just seems strange, but it's always worked out brilliantly. So yes... warm chocolate pudding cake with a scoop of Soy Dream? Heaven!