My Plant-Based Diet

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Plant-based High Carb Breakfast. Assortment of fresh and dried fruits, nuts, seeds and puffed rice.

Since switching to a vegan diet (plant-based) I’ve noticed that, not only am I happier and more satisfied, but I no longer stress about feeling guilty after eating high calorie foods like I used to. The more you educate yourself, the more you realize that the norms set by the fitness/health industries are really inaccurate. They teach us things that will keep people coming back to them. It’s just like medicine. Doctors never really treat the actual problem, it’s just a quick – using medications to lessen the symptoms but what exactly caused these symptoms? What about long-term healing and sustainability? No. Carbs don’t make you fat, they really don’t. The carbs that make you fat are the ones that are taken from their real form and turned in to something that they were not intended to be. The ones that are covered with metric tons of saturated fats, oils and sugars. Eat boiled, steamed or baked potatoes…as many as you want, but is it truly necessary to dump them in a tub of boiling vegetable oil?

Of course you also have to be reasonable and understand that what you eat should in some way give your body the energy, nutrients and minerals it needs to maintain itself. That doesn’t mean scarfing down three plant-based donuts and feeling okay because they don’t have any animal products or what not in them – no. What exactly is your body going to do with all that sugar and fat?

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Grain and Seed Salad with Balsamic Dressing

Restrictive diets, low calorie diets, low carb diets – they don’t work. It’s a constant battle. You fall off the wagon and you think it’s because your willpower is not strong enough. You shouldn’t have to be in a continuous never-ending battle with your willpower. You have to change the game plan and be rational with the way you choose to eat. I know this from experience. You can’t one day just turn a switch and stop eating all junk food and processed foods all together. You will end up craving and constantly thinking about those foods that you can’t eat. I’m all about balance, and satisfying your cravings in the moment but not bingeing because you think you can. It pisses me off when I see women (girls) who starve themselves all day and then go nuts at restaurants by ordering all the junkiest foods there are. And then…pretending like they don’t have to work for their amazingly slim bodies. No girl, you are setting yourself up for disease, slow metabolism, and eventually weight gain. Stop.

The problem with the health and nutrition industry is that so much emphasis is placed on weight loss or achieving this “goal weight” or “goal physique” that the health component of it all is left to the side. Cool, you’ve decided to change your life around and start eating healthy but what exactly is healthy? I’m pretty sure this is a subjective thing and it really is determined by who you listen to and what you’re told.

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Vegan Thai Curry

I binge watched My 600 lb Life on Hulu the other day and it’s just so sad to see these folks completely lose control like that; allowing the food to take over their mind and body. The thing that struck me the most was the doctor/surgeon who kept telling them to eat a strict low carb diet, like 5% of their diet is carb. So you see them in the mornings annihilating mini portions of fried eggs and fried bacon – 100% thinking this is healthy. Because why? Doc said no carbs, so carbs = the devil and all fat and protein are the way to go. That’s what they were taught so it has to be what’s healthy. Okay that’s fine to think that way but how exactly is your body supposed to use this crap? I understand the high fat, high protein diet. It works for thousands of people but shouldn’t it be in the form of clean fats and clean protein sources?

I started dabbling in plant-based eating almost 3 years ago and over time I was able to stick to a 100% vegan diet. It started slow, I became a vegetarian in November 2015 and have been 100% vegan since September 2016. It takes time and yes, I have consumed things that have dairy products in them without realizing it but we make mistakes, learn from them and move on. It’s a little bit embarrassing to say that what got me started on this journey was actually Freelee The Banana Girl. Not kidding. She’s one mentally unstable lady but she actually has a good message when it comes to high carbohydrate diets particularly her thoughts on the absurdity in promoting low carb diets for weight loss.

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Fruit bowl with coconut and raw date bites

I would never force this sort of lifestyle on anyone or insult anyone for the way they choose to eat. We all have our preferences. I started eating a mostly plant-based diet for health reasons, energy and weight maintenance. Now it’s about something bigger which is animal cruelty – and the more I learned, the more I began to understand exactly what is the most beneficial diet for my body, and right now – that’s a balanced whole foods plant-based diet.

 

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Chocolate Banana ‘Ice cream’ with almond stuffed dates and fruits

If anyone is interested in embracing these plant-based diets, I highly recommend checking out some of these sources:

Books and Studies

  1. Forks Over Knives by Gene Stone, Dr. T. Colin Campbell, Dr. Caldwell B. Esselstyn Jr.
  2. The Starch solution by Dr. John McDougall
  3. 80/10/10 Diet by Dr. Douglas Graham
  4. The China Study by Dr. T. Colin Campbell and Thomas M Campbell
  5. How Not to Die by Dr. Michael Greger

Documentaries and Videos

  1. Earthlings
  2. Forks Over Knives
  3. Vegucated
  4. Cowspiracy
  5. Gary Yourofsky’s Speech
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