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Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Vegan Eats

So I've hesitated to mention this because previous attempts have been unsuccessful, but I've been dairy-free for a month now. And I'm kind of loving it.

I feel more energetic and lighter, and my skin looks so smooth. I've had a few cravings here and there, but it's actually not been too bad. I even made it through a {still delicious} meal at the Olive Garden without cheese!

I should also mention that, for the most part, I've been sugar-free, too, per the request of my doctor to stop gaining weight, for cryin' out loud. {OK, those weren't her exact words, but you get the point.}

Anyway, I've been feeling so well in this pregnancy that I wanted to go ahead and make the move from vegetarian to vegan, something I've been wanting to do for awhile. Being ordered off of sugar {or sweets as I more loosely interpreted it} has both helped and hurt the process. If I were relying solely on my convictions and willpower to not give into my cookie and cupcake habit, I suspect I would have failed again. {Major sweet tooth here.} But not being able to have those for an additional reason has made it a lot easier to stay on track.

However, I have to say I'm looking forward to indulging in the occasional Sonic slush, coconut milk ice cream, or other dairy-free sweets when I'm given the all-clear.

If you're thinking of making this move, here are a few things that have helped:

-Day-by-day mentality.
This has been essential for me. Every time I think something like, "Aach! I'll never eat a cupcake again!" it makes me want to run out and buy a dozen. But I can much more easily manage when I think, "OK, today I'm all set for breakfast, lunch, and supper, and I'm really OK [just for today] without a cupcake."

For the things I can have, I've not really restricted myself when it comes to my favorite things. I'm sure that day will come, but I've been enjoying as much peanut butter, fruit, and pasta as I want for now to make the transition easier.

-Spiral Diner
It has been a bit challenging to go vegan when it comes to eating out, especially for convenience foods. There are lots of places that are just not options anymore, but the Spiral Diner has made me feel like I'm indulging enough not to miss those other places! It's a local joint, and, in addition to being all-vegan, they also try to do local/organic/environmentally friendly stuff as well. Their food is mouth-watering good, and I can't wait to try some of the yummy looking desserts! {Hint to Jason: Mother's Day lunch}

Now, here's a challenge that I'm hoping you can help me with!

-Being polite
Our class at church is AMAZING about bringing food when you have a baby. I don't think we cooked for a month after Catherine was born! However, I always feel a little awkward asking them {or others} to adjust their cooking plans/styles for my preferences {even though it's more of a conviction than a preference}. Same with just eating at someone else's house or traveling to Alabama. It's not like we have allergies or something--I just don't feel right eating meat or dairy, big staples for a lot of people.

So what is the best way to bring that up with others? How do I maintain this lifestyle without making others feel awkward or go to a ridiculous amount of trouble? Thoughts? Suggestions?


  1. Anonymous4/16/2013

    Tiffany, you might thank them for their kindness, and ask if they might take the dinner they have prepared to a shut-in, who would be so grateful not just for the food, but for the company; or to a single Mom, who would treasure those moments of being able to just relax for once, instead of going into "Mom Mode" right after a trying work day.
    God bless your efforts.
    Happy days!

    1. Good thoughts! I have to confess, though, that those meals are life-savers--especially in the first few weeks--since we don't have family in town to help. I love the idea of paying it forward, though--good reminder!

  2. It's a fine line between being polite and being kind to your body. Since you ARE doing this for your health I would just explain that to people. Where I live we are always asking about allergies/dietary needs and making those clear.

    One thing you could do is provide a list of recipes people could make for you. I know my one mom's group did that in Edmonton because the idea of cooking meat-free scared people :)

    If this is a lifestyle change you are making you will need to get people to cook that way for you eventually. (My parents didn't know how to cook vegetarian at first but between me being a little flexible (I'll eat stirfry that has meat in it and just eat around the meat) and them being creative, we were able to meet halfway.

    1. Yes to the flexibility! That has definitely worked, and I love the idea of providing recipe ideas!

  3. Also Yay! for you for making a hard change that you feel good about. And is good for you!


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