It’s done! I win!
I have (sort of) successfully completed a month of being (basically) vegan!
I’m not going to lie, this past month has been tough, the most challenging test of my self-control I’ve faced…ever? I was initially very enthusiastic about experimenting with new recipes and products and having a perfectly planned, and nutritionally complete diet. That enthusiasm faded, FAST. I very quickly got into the frame of mind that I just had to survive a month being vegan, and that the repetition of the same 3 dishes was quite acceptable. That’s the main reason I stopped forcing you to read about my daily intake, but also because I suddenly felt VERY EXPOSED.
I had always heard that eating a vegan diet was very cheap, but my experience wasn’t as such. The best vegan cheese, ‘Cheezly’ is $12. TWELVE DOLLARS. It was enough for maybe ONE pizza. I bought a $5 variety instead ($5 on sale) and couldn’t have more than a slice of it, blergh. I was also drinking soy lattes on average, 4 times a week, and 50cents extra for soy milk, I spent a total of $8 extra. Ok, I kind of thought it would be more than that. Maybe it’ll look more shocking if I write it like ……$8 EXTRA, ON SOY MILK, IN A MONTH.
I have a fellow pescitarian with whom I usually share meals with when we go out. Luckily, she was still nice enough to share vegan dishes with me, but I definitely felt a little bit guilty. I also felt a bit guilty when the restaurant choice was based on MY dietary requirements.
In terms of talking about my ‘new vegan lifestyle’, it was interesting at first, but I did eventually get sick of explaining to everyone why I was having a lettuce sandwich and not some sort of delicious egg salad and cheese filling. I guess im quite used to having to justify my food choices every time I share a meal with someone new, so in that way, it wasn’t such a change.
What does bother me is that people feel they have the right to question my choices and my ethics, yet I can’t question theirs. Am I allowed to ask people why they eat such unhealthy food or eat so much meat? NOPE! Or if I did, it would be quite rude.
I did have some days when I was in a bad mood and just wanted to make something easy, delicious and comforting. And sometimes, when you’re tired, you’re really not in the mood to figure out how to turn tofu into fish and chips.
It was also sort of depressing knowing that realistically; I could only do my shopping in a few of the aisles in the supermarket. Though I normally only shop from a few aisles, that’s out of CHOICE.
I only lost about 1kg over the month (I think). Normally I eat quite a low fat diet, and while being vegan, my energy consumption definitely reduced due to the exclusion of yoghurt, cheese etc. I do anticipate I’ll regain that weight and more (FML) as I attempt to make up for a month of deprivation.
After doing this challenge, I have a new found respect for vegans. No longer will I tease them and taunt them while I drink a chocolate milkshake and dance around in leather heels, but I will acknowledge and admire their absolute dedication to their lifestyle.
So where to from here?
I unfortunately can’t see myself being vegan. As I mentioned initially, I used to be a pescitarian (basically vegetarian, but still ate seafood). Having completed the challenge, a vegetarian diet looks like a walk in the park. So from here, I will attempt to give up eating seafood, so I can finally lecture people about a vegetarian lifestyle without being a hypocrite (obviously, my only reason).
To everyone who has been following this blog, I thank you! I am genuinely surprised to find out just how many of you have been reading it, and I’m quite honestly flattered! I think I will continue with this blog, with my general musings on food, of course, accompanied by wonky drawings.
The tempehrary vegan.