My Update: The Hardest Part of Veganism

So I wanted to fill you in on something I’ve been struggling with more and more as this challenge has progressed. I’m quickly finding out that eating vegan is the easy part of all of this. Justifying, clarifying, and defending this way of eating is by far, the hardest part. Deep down and wholeheartedly, I feel like I am doing something really amazing for my body. I’m proud of the way I am eating, and even more about the way I feel eating this way. However, I’m finding that I’m quite defensive about it when I’m approached the wrong way. There are people who are very concerned that I’m starving myself, not getting enough protein and calcium, and overall that I’m voluntarily being deprived of “good food”. For the record, I don’t feel deprived at all! Quite the contrary actually.

The most important thing I’ve noted is that I feel more balanced and more in tune with my nutritional needs than I ever have been in my entire life. Doing all of the research and reading I have done during this challenge has formed a nutritional database in my head that I never had access to before. It’s so ironic to me that no one took much notice to my very unbalanced diet that I was enjoying before I started this blog, because I was eating just like everyone else. Now that I am eating a much more balanced diet (that is no where near perfect, but is certainly closer than before), everyone seems to have something to say and is very concerned about the fact that I’m not eating animal products. This is not something I expected whatsoever. I suppose I was naive in thinking that everyone would trust that I’ve done my research and that people would inherently support me while I take responsibility for my body.

It is a fact that those who are closest to you are going to show the most concern. I get that and quite frankly, I’d think it was weird if my family and friends weren’t asking questions and weren’t curious about what I am doing. However, I’ve been caught off guard by how quickly a simple, everyday headache can be attributed to my vegan diet or if I’m grumpy, it’s because I’m eating vegan. I want everyone to know that I am doing my absolute best to get in my daily needs of calcium, protein and everything else for that matter. I am not perfect, and not every day will be perfect, but does anyone really eat perfectly every single day? Not likely. From beans, nuts, and whole grains to spinach, kale, and fortified milk and yogurt substitutes, I am getting everything in. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I have not eliminated very much from my every day diet, but I HAVE become more focused on eating in balance.

I mentioned a couple of days ago that I’m currently reading the book Vegan Freak. It’s helping me realize that it’s not likely that everyone will ever be fully comfortable with what I am doing, unless they are vegan themselves. I really wish this wasn’t the case and that people could be inherently more open-minded and willing to learn and understand. I’m working on accepting this fact. In addition, it’s teaching me that most of the time it’s not worth getting worked up when you’re feeling attacked for your lifestyle choice and it’s also not worth-it to get completely annoyed when the 1,000th person asks you where you’re getting your protein and calcium. People are scared of what’s different. I respect the food choices that others make because that’s what they feel is best for them. At this time, I’m feeling more and more that this is what is best for me.

I’m willing to answer any questions that there are about why I am doing this, but I won’t react to the best of my character if I feel like I’m being attacked out of ignorance and fear of the unknown. If you’ve armed yourself with information and still want to argue with me about your opinions of veganism, go for it. I’ll be open-minded, so long as you are! πŸ™‚

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Okay, whew, glad that’s off my chest! I don’t tend to write emotionally-charged posts such as this, but I thought it was an appropriate and relevant topic to discuss, as I’m sure there are many of you out there who have gone through this yourselves. I’d love to hear your thoughts and suggestions for how to deal with this! You all are an amazing and accepting community of people and I’m really blessed to have this outlet at my fingertips!

Okay, let’s move on to food, shall we?

Vegan Challenge Day 15

Breakfast: Raw Revolution Organic Live Food Bar: Spirulina and Cashew

It was super GREEN and OILY but the taste wasn’t terrible. Not my favorite so I only ate half of the bar while I was rushing to seminar this morning. I’m saving the other half for when I need a small snack on the go.

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Mid-morning Snack/Lunch: Nature’s Path Hemp Plus Waffle (X2) topped with homemade raw almond butter. Served with a Braeburn apple and a Valencia orange (all organic)

These waffles are really wonderful. They don’t have that chewy eggo waffle texture that’s hard to chew. These were super soft and had wonderful sweet flavors. I loved eating all of that fruit on the side πŸ™‚

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Mid-Afternoon Snack: Green Smoothie with spinach, kale, pineapple, POM and rice milk. A few raw, unsalted sunflower seeds too.

This had that juice consistency I LOVED yesterday. I really love veggie juice!!

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Dinner: Leftover Amy’s Pizza, celery and almond butter for dipping

Kind of a weird dinner, I realize, but it couldn’t have been any better for me. It was the perfect about of food and all of it was wonderfully savory!

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Dessert: Do I really have to tell you…Key Lime Pie Rice Cream, of course!!

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In other news…

  • Tyler from Raspberry Runner was wonderful and kind enough to send me this sweet blogger award πŸ™‚ Thanks Tyler!!!
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FRIENDS… comes with the following description to be added & passed along: β€œThese blogs are exceedingly charming. These kind bloggers aim to find and be friends. They are not interested in self-aggrandizement. Our hope is that when the ribbons of these prizes are cut, even more friendships are propagated.” Please give more attention to these writers. Deliver this award to eight bloggers who must choose eight more and include this cleverly-written text into the body of their award.”
  1. Lindsey at Life According to Mrs. LC
  2. Ashley at Daily Goods
  3. Meghann at The Inner Workings of a College Graduate
  4. Caitlin at The Healthy Tipping Point
  5. Sarah at Sarah is Healthy
  6. Angela at Oh She Glows
  7. Gena at Choosing Raw
  8. Lora at Honey Nut Lo

Okay, I’m off to write two more papers and a lesson plan. Does it ever end??? I’m so tired from running on 4 hours of sleep! I’m hoping to be in bed by midnight. Yikes…

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