Long time no see…
January’s been a pretty busy one, as per. We got back to uni, committing (and LOVING) the gym, launched a business and maintaining Matriarch, so things have been busy. But this year, we also threw veganism into the mix. That’s right, I jumped onto the bandwagon that is, the vegan diet.
So here’s the thing, I was vegetarian till I was 8 so I’ve had experience with a non meat diet but let me tell you back then, it was not what it was now. Shout out to Quorn roast which was essentially a sliceable cylinder of quorn and that was one of the better veggie alternatives. But after being on a meat based diet for the next 10 years, it’s fair to say I got quite sick of the meat. It wasn’t enjoyable anymore and what was once the best part of the meal became the thing I cared for less and less. And it was over Christmas just gone that I realised how much I didn’t actually like meat anymore. We had chicken, beef, pork etc everything, it’s Christmas after all, and actually I found myself enjoying my mushroom and spinach wellington I’d made for my sister and friends much more enjoyable. Before Christmas, I had become flexitarian – being predominantly vegetarian but with the flex, and so this mixed with my dislike of meat, Veganuary seemed like the next natural step…
I have a few friends who are vegan but also follow a number of vegan accounts on Instagram and accounts like @veganshite were really eye opening into the developments of vegan food, how accessible they are becoming but also how damn good they can be – no, it’s not just vegetables.
So, how did I find it?
Firstly, I really enjoyed it, a lot more than I thought I would. I in no way felt like I lost out because of my diet or ate less interesting or less flavourful food. In fact, I actually felt like I had more variety, more flavour and way more interesting meals and it all came down to the fact that I had to think about what I was putting into my body so much more. And for that, I am so grateful. Veganism has made me re-evaluate my diet and my relationship with food for the better. I am a lot more conscious about balance and intake so that I’m getting the nutrients I need but I have also become so much more appreciative of food. I’m less wasteful and have stopped relying on more processed, grab and go type foods. In short, my relationship with food has completely changed for the better.
Will I continue it?
My one struggle was cheese. I won’t lie to you, it was really hard with the cheese and as good as alternatives are they will definitely take more time to adjust to which is something I can see myself doing in the future. For the meanwhile though, I want some kind of flexi-vegan type diet – ‘freegan’ if you will where I’m vegan 80-90% of the time but I give myself some leeway. If I’ve learnt anything about my health and food, it’s that if I feel restricted I am more likely to rebel and break that triggering a guilt complex – we don’t need that anymore.
However I do have to mention the ease of Veganism and whilst it’s great and the majority of people are driven by their own morals, you do question whether Veganism this year has been commoditised for it’s popularity and undeniable cash cow status in 2020. Whilst the morals of big corporations can often be skewed there is something to be said for accessibility and ease which naturally does draw people in. Let’s put it this way, I never struggled for options or price point.
So veganism, tried and tested – it’s a yes from me. Give it a go