People ask me what I eat since I became vegan, so I decided to share that information today, but first a little back story…
First of all, I LOVE food! I worked in restaurants for over twenty years because I enjoy food AND the camaraderie that is shared when dining with friends and loved ones. I never worked for fancy establishments. I enjoy the feel of a family restaurant instead.
Getting cancer changed my thoughts about that.
Hubby and I do not eat out nearly as often as we used to because, too be honest, I am more educated about what is “hiding” in the foods we eat; the additives, hormones, preservatives, antibiotics and most recently, genetically altered ingredients. The majority of restaurants get their food “ready” made because it’s cheaper and faster to prepare. Those premade foods contain the same additives you find on your grocery store shelves. I prefer to make food at home, from scratch, that way I know exactly what I’m eating. For the most part it doesn’t take any longer than it did when I opened a jar, can or box of processed foods to make a meal. If I do buy something processed, I read the label and you can bet it will be organic. The name “natural” means absolutely nothing. It is not regulated by the FDA like the word “organic.”
These days there are so many wonderful websites dedicated to healthy recipes, I cannot keep up with them all. Pinterest is another great place where I go to. Betty Crocker move over, the Internet is the place to go for the latest, healthiest and tastiest recipes, most of them from regular people like you and me. Many are easy to make, so you have no excuse, you don’t have time to cook or prepare something, if you’re a raw food enthusiast, it’s even easier (no cooking involved).
When my son was tall enough to reach the stove, I taught him to cook. It’s so important to teach our kids to be self sufficient. It’s cheaper to cook from scratch than eat fast food three times a day, not to mention, that “junk” has zero nutritional value! Preparing food as a family is a good way to bond and catch up with what’s going on in your kids lives. If you would like know why eating together is beneficial and how to make it happen, you can visit the Family Dinner Project.
I decided to go vegan because I was vegetarian eight years before that and I use that term loosely. I claimed to be vegetarian but one important thing was missing from my diet… the vegetables! Canned corn, refried beans, salsa and chips don’t cut it and that’s what I was eating. Now my diet consists of eighty-percent raw fruits and vegetables. I don’t worry about how many servings I’m eating, it’s the ratio that matters to me. My diet varies but not by much. For the most part I am a creature of habit. I want nutritious meals that are easy to prepare and don’t take more than thirty minutes to fix.
This is a typical meal I have throughout the day. Oh, and another thing I almost forgot to mention; I am a grazer, meaning I eat several small meals throughout the day.
1 cup of organic coffee with a tsp. sucant, organic soy milk
1 slice Ezekiel raisin toast with raw almond or peanut butter
Handful organic Medjool dates or
1 banana or
handful raw trail mix
Large salad: organic spring salad mix, sliced tomatoes, cucumber, black beans (if on sale, avocado) drizzled with homemade balsamic vinaigrette dressing or
Lettuce or broccoli slaw, tomato, hummus sandwich in a wrap (I like to add a smear of Veganese dressing) If its on sale, I add avocado.
Seasonal fruit, apple dipped in nut butter (peanut or almond)
I switch off sautéing or steaming: veggies (broccoli, sweet onions, red peppers, yams, brussel sprouts, sugar snap peas) I don’t cook all those ingredients for one meal. I rotate them, maybe using four types of veggies at a time. If I sauté, I cook them on medium high heat for five minutes, turn off the heat and let them sit covered for another ten. In order to get the most nutritional benefit from your veggies, they should have a slight crunch when you eat them. I also use either olive oil or coconut oil to cook them in. Sometimes, I put the veggies over brown rice and drizzle organic soy sauce over them. If I have hummus left over, I dip my veggies in it.
Late snacks are similar to what I eat during the day. If its cold outside, I make myself a small bowl of oatmeal with soy milk and raisins.
Now for my daily green smoothie. I make it right after breakfast and drink it throughout the day, along with my eight glasses of spring water. I do not have a water purifier because, to be honest, its not in our budget at the moment. I buy spring water in gallon jugs and refill them four times at the water purifier station at my grocer before buying new ones. I know someone will freak out if they read this but we all have to do the best we can with the resources we have. I don’t have an expensive juicer or blender either. I bought a Breville Fountain over three years ago and it’s going strong. My blender is Black and Decker 700 watts, it doesn’t purify the ingredients as much as a Vitamix, but I am happy with the results. My digestive tract can do the rest.
That’s it. Now you know what I eat. I do have dark chocolate, cupcakes, and cookies on occasion but I make sure I know what’s in them before I indulge myself.
Be Well and Be Happy!