Today I'm answering some questions that I've recently received. First, a reminder that I'm only speaking from my own personal experience, and according to the plan my homeopathic doctor has put me on. I get some really in depth emails from folks who are still confused, not knowing what to eat, and asking me - but the truth is, I don't know any better than they do. I'm still finding what works for me. I'll say it once again - if you are confused and struggling, consult some kind of holistic practitioner.
Do all your MAIN meals include protein? Do you ever eat just eat veggies by themselves?
Yes, all my main meals include protein. Usually eggs with breakfast, meat or fish with lunch and eggs or meat at dinner - always with veggies. Sometimes I eat veggies alone. I might have a salad, soup or veggies with a dip for a small meal. But for most of my meals I eat veg with protein. This will probably change when I start introducing sweet things again, like fruit, although I will have to make sure to keep enough protein that I don't crave sugar like I did before.
Are you allowed to eat lentils or legumes?
The word "allowed" really makes me cringe. It seems that our society is so terribly caught up in doing the "shoulds" that we don't listen to our own bodies - myself included. I have eaten a small amount of legumes lately. For example - I made split pea soup for guests last week and had a bowl. I ate hummus while out with friends yesterday, but before that I don't remember the last time I ate these foods. In my mind, the question is - how does it feel for YOU to eat these foods? For me it feels heavy so I keep it minimal.
What do you think of vega? And brown rice protein powder?
I've tried vega once and found the taste to be horrific. I've tried a few brown rice proteins and find that my body responds fine. I particularly like Epic Protein (Vanilla Lucuma), but am not currently consuming it while being off sugar.
What made me switch over from raw vegan?
I'm still being asked this question occasionally- read my health story HERE, and a progress update HERE.
Am I eating too many fats? I eat avocado, eggs, cheese, yogurt, meat, and oils.
First of all, I believe our bodies require healthy fats. Secondly, I think it really depends on YOU. I eat all the fats you mention, and I think I'm consuming too much fat at the moment, but I think the fat in combination with the protein is what's helping me stay off sugar, so I'm going with it for now.
What's a typical 3 day meal plan for you?
This is SO individual. Check THIS POST for what I have been eating daily. We all have different bodies which means we all have slightly different food requirements. Also, my diet changes subtly these days, so 3 days wouldn't necessarily provide the best overview. For example, one day I might eat some starchy things like yams, while the next day I may not eat any.
Today for the first time in ages, I'm craving cacao - and I'm rather annoyed by it since sticking to my new diet has been effortless for the most part. One day last week I had a minor sugar/cacao craving as a result of a liver cleanse remedy that Denyse had me on, so it was "to be expected". I rode it out, and sure enough it passed within a few hours.
I realized today that the craving is a result of my monthly friend, who just arrived. What's interesting is that in the past I ate so much cacao all the time, that I never noticed a difference during my period. Now that I'm so far removed from cacao, I can see that this isn't an emotional craving, but clearly a hormonal thing. In fact, I have been around chocolate quite a lot lately - pulling it out of the freezer for guests, sending off choccie packages to friends, and so on - so I am certainly past the "craving" stage.
Anyway, I battled it out for a while. I ate a colostrum/hemp milk/chia mix for breaky, salad with venison for lunch... but then I just couldn't hold any longer. I ate a small piece of raw chocolate before heading out the door to the gym. Yes, I could have walked away, but I decided to have a bit. I felt fine physically, and the craving went away. Plus, it doesn't mean that everything has to come undone just because I "broke my diet". I'm moving on.
Muscle and Fitness
Moving onto another point... the great weight debate, strength, and fitness. As I mentioned in another post, I have gained weight since adopting my new lifestyle. While I have my occasional freak outs about this, I can confidently say that some of it is muscle. I feel MUCH stronger now, and feel better in general. I have become stronger in my yoga practice, and have recently started working out at the gym for the first time in years. I'm going partly because it's minus a million here with 10 feet of snow on the ground which means no outside activity, and partly because I'm going to a bikini destination soon and want to trim down. An incredible surge of energy had me running on the treadmill the other day, and it felt great. My newfound strength has me walking on the treadmill a steep incline at a pretty fast pace - effortlessly.
As an aside, many years ago I did gymnastics, then got into cheerleading, running, and light weight lifting. When I became vegan (upon turning 14) I lost my strength, and about 10 lbs (although I was at a fit, normal weight to begin with) so fast that I couldn't do some of my regular gymnastic moves anymore. At the time I didn't know what the heck was going on, and my coach/friends accused me of not eating and being anorexic, but now I see that it was my body's negative response to removing the animal protein from my diet. In fact, at one point my hair started thinning, I was tired all the time, skinny, and super pale. When it was recommended that I start eating meat again, I said "Absolutely NOT" and continued on for 13 years. I think my body adapted to some extent - but I've come to realize that it adapted trying to get as much sugar as possible, in the form of constant cravings.
I still believe that some people can thrive on a vegan diet, however, I am not one of them. If I could go back to being raw vegan and be completely balanced, I'd return to it in a heartbeat. I will always have a major passion for raw foods, and it will always be a part of my life.