Plant-Based and Proud

vegan1{image source: Vegan Food Spot}

I’ve been on the road to living a plant-based lifestyle since I was a child. I can remember questioning the ingredients in food as early as the fourth grade. When I began my freshmen year in high school, I was twelve years old and knew then that the carnivorous diet did not suit my soul. Even at that young age, my higher consciousness told me that something about the way I was living wasn’t quite right.

I abruptly stopped eating beef, pork, and certain types of seafood as my step one to living a better life. Once I began college, I reintroduced myself to beef and bottom dwellers, especially since a Cajun cheeseburger or crawfish po’ boy was sometimes the best option for a late night bite during my undergraduate days in New Orleans.

During my senior year in college, I moved near a Whole Foods and that’s when my organic foods obsession began.  About two-and-a-half years after college, I moved to Los Angeles and my only food restriction was still pork. After a few years I returned to New Orleans and became a pescatarian. I had also stopped eating eggs and drinking milk after having breakfast at a restaurant in the French Quarter and feeling very nauseated afterward. I still remember that day. I felt disgusting, and it tainted my image off eggs forever. Sushi was my absolute favorite food and I wasn’t prepared to give that up and in spite of hating animal’s milk, I still had a weakness for cheese. A good cheese board and a bottle of wine changes lives!

In March 2015 I spent eleven days in Tampa, and while laying on the beautiful white sand beach Pass-A-Grille, the southernmost end of St. Pete Beach, I thought about the Los Angeles episode of Bizarre Foods that I’d watched the night before. I was surprised to see one of my favorite raw foodies on one of the segments. It was none other than Ani Phyo, a celebrity health & wellness expert and eco-stylist. I instantly became inspired and decided that starting April 1st, 2015, I’d commit to the raw food lifestyle for one full month. I had dabbled far too long, and it was time to put myself to the test. From that point, it felt only natural to become a vegan.

vegan2{image source: Best of Vegan}

I’m often asked, “Where do you get your protein from?” Some folks even ask about my healthy fat intake. I just want to take a handful of almonds and throw them in the air. Family, friends, colleagues, and even strangers ask “How do you stay vegan?” Whether it’s someone who’s asking out of curiosity or trying to live a healthier lifestyle, my answer is clear.

To live a plant-based lifestyle, your reasons have to be transparent. The most important reason for me is self-respect. Why would I want to eat a dead animal when I can eat living food grown by the Earth? Imagine the type of emotional and chemical release that happens when an animal is slaughtered. That energy is transferred into your “food” then processed by your body. Also, you don’t see any other species drinking the milk of other species. This is why I prefer being vegan and not vegetarian.

My second reason is respect for the environment. Nature provides us with everything we need. The planet is saying “I shall offer and you shall eat.” When I eat from the earth, I feel ethereal and grounded. The same frequencies that resonate from the Earth are the same frequencies being absorbed into my living body temple, so I feel the greatest peace and balance of energies.

My 3rd reason is I eat to respect animals. Are they not conscious creatures who mate, give birth, and have feelings? I don’t like the way humans treat each other, so I can’t allow myself to treat animals in the same way. I do have leather shoes, jackets, handbags, and seats in my car, but in my defense, I acquired these things before going vegan. I give thanks to the animals that have died for these material items, and will continue to be conscious about animal products in every capacity.

Last but not least, my spirit said that this is how I am to live. During the days of being a carnivore, I admired vegans. I imagined myself being vegan. You know how they say “Your thoughts become your actions”? Well, this is a prime example. Now I feel good, vibrantly alive, and I can’t imagine it any other way.

When I wake in the mornings, I can’t wait to play in the kitchen. I look forward to blending smoothies and starting my day out with a glow. When people say “Oh, I couldn’t live like you,” I say “Yes, you could.” I don’t push my lifestyle onto anyone but I urge people to live healthier. If you feel drawn toward a vegan dietary lifestyle or are just starting out, then continue reading below.

vegan3Here’s a small guide for anyone who’s interested in a plant-based diet:

1. Design your steps

Going plant-based doesn’t happen overnight (for most people). Create a step-by-step plan to your destination. You may want to give up pork first, then beef, then poultry, seafood, milk, honey cheese, etc…

2. Meal plan

Plan your meals ahead of time. It’ll make life, and grocery shopping so much easier. Grab some lead-free glass or non-BPA Tupperware and create your menu for the week.

3. Get creative

Think about all the foods you like and find a plant-based substitute. I have several suggestions that I’ll share in another post.

4. Be realistic

Be honest with yourself and your goals. Again, being 100% plant-based is not an overnight occurrence. It takes time, patience and dedication. You’re practically reprogramming your body. Also, know exactly why you want to live this lifestyle. It’ll make your transition more meaningful.

5. Don’t be too hard on yourself

I’d fallen off the vegan wagon several times before I committed. I had succumbed to a sushi temptation wonderfully known as The Lobster Roll. I had also eaten honey, pimento, goat, and brie cheeses. Not anymore! There are so many other pleasurable things in life to indulge in.

If you keep these steps in mind, you’ll reach your goals. I wish you nothing but balance and prosperity. Peace, and much love to you.

Disclaimer: I am not, let me repeat, not a doctor, therapist, scientist, certified nutritionist or herbologist, holistic practitioner, or any other term used to describe a physician. I’m simply a health and wellness enthusiast who is sharing my journey and information I’ve learned. The information provided in this post is designed to provide helpful information on the subjects discussed. This post is not meant to be used, nor should it be used, to diagnose or treat any medical condition. For diagnosis or treatment of any medical problem, consult your physician. The author and publisher (yours truly) of this post is not responsible for any specific health or allergy needs that may require medical supervision and is not liable for any damages or negative consequences for any treatment, action, application, or preparation to any person reading or following the information on this blog. Any references provided are for informational purposes only and do not constitute endorsement of any websites or other sources. Reader should be aware that the websites listed in this post and on this site may change.


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