I just completed a 7-day vegan challenge (which I actually extended to 11 days because truthfully, I felt amazing). It was about five times easier than I ever could have expected, and the food was delicious. I ate according to how my body felt, and for the first time in ages, I didn't binge once during the course of those eleven days.
Truly mindful eating, fueling my body with only plants, for eleven days. Is this even real life? Yes, my friends, yes it is.
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This was phenomenal. I can’t believe how easy being vegan has been during this now 11-day challenge. Fully planning on exploring this way of life more when we’re done with our summer travel. I’m thinking primarily plant-based “flexitarian” with several vegan challenges throughout the year might be the way to go for me. I just can’t get over how simple this has been and how amazing I feel! . . . . . . #vegans #veganfood #vegansofig #veganlunch #veganrecipes #flexitarian #hippiemom #hippiemama #crunchymom #crunchymama #plantpowered #plantbased #7dayveganchallenge #plantbaseddiet
I wrote about the experience here. One of the biggest surprises was the significant decrease in inflammation. I was getting private messages on Instagram daily from people saying how much thinner my face looked. Over the course of my wellness journey, I've learned how much my face shows what I've been eating - gluten, dairy, and sugar - all inflammatory foods - show up immediately in my face as bloating and puffiness.
I created a 7-day vegan meal plan to make it a bit easier for anyone who is interested in trying a short vegan challenge. These are simple recipes that don't require strange ingredients or trips to Whole Foods. I had the same thing for breakfast every day 1) because it's what I had every morning before the vegan challenge, and 2) it's easy as all get-out and I like to simplify as much as possible.
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So this 7-day vegan challenge is a crap ton easier than I expected. I don’t know why I put this off for so long! I wanted to give plant-based living a try. I’ve heard that eating vegan can really help with migraines, and while I have zero plans to go fully vegan forever, I’m learning this week that it’s not as hard as I thought - and the food is frigging delicious. My mood is much better overall, and all of my face bloat is gone! . . . . . . #vegan #7dayveganchallenge #veganrecipes #veganfood #vegans #vegansofig #veganaf #veganlunch #postpartumbody #postpartumjourney #postpartumfitness #workingonmyself #migrainerelief #strongerthanyesterday
Some of these recipes do include honey, which is not vegan. I will be completely transparent and tell you that I ate honey during my vegan challenge, but full vegans would not have done this. You can omit the honey or substitute maple syrup - or live on the edge and just have the honey as I did.
Breakfast: Vegan superfoods smoothie mix with 1 cup almond milk, 2 handfuls spinach, 1 banana
Lunch: Chickpea curry (omit honey for true vegan curry)
Dinner: Thai noodle salad (omit chicken, sub maple syrup for honey)
Once I started eating vegan, I was shocked at how easy it is. Going forward, I'm trying to incorporate at least two plant-based dinners a week for my family, and eating vegan meals as much as I can. Not only is it incredibly healthy for your body (when done correctly, because let's face it, Oreos are vegan too...), but it's great for your budget.
For more of my personal column, Heather Gets Healthy, click here.