Our 7 day Veganism challenge has come to an end and I’ll be honest with you, I am a little sad. During our 7 days I felt really good…I never felt bloated and I never felt lethargic or uncomfortably stuffed after a meal. Both are really good boosts for the self esteem! I also loved that I didn’t have to wash my hands as often while cooking. Before you think to yourself that my hygiene could use some improvement, just consider that when you are preparing vegan food, you aren’t using any (raw) animal products so hands, cutting boards, knives etc. aren’t becoming contaminated. It was great to be able to go from chopping to instantly picking up my squawking baby without having to disinfect my hands first! Our 7 day veganism challenge was also really gratifying from an environmental perspective, knowing for just that week our food choices were making a positive impact.
So why not go completely vegan?
I really missed dairy. Like, a lot. Every vegan dish I made was really good, but I couldn’t help thinking this would be even better with cheese… And I missed eggs. Even more than dairy. To me, nothing is better than some light fluffy scrambled eggs (with avocado!) and I just don’t think I have it in me to abstain from them! I’m sorry, but I can’t. And I guess I missed meat too. But don’t worry. I made up for it by eating ALL THE CHEESE, EGGS and MEATS at a party this weekend after the conclusion of our challenge. Which I paid for by having an upset tummy. Go me.
So what (else) did I learn while I was a 7-day vegan?
1. Preparing good Vegan food takes time: I probably spent at least an hour preparing dinner every night, and sometimes longer if I was hydrating beans/lentils etc. And because you aren’t relying on the fat from meat or other animal products to flavor your food, many vegan recipes require a lot of ingredients and spices. I didn’t mind because what good meal doesn’t take a little time, but I can see how it would be challenging to constantly dedicate that amount of time to food preparation.
2. Staying true to the vegan constraints requires planning ahead: I had every meal and snack planned out for the week and all the ingredients at hand, so sticking to the plan was pretty easy for me. But without that plan I would have really struggled. There are very few healthy vegan choices available when you are out and about so my planned out snacks and meals were imperative in order to remain vegan on the busy days.
3. There are unhealthy vegan choices too: Not all vegan-friendly food is healthy. Potato chips, for instance are vegan but we all know they aren’t the awesomest of choices. You can also make brownies using a box-mix, water, oil and flax seed…which I enjoyed very much but lets face it, weren’t a good choice either, vegan or not. I guess all I am saying is that with all food lifestyles, you still have the opportunity to make some wise, and not so wise choices.
4. Vegan food is really delicious: It is! I know I said earlier that most of the dishes would have been better with cheese, and I am sticking to that, but honestly, the food was great on it’s own. The favorites in our house were the Lentil Loaf and the Loaded Sweet Potatoes. They held their own without cheese.
5. Veganism isn’t right for me all of the time: This 7 day challenge was fun and easy for me but that is mostly because I had a great plan to stick to and we were eating at home. If you throw in travel or some crazy days where your plan gets shot then I can see how this lifestyle could become more challenging.
Will I do it again? Absolutely!
This might have been my first food challenge but it won’t be my last! What is next? Clean eating? Paleo? You tell me in a comment below!
I’d also love to hear how your 7-day veganism challenge went! Let me know below!