I’ve been a vegetarian since December 2006. Since then my attitude towards food has changed a lot. I wrote more about those changes in my five-year veggie-versary post. During those 5+ years I’ve tried to go vegan several times. Why? First of all, I love and respect animals. All of them. And I don’t want to cause them any harm. Plus, I do believe that a plant-based diet is not only healthier for humans but also better for the environment.
While I do enjoy vegan food a lot, I’ve always found it very hard, almost impossible, to be 100% vegan for more than a few days.
Following a meat-free diet in this part of the world is challenging, in many ways. First of all, I’m surrounded by omnivores, who strongly believe that a vegetarian or even vegan diet is unhealthy, that I’m at the risk of malnutrition, and what not. Some even think that I’m suffering from an eating disorder!
I know a total of two or three people, who are also vegetarians, but we are not close friends. I don’t know any vegans in real life. I know I shouldn’t care what others think or do, but always being the odd one is not fun at all.
Aside from that, I’ve noticed that my biggest challenges are free food and eating out. I love baked goods, especially elaborate birthday or wedding cakes (be still my heart). Unfortunately, none of them are vegan, and they are full of processed sugar and white flour. But they are so freaking delicious!
Plus, I don’t want to be that annoying person at a restaurant, that bombards the waiter or waitress with tons of questions and special orders.
I used to think that if I can’t be 100% vegan, it’s not even worth trying. Recently, I’ve changed my mind about that.
I’m not trying to be perfect anymore! Instead, I’ll eat vegan meals and snacks as often as I can, while allowing myself to follow my cravings. So I may or may not have a piece of non-vegan cake, and I may or may not have some non-vegan ice cream on a hot day, and I may or may not order a pizza with cheese when I’m going out with my friends. I might even have scrambled or hard-boiled eggs when I’m stuck at a hotel where the vegan breakfast options are more than sad.
A few weeks ago I’ve stopped using animals products when preparing my own food, as you can see in some of my WIAW posts. I won’t call this a transitioning phase, as I’m not sure where I’m going. I also won’t call myself a vegan, as I do still occasionally consume foods that contain eggs or dairy. At the moment, I’m about 80 – 90% vegan, and that’s enough for me.
Well, this is where I stand right now. Maybe I’ll be a real vegan one day, maybe I won’t. I don’t know. But I do know that I feel absolutely amazing on a plant-based diet.
How would you describe your diet? Plant-based, paleo, omnivore?