A few days ago this conversation happened:
Person: “Don’t you get tired of eating the same thing all the time?”
Me: *confused* “What do you mean?”
Person: “You know because you can only eat a few foods.”
In my head, I responded with the biggest eye roll ever to be completed by a human being. In real life, though, I explained that the only food I choose not to eat is meat and dairy. Two types of food. Two.
I honestly couldn’t believe I was having this conversation. I mean good grief do people actually think vegans literally eat grass for every meal? I can’t speak for other vegans, but I only eat grass for lunch 😉
After having this conversation, it occurred to me that maybe people really don’t understand. Not all people, obviously. Those who already eat vegetables, grains, and legumes will not find plant-based diets so confusing. But, there are plenty of people out there who eat mostly animal products (to which I say “don’t you get tired of eating the same thing all the time?”). This post is for anyone who does not understand the concept of a plant-based diet or for anyone looking for new meal ideas. I stick with 5 small meals a day and usually eat clean (though dark chocolate and wine frequently find their way into my weekend snacks hehe).
M1: Protein smoothie (1 banana, handful of diced pineapple, 1tbs of flaxseeds, 1 cup of unsweetened almond milk, 1 scoop of protein powder)
M2: Bowl of grapes and a handful of almonds
M3: Salad (bed of spring mix, sauteéd tofu, bell peppers, apple cider vinegar + olive oil + Italian herbs) Usually I top my salads with beans like chickpeas and nuts, but I had tofu in the fridge that needed to get eaten.
M4: Hummus and carrots
M5: Veggie stir fry (black beans, quinoa, zucchini, bell peppers, peas, mushrooms, onion, garlic, kale, and broccoli on the side)
*I don’t actually measure out my food, I just eyeball it, but I figured it might be helpful to suggest measuring sizes. Also, I strive to drink at least 64oz of water every day, though ideally, I will drink at least 72oz.
For the most part, I eat the same type of meals each week. This is because it is cheaper and makes cooking easy, not because I have limited choices. I’ve been vegan since September ’14 but I did not start eating clean like this until around this time last year. I dropped 15 pounds and have stayed at that weight (give or take a couple of pounds of normal weight fluctuation) since then. I feel so much better! My clothes fit me nicely, I’m much more confident, I have the energy to workout and actually find myself wanting to workout (crazy, right?), and most importantly I feel good.
Eating clean changes your life. You don’t have to go vegan to eat clean. You can eat chicken, lean turkey, and fish, but you do have to ditch red meat and dairy if you want to eat clean. Once you start reaping the benefits of clean eating, you’ll wish you had started sooner! Give it a try 🙂