January 28, 2011

The Vegan Diet: Day 3

I'm holding up...  But frustrated and overwhelmed.
Here's my honest daily report.

NOTE: I weighed myself this morning right after my first bowel movement.  125 lbs.  Three pounds heavier than the last few months.  Remember, my goal is to lose no weight.

There are a million "shoulds" and "shouldn'ts" in the world of food consumption.  Just when I think eating veggies and avoiding other inflammatory foods, one of you mention that tomatoes and peppers are inflammatory.  AAAAK.  There goes my dinner plan.

And while I'm truly grateful for Harmony and Tabitha and others' direction on books to read, whose website to check out, and how to make fresh almond milk, I just want to eat a known body of food and call it good.  I'm overwhelmed.  I don't want to read a book - I only have 11 days left of this!  (Unless I extend it to one month). 

Perhaps I'm being ignorant by choosing to simply omit animal products and sugar, and eat all the rest.  Perhaps I ought to take the time to read the books and do a 30 minute web search.
And perhaps I'm just tired of conflicting opinions and am creating this simple grid because I'm sick of thinking about it all.  Sigh.
My cravings have almost disappeared.  It only took three days!  However, I am irritable, and know I'm behind on sleep.  I can't blame my diet for it yet.  (And I fess up to a HUGE want for a chocolate chip cookie this afternoon.  Thank God there were none at my house.)

Best food item of the day: Rice pasta with Trader Joe's Sun Dried Tomato & Pesto Torta.  I ate buckets of it.

Off-Diet - There was some sort of milk in the Torta.  I had about a tablespoon of the milk product.  I'm pretty stinkin' proud of myself.  I thought I'd run out of food ideas by now.

1 comment:

  1. Don't give up!

    I agree with you that it is uber-frustrating to just want some straight advice about what to eat and to have to face so many conflicting messages about what the answer is! But the subject of food is a big one. Very complex. I don't think it is possible to do it any justice without dedicating time and research and lots of trial and error.

    And it's not just a vegan thing. Think of it this way. You can't expect to know the ins and outs of ANY diet (or any subject) all at once the first day (or week, or month) you jump into it.

    Besides the cravings for foods you are more familiar with and foods you may be physically addicted to, the hardest part about making any dietary switch takes place right at the beginning, during the first few weeks. This is the time in which you are stuck with the problem of figuring out just what you CAN eat. But once you have a handful of satisfying meals figured out (5-10), it becomes a simple matter to re-visit them again and again!

    May I be honest? And I don't mean this as an attack or to discourage you in any way, because I'd like to see you have a worthwhile experience, whether or not you choose to adapt your diet in the long run. I see two points in which I think you have set yourself up for a less-than-ideal experience.

    One, you've given yourself a relatively short amount of time. Two weeks may seem like a long time when all you can think about is how long you will have to forego something you like. But two weeks is nothing when you consider actually causing and noticing a dramatic shift in habit or health!

    Two, it sounds like you haven't done much research into how to most successfully meet your goal (stick to a "vegan" diet for two weeks). You've laid out a few ground rules, which is good, but they leave a lot of gray area that you still have to work out for yourself.

    I think the thing can still work out quite well for you, as a test, if you are willing to modify one of the above points. That is, either increase your time period or increase your knowledge. The one gives you time to work your way through by trial and error without feeling the pressure of a two-week trial clock bearing down on you. The other gives you the answers ahead of time so the time period actually becomes useful.

    I agree that you don't necessarily want to go out and read a bunch of books just for a two week experiment. But some of the commenters have significantly narrowed your focus by pointing out specific books (out of hundreds written) depending on which subject matter is most important to you.

    Perhaps a helpful hint would be that some of the books already referenced (or others like them) will provide you with sample menus you could potentially use to cover your bases for the remaining days, whether you read the books or not. This could be a useful shortcut for you. If you don't want to get the books, you could probably find similar resources online.

    The resource I think might be the easiest for you to digest and apply right away? A 21-day podcast that Erik Marcus put together a couple years back. Each day is about 10 minutes long and he covers all manner of basics related to the vegan diet: how to eat vegan at a restaurant, how to shop vegan at a grocery store, how to make sure you are covering your nutritional basics, how to deal with friends and family who may not be supportive, what common foods he would suggest to use as the core of your diet and how to prepare them, etc.

    You can find all those available to listen to for free at or you can download them for free on itunes.

    I know this is a huge ocean of possibility that you have jumped into but I really would like to see you do well in your experiment! Feel free to call or email if you need to vent or continue to get stuck! :)