Eating healthy is a form of self-respect
I’ve always eaten quite healthy, but since switching to a plant-based vegan diet, I’ve seen accelerated effects on my well-being. I’ve had improvements such as enhanced energy, healthier skin, improved digestion and a less expensive grocery bill—it’s anything but a hindrance.
I don’t subscribe to the “low carb”, “high fat”, “paleo”, “ketogentic” etc. fads. I’ve found that by eating whole, nutrient-dense plant-based foods, I don’t need to worry about my weight or taking supplements. It doesn’t need to be complicated—eat real food!
Vegan, gluten-free & delicious
My plant-based diet propels me in sport, work and keeps my brain sharp in all my activities. My recipes are pretty simple with room for improvisation and creativity, depending on what ingredients I have in my fridge—they may appear complicated from the photos, but it’s all smoke and mirrors! 😛
Preparing meals rich in raw plant foods every day isn’t boring. There are SO many beautiful colours and textures to choose from; each plate is like a blank canvas ready for you to create a work of art—slow down, turn off your phone, crank the tunes and get into the flow!
My typical breakfast is a green smoothie, with spinach, kale, ginger, turmeric, blueberries, banana and a revolving list of other ingredients. It’s a great way to take in lots of nutrients. If I’m still hungry or have a big workout planned, I’ll also have few handfuls of nuts or make a breakfast bowl with nuts, seeds, quinoa, coconut milk and berries. I drink coffee, but limit my intake to one cup in the morning with some Soy or Almond milk.
Throughout the day, I snack on raw organic nuts or fruit. I often eat a few apples or other fruit such as blueberries, oranges, grapefruit or banana, 2–3 handfuls of almonds or walnuts and maybe a spoonful of almond butter, 1/2 an avocado, some cacao nibs, pumpkin seeds or gluten-free Zesty Life Granola.
If I’m not drinking a big jar of water, I’ve usually got a herbal tea on the go such as green, turmeric, licorice root, or chamomile. If I’m dehydrated I get tired, especially between workouts, so being mindful of sipping fluids during the day is very important.
During my workouts, I don’t often eat anything if it’s under three hours. For a long bike ride, my go-to fueling sources are dates dusted with pink salt, bananas, unsweetened dried fruit, yams or some Zesty Energy Balls. I only drink water during my workout, but occasionally, especially if it’s hot, I will add lemon, ginger, a splash of apple cider vinegar and pinch of pink salt. Sometimes I mix in some lemon and a tsp of matcha powder.
To replace glycogen stores and protein I will eat a small amount of something high in carbs right away such as brown rice, yams or a couple dates etc. For my meal, in most cases I try to time my post-workout around lunch or dinner, so it’s usually a big Zesty Life bowl, or a smoothie.
I try to eat relatively light at lunch; usually a big salad, Zesty Life bowl, vegan chilli or a VITA-MIX drink with a lot of veggies and avocado.
Supplements are not a big part of my routine. I’m not worried about not meeting my nutritional needs because I get a variety of nutrients from my food. I do take vegan omega oil, plant-based iron if it’s low, and organic spirulina powder.
Breaking the routine
I don’t eat perfectly every day. I splurge every now and then, but honestly I don’t really get junk cravings because when your body is in a rhythm of eating healthy whole foods, you feel awesome and begin to crave more of that. *I never eat fast food, processed food, dairy, eggs, meat or candy. On occasion I’ll eat gluten and rarely drink alcohol.