Vegan At Last.

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Me right now

If you’ve been keeping up with my posts, you know that I called myself an “aspiring” vegan. This is because for years, I’ve been flip-flopping all over the place with vegetarianism, veganism, gluten-free…ism, raw foodism, dairy-freeism, egg-freeism, and meat-eating……ism. ( Told myself they all have to end in “ism” )

All the while I knew that, ultimately, I must be vegan. It is the only sustainable and morally livable lifestyle. Up until now, I had everything but the diet down.

I had reached the point where I just couldn’t take it anymore. The reason I failed so many times before, reverting back to meat, is because I wasn’t eating enough real food. I’m talking legumes, whole grains, and vegetables. Any junk food vegan will not last unless he/she makes changes. I finally discovered that any junk food diet is slowly killing anybody. Because still, I was unhealthy as a meat-eater.

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Where Do You Get Your Protein?

It’s easy enough to count the number. 7g here, 15g there. The real stuff of the genre that is protein? Amino acids.

Suffice it to say, from an amino acid point of view, there is no difference between animal and plant foods. Meaning, there’s nothing wrong with vegan protein.

20 core amino acids are used to make every protein in our bodies:

Our bodies can never make… Our bodies can always make… Our bodies can sometimes make…
Histidine Alanine Arginine
Isoleucine Asparagine Cysteine
Leucine Aspartic acid Glutamine
Lysine Glutamic acid Glycine
Methionine Serine Proline
Phenylalanine Tyrosine
Threonine
Tryptophan
Valine

Because it’s difficult to know when your body needs and doesn’t need the “sometimes” category, it’s best to ensure you get plenty of the 1st and 3rd columns through diet ( 15 out of 20! ).

Fortunately, and contrary to some “protein experts” you may know, plant-based amino acid needs can be achieved without really thinking.

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The Sweetest Sweet Potato You Can Imagine

Try this as a dessert, sweet snack, or – if you’re anything like me – breakfast.

If you don’t know why sweet potatoes are essential for everyone from vegans to meat-eaters, you’ve got to read my previous post.

By the way, this is the perfect vegan ( and certainly more pure ) substitute for this:

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Who needs the Thanksgiving excuse for this level of sweetness?

Simply:

Cut up a sweet potato from left to right

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Lend a Hand

It goes without saying why volunteering is invaluable to communities ranging in size from your town to our planet. That being said, I’d like to give a couple of reasons why community service is good for you.

Outside Focus

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You’ve got no choice but to focus on someone or something other than you. This may be especially good for anxiety. In general, you just get a good reminder of what it’s all about: not just you.

Experience

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The Surprising Food You Can Absolutely Substitute for Meat

As far as the vitamins and minerals that meats provide, the only ones to worry about are the water-soluble ones. Those guys are the ones we need every day.

If you’ve been getting them through meat and suddenly you take that meat away, well, you need an alternative. You probably wouldn’t want to risk a deficiency that can hinder your decision to be vegetarian or vegan, for example. By the way, I definitely already did that.

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There are 9 water-soluble vitamins essential every day: biotin, pantothenic acid, folate, B1, B2, B3, B6, B12, and C. Tip: that’s really just B-complex and C. 

If I heard about a food that gives you a substantial amount of 7 out of 9, even I would think it were meat. But it’s not. It’s a sweet potato.

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Lactose // Not All Dairy Is the Same

Disclaimer: I don’t eat dairy, but I definitely used to. This post is based on my past experience and research. Both meat-eaters and vegetarians may have a sensitivity to dairy (vegans, you’re way ahead!) – this could be why. ❤

A significant number of people have – shall we say – “issues” persons-0016_large.png with diary. Sometimes it’s legitimate lactose intolerance or even an allergy. Personally, however, I’m one of the people not officially labeled as either but with noticeable negative reactions.

Those reactions aren’t what this post is about. Rather, I want to emphasize the fact that I react differently to different variations of dairy.

What are those variations?

Milk

Those were the cute and obvious. Oh, there’s more…

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Oatmeal: The Superfood Even Meat-Eaters Should Devour

As I said in my last post, people require vitamin C and several of the B-complexes to be had through diet each day. There are 9, including C and B12.

Here’s a killer: 1/2 cup of dry oatmeal provides over 50% daily value of both biotin and B1 – and meat is not even a top source of either one.

Translation: vegans, vegetarians, and meat-eaters alike need to worry about those 2 vitamins every day. So we should all be eating oatmeal.

Gluten-free eaters: Not to worry. You can simply go with the gluten-free option!

Raw foodists: more posts are in store for you!

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Depending on how you decorate your oatmeal, you can up the nutrition:

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A Staple All Vegetarians ( and Vegans ) Should Have in Their Kitchens

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Mushrooms.

I didn’t used to like these, but like a lot of us have to do, I trained myself to really love them!

If you’re allergic, there are plenty of other nutritionally equivalent foods 😀  But that is for another post!

First, some facts:

  • We must get (from food) water-soluble vitamins each day because, simply, they don’t remain in our bodies. Vitamin C is commonly known, but the B-complexes are equally essential.
  • Those include folate, pantothenic acid, biotin, B1, B2, B3, B6, and B12
  • There is some debate over whether or not B12 actually stores in the liver – but regardless, even meat eaters have to attend to their consumption…
  • …Not so with several of the other B vitamins. But that’s okay!
  • The top sources of B3 are all meat, for example. But crimini mushrooms, among a variety of plant foods that do, provide over 15% daily value.

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High fat vs. High carb // Something Weird I’ve Noticed

Disclaimer: I’m aware that there are high-fat vegans. I’m mostly discussing a meat-inclusive diet, which is my more recent experience that lead to the discovery below!

The high fat vs. high carb debate is of peak interest among nutritionists and other qualified persons today – and then there’s me. It has become an inner war of my own.

Allow me to examine the extremes of each scenario:

Meat-eater

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am I right

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