If you’ve been keeping an eye on my Instagram, you’ll know I’ve been taking part in #Veganuary. A whole month of no meat, dairy or eggs! I’ve decided to do this to see if my health improves, to see if I lose weight, and to see if I can actually do it!
I felt like this had to be done after the Christmas I had, stuffed to the gills with Quality Streets, Terry’s Chocolate orange, trifles, cheesecakes and more tempting sugary nonsense. My skin was looking the worst ever and I felt like a solid mass of sluggishness. I was thinking about going veggie for January but my skin was irritating so much I thought I’d try losing the dairy too.
This is not a preachy post, just an honest reflection on how I’m finding it so far, and also what I’ve learned!
- My skin has been the most amazing revelation about the challenge. It has completely cleared because of the lack of extra hormones and nasties in dairy. Even down to the texture of my skin, which is more even and people have been saying I look glowing. I definitely will never go back to the cow juice!
- It’s all about the prep. The hardest thing I’ve found is going out to eat, though most places are accommodating. I found myself at an American smoke house at the weekend, and they made me some veggie burgers and fries with some veggie beans and a bit of salad. What more can you ask for!
- Sainsbury’s vegan cream cheese is one of the best things ever created – you would never be able to tell that it is any different to ‘normal’ cream cheese.
- I’m feeling quite spritely but I’m quite hungry quite a lot of the time. I’ve found beans are quite filling, and something with a bit of crunch usually sorts me out.
- Deliciously Ella and Thug Kitchen are my go-to books for inspiration. I find cooking batches on a weekend for the freezer and planning meals makes life so much easier.
- Marmite is my new best friend – especially as I’m eating more bread. All those B vitamins though.
- You probably won’t find a vegan ready meal to save your life. The only one I have found so far is the Sainsbury’s dairy-free lasagne.
- Apparently Toby Carvery do a vegan Sunday roast but I’m still yet to visit…
- Most allergens are bolded in the ingredients of food now – really handy for those avoiding certain foods and something I’d never noticed before.
- Supermarkets are getting better and better at this stuff, with selections of milks, ice creams, chocolates etc that are dairy-free.
- There’s a brand of Vegan cheese that’s made in the North East called ‘Tyne Chease’. Apparently the comedian Sarah Pascoe eats it and it’s the best vegan cheese out there, I am buying some on Wednesday!
- Most dark, dark chocolates are dairy-free, result.
Hit me up if you have any tips on the vegan lifestyle, or even completing the challenge. I’d love to hear your advice!