Boy was the month of January a LONG one. Whether it was because it was the first month in a LONG time that we didn’t have a birthday or Holiday to celebrate…or mabye it was because I was eating vegan. Either way, it was long. So I thought I’d recap how my experience went and curious to hear from anyone that did it with me or just ate more vegetarian dishes overall.
I did lose 4 pounds in the month of January (*see additional info) while I was eating vegan. This was very exciting for me because I don’t lose weight very fast. I am now 6 pounds away from my pre-pregnancy weight and my little sweet boy just turned 3 months. Not bad. I can fit into a few more pre-pregnancy pants, but not all of them. I think it will take another month or so to get there. Nonetheless, I am happy to be making progress.
I am not too concerned about getting rid of those last 6 pounds right away, because as a nursing mama I know that my body hangs on to a few extra pounds as maternal fat stores. I am totally fine with that knowing that I am nourishing this little guy.
(* Weigh-in was done a couple days ago so it was a pre-Super Bowl weigh-in and if you knew how many donuts I had yesterday, you might go running as fast as possible away from Nutritious Eats, but I feel obliged to tell you I ate….A LOT and I don’t usually do that. Ok- I feel better now).
Back to vegan month, I really didn’t struggle as much as I thought I would giving up all animal products for 31 days. I cooked a lot of great vegetarian dishes- tofu stir fries, vegetarian chili, soups, etc. I didn’t bake at all. I mostly ate oatmeal of high fiber cereal with soy milk for breakfast (no big change there) and snacked on lots of fruits and vegetables. On pizza Fridays, I had no cheese pizza with extra sauce and lots of veggies- mushrooms, bell peppers, onions, black olives, tomatoes and jalapenos. I missed the cheese a little, but not too much.
There were a few instances where feta made it’s way onto my plate- one accidentally eating out and one by choice. I craved eggs, deli ham and baked chicken. Rib-eye steak also started sounding pretty good towards the end and I rarely eat beef (I mean maybe a few times a year?).
Because I am exclusively breastfeeding and I kicked up my exercise a lot this month, I just felt like I was missing something at the end of the day. Maybe it was calories…or maybe I was just missing the satisfaction from my regular protein sources. It could’ve also been the lack of treats or baked goods. What ever it was, on some days I felt like I didn’t eat enough and no amount of fruits and vegetables would fill the void. Interesting. I think that with time that I’d get used to the diet. Another interesting thing is that I did not feel any different than eating my regular diet. No change in energy, digestion, etc. Ok, well maybe a little more gassy! Ha!
A few things I learned- soy substitutes like soy cheese, soy yogurt, soy sausage, etc. are NOT my cup of tea. No thank you. I would rather go without all dairy and meat than try to incorporate the fake stuff. So all in all, it was a good month and although I welcome animal products back into my life, I know I will be eating more vegan dishes than meat dishes in our new “normal” routine. For that, the experiment with worth it.