Maggie Swan

I did not die from my vegan diet…

In Vegan on March 5, 2014 at 11:53 pm

My lack of updates on our 30-day vegan experiment is not because I have fallen off the wagon or died, although the flu did hit my son and I pretty hard. For one day. I have to say – Tamiflu is indeed like a miracle drug.

Here’s what you’ve missed.

1. The scale doesn’t reflect any significant weight loss, but I have lost several inches of bloat from my waistline. This is a great development, except that when I run my shorts slide down my butt. In fact, my whole body looks and feels tighter, without any apparent muscle loss.

2. We are not starving! In fact, I’ve gotten pretty creative now that I have had a chance to explore all of the meat- and dairy-free options out there. This Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers recipe was a winner, as was the wrap I made with veggie “beef” crumbles and chickpeas, and the Tortellini with Creamy Wild Mushroom Sauce recipe from Mouthwatering Vegan by Miriam Sorrell. Up next this week: Stroganoff Supreme, Juicy Burger & Potato Stew (also from Mouthwatering Vegan), and Meat-free meatball subs.

3. I recognize how very lucky we are to live near so many grocery stores that carry vegan-friendly products – we’ve got Whole Foods, Fresh Market, and new Greenwise Publix within a 5-mile radius.

4. Veggie hot dogs suck. I simply cannot find a brand that doesn’t make me gag. If you know of a good brand, please let me know!

5. I made a great dish – Pasta No-Fredo – which tasted a lot like real Fettucine Alfredo using pureed cauliflower instead of cream. However, the cauliflower put me in SEVERE gastrointestinal distress for two days. I thought I was going to explode.

6. We *almost* broke down and got a pizza the other night. It had been a long day for both of us and neither one of us felt like cooking. We ended up sticking to the plan and going to Pei Wei – I didn’t realize how vegan-friendly their food is!

7. My 8-year-old is not sticking with the plan. I am having a hard time packing nutritious lunches that he will actually eat, and that don’t include a lot of sugar. I did, however, find a brand of meatless buffalo chicken wings that he inhaled. He is eating vegan about 50% of the time – it’s a start, anyway.

8. I just discovered that there are vegan substitutes for feta and pepper jack cheese!

9. I have not really found a good substitute for vegan cream. Soy creamer is really too thin for the texture I am trying to achieve.

10. I don’t know that we will ever go back to eating the way we used to. I do miss my fish (salmon, particularly) but the cravings I had for meat are totally gone. I don’t feel deprived. I was concerned that I would be “weak” but that has not been the case, even after really intense spin classes.

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