Hello, lovely readers!
Huge apologies for my prolonged absence from the blogosphere; as I mentioned in a previous post, my year got off to quite a spectacularly bad start, and, incredibly, things somehow spiralled even further downward, with the unexpected death of my dog, almost losing my dad to illness, and facing a serious illness myself which left me bedridden for almost a month. I won’t pretend it hasn’t been a difficult time, but I am beginning to find my way out of the black hole in which I found myself, and, fingers and toes crossed, things can only go up from here. Thank you for the lovely messages I’ve received during my blog break, it’s so sweet to know that people care so much.
Anyway, back to business! The regular readers among you will know how much I love a challenge, and I’ve been on a quest to pursue a more whole foods, plant-based diet for a long time, so when I read about the Happy Herbivore 28 Day Whole Food Challenge, it seemed a perfect opportunity for me to improve my eating habits, boost my immune system after a long illness, and put the ‘veg’ back in vegan, as they say! The challenge involves eating only whole foods, such as fruit, vegetables, whole grains and pulses, for 28 days, in order to develop cleaner, healthier eating habits. One of the things I like about the challenge is that it’s not remotely dictatorial or absolute; it’s about progress, not perfection, and if the notion of eating only whole foods for a month is too daunting to comprehend, participants are still encouraged to incorporate as many whole foods into their diet as possible, and simply make healthier choices whenever they can. Amidst all the noise of the online Vegan Police, it’s refreshing to see a vegan blogger advocating a gentle approach to making healthier, more informed decisions.
I’ve just completed day 5 of the challenge, and I’m feeling great! I’ve given up caffeine as part of my interpretation of the challenge, and for the first few days, I experienced a mammoth caffeine withdrawal headache, but now I’m out of the woods and feeling bright, bouncy and really optimistic, which is great! I’ll post a recap of Week 1 at the end of this week, but as an illustration of my daily food choices, I thought I’d share a list of what I ate today:
Breakfast: A bowl of fresh blackberries
Lunch: Quinoa, edamame, red pepper, red onion, tomato and grated carrot, with balsamic vinegar
Dinner: Grilled portobello mushroom, tomato and mashed avocado on 2 slices toasted wholemeal bread, with a side salad of seasonal mixed leaves, cucumber, tomato, red onion and balsamic vinegar
Snacks: Banana, Pink Lady apple, strawberries, small handful of pumpkin seeds
I really do feel fantastic after several days of eating such clean, fresh food. My body and brain are already starting to thank me for it, and I’m so excited to continue! I’ll post regular progress reports throughout the challenge, and if you’re taking the challenge too, I’d love to hear about your experiences. Happy plant-munching!