I eat the food I eat because it makes me feel good. Not that immediate, sensory, ooh that was amazing, epicurean ice cream sundae sort of good that doesn’t last, but that innate, vivacious, energetic and healthy variety. The sort of good that lasts after the taste of the food has long left your mouth, that continues to nourish your body and keep your mind clear. The good that doesn’t make you sick later, but makes you strong.
That is not to say my food is bland, boring, altogether lacking in flavor or tastiness. To address another common misconception: yes, it does contain protein, and plenty of it. My diet is centered on whole plant foods. I eat lots of fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, beans, and whole grains, eaten on their own or combined in creative salads and mixtures. These dishes rely primarily on spices for flavor rather than added fats, salts, or sugars, though if I need to make a dessert for a special occasion I am flexible. While I often employ cooked grains and beans in my dinners, I enjoy trying raw vegan creations when I have the opportunity.
Yes, I am a vegan: I do not eat any meat, dairy, or eggs. However, I’m not a crazy, militant vegan. I’m not some sort of rebel out to free all the animals, who won’t wear leather and wants to convert you. I don’t care that you eat meat; the whole rest of my family does, and I’m not out to judge anyone for their habits. I just want to take the best care I can of my body, and I’m glad I can do that while having a positive impact on the world.
I have never liked meat, and I became uncomfortable with eating meat simply because I never had a taste for it. I eliminated all other animal foods from my diet later because they contain cholesterol, which I need to keep out of my system for genetic reasons. This diet helps me to focus on putting good things into my body instead of counting calories, obsessing with the scale, and treating food as the enemy. That’s just a recipe for disordered eating, and I’ve hovered on the brink of that in the past. This is a way of eating that works for me.
I do not think that total veganism is necessary for everyone in order to live a healthy diet. However, I do think everyone can benefit from adding nutritious, plant-based dishes to their plates, and I am so glad to see this way of eating gradually becoming more mainstream. I love the food I eat, and this site is a way of celebrating it. I hope you enjoy my recipes!