What Do Vegans Eat

I find it very interesting to see the facial expression on people’s faces when we tell them we are vegan. Then we always get hit with the question: ‘What do you eat then?’ Simply put, we eat everything. Everything that does not come from an animal.

My previous posts have been about my fitness journey, and I elaborate on my eating habits. In these posts, it is clear that my husband and I are vegan. I prefer using the term whole-food-plant-based, as the term vegan can be misused and to many people, it sounds like we are vegetarian.

My husband is Lebanese and I am South African, and I mention this because both nationalities are very big meat-eaters. I mean, eggs and bacon for breakfast. Kafta and mixed grills are a must. Do not forget the raw meat dishes and snacks we have in both cultures. For dinner, the entire meal is constructed on what meat will be prepared. Everything else is considered a side dish with the meat.

Let’s take a few steps back to the early 1900s. Society, mainstream media, our parents, and their parents have been told that eating meat every day is essential. Smoking was also considered good for you in the 1920s to 1950s. Now we all know ‘how good’ smoking is for you. My point is before meat became so popular and on-demand, most families would eat vegetables, fruit, rice, beans, and meat would be once a week or on special occasions.

We reverted to that. Our pantry is fully stocked with beans, legumes, nuts, seeds, oats, rice, and bread. Once a week I purchase fresh fruit and vegetables and plan our meals around what type of salad or bean will be served for dinner. Now you might be asking me about all the other good stuff like cheese, milk, chocolate, butter, and ice-cream. We have all of those too! As far as milk goes, almond milk is our go-to. However, there are many other kinds of dairy-free milk available like oat, coconut, hazelnut, you name it. Vegan cheese is readily available in stores, so are vegan chocolates, butter, and ice-cream. Alternatively, I can make it myself.

What about our protein you ask.  Well, just about everything has protein in it. However, there is food that contains higher protein percentages like tofu, tempeh, and edamame. Greens are very high in protein like kale, broccoli, and spinach. There is no worry about our protein if we have a balanced diet.

Yes, but you need Vitamin B12 that you only get from meat.  That is not true. There is a long list of foods that contains B12. Nutritional Yeast, Marmite + Yeast Spreads, Fortified Soy + Almond Milk, Plant-Based Meats, Fortified Cereals, Tempeh, Chlorella, Nori Seaweed, and Cremini Mushrooms.

Although there are so many charts, foods, and facts I can share with you, it will end up being a short book. However, I feel I have answered the question. We eat everything!

I leave you with this quote from Frank Ferrante: “As I improved my diet, I started to learn to love myself, probably for the first time ever.”

by Odette van Jaarsveld

I am a Mom to an independent, beautiful little girl and a strong, cuddly baby boy. I also have the privilege to be a wife to a very intelligent, handsome man. My life is filled with so much love, joy and very busy days....sometimes nights too.

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