I’m trying something different today. Instead of one of my What I Ate Today videos, I’m sharing what I ate today, picture-by-picture.
Also, I get a lot of questions about my personal diet and today, I’m addressing one of them, which is, “What do you think about dairy, grains and sugar?”
These types of posts are part of my new “Healthy Living” series, which you can access by clicking to the right of the blog. See the green bar that says HEALTHY LIVING? Yes, click that! Or bookmark this page.
First, here’s what I ate, well, yesterday…
What I Ate Today, January 9, 2017
- 1 Coffee with cashew milk (cashew milk by Silk)
- 1 Green Smoothie: 1/4 cup cashew milk, 1 cup chopped kale, 1 large banana, 1 spoonful of collagen powder, 1 tablespoon almond butter (Justin’s), 1/4 cup blueberries, and a small scoop of ice.
I was recipe testing for the blog all day, so I was taking bites here and there. Finally, I enjoyed these leftovers for lunch (Ginger-Coconut Chicken “Noodle” Bowl from the Whole30 Cookbook, but left out the chicken (the recipe originally calls for chicken) and added extra sweet potatoes. I like to keep my lunches mostly vegan/vegetarian.
Peppermint tea with steamed almond milk, a pear, and a handful of mixed raw nuts (cashew, pecans, sliced almonds, walnuts). For everyone who asked, I use this frother or I just place almond milk in a small saucepot and bring it to a boil!
Leftovers from the blog, these Southwestern Quinoa and Sweet Potato Noodle Stuffed Bell Peppers with Avocado (recipe coming to the blog soon!) I ate the stuffing with avocado, instead of having the stuffed pepper (I like to keep it dairy-free on the weekdays especially!) I had two servings!
Watched the President’s final speech and had a couple cups of my favorite vegan cheddar popcorn from Skinnypop!
My thoughts on dairy, grains and sugar
Before I express my thoughts on dairy, grains and sugar, let me express this: this is just an opinion.
It’s my opinion, that’s derived from my own experiences. I’d never judge you for the way you eat, so don’t judge me. We’re a bit too accusatory on the Internet and tend to want to “enlighten” someone else when we think what they’re doing/eating isn’t the right way to do/eat. Be kind- there’s no right/wrong way. I’m just telling you my experiences and answering a question that I receive a lot about my diet.
I look to dairy as a treat. I’d say I abstain from it 90% of the time. During the weeks, I rarely ever have it and if I do, it’s a sprinkling of feta on a salad or a dusting of grated parmesan on a spiralized pasta. But, it’s rare – perhaps once or twice a month during the week. On the weekends, I’m a bit more lenient, but I’d say every other weekend I’ll indulge in dairy and if I do, it’s something insanely worth it, like pizza or manchego and crackers with wine.
If I’m ordering a veggie burger at a restaurant or a salad that has cheese, I always ask for no cheese. I usually ask, “is there dairy in that?” Sometimes I’ll just fib and say I’m allergic to dairy, which isn’t really a fib, because I feel allergic, since the after-effects of having dairy aren’t good!
Why don’t I like dairy? It bloats me, it gives me gas (TMI?), it makes my skin break out, it makes me tired, and scientifically, it creates an inflammatory environment in my body that I don’t react well too.
I love them, I eat them often, almost every day. My favorites are quinoa, whole wheat, brown rice, couscous, oatmeal, and farro. I eat a sandwich (on spelt or whole wheat bread) almost every single day!
This is a tough one. When I was vegan (2008 to 2010 about), I abstained from sugar. When I did this, I had the highest energy levels I’ve ever had, I didn’t drink coffee, my skin was its clearest, and my stomach was the flattest it ever was! Ever since then, I’ve looked at sugar in an entirely different way: as a poison to your body.
The key is training your taste buds NOT to crave sweet.
However, I no longer 100% abstain from sugar, and thus, I have a sweet tooth, and I’m conscious of it, so I always read labels. I never buy a product for our home if it has sugar as one of the ingredients. So, you won’t find added sugars in our apartment, except, recently, I’ve started experimenting with coconut sugar. Having said that, I do keep honey and maple syrup in the apartment, for making dressings, marinades, pancakes, and adding to tea. It’s my little “compromise” and “everything in moderation.”
But you all know by now that I follow a strict 80/20 rule, so although you won’t find sugar in our home, if it’s the 20% time of my rule, I will indulge. Brownies, cookies, yes – all of it!