By Colleen Gallick RYT200
As a yogi, I am aware of the ways to move my body that feel really good. The more I practice yoga, the more aware I am of what food makes my body feel just as good. Five years ago, I made the decision to become a whole-food, plant-based vegan. The beginnings of a vegan diet are confusing and frustrating and wondering if it’s even worth it. While the results of a vegan diet may not be noticeable right now, over time you being to notice how good you feel, how well your body moves and so much more. When you stop feeding your body fats & sugars & animals & processed foods you can feel your body truly working with and for you. Veganism gives you a chance to connect with your body in a way that no other lifestyle can. Our cells crave easy-to-process foods full of vitamins and minerals and, maybe shocking to some, you can get every nutrient you need from plants! When you stop eating animal meat you might be concerned about your protein, but mother nature gives us lentils which are a complete protein with 2x more protein than meat. Worried about calcium without dairy? Kale has more calcium than milk, not to mention iron, magnesium, fiber & so much more (this is what makes kale a superfood!) Replace processed grains with whole grains like oats & rice and you will notice the difference in your digestion. Add in fresh herbs like parsley and cilantro & you will feel less bloated and constipated. A vegan diet allows you to fulfill cravings with what your body is actually asking for like those sweet summer peaches or spicy radishes or savory roasted squash. The more plants you eat, the less fat you will hold in your cells which means your blood will flow easier & your heart can beat slower and stronger. The less sugar you eat, the less your organs will have to work to lower your blood sugar and the less stress you put on your organs, the lower your chance of creating dis-ease. The first step in being healthy is noticing what you’re putting into your body. After each decision to eat a clean, raw plant your body will thank you with clearer skin & brighter eyes.
A few months into being vegan I noticed I stopped craving dairy and meat; it became something I wasn’t interested in eating. Then I noticed I wouldn’t have to sit and let my food settle after a big meal, I could just get up and go. At about a year of vegan, break-outs became a thing of the past. I could see how my body was reacting to the foods I was eating & it has made me a life-long vegan. This isn’t just a diet, it’s giving yourself the energy to me more active. Vegan means building yourself a stronger, healthier body with every meal. Vegan means taking care of our bodies so our bodies can do more for us and that is a benevolence you will feel everyday!