Day THREE: Cleanse Thyself

So this was the first difficult day for me. Sarah’s assignment is to simply eat fruit and vegetables for twenty-four hours, preferably raw. Eat as much as you want, whenever you want. The end. Unfortunately, I had some trouble with this. I made it about eighteen hours.

Here was my menu:

  • Breakfast
    • Strawberry, Banana, and Spinach Smoothie
    • Black Coffee
  • Snack
    • Sweet Cherries
    • Banana
  • Lunch
    • 3 Bell Peppers
    • Lemon Water
  • Snack
    • White Mushrooms
    • Banana
  • Dinner
    • Spinach Salad with Bell Peppers
    • Corn on the Cob (not raw)
    • Lemon Water

Here’s where I went wrong. I cooked dinner for my husband…and… sampled it. As hungry as I was, my thoughts were: I already spoiled it, so might as well eat this wonderful dinner I prepared. Oops. I’m not going to repeat this day, but next time we’re assigned a cleanse, I’m determined to do it right. And I’ll make sure it’s leftover night at home so that I don’t have to cook.

Have any of my readers ever done a cleanse or fast?

Eating Out

Through a little bit of independent research, I’ve been able to find vegan options for eating out at almost every chain restaurant in my area. I’ve arranged the options into meals, but feel free to mix and match, to add to my list, or to make corrections! I’ve personally had the meals at Applebee’s, Domino’s, and McDonalds and was very pleased.

Applebee’s

  1. Thai Shrimp Salad (no Shrimp/Wonton Strips) with Chili-Lime Vinaigrette; Strawberry Lemonade (≈$15) NUM

Buffalo Wild Wings

  1. Veggie Flatbread (no Cheese); Garden Salad (no Cheese) with Light Asian Sesame Dressing
  2. Veggie Flatbread (no Cheese); Veggie Boat (no Ranch)

Cici’s Pizza

  1. A’ La Carte Salad with French Dressing and Pasta with Tomato Sauce

Culver’s

  1. Garden Fresco Salad (no Cheese/Croutons) with Raspberry Vinaigrette; Apple Sauce; Classic Lemon Ice

Domino’s

  1. Thin Crust Pizza (no Cheese) with VEGGIES
  2. Mediterranean Veggie Sandwich (no Cheese)

Hardee’s

  1. Side Salad (no Cheese) with LF Italian Dressing and Sourdough Bread
  2. Grits with Margarine and Black Coffee

Kentucky Fried Chicken

  1. House Side Salad with Light Italian Dressing; Corn on the Cob; Sweet Hawaiian Bun

Little Caesars

  1. Thin Crust Pizza (no Cheese) with VEGGIES

McDonald’s

  1. Side Salad (no Cheese) with LF Balsamic Vinaigrette and Apple Slice
  2. Asian Salad (no Chicken) with LF Balsamic Vinaigrette and Apple Slices

Panera Bread

  1. Classic Café Salad with LF Thai Chili Vinaigrette; Soba Noodle Bowl with Edamame; Apple
  2. Greek Salad (no Cheese) with Greek Dressing; LF Vegetarian Black Bean Soup; Fruit Cup
  3. LF Garden Veggie Soup (no Pesto); Lentil Quinoa Bowl (no Chicken/Egg); French Baguette

Pizza Hut

  1. Thin n’ Crispy Crust (no Cheese) with VEGGIES

Q’Doba

  1. Tortilla Soup; Tortilla Chips; Apple Sauce
  2. Burrito on Wheat with Black Beans, White Rice, VEGGIES, Salsa Verde, and Pico de Gallo

Subway

  1. Hearty Italian/Sourdough Bread; Brown/Yellow Mustard, FF Sweet Onion, Oil, Red Wine Vinegar; VEGGIES; Apple Slices

Taco Bell

  1. Fresco Bean Burrito and Cinnamon Twists
  2. Veggie Cantina Burrito and Mango Fruitista Freeze

Wendy’s

  1. Baked Potato (no Butter/Cheese/Cream); Garden Side Salad with Red Italian Dressing
  2. Veggie Sandwich (no Cheese) and French Fries

Olympic Steakhouse: Fredericktown, MO

One concern about the vegan lifestyle is eating out. I, for one, am weary about asking my server odd questions like, “Do your noodles have egg in them?” Shy people like me can always look online for vegan options at chain restaurants, but local restaurants often do not have menus or reviews posted online.

My husband and I went out to eat yesterday to Olympic Steakhouse in Fredericktown, MO. A steakhouse. No fear, I was able to find a decent meal without harassing my server:

Full salad bar with a baked potato.

The salad bar has a variety of vegetables that can be eaten with oil and vinegar dressing. The baked potato was served (automatically) without butter.

Even at a family-owned steakhouse in a town of 4,000 in southeast Missouri, one is not without options. Just get out there and look.

Day TWO: Do your research.

I’m sure we all know the common objections to the vegan diet:

  • You’ll always be hungry/underweight/tired/sick!
  • Weren’t farm animals meant to be eaten?
  • Plants have feelings too!
  • Humans are meant to be carnivores!
  • But you can only get vitamin B12 from animals!
  • How will you get enough protein?

As soon as people find out you’re an herbivore, you’ll hear these things over and over again. Everyone will suddenly become a nutritionist or a doctor. I’m here to tell you: if you don’t do your research, you may allow yourself to become talked out of this adventure! You may also live up to some of these common objections. For example, if you have a lack of knowledge of basic nutrition, you won’t feed yourself correctly and you will always be hungry/underweight/tired/sick. Do it right. Do your research. Here are some of the resources I used:

What resources have you used to learn about plant-based diets?

How Do I Even Start: Day ONE

To get started, I bought Sarah Taylor’s Vegan in 30 Days at my not-so-local health food store. This book is really my style, and I would recommend it to anyone who wants to get crackin’ on veganism but doesn’t no how to start, or anyone who wants to do it gradually. This book breaks everything down into one simple, daily assignment for thirty days. Did I mention it’s only ten dollars brand new? Of course I can’t post the content of her excellent book here, but I can tell you all about what I did with the content of her book.

Day ONE: Find a good reason to keep you motivated.

This was easy for me. I had the pleasure of gaining twenty pounds in college. I want to get back down to a healthy weight and stay down. I’m also always having stomach issues and headaches, and I’m always tired. I’ve heard that a whole-food plant-based diet can soothe daily aches and pains and even reverse certain diseases. I’m up for that!

Also, I have a soft spot in my heart for hungry people. I saw in Vegucated that if everyone in the world ate the SAD, it would take three Earths to sustain us! In contrast, if everyone were vegan, this world could feed 10 billion people! That’s incredible. How can I sit here and consume more than I need, living in a country that throws away approximately 40% of its food, when there are people out there who are close to death because of lack of food. I know that by simply eating vegan, I won’t directly feed starving people…but it does make me feel better.

What are your reasons for going vegan?

As Anybody Out There?

Hello, readers. The reason I’ve started this blog is because I have been flirting with veganism for about ten years now and haven’t had the gumption to start it and stick with it. Time after time, the reasons for going back to the ‘ol SAD (Standard American Diet) were:

  • Uneasiness about telling people.
  • Lack of vegan friends and role models.
  • Limited vegan restaurants and health food stores.
  • LACK OF ACCOUNTABILITY.

While not everything can be blamed on where I live, I can’t help but think that if I lived in New York City or Los Angeles that I would be able to make my lifestyle change permanent. It seems so easy there!

My home is in rural southeast Missouri. The nearest grocery store is a Wal-Mart 24 miles away. The nearest health food store is an hour’s drive. And the nearest vegan restaurant is a whopping two-hour trip to Saint Louis. There are no vegan groups on Meet-Up for my area. There are no vegan festivals or seminars that I have heard of….so I turned to the internet. Surprisingly, there aren’t even bloggers who have anything to say about living a vegan life way out in the country! But I know it is possible, and I am determined to chronicle my journey for the benefit of others in similar situations.

For those of you out there, I know you exist. I’m here.