1.24.2018

My Veganuary Experience So Far

Hey beautiful people! I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that I was toying with the idea of veganism and I finally gave it a shot. So, here's my veganuary (didn't even know that was a thing) experience so far.

veganuary-experience
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I've thought long and hard about my 'why' when it comes to veganism. Initially, the idea stemmed from watching the What The Health documentary on Netflix. After the shock, for lack of a better word, of watching the documentary wore off, I was still thinking about it. I've decided that my why comprises of two parts: to have beautiful, healthy skin and to also contribute to saving the planet. The saving the planet bit is actually pretty recent for me. 

I know some people might roll their eyes at the saving the planet thing but it really is important and I encourage everyone to look for avenues in which they can help, it doesn't necessarily have to be going vegan. I read this post by Victoria of In The Frow on small ways to protect the planet, I think it's really good and she gives easy practical advice.

And for anyone wondering how exactly  veganism helps save the planet, you can read this CNN article on that, I actually learned a couple of things I didn't already know. I don't want this post to turn into a preachy post or anything. And of course, eating more fruit and vegetables is good for your body.

Anyways, the very first thing I learned is that eating vegan doesn't necessarily mean eating healthy. In the first week or so, I literally survived on Oreos (yup, they're vegan), plantain chips, garri* and bread with peanut butter. All the things I love to eat but not particularly healthy if eaten all the time right? My mum actually got mad because I was eating a lot of bread and peanut butter haha. 

Thankfully, I decided to be more mindful of what I was eating. In came pasta/rice with veggies, bagels with spinach and beans(or bagels on their own), healthy wraps and so on. I also had oatmeal a lot for breakfast but that isn't new as it has been my breakfast of choice even before now. 

I'm not even going to pretend like it was all smooth sailing because it wasn't. Coming from a Nigerian household where meat is so prevalent in our diet, it definitely hasn't been easy and a lot of willpower has been needed lol. One time, I was at the food court with my cousin and my aunt. I really like bourbon chicken but I obviously couldn't have any so I asked the kind lady at the counter to douse my steamed broccoli in bourbon sauce. Did it have the same effect? Of course not but it was better than nothing haha. And I called the lady kind because she gave me extra servings of plantain when she realized I wasn't eating meat.

Quite a number of people also misunderstood my whole veganism thing. Some rolled their eyes or insisted that I was doing it to lose weight even after insisting that I wasn't. All that added stress from people you know? 

Speaking of losing weight, I'm not sure if I did. I've been told that my face looks slimmer but I personally don't see it.  Maybe it's one of those things where everyone else can see it but you can't. And as for glowing skin, I'm not there yet but I have nobody to blame but myself for that. I definitely did not eat as much fruit and vegetables as I should have, fruits in particular. With regards to how I feel, I would say pretty good. I feel light and not bloated at all which I think is great. 

I've thought about it and I've decided that being 100% vegan just can't work for me at this time. I am happy to eat plant-based most of the time as it benefits my body and the planet but I'm not willing to forgo meat and dairy completely. So 80% ish plant-based and 20% ish animal-based works for me, at least for now. Who knows? I could change my mind again but I'll wait and see. Of course, I'm going to finish Veganuary in case you were wondering.

I feel like this post is on the lengthy side so if you've read up to this point, thank you so much and I'll talk to you all in my next post! xx

*Garri - Cassava Flakes
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38 comments

  1. It's really admirable that you're trying to contribute to saving our planet, no matter how small. Going vegan is something I personally don't think I can hack, but it's still insightful learning from your experience.
    Great post as usual and I hope the rest of your veganuary goes smoothly <3

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    1. Thank you honey, you've been very encouraging. Mwah! <3

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  2. This is really nice and inspiring, I have been contemplating going veg for a while now. Honestly dont know if I will ever fully be veg but I have managed to drastically reduce my animal consumption and the benefits have been endless. It is also nice that you are trying to pitch in and help save the planet, we all should be on that too.

    Nice post Coco...xxx

    CURRENTLY I AM || JAN ’18 + SURVEY

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    1. Thank you Ifunanya! I appreciate the support :)

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  3. I actually told my friend last month that I was going to become a pescatarian in 2018 but I'm ashamed to say I haven't started. The struggle living with a Nigerian family and getting off meat is real! I need to do a meal plan and hopefully start soon. Good job getting started xx

    www.adabeauty.com.ng

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    1. The struggle is very real LMAO! Thank you Ada, good luck with yours too :)

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  4. Good for you for trying this out. I often toy with the idea of becoming vegetarian but I have yet to make it pass 2 weeks. I still need to watch "What the Health." Didn't know that you were Nigerian, so I am!!

    www.NancyUgo.com

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    1. It's quite hard I must admit, especially for a meat and dairy lover like myself lol. Yes girl, I'm Nigerian! :)

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  5. Great post! I tried cutting out dairy for a bit as most of my family are allergic to it and I hated it - a life without Dairy Milk isn't a life I want to live. I definitely want to try to limit my dairy and meat intake though but it is so hard. You did well to stick to it!

    www.theemeralddove.co.uk

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    1. OMG yes, a life without Dairy Milk sounds so miserable. Thank you, good luck with it all :)

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  6. I actually thought it was pretty short so I'm surprised you think it's a long post. It's probably because I really wanted to read more as I'm fascinated with vegans and vegetarians (I only just learnt the difference lol). I'm looking forward to reading more of your vegan journey, I think it's fun even though I don't see myself ever ditching animal foods haha. I can't wait to read about your skin glow testimony. Amen? Amen.xxx
    Why Don't You Have A Business?
    www.laitanbee.com

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    1. Oh really? I was even scared that no one would read all of it, thank you Laitan! Amen o, glad you enjoyed the post :)

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  7. Sounds good! I personally think that your decision to make it 80%/20% is a good one. :) Enjoy your journey!

    www.jeannieinabottleblog.com

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  8. What a great post!
    Elise | www.elisebythepiece.com

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  9. As much as I would love to I can't do it either. And its sad because forgoing meat and dairy seems like the best way to clear one's skin, and that's one of my new year resolution.

    I like the 80% vegetable and 20% meat/dairy diet better and that's currently what I'm doing as well.

    Don't forget to drink lots of water daily as well!

    xo,
    Sheyla
    www.freestyle-moda.com

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    1. Clear skin was my major aim initially so we're on the same page there haha. Yass, water's so important. Thank you Sheyla :)

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  10. Caring for the environment is no laughing matter! I totally agree. Actually, I was vegetarian for two years because I wanted to have an impact on the environment. I think its so important. And it's a huge impact that you can have. Nice job lady!

    -Emily www.coatandcoffee.com

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    1. Wow, two years? That's so impressive! Thank you Emily :)

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  11. I have thought about going vegan a lot, mainly due to the fact that I don't want to be part of animal cruelty. What I struggle most with is planning meals in order to get enough nutrients in my body.

    Vanessa x | www.springlilies.com

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    1. Yup, coming up with the meals in the beginning can be quite daunting. But after a while, you do get used to it. Thank you Vanessa :)

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  12. What a cute post title! Nice to know more about Veganism and you, if I can be a 100% Vegan for one day I would be happy :) The idea is nice but I think it's just hard for me to do.

    www.busyandfab.com

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    1. Yup, I totally get that. Thank you for reading Mercy :)

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  13. It's great you're doing this challenge! I've definitely been trying to eat less meat, it is a healthy option, but I've not given it up entirely. Plus I love cheese, haha!

    Hope that you are having a good week so far! It's been a bit crazy here! :)

    Away From The Blue Blog

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    1. Ah yes, cheese. The thing that we all love! Thank you Mica :)

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  14. It was so interesting to read about your experience - well done for taking the challenge and giving an honest review, and especially bringing up the fact that veganism doesn't have to equal healthy, ie people can still eat all of their favourite treats on a vegan diet. Also, even if you can't go 100% vegan straight away, eating a mostly plant based diet still makes an enormous difference as starting slow is much better than jumping straight in and then giving up after a few months!

    maria | http://whatismaria.com

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    1. Yup, totally agree with you Maria. Slow but steady is never a bad idea! Thank you, mwah! <3

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  15. I admire people who can stick to a diet probably because I know how hard it is. I started the Whole 30 diet in January but 2 weeks into it, I fell completely off the wagon. However, I've been off dairy for about 2 months now (unconsciously). I admire your efforts to eat healthy and hope you enjoy your vegan~ish journey.

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    1. Wow, you were on the Whole 30 for two weeks?? Girl, you need to give yourself a pat on the back! That's so impressive. And thank you <3

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  16. While I'm not vegan I've been vegetarian for about 5.5 years and often eat vegan meals as well, and while I don't know that veganism necessarily does much for your skin if I'm honest, it most definitely has an effect on the planet. I love that it's becoming more popular and far more common and accepted for people to follow a vegan lifestyle, because even if everyone in the world ate vegan one day a week it would have a huge impact on the factory farming industry, which is so harmful to both animals and our planet. I think every little bit helps and even if you just reduced your meat intake and only had it 3 days a week instead of possibly 7 then I still think that's a great step. If you're looking for any more info the book that made me stop eating meat is called Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer and I couldn't recommend it enough! :)

    littlehenrylee.net

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    1. Vegetarian for over five years? That's pretty impressive !

      Wow, I honestly did fall for the you'll have really nice skin if you're vegan lol.

      You're totally correct when you say every little counts and I'm going to keep that in mind. Thank you Jessica! :)

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  17. Awesome post! I'm always fascinated by other peoples experiences with veganism. I've been vegan about ten years now - it was tough at first, especially with family but I've found it easier and easier. Well done for giving it a go and summarising your experience so well! x

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    1. Ten whole years? Way to go Laila! Thank you so much :)

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  18. I don't think I can venture into this veganism thing... For now... Maybe 2019, it may be a new year resolution. Although I decided in 2018 I'm going to take care of my health and body, that's why I started working out again, but meat is heavily prevalent in my home and it's just so hard to give up😢🤧

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    1. I can so relate, not eating meat in a Nigerian household is not easy at all haha. You don't have to be vegan to be healthy so you do you girl! :)

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  19. I've also thought about going vegan but it's a bit drastic for me. Skin was one of my main reasons too and also the fact that I was getting tired of chicken etc (Couldn't believe it either,haha). I think I might try going vegetarian for a week or two and see.

    www.runwayribbons.com

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    1. I know what you mean, I get tired of chicken sometimes too! Ooh good luck with it Nengi :)

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