Lizzie joined over 150,000 people who tried Veganuary. Here she shares her experience and what she’s learnt.
Before Veganuary I would have some form of animal-derived product in every meal. My boyfriend and I cook fresh, but we’re into fitness, so by the time we get home in the evenings, not much thought goes into what we eat.
I wanted to try Veganuary to experience the health benefits of a plant-based diet, boost my mood and energy levels, and also reset my skin after months of eating heavy food – leading to an oily t-section and breakouts on my chin.
Here’s what I’ve learnt…
You must be organised
The most striking thing was the time needed to plan, buy and prepare meals. I had to cook or prepare the night before, or be left with limited options in the local shops. Building up a few go-to vegan recipes really helped.
You need support
Going vegan is a big lifestyle change, and you need support. Fortunately in the office Amy and Nicola were also doing Veganuary, and several of my friends, which meant we could share recipe tips and encouragement. Something as simple as ‘I’ve bought almond milk for the week!’ made a big difference.
You add more salt and pepper
I added more seasoning to make foods seem more appealing, and ate more carbs than normal. So initially I didn’t see the impact on my skin that I was hoping for. But, when I got everything in balance, my skin felt less oily and looked plumper.
You try new things
I’ve been more adventurous in my food choices. More restaurants were on board with Veganuary than I expected. I tried an incredible vegan dish of Caramelised Chestnut Gnocchi, Baked Pumpkin, Chanterelles, Salsify and Truffles which I would never have tried before!
You approach food differently
Veganuary has taught me to experience food in a different way. Rather than seeing meat as the main component of a meal, I‘ve created and chosen dishes for their delicious blend of flavours, textures and nutrition. I think the biggest effect has been on my energy levels, I feel more positive and am sleeping better.
I will continue in moderation. I’m aiming to eat vegan during the day but not to be too restrictive at night because I find planning alongside an active lifestyle difficult. Nonetheless, I will definitely try more vegan options in restaurants and try more inventive plant-based recipes myself.