In the last 3 days

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I have SAVED

the volume of water needed to take 105 showers, but I’m not dirty.

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I have SAVED

enough CO2 to keep 120 trees alive and photosynthesising for a year, but I haven’t sold my car.

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I have SAVED

the same amount of energy needed to charge my mobile phone for 12 years, but I’ve still turned the lights on.

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I have SAVED

the equivalent area of land taken up by 11 football pitches.

How?

By not eating meat or animal products for 3 days. That’s the amazing impact I’ve made, just me alone all on my own. Too often we are told that one person can’t make a difference, that on our own we can’t change things. It’s that attitude that’s the world into the mess it is today. Each and every action we take as individuals makes a difference to the world we live in. 

From the environment to politics we really can make a difference. Most of us are too worried about the day to day problems in our own lives. Paying the bills and putting food on the table are sometimes all we have the time to concentrate on. The rest of the world and its problems can seem overwhelming.

That’s how the politicians and big business are able to succeed. They keep us thinking that we are powerless. But you’re not. Every choice you make every day makes a difference to the world. The food we choose to eat is probably the one place we can make the biggest impact.

What is Veganuary?

First launched in 2014, Veganuary is a campaign to make vegan eating mainstream. I’ve been aware of it for a while now, I’ve watched some videos and read up about the nutrition. Over the years I’ve been vegetarian on and off. I’ve always prefered vegetables to meat. But it’s more than that, from the videos and reading I’ve done, the impact on the health of us, the health of animals and the health of the planet is without question. 

The films I watched on YouTube are; Vegan 2018, Why Vegan (Not Graphic), PlantPure Nation and H.O.P.E What You Eat Matters (2018). This is just the start of a journey of discovery for me and I’m sure there are many more great resources about vegan living. If you know of others please comment and share them with all of us below. I thought I knew quite a lot about the way our meat was produced and slaughtered until I watched some of these, the last one is the most graphic. 

Why me?

Now I’m taking my love cooking and going vegan for the month. For me, it’s as much about my health as it is about the animals and the planet. Following a gallbladder operation in March last year, my body no longer tolerates most dairy products. I also have to keep my fat intact low and need to avoid most processed meat and cheeses. The tastiest way to do both of those is with vegetables and pulses.  

Me and my husband turned 50 in 2018. For us, the birthday has been a catalyst to rethink our lives including the way we fuel our bodies. We want to not just live a long life but also a healthy and fit one. Long-term health has to come from the food we eat not medication from the pharmaceutical industry. Food really does have an impact on our health. 

What next?

I didn’t simply throw all the meat out of the cupboards and go vegan overnight. I won’t waste good food and I’m not that rich. Initially, this is just me for one month. My husband is away working which gives me a chance to learn how this will work, time to experiment with recipes and make mistakes.

Our cupboards are already well stocked with a variety of beans and pulses, vegetables and condiments that are great for a vegan menu. There are also a few things I’ll pick up over the month at the health food store, the nut shop and different supermarkets around the island. However, this is a small Greek island and we don’t have access to many of the pre-prepared vegan foods you’ll find in places like the UK.

I’ve heard of one type of vegan cheese available and will try that. There’s also a small Asian supermarket that stocks a few things. Mainly though it’s going to be wholefood, raw ingredients adapted by me. The most affordable way to eat here is local and in season especially with vegetables so that’s what I’ll be doing. There are a very few recipes on the blog already that are vegan you can find them here and I’ll be adding more really soon.

I’ve got one recipe book that is dedicated to vegan food from To Marouli (the only vegan restaurant on the island closed in winter). Other than that I’ll be on google. If you know of any great vegan resources then let me know. As I learn I’ll share my recipes and ideas with you. Greek cuisine already has a number of vegan dishes that are traditionally cooked during lent and I’ll be looking at ways of adapting other recipes to suit a vegan lifestyle.

I’ve found some great resources online at the Veganuary website, including recipes and an essential shopping list. I’m looking forward to trying to cook with new ingredients like tofu and nutritional yeast and seeing how egg replacements work in baking.

I don’t know what will happen over the month, tomorrow I’m heading up the island to the market and shops in Rhodes town and taking some friends along. We will explore and see what we can find, I’ll let you know next week here. You can also follow along on Facebook and Instagram.

To find out how much you or your family could save the planet by going vegan check out this link.

 

Are you going Vegan in January?

After 3 days I already feel like I’ve got a little more energy. The sluggish post Christmas bloating has gone and I’m sleeping a little better.

Have you tried vegan food or are you vegan? Have you ever thought about changing your diet to improve your health and the planet? Do you have great vegan resources and recipes you’d like to share? What advice would you give someone who is thinking of changing to a vegan diet?

If you enjoyed this post and found it helpful please comment and share below. Thank you

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