I eat a primarily plant-based diet focused around whole, fresh foods. These are the foods full of vitamins, minerals, proteins, fats and all the energy we need to live our lives. I never feel deprived. I eat what I want and that’s mostly just whole foods prepared in simple and delicious ways. I try to keep my recipes as simple and minimal as I can and most of the recipes you’ll find on Running on Real Food don’t require any fancy or hard to find ingredients.
I grocery shop and cook vegan at home and all the recipes on Running on Real Food are vegan but I don’t like to label my diet or have to explain my dietary choices to anyone. I am not vegan, although I do eat plant-based more or less 100% of the time. I never eat meat or fish and I avoid dairy, eggs and any other animal products as much as possible.
Here in Vancouver, it’s easy to eat a healthy vegan diet, so I do, however there have been instances when travelling for example, where I haven’t been able to completely avoid eggs and dairy. I’m okay with that. I do the best I can with what I have at any given time.
So overall and certainly day-to-day, I eat what’s considered a vegan diet. My choice to eat plant-based is an ethical one however I also just enjoy how a plant-based diet makes me feel. Day to day, my diet consists of vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds, some grains like oats, brown rice and quinoa and some beans and lentils.
During the week I typically eat a smoothie, oatmeal, tofu or chickpea scramble, pancakes or chia seed pudding for breakfast, leftovers from the previous evening for lunch and a wholesome, plant-based meal for dinner. I snack mainly on fruit and veggies, hummus, dips, nuts, seeds and homemade bars. I use some products such as Vega protein and a few other vitamins to help supplement my diet and support my workouts.
I think food should be fun and I love to eat, so I don’t worry too much about it. It’s pretty simple, just eat whole, fresh, real food most of the time and don’t fret about the rest. Life and food are to be enjoyed! I love eating. I love trying new foods, I love experiencing local culture when I’m travelling, I love take-out on Friday nights, I love dessert….I think 80/20 is a good general rule for enjoying a balance of healthy food and happy food.
How I eat is just part of my lifestyle and I’m very passionate about it. The reason we should eat is to keep the body healthy and strong, and a healthy body leads to a happy mind! Maintaining a healthy body weight is just a by-product of eating foods that are good for you.
I love cooking healthy meals at home, full of every colour in the rainbow. I enjoy experimenting with recipes and new foods. I love how amazing a healthy diet can make you feel inside and out. I have endless energy and I know it’s because I fuel my body with healthy, whole foods.
I try to avoid overly processed foods. The aisles of a grocery store can be a frightening place, full of chemicals and substances that have no right being called food. I don’t really have need for processed foods when it’s so easy to make your own healthy options at home. Plus, now more than ever, there are so many fantastic resources out there for plant-based recipes it’s easier than ever to eat a vegan diet!
As for drinks, I mostly just drink water but I do enjoy tea and I love coffee. I use different nut milks or coconut milk as a dairy alternative. When it comes to sweeteners, I typically use dates and maple syrup to sweeten recipes. I use cashews, tahini, avocado, nutritional yeast and other plant-based foods to replace dairy in my diet.
I feel very, very fortunate that I have the choice to eat the way I do. I have access to fresh, seasonal and local produce, farmers markets and health food stores. I have plenty of everything I need, everyday. I have fresh, clean water, some of the best in the world. It’s really amazing and I’m so grateful.
Why would you eat any other way when we have access to all this beautiful, real food? I think it’s amazing what you can make out of simple, whole foods. I often don’t tell people what I’ve made is vegan and they would have never guessed.
I believe one of the keys to living a happy life is eating real, natural, unprocessed foods. Foods that simply are what they are. Foods that don’t need a commercial and weren’t made in a factory. We simply cannot be our best on a diet of fast-food and frozen dinners. There is an epidemic of obesity both in our country and around the world. Changing how people eat begins with education, so if I can show just a few people how simple it can be to live a healthy, balanced lifestyle, I’ll be one very happy girl! Healthy eating doesn’t have to be complicated and it doesn’t require any restrictive or confusing diet, I hope Running on Real Food can help show people that. Eating should be fun and enjoyable and not a source of stress in your life.
Real food tastes amazing, real food is fresh and real food is good for your body and mind! All that being said, I’m certainly not perfect, these are simply the general guidelines that I follow and it’s what works best for me. When it comes to social events, holidays, travelling and time with my family I don’t restrict my diet at all. I drink beer, one of my favourite meals is fries and a veggie burger, I can’t resist chips and I usually don’t go very long without eating too many cookies or chocolate.
Nutrition = health + happiness, so while I think it’s important to eat food that’s good for your mind and body, so is enjoying yourself and eating food that’s good for your soul.