Our guest writer, Ruchika Gokarn, shares her move towards Wellness with her experiment with Veganism. Here’s her interesting story!
A few months ago someone had told me that I would be writing a blog post on veganism, I would have laughed my head off. I was brought up in a ‘non-vegetarian’ family, which in India those days, meant eating non vegetarian food twice a week. However, in my own household now, every meal is full of animal products. And we are quite fit – we exercise and are healthy so I saw no reason to change any of this…till this year.
In Jan, I met Ajay at a coaching workshop. A vegan, he was a strong advocate and talked about his weight loss and reduction in blood sugar. He was attributing it to veganism! I was impressed but secretly though – that’s just not me. So I really don’t know what came over me to try veganism in April. It could have been the indulgent (both food and drink wise) holiday in Siem Reap and the extra 3 kilos I had gained but here I was on 30th March, resolving to be vegan for a month.
So that’s how it began, I decided there would be no more animal products in my diet. Other than the obvious animal products, it also meant giving up all dairy – cheese, butter, ghee, yogurt, almost all desserts. I also gave up wine as in Indonesia, where I live, vegan wines are not available. Sounds bleak, doesn’t it? It really was not. I ate well and ate healthy. My family started betting on how long I would keep at it. The longest bet was 1 day. But I made it the whole month. Veganism made me think about the food I was eating. I started planning my meals carefully to ensure that I was getting enough proteins especially since I was still working out. I replaced normal milk with almond milk (which is much tastier) and added a lot of tofu and beans to my diet. I didn’t feel weak as many thought I would. Instead, I felt light and full of energy. Yes, I did get hungry more often and made a conscious decision to not increase my carb intake but added snacks like nuts, sunflower seeds, fruits etc., mid-morning and in the evening. The only thing I missed in the first few days was chocolate. I remember looking at chocolate in supermarkets and finding that even in the 90% chocolate, there were some milk solids. However, soon I didn’t crave that either.
One month down the line, I was 3 kilos lighter and my body fat percentage was 2% less. Now, I have always been slim and physically active and can lose weight easily but despite trying for almost 3 years to shift my body fat %, it had not moved, till now. So it does work!
Over the long term, I have now decided to try to be vegan during the week but to be flexible on the weekends when most of my social engagements are. So that’s how it was for me. If you have experimented with veganism or are toying with the idea, do let me know of your experience in the comments section.
Start your own journey towards Wellness! Download our free e-book here: A Fat Guy’s Guide To Fitness-Ebook-7 March 2014