Mrs Green eats a vegan diet

avocadoThis week Small Footprints asked us to eat a vegan diet for a day.

I explained that I would take part but that it was a challenge for me as I can’t eat nuts or seeds.

I am a slim build and get cold easily so have to admit I signed up with some degree of concern about how I would get on.

I realised that I hadn’t really planned much in advance and I think that to continue a vegan diet longer term I would really have to work harder to ensure my diet was balanced. I’d probably spend time browsing websites and recipe books for inspiration first.

Here’s my diet from yesterday:

  • Breakfast: Porrage made with soya milk and water with organic fruit purée and an apple
  • Snack: A few ryvita spread with mashed avocado
  • Lunch – jacket potato with avocado mashed into it instead of butter with vegetables
  • Dinner – Rice drizzled with olive oil and mixed herbs and a home made tomato sauce mixed through, sprouted alfalfa, steamed broccoli and carrots and falafel

How did I feel? I missed the rich, creamy taste and satisfying feeling in my stomach of yogurt and butter if I’m honest. I’m not saying I didn’t enjoy my food, but it was missing a certain something, a richness that I like.

I did notice, however, how much more I tasted the actual porrage for breakfast which was a bit of a revelation.

The ryvita without butter were pretty dire; even the yummy avocado couldn’t impress me.

The jacket potato with avocado instead of butter was very nice and I’d be happy to eat that again.

The dinner was lovely too; something I’d definitely eat again.

I felt cold, I had pains in my stomach and liver and I think I dreamt about licking the butter knife that night!

Would I do it again? Probably in the summer if I wanted to do a detox, but not as a long term, lifestyle commitment…

What about you? Does a vegan diet appeal to you?


  1. Small Footprints on November 8, 2011 at 1:39 pm

    I think you’re right … going vegan long term needs a little planning. In looking at your menu for the day, perhaps you would have felt better if you had added in some beans. Butter beans, especially, are very calming to the liver and their rich, buttery flavor is very satisfying.

    I went vegan several years ago and then I switched to a vegetarian diet (adding in milk & cheese only) because it seemed easier to eat out and eat at other people’s homes. But in truth, I didn’t feel good. So I returned to a vegan diet and feel so much better … cleaner (if that makes sense). I do find, though, that if I eat only light foods (mainly veggies), I’m hungry and feel weak. So I make sure to add in grains and legumes which give me the fuel I need. Another tip I learned is that adding citrus to our day helps our bodies absorb the iron in plant-based foods … that’s essential so that we have energy.

    Thanks for participating, Mrs. Green!!

  2. Alissa on November 8, 2011 at 3:08 pm

    A vegan diet does appeal to me, but probably not in the long term – instead I try to eat one vegan meal a day, and incorporate more dairy free, meat free items as the months roll on. I don’t think veganism is the answer for everyone, as everyone’s genes probably require different foods…

  3. nadine sellers on November 8, 2011 at 5:01 pm

    part-time vegetarian–part-time omnivore; i become a summer vegan when the garden blessings abound…due to a propensity to make the most out of all resources..fresh and raw, soups or salads = delight.

    a few weeks or months of mostly vegan is beneficial to the digestive system–a mostly vegetarian diet can benefit most bodies–i follow my own instincts combined with finances and local availability < the menus are varied and plentiful..

    that’s why i could not adhere to a strict diet or regimen, under any name but healthful living..

  4. All Natural Katie on November 8, 2011 at 10:28 pm

    I agree that a vegan diet takes a lot of planning to ensure balance and flavorful meals. Eating vegan for one day was not too bad, although I did miss the cheese and sour cream on the enchiladas. I could probably do it one day a week, but not every day. I love butter and cheese too much. However, I think I can downsize my consumption to lessen the impact on the environment. Either way, I think we can all make small little changes, but still enjoy the foods that we like.

    Menu Plan:

  5. Jennifer on November 8, 2011 at 11:44 pm

    I did a whole vegan week a while ago and ended up not feeling very good, even though I planned my meals and tried to make sure I was getting plenty of protein. I craved eggs like crazy. Vegan week ended one day early because I was watching Ratatouille, realized how much I wanted an omelet, and threw up my hands and made one. It was delicious.

    Like you, I’m slim and can’t afford to lose much weight. I think I did end up losing a little during vegan week. I eat a vegetarian diet with small amounts of dairy and maybe 4 eggs a week. I’d be willing to have a go at trying veganism again, especially in the summer, but in the long haul, it seems like too much work to keep myself healthy on it when my body is happily humming along with just a little animal protein.

  6. Mrs Green on November 9, 2011 at 3:46 pm

    @Small Footprints: thanks for the tips about butter beans and citrus. I’m coming to the conclusion more and more that there is no ‘one size fits all’ approach to diet…

    @Alissa: I like your babysteps approach Alissa; that’s definitely something I could try; one vegan meal a day sounds doable. Thanks for the inspiration!

    @nadine sellers: I love your approach Nadine; I think following the cues of our body is the best way to go. Like you, I’m sure I could embrace being vegan for the summer, but now as I look at the grey English sky for the 5th day in a row I’m craving fat – butter and yogurt…

    @All Natural Katie: I agree Katie; making small, gradual steps; say by purchasing more local, seasonal or more fairtrade products all helps benefit ourselves and the environment

    @Jennifer: I think you’re marvellous for trying a week; I think I would go stir crazy too. Like you, I feel a little animal protein keeps me in optimum health. Though I’m really glad I experienced it and like the idea of perhaps one vegan meal a day

  7. Melissa on November 9, 2011 at 3:48 pm

    I’m a happy vegan already, but it’s interesting to hear the changes you felt from your vegan day. I think your first commenter is on the money with her suggestion to add beans and perhaps some other protein sources if you give it a go again. Personally, I think I would have felt rather hungry all day on the meal plan you ate.

    I attempted a raw week once upon a time and there was just no amount of food I could eat that would satisfy! Of course I didn’t know about the wide world of raw foods out there at the time, so I was simply eating whole fruits, veggies, nuts, and seeds. I may have to give that one a try again now, come to think of it!

  8. Alicia@ eco friendly homemaking on November 9, 2011 at 4:18 pm

    We started eating vegan several months ago and really enjoy it. We all can tell that we feel so much better, I love your dinner recipe and am looking forward to trying it.

  9. Terri on November 9, 2011 at 5:37 pm

    Hi, I probably could have left the same comment as Melissa…Weceat different beans or tofu everyday. Check out my blog for some more filling vegan recipes 🙂

    Also I use a lot of coconut milk which leaves us full and satisfied for creamy food. Try adding some next time! Glad you tried – the vegan diet isn’t for everyone but done well, it’s a great way to leave less of a footprint on the Earth. onelove

  10. Mrs Green on November 10, 2011 at 2:57 pm

    @Melissa: Thanks for sharing Melissa; and interesting to note that you felt you would have been hungry on my day’s intake. Raw is good to undertake when it’s warmer but challenging in winter…

    @Alicia@ eco friendly homemaking: I don’t think I knew you were vegan Alicia; I’m hoping you might share some of your menu secrets on your blog sometime 😉

    @Terri: thanks for your thoughts and encouragement Terri; it would seem I definitely need to plan more and add more substance if I were to succeed on a vegan diet