Hello there and happy Monday! The sun came out after all today which made for an awesome Sunday treat and a stellar finish to the week. Here’s to hoping the [not as awesome] weather forecast for the next days is totally off. Contrary to my assumptions in my last post Sunday turned out to be gorgeous. Sunshine, around 60°F and just perfect for a nice long walk. I wouldn’t mind this marvelous weather to stick around for a long time.
On another note and explaining this post’s title it’s about time I spill the beans about the allusion to another ‘C’ food I made in my Currently post: Cheese. There it is, the mysterious last current food. Not an unusual one for many but for me it is significant. If you’ve been reading for a while already you might remember me using a term Sarah coined and calling myself a vegan with benefits. Up until now the benefits had been limited to dairy in the form of Greek yogurt [or Quark for all Germans]. Which seemed semi-okay to me because there’s no vegan equivalent and my diet was [and is] still largely plant-based. The reason why I decided to start eating cheese again after mulling it over for a while was finding what had caused me to eschew it before: Fear. And:
The latter is worth looking at a little more closely. Why guilt? Because I felt eating cheese would mean I’d failed at being vegan. Disappointed others. Really, though? Nobody expects me to be vegan. It was also relieving for me to see a number of other previously vegan bloggers listen to their cravings and reintroduce eggs, dairy or at times fish and meat back into their diet. In order to practice what I preached – congratulating others who didn’t let their diet keep them from listening to their cravings – it was only consequential for me to do the same. Not only stop beating myself up every time I ate dairy before but go that step further trying cheese [seeking out vegetarian ones only] again.
… and the world truly kept spinning.
For me, true recovery means letting go of food rules and guilt around eating. As well as not letting the label I’ve put on my diet keep me from satisfying my cravings. Yes, there’s vegan cheese, delicious kinds even, but I’d still been feeling a lack of satisfaction with my diet lately. It might be due to the lack of cheese, it might be something else. I’m leaving the outcome of my little diet experimentation open for now. And isn’t that the beauty of experimentation? We can never tell the results in advance. It’s a journey of trial and error.
To make this a point here: I don’t in anyway think veganism in itself is a sign of eating-disordered behaviour for everybody following it. In fact, eating vegan made me get more creative in the kitchen that I’d been during my previous years as a vegetarian. Experimenting with vegan dishes has been exciting for me and I plan on continuing to do so and eat largely vegan. Just throwing in the odd bit of cheese here and there when I feel like it. What I’ve noticed during these past first weeks was that I craved cheese one day, had it and was satisfied. The next time I’d use a bit more [too much] and not think of it or miss it for days. Maybe I’ll be fed up by cheese and dairy in a few weeks or months. Maybe I’ll keep eating them. What I know, though, is that whichever way I go I want to eat without guilt. Because living without food guilt is a marvelous way of living.
Happiness inducing today: Walking my favourite longer route again for the first time without hip pain. Do I sound like an old lady saying this? Maybe. Was it a great feeling? Definitely.
Stay in touch!
Have you ever dealt with a similar situation of reintroducing foods that you’d previously escheweded?
Do you label your diet?