I mentioned a few days ago that I’ve decided to go vegan. I’m still trying to wrap my head around the concept, and it’s taking some getting used to. At the outset,I decided to look at this transition not in terms of what I was giving up, but of what I was gaining. As it turns out, there have been some immediate benefits, though a week or so is a sample too small to draw hard and fast conclusions from. Anecdotally, thought, the early returns are looking good.
I’ve noticed that the stomach problems I’ve dealt with and accepted as my destiny for years seem to have largely disappeared. I don’t feel bloated after I eat, which was a regular and expected occurrence. It seems I feel a bit more energetic, though it’s far too early to make a definitive pronouncement on that count. My initial impressions have been positive, though it’s definitely an adjustment. I’m having to read labels closely, which is a good thing under any circumstance. It turns out that you can find animal and dairy products in places you might not expect. I don’t plan on being a militant vegan, but if I’m going to do it, there’s no reason not to take it seriously. And I am.
What I find so amusing is the wide variety of food that have vegan alternatives. F’rinstance:
Yeah, I know; whodathunkit? I’m Scottish by heritage, but I can’t imagine eating haggis if I wasn’t heavily sedated. The idea of a vegan version? Yeah, that leaves me scratching my head…but to each his own, right?? The mere fact of being an alternative doesn’t mean it’s comparable in flavor, texture, or taste. Departing the world of the carnivore means having to acknowledge that faux anything is…well, faux. It’s possible to come close in some cases, but you’ll never completely replace the taste or texture of the real thing; the sooner you accept that, the easier it will be. I’ve had faux Philly cheese steak and faux hamburger. Accept them for what they are, and they’re tasty in their own right. If you’re looking for a carbon copy…prepare to color yourself disappointed.
One thing I’ve been delighted to discover that vegan baked goods and pastries are TEH AWESOME!! I walked into Dovetail Bakery on NE Alberta St. in Portland having NO idea that everything was vegan. If you’d told me that as I inhaled a chocolate chip cookie, I would have scoffed at the notion. It would take a palate far more practiced and sensitive than mine to recognize Dovetail Bakery’s goodies as vegan. The same is true for Sweet Pea Baking Co. on SE Stark St. in Portland. I’m currently sitting on two Snickerdoodle and two Chocolate Chip cookies, all vegan and all difficult to keep my hands off. As someone with an overdeveloped sweet tooth, this aspect of being a vegan does NOT suck.
It’ll be interesting to see where this leads, but so far, so good. Stay tuned…. ;-)