Choosing the “Diet” for Your Lifestyle

Whether you’re vegan, vegetarian, lactovarian, fruitarian, pescatarian, or have no preference, a diet isn’t something that should be equated to a temporary intake or quick fix to lose/gain weight. Your diet should be your way of life, in other words it should be consistent and beneficial. I personally think that we should throw away this whole idea of “going on diets” and transition our intake to foods that are more reasonable and responsible. Your diet should consists of foods that makes you comfortable (tastes good & makes you feel good), caters to your health, and provides a balance to your digestive system. Labeling yourself as vegan, vegetarian, or whatever doesn’t mean that you’re necessarily “eating right” or that you even feel 100% good about the decision that you made. At the end of the day the food that you consume should benefit you, be eaten in moderation, and shouldn’t make you feel bad or create side effects. And by side effects I mean acne (most commonly caused by sodas, white bread & rice, & dairy), high blood pressure (most commonly caused by fried food, sodium filled food & canned food), and digestive issues (most commonly caused by red meats, dairy products & high amounts of fructose). What we eat not only affects our bodies, but our minds and spirits are heavily influenced as well. So you should always take into consideration the foods you choose to intake because they certainly play a major role in the future of your health, just saying! Which is why transitioning to the plant-based diet is the most realistic, comfortable, beneficial, and effortless decision that one can make. Think about it, by going plant-based you don’t have to restrict yourself to certain foods or even refrain from the ones you enjoy (just as long as you eat it occasionally or at MAX in moderation). To be plant-based simply means that you’re eating MOSTLY delicious, naturally grown products given to us from our bountiful and beautiful earth (beans, grains and oats, nuts, fruits, vegetables, soy, etc) but with a the option of flexibility. Basically you won’t have to cut off animal products but definitely cut back on them. If you’re someone who eats meat or any animal product (milk, cheese, eggs, honey, etc) everyday then start by going a few days without them, and eventually attempt to only eating animal based products a few times a month or every once in a while (every couple of months or so). It’s challenging (only in the in the beginning), but not impossible. Remember that your health is wealth, and that without it you won’t be worth a damn, (I said what I said🤷🏽‍♀️)!

 

Need help with plant-based recipes?

Use the search bar below and type in “recipes” for some of my favorite plant-based meals, feel free to add your spin on them!

 

Tomayto, Tomahto: 5 Undeniably Tasty Tomato Based Recipes

Before we get started…question! Have you really heard anyone pronounce tomato like “tomahto”? Yeah me neither lol. But no matter how you pronounce it, nothing can take away from the savory, tangy, deliciousness of this lovely “fruit” we call the tomato! Thanks to tomatoes we have pizza, pasta sauces, better salads, chunky chili, and several delicious dips, just to name a few things! But I have to be honest here for a quick second, growing up I could NOT stand tomatoes lol. Aside from ketchup, I would not eat anything with tomatoes in it. But as I grew older somehow my taste buds started to evolve and I can now happily say that I love them, mostly cooked though; I still can’t eat too many raw lol smh but hey baby steps right? After giving them a second chance I realized that they can be used in many ways and I thought it’d be cool to share a few of my favorite ways to enjoy them along with detailed recipes! Click the link below 😋

  1. Spicy pico de gallo & tortilla chips
  2. Creamy tomato & sweet basil pasta sauce
  3. Fried green tomatoes with vegan ranch
  4. Stewed tomato spinach grits
  5. Ricotta tomato toast (can be made vegan)

 

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1ThbcgvD2l7lpuPzkemtvLQjhP3oGPEUIlH5oICmp5jU/edit?usp=sharing

The Versatility of Beans/Peas/Lentils: 6 Un”bean”lievable Recipies

The legume family, also known as bean, pea & lentil family are an affordable source of protein, fiber, and vitamins that also happens to offers many health benefits. Such as being natural antioxidants and anti-inflammatories, stabilizing blood glucose levels, reducing digestive issues, lowering cholesterol, and providing zinc, iron, magnesium, and fiber. And on top of all the many benefits, they’re so versatile and delicious! Oh, the tasty things you can do with beans/peas/lentils. The endless possibilities, limitless flavor combinations, and the guarantee of a filling satisfactory ending. 100% natural, gluten-free, (unless you’re eating canned beans…another topic for another day) yet savory, scrumptious, and nutritious. From old fashioned red beans & rice to garlic n’ herb string beans to spicy black bean burgers to curried lentils to mediterranean style roasted chickpea salads, to teriyaki glazed sugar snap peas, the bean, lentil, & pea family can be used as a protein replacement in almost any meal you can think of. I just made you hungry huh? Well no worries, I won’t leave you hanging. Allow me to share with you a few recipes that you will want to make, then fall in love with & end up wanting to share with the world!

Click the link below to full recipes and instructions:

  1. Old fashioned red beans & rice
  2. Garlic & herb string beans
  3. Spicy black beans burgers
  4. Curried lentils
  5. Mediterranean roasted chickpea salad
  6. Teriyaki glazed snap peas

 

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1PimCkZPyjh3OOSCF0oVB2VnvVgKs4yvXaRlpZxv34Ps/edit?usp=sharing

Sevananda: Atlanta’s Best Natural Market

If you live in Atlanta and the surrounding areas I’m sure you’ve heard about this wonderful store, Sevananda! But if you haven’t then I am more than honored to introduce you. This amazing gift of a market is located right in the heart of Atlanta in a neighborhood locally known as Little Five Points. Sevananda is not only black owned but it is also community owned which makes the shopping experience even more personal and fulfilling! You just never know who you may meet or run into when entering this lovely establishment. From the moment you enter the doors you are welcomed by beautiful smiles, lovely scents, and gravitating vibes that you won’t find anywhere else. This natural foods market offers a variety of natural and organic groceries (dry, fresh, and frozen), alternative dairy products, pre-packaged to go meals, a delicious hot vegan bar (the best vegan food I’ve ever had in my life), a wide variety of alkaline, spring, and mineral water, and a self-serve nut, seed, granola, and candy area. They also have an entire natural product section where you can find natural options for skin care, hair, oral health, vitamins and supplements, laundry and home cleansers, and so much more! I can easily go in this store and get lost for a few hours and although the store isn’t that big, they have so much to offer. From exclusive locally made products to knowledgeable down to earth employees with a passion for educating, making it very easy to get caught up in the remarkable ambiance. This place alone brings me so much peace and since my first experience I haven’t been able to stop telling everyone I know about Sevananda. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting the store’s administrator Ms. Carolyn Morris once and the marketing and outreach assistant Ms. Ifini Sheppard on several occasions and I can honestly say that they both are beautiful, inspiring, educated women. They are always looking for volunteers for different events around the city and are always hiring for full-time and part-time employees! If you are in or near Atlanta or if you ever decide to visit please make your way to this extraordinary market for an incredible and unforgettable experience! “Own Your Health” today , tomorrow, and forever, what are you waiting for?

Contact:

Ms. Ifini or any other lovely employee at the customer service desk

Phone: 1-404-681-2831

Address: 467 Moreland Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30307, USA (8:00AM-10:00PM Daily)

Website: http://www.sevananda.coop/

Smoothie Bowls & Gluten Free Pancakes

I haven’t dedicated a post to breakfast yet and just randomly decided to choose this week to do so. I am a big breakfast person, I have to eat or at least drink a smoothie before starting my day. I don’t always have time to eat the type of breakfast I would like but when I do these two (Smoothie Bowls and Pancakes) are my favorite to eat. They are super simple to make and heavenly to consume! 100% healthy and 100% tasty guaranteed. I love taking foods as simple as these and dressing them up with all types of toppings and interchangeable ingredients to keep from getting bored with the recipes. Find the recipes for these below! 😋😋😋

Smoothie Bowls:

Ingredients:

  1. 1/2 cup of almond milk sweetened or unsweetened (water, rice milk, hemp milk, etc any type of milk you want to use)
  2. 1 cup of spinach (or desired greens)
  3. 1 frozen banana (unpeeled)
  4. 1 cup of desired frozen fruit (I prefer berries or kiwis & strawberries)
  5. Toppings: nuts, seeds, sliced fruit, granola, coconut flakes, etc….(options are endless)

Instructions:

  1. Put milk/water, greens, and fruits in blender
  2. Blend until smooth
  3. Pour evenly into a bowl
  4. Use a spoon to smooth it out
  5. Place toppings on top of smoothie mixture
  6. Grab a spoon and enjoy

Gluten Free Pancakes:

Ingredients:

  1. 1 1/4 cup of GF flour
  2. 1 tbsp of sugar (brown or white)
  3. 1/2 tsp of GF baking powder
  4. 1/4 tsp of salt
  5. 1 tbsp of vanilla extract (optional)
  6. 1/4 tsp of cinnamon (optional)
  7. 1 cup of almond milk (water or desired milk)
  8. 1/4 cup of olive oil
  9. 1 smashed banana (optional, add 1/4 more almond milk if too thick)
  10. Margarine (vegan) or butter

Instructions:

  1. Mix flour, baking powder, sugar, salt, cinnamon into a large bowl
  2. Add milk/water, banana, vanilla extract, olive oil
  3. Mix until evenly combined
  4. Heat skillet or griddle to medium heat
  5. Add margarine/butter and allow for it to bubble
  6. Add pancake mixture and cook for 2-3 minutes
  7. Flip pancake and allow other side to cook
  8. Remove from heat and plate
  9. Add toppings such as fruit, nuts, syrup/agave, and enjoy

My Top 40 “Accidentally Vegan” Snacks

If you thought being vegan just meant eating fruits, vegetables, and rice then you’re in for a real surprise. LOL, I actually know a lot of unhealthy and even obese vegans. Just because someone isn’t consuming animal products doesn’t mean that they are always eating healthy. For example, speaking for myself here…I love chips, and all types of chips not just plain potato chips or tortilla chips! I love a flavorful crunch and I couldn’t imagine a world without chips, or snacks at all. Once I decided to make the transition to plant-based eating I thought my options were going to be limited to maybe 2-3 varieties of chips but after doing a littler research I was happy to find out that I was wrong. Not only can I enjoy chips, crackers, french fries, etc but I can also satisfy my sweet tooth with cookies, brownies, candy and even ice cream without cheating on my diet! Below you will find a list (my top 40) of a large variety of well known snacks that aren’t advertised as vegan but I can reassure you that they are.

  1. Spicy Sweet Chili Doritos
  2. Original Lays & Original Pringles
  3. BBQ & Salt & Vinegar Lays Potato Chips
  4. Cracker Jack Caramel Popcorn
  5. Original & BBQ Fritos
  6. Ritz Crackers
  7. Cap’n Crunch (all flavors..yay)
  8. Keebler Original Club Crackers
  9. Wheat Thins (Buffalo, Hint of Salt, Zesty Salsa, etc)
  10. Wise Onion Rings
  11. Tortilla Chips (Original & Lime)
  12. Snyders Original & Jalapeno Pretzel Sticks
  13. Smartfood Sweet & Salty Kettle Corn
  14. Original Sunchips
  15. Kettle  Brand Chips (Maple Bacon…yep I promise, Jalapeno, Red Curry, etc)
  16. Stacy’s Pita Chips (Simply Naked, Italian, Veggie Medley)
  17. McCormick Bac’n Bits (I know I’m not the only one who eats these plain LOL)
  18. Hairbo Sour S’ghetti Gummy Candy
  19. Swedish Fish
  20. Sour Patch Kids
  21. Fruit by the Foot Rollups
  22. Airheads
  23. Jollyranchers
  24. Super Bubble Bubble Gum
  25. Keebler Fudge Shoppe Fudge Pops
  26. Charms Sweet Lollipops
  27. Minute Maid Frozen Juice Bars
  28. Quaker Apple Cinnamon Rice Cakes
  29. Nabisco Ginger Snaps
  30. Oreo Thin Crips
  31. Unfrosted Poptarts
  32. Nature Valley Granola Bars
  33. Belvita Chocolate Bites
  34. Aunt Jemima Original Pancake Mix
  35. Smuckers Uncrustables
  36. Duncan Hines Whipped Chocolate & Vanilla Frosting
  37. Jello-O Banana Cream Pudding Mix (perfect for banana pudding)
  38. Pillsbury Crescent Rolls (I’m not ashamed to say that I can eat the entire package for breakfast)
  39. Ben & Jerry’s Dairy-free Ice cream (if you haven’t tried these then please do, you won’t regret it!)
  40. Hershey’s Chocolate & Strawberry Syrup

That’s just a list of personal favorites, there are many other snacks and frozen foods that are “accidentally vegan”. See, told you that just because something doesn’t contain meat or dairy that is isn’t good…I bet you’ve been eating vegan snack all along and didn’t even know it lol ;). Now I’m not saying you should eat these snacks all the time but I’m just letting you know that having a vegan or plant-based diet does not mean you have any limits.

To find out about more vegan snacks and food visit http://www.peta.org , warning you will be surprised!

The Magical Meat Replacement…Jackfruit!

Oh Jackfruit 😉 my guilty pleasure! Never in a lifetime would I have even imagined using a fruit to replace meat but please believe me when I say it’s one of the best things I’ve ever eaten….EVER! This magical fruit will literally save your life if you’re looking for a cheat code into the plant-based lifestyle. It can be used as a meat replacement in all of your favorite meals such as tacos, pulled “pork” sandwiches, wraps, nachos, roast “beef”, etc the options are endless. Jackfruit is also is very easy to cook and doesn’t take up much time at all to prepare which is another plus!

Pulled BBQ Jackfruit Sandwich, Wrap, Tacos, etc.

Ingredients:

Canned jackfruit in brine (drain, rinse and remove seeds)

Salt

Pepper

Seasoned salt (add other seasonings according to meal)

Bbq sauce of choice, taco sauce, gravy, etc (according to meal)

olive oil

Instructions:

1.Open can(s), drain jackfruit, rinse in warm water, remove any seeds.

2. Cut pieces into halves.

3. Place in bowl and season with salt, pepper, seasoned salt etc.

4. Pour 1-2 table spoons of olive oil in bowl then mix the jackfruit around until it’s covered evenly in seasonings and oil.

5. Prepare as you normally prepare your meal. Be cautious that if using a skillet to cook the jackfruit (for example when making tacos) that it doesn’t need to cook long ( so simmer on a medium low heat and add more sauce (or whatever) periodically.

6. Once jackfruit is finished cooking take two forks and further shred it if it is not already shredded to your liking.

Jackfruit can be cooked in the oven, slow cooker, or in a skillet. After “saucing it up” add desired toppings, along with your favorite side and viola! You’re on your way to enjoying one of the best plant-based meals you’ve ever had in your life! If you have any left overs they can be frozen and of course can be turned into another meal of choice 🤤. I can go on and on about jackfruit because I just love how limitless this miraculous plant can be but I’ll stop here. Don’t just take my word for it, try it out for yourself. Jackfruit can be found in almost any grocery store on the canned fruit aisle. Remember to get the kind in brine and NOT syrup. Comment results below!