I’ve been vegan (well, technically, non-dairy vegetarian) since November. Here are some of my observations from the last three months. In general I’ve felt much better since I stopped eating cheese; here are some specifics.
The cheese pizza experiment
In early January, I was still craving cheese. I decided to eat a cheese pizza to see what happened. I was irritable for three days and congested for a week. It wasn’t worth it.
Cutting out dairy was a double-or-nothing for me. When I stopped eating dairy, I felt better, more clear-headed, more compassionate, and I had more energy. But then when I ate that cheese pizza, I felt far worse than had been my previous baseline when I was just plain old vegetarian. It was as if my body had adjusted to the non-dairy state, and trying to go back was horrific.
Soy cheese may contain dairy products
We bought some soy cheese. The second ingredient was milk products, but we found that out a little too late; I’ve been congested ever since I ate it. It was apparently for lactose intolerant people, but whatever it is in dairy that messes me up, I guess it’s not lactose, because the soy cheese definitely messed me up.
I don’t want potato salad anymore
I used to love potato salad. It has eggs in it, but since I’m not strictly vegan, just non-dairy vegetarian, it was technically okay. But the lonely container of potato salad just sat there in the fridge until it went bad. It just felt heavy and icky and it didn’t sound appetizing anymore. This is weird to me, and pretty awesome. I don’t have to constantly exert my willpower to stop eating things that are bad for me, because they just stop being appetizing. It’s neat. (:
I eat entire bowls full of nothing but vegetables
For anyone who has known me for a long time, this will probably freak you right the hell out. I used to be The Vegetarian Who Doesn’t Eat Vegetables™. Now I eat vegetables with a little sauce and spices. I eat vegetables with rice. Yesterday I ate a red pepper like an apple. It’s yummy! Once I stopped bombarding my taste buds with synthetic crap, I started being able to actually enjoy the flavors of all this natural food.
Kyeli and I have decided to try eating only raw food for the entire month of February. We’ll let you know how it goes! (: