January… Oh Sorry I meant Veganuary (Plus my Warming Winter Granola Receipe)
Veganuary is a charity that inspires people to try vegan for January and I think this is a really clever concept. Embracing a month of being a vegan is a great way to introduce the diet into your life. Veganism is a huge lifestyle change and I believe it takes slow steady steps to embrace this way of eating.
I became a vegetarian over ten years ago as I started to acknowledge my belief in ahimsa which is the yogic principle of non-violence. Also the practice of yoga heightened my awareness in my body and how I felt after eating meat. I noticed meat often made me feel lethargic and it was quite taxing on my digestive system. So it made sense to become vegetarian which is something I never thought I would do as I really enjoyed eating meat. But now I love being a vegetarian and I have no desire to eat meat.
My diet in recent years has also further evolved as I am leaning more towards a vegan diet and I like to call myself a part time vegan. It's a great diet for your body and mind as well as the environment. It really is the way to eat as we move forward into the future. However veganism does require extra thought as you do need to consider eating a variety of different foods to achieve a healthy nutrient intake. I find though it encourages me to eat more super foods and to really learn about what foods I need to be eating. As well as this you need to supplement well with vitamins such as B12. I would also encourage anyone who is considering becoming vegan to seek advice and guidance from either a nutritionist or as in my case I have been guided by my Ayurvedic doctor.
Why have I not embraced a full vegan diet? Firstly if I look at my family history and ancestors we ate a full diet of meat, dairy and vegetables. Therefore changing my diet so drastically would need to take time. When I became a vegetarian it took a few years as I first gave up red meat, then white meat. It wasn't a decision I took over night as I don't think that would have felt right in my body. So I'm still easing myself into veganism and I still love to have the odd chessy pizza now and then and I can't say no to a piece of cake! So when the desire for these things goes then I'll be ready to be a full time vegan. Until then I will occasionally have some dairy in my diet.
A vegan diet which is also known as plant based eating is also really beneficial for the environment. Rearing cattle destroys forests and is believed to emit more emissions than the cars and vehicles we drive! A plant based diet also takes us back to nature, Mother Nature who provides us with everything we need.
Have you embraced veganuary? How has it affected your body and mind? To know more check out https://veganuary.com.
Also to celebrate veganism I want to share my granola recipe which is vegan and can be enjoyed with coconut, oat, almond or any other dairy free milk. Granola is full of healthy fats and I craved it throughout my pregnancy as the warmth and density felt grounding and settling. It is a great way to start the day or it can be enjoyed as a snack during the day.
I hope you love it as much as I do!
Warming Winter Granola Receipe
500g Porridge oats
300g Nuts (You can use any variety of nuts and I like to use hazelnuts and pecans)
200g Seeds (You can use any variety of seeds such as sunflower, pumpkin or linseeds)
150g Almond flakes
100g Raisins or cacao nibs
1/4 Grated nutmeg
1tsp Himalayan salt
3 tbsp Coconut oil
175ml Maple syrup
1tbsp Tahini or peanut butter
Preheat the oven to 100 degrees. Mix the oats, nuts, seeds, almond flakes, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt into a large baking tray.
In a saucepan on a low heat melt the coconut oil and mix in the maple syrup and tahini or peanut butter. Continue to gently stir until the liquids bind together.
Stir the mixed warm mixture into the baking tray with the other ingredients.
Bake at a low heat for one hour and stir every fifteen minutes. Mix in the raisins or cacao nibs. Then leave to cool overnight.
Enjoy with your favourite non-dairy milk.