#1 – What I eat in a day as a plant-based vegan

This post gives you an insight into what a full day of eating as a plant-based vegan looks like for me.

Before I get into this post, I want to reiterate that the amount of food I eat is sufficient to fuel my body based on my activity levels and my size.

The last time I shared one of these posts, I got messages from people telling me I eat too little, which discouraged me from sharing more.


Every day is different, some days I eat more and others I eat less. I choose to go with how I feel, and I prefer not to overfeed or underfeed myself just to fit society’s standards.

If you’re still stuck in the mindset of eating a set number of calories or a fixed amount of food, consider letting go and allowing your intuition to guide you. It is the most liberating thing ever.

I typically eat two large meals a day with fruits and lots of vegetables. I have mentioned in the past that I practice intermittent fasting. It is not a strict form of intermittent fasting because I don’t have set hours where I eat and don’t eat.

The only aspect of it that I try to keep consistent is leaving at least 16 hours between my last meal and my next meal the following day. If for whatever reason I am unable to wait 16 hours (this rarely happens), I eat anyway and continue with my day as usual.

Morning Refresher: Ginger and Turmeric Tea

I start my day with a glass of room temperature water, sometimes adding freshly squeezed lemon or lime juice. I learned a long time ago that it helps with detoxification of the liver, so I like to do this as often as I can and whenever I remember. I’ve also started incorporating herbal detox teas into my routine.  I’m currently enjoying the ginger and turmeric tea from Pukka.

Weekday mornings are hectic for me. I have to get both my kids ready for nursery and school, cook them breakfast, and then do the school run before doing anything for myself. The joys of motherhood… I do love it really.

I get my workout done once I drop my kids off. As well as keeping me fit and strong, exercising is my form of self-care. It is the only time when I get to focus on myself 100%, and when I release negative energy and reset my thoughts.

Since I cannot eat before exercising (I get terrible stitches), I have my first meal sometime after midday. I’m usually starving at the point.

Meal 1: Chickpea Stew and Brown Rice

My first meal usually contains a grain or a starchy vegetable, legumes, and lots of non-starchy vegetables. Meals like this keep me super satisfied without the need to snack in between meals. If I snack in between meals with lots of veggies and legumes, I always end up bloated and very uncomfortable. Not nice. 

Today I chose to have brown rice with chickpeas and mixed vegetables. This one-pot recipe is straightforward and requires minimal spices.

Ingredients

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  • 75g brown rice
  • 100g frozen mixed vegetables
  • 240g tin chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • ½ vegetable stock cube
  • 50g frozen (or fresh) butternut squash
  • ½ tsp cumin
  • ½ small red chilli, finely chopped
  • ½ tsp ground coriander
  • 1 small shallot, finely chopped
  • 2 small garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 2 tbsp tomato purée
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How to make 

  1. Cook the rice according to the packet instructions then set aside.
  2. Add a good splash of water to a small-medium saucepan over medium heat. Put the mixed vegetables, chilli, butternut squash, shallots, garlic, tomato purée, stock cube and spices into the pan. Stir as well you can then put the lid on the pan and cook for about 15 minutes until the vegetables are soft and have absorbed most of the tomato sauce. 
  3. Add the chickpeas then turn the heat down to a simmer and cook for a further 5 minutes. 
  4. Serve the chickpea and vegetable stew over brown rice. Garnish with fresh coriander if you desire. 

Meal 2: Pesto Linguine with Peas

There’s usually a 4-6 hour gap between my first meal and second meal. That gap solely depends on how big my first meal is. My second meal today was a lovely green bowl of pesto linguine.

I usually make my pesto with sunflower seeds, but I found out at the last minute that I was out of them, so I made a fat-free version. This version is great if you’re trying to limit your fat intake. You can find my usual pesto recipe here.

Ingredients

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  • 75g linguine
  • 100g peas, steamed
  • 40g fresh basil leaves
  • 30g rocket (arugula)
  • 6 tsp nutritional yeast
  • 2 fat garlic cloves
  • 30-50ml water (or more as needed)
  • Pinch of salt, to taste
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How to make 

  1. Cook the pasta according to the pack instructions. While it is cooking, place all the ingredients in a food processor apart from the water. Add the water a little at a time and blitz until you reach your desired consistency.
  2. Once the pasta is cooked, drain (reserving some of the pasta water) and add half (or as much as you need) of the pesto. Loosen the sauce with the pasta water if it gets to thick.
  3. Spoon the pasta into a bowl and serve with steamed peas and fresh basil. Sprinkle with more nutritional yeast if you like. 

Meal 3: Fig and Blueberry Oats with Yoghurt

My last meal of the day is a lovely warming bowl of oats. Unlike most people, I choose to have my oats at night. It helps me sleep very well, and I wake up with no bloat whatsoever.

If I eat legumes late at night, I don’t sleep well at all, and I wake up the next morning very bloated. It makes sense because beans can be very difficult for the body to digest. You could try if you have the same problems with legumes.

I cannot eat a whole banana; there’s just something about the texture that irks me. I love the taste of bananas, so I frequently have them in smoothies. It occurred to me that if I like them in smoothies, I would probably enjoy them mashed into my oats.

I started doing that recently and I really, really love it. I usually also have yoghurt with oats for two reasons. One is that I love the creaminess it adds and second being that it is an excellent source of probiotics.

If you don’t know already, probiotics are great for your gut because they provide the friendly bacteria that we need for digestive health.

If you incorporate bananas and yoghurt into your oatmeal, you boost the friendly bacteria in your gut. Bananas are prebiotic, meaning that they feed the healthy bacteria in your stomach.

The more you feed these bacteria, the more they thrive and the healthier your gut is. This is the key reason why I always try to have bananas and yoghurt together.

Ingredients

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  • 60g rolled oats
  • 200ml unsweetened almond milk 
  • 60g banana, mashed
  • 1 large fig, sliced
  • 150g soy yoghurt
  • 60g fresh blueberries
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 small rectangle, dark chocolate
  • 1 tsp mixed seeds
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How to make 

  1. Put the oats, mashed bananas, almond milk cinnamon and vanilla extract in a small pan. Cook on a simmer for 15 minutes until the oats are properly cooked.
  2. Allow the oats to cool a little then serve in a bowl and top with figs, blueberries, yoghurt, and chocolate.
  3. Sprinkle with mixed seeds and enjoy

I have a small bowl of fruits that I pick from typically when I’m working. The bowl is filled with whatever fruits I have available at home.  I chose to have an orange with blackberries, raspberries and a kiwi.

If you notice, I try to eat as many colours of foods as I can throughout the day to make sure I’m getting varied nutrients. I hope you found this post helpful. If you did and would like more like this, leave me a comment below and I’ll do them at least once a week.

 

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2 Comments

  1. Tracey
    22nd March 2018 / 9:23 AM

    Thank you, appreciate your teaching of healthy eaying, great practical ideas

    • 22nd March 2018 / 12:41 PM

      Thank you so much Tracey!

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