I had it all planned out in my mind, "this is going to be the healthiest pregnancy yet, I am going to eat nothing but whole foods and drink alkaline water. I planned for this goal to meld into my daily lifestyle and expedite my health goals overall. I did set the bar pretty high but I would have to be honest and say this has been a pretty average pregnancy. I have had a mix of completely plant based days to consuming Impossible Burgers and Vegan pizza. I am not mad but hoped my health goals immediately would kick in mentally without any transitional work. But, I now realize you have to put the work in (pregnant or not). Personally, I don't want to use my pregnancy as an excuse to eat whatever comes to mind. I also realize that I am looking to include some things that I consider comforting...but less often.
Lets be honest, I feel there are a lot pressures put on Vegans to be superior when it comes to health or the expectations are eating salads by the boat loads. Doesn't matter where you are in the journey, what you have given up, or your budget. I had to put up a shield and really ask MYSELF what I want and where I want to take this lifestyle. I want to tip the scale towards a whole food plant based lifestyle and also find time to say, yep, Yelping it. LOL.
However, having Vegan kids from birth for whom you desire to consume whole foods can be corrupted by Vegan processed foods also. Meaning...while you try to find your balance because you come from a processed high fat diet, your exposing their palates to mind altering foods. I have seen this first hand. For example, there have been times I have brought in processed foods that just caused them to literally ask me for it over fruit or veggies immediately. I have seen them turn food away and want that item if they knew it was in the home. So we had to pull those items out the house, and also decide what we want to stop buying from week to week. Perhaps, limiting these rich items for special events so they can associate them with being occasional indulgences.
This pregnancy has taught me to be more adaptable and understanding. I allowed myself to have the foods I wanted and I was as active as my full-time schedule allowed. Somewhere in this chill mode, I really thought about what I want and also what I don't want. For now, I am going to consume more fruits and veggies, and pack consistently for workdays. Modeling a progressive lifestyle for my children and committing to changes within myself are vital goals. Putting in the work, means that realistic goals have to be set with dates*. It means saying NO to cravings that have been hindering your progress and really finding foods that work for your end goals.
Sharing real life experiences, I feel, helps others to know they aren't alone when it comes to how our minds function. Most of us have been exposed to so many mind altering foods that new realities seem intangible. How do you commit to making changes you may ask? We have to fall in love with our healthy lifestyles, it has to be a relationship you value. It's really a relationship and commitment to yourself because you probably have an underlying reason why you have made this change. So lets not beat ourselves up for not consuming high raw diets, or having a small bowl of store bought vegan ice cream.
Each and everyone of us desires to do better, be better, and evolve. If your on a plant based (vegan) journey and have changed up your entire life. You are doing it! For myself, I am going to just evaluate my food purchases and ensure week to week I purchase only minimal processed items. This is my personal goal, I would love to hear yours!
Much love to my RicanVegana family!