I had a pretty normal childhood. My parents exposed us to a variety of different foods. Being originally from Hong Kong, our meals (particularly dinner) would compose of rice, veggies, and meat, especially lots of fish. Yes, we also ate junk food and some unhealthy foods but it did not comprise much of our diet.
I do not remember how far back it goes, but I always had trouble with digestion, even if I wasn’t aware of it. Thinking back, I definitely suffered from constipation. Interestingly enough, constipation is associated with the connection of holding on to things and fear of letting go… which I definitely had issues with.
In terms of the food aspect, I always had an interest in food. I took foods classes pretty much all throughout high school and they were definitely one of my favourite courses. Baking was my thing, I was a sucker for sweets… and still am.
Fast forward a few years… I had the amazing opportunity to travel abroad by myself for a couple of months and during this time I definitely was not healthy whatsoever. I succumbed to (I guess we can categorize it to) the standard North American diet. The funny thing was, I did not eat that much meat because a flatmate I was living with at the time was vegetarian and did not like the smell of meat. Therefore, I respected her preferences and rarely brought meat home to cook. Nevertheless all the fat and carbs I ate (which were all quite processed, unnatural, and not very wholesome), in conjunction with the lack of exercise resulted in me gaining weight, I would say around 10-15 pounds. This may not sound like too much but I’m petite, and it definitely showed.
Once I settled back at home and had the realization that I needed to make a change, it was where my health journey really started. The obvious first step for me was to focus on exercise because at the time that was what I was particularly interested in. I started working out around 5-6 times a week, sometimes twice a day. And what were the results? Well nothing really changed to be honest, other than maybe I became more fit in the sense that I definitely got stronger, and I wouldn’t die after a 10 minute run. However nothing else changed. I do want to point out, I did not work out just because I wanted to lose weight, I truly enjoy my time exercising. Nonetheless, it definitely was discouraging that my body weight and shape did not seem to change very much. That was when I started to turn my focus on the foods that I was consuming. The distinct changes that I remember were changing my grains to whole grains. Our family grew up eating white rice, but we started the switch to brown rice. My tastes and food preferences also started to change, I consumed much more veggies, ate less red meat, more fish, and started to pay attention to the oils and salt I was consuming as well. I finally started a good positive relationship with food. To be honest, I did not notice much of a difference either but I was definitely feeling much better.
One day I stumbled upon a video by Annie Jaffrey where she talked about her recent discoveries and newly transition towards a plant-based high carb low fat vegan lifestyle. From there I went on to do much more research, and I mean A LOT of research. I watched video after video, fell in love with FullyRaw Kristina, watched all of Rawvana’s videos, watched many videos by Freelee the Banana Girl, went on countless other websites and become so intrigued by this entirely new world!
I decided that I would try this lifestyle out and see what would happen. May 26, 2014 was the day that I began this vegan journey. Yup there really was not slow transition per se. One day I was consuming meat, the next I went straight to becoming a mostly raw, high carb low fat plant-based vegan.
If you want to read more about transitioning to a vegan lifestyle click here.
Naturally, my body went back to its ideal body weight. I lost much of the fat which was awesome.. but one thing that I really noticed was how much more energy I had. I began running and running is definitely not my favourite thing. I was able to run 5k in 28 minutes. Which I had never done prior to. I felt lighter, happier, and so inspired.
From then on, I never looked back. I would say, since becoming vegan, my diet and lifestyle has changed so much and it continues to change. I jumped right into the deep end and I have learned so much along the way. Honestly, I am still trying to figure it out as everything including ourselves continues to change and evolve on a regular basis. One thing for certain that will not change is my decision of becoming vegan; a decision that I has changed my life completely and will remain a huge part of my life forever.