Veganniversary - A look back over the last 2 years and how my health and wellbeing has improved.
New Year is also my veganniversary and this year I am celebrating two years. The main benefit I've noticed is my health. I used to suffer with headaches, there wasn't a day that went by without me suffering. I was also prone to getting a head cold or worse as soon as I stopped. Every year when I broke up for a holiday or Christmas instead of enjoying my time off, relaxing and filling each day with fun, I was always warding off a cold or bug of some sort and the worse thing I suffered with was cold sores!
Whenever I got run down, which seemed a lot when I look back I didn't just get one cold sore but I'd get a whole fat lip covered in the little buggers, inside and out. It was so painful and it hurt to drink, which was always through a straw let alone eating! There was no over the counter medicine that would even touch the little blighters, it always meant a trip to the doctors where I was prescribed tablets to help clear them up!
Since turning vegan I haven't suffered massively with cold sores although I did have a rather nasty break out in May 2013, five months into transferring to a vegan diet. I did however combat the breakout with food. Back in May 2013 after doing a lot of research I created a couple of cold busting smoothies; 1) using strawberries and 2) using pineapple. Did they work? Yes they did without taking a trip to the doctors, my preference was the Pineapple smoothie. Thankfully since that last outbreak I haven't suffered another apart from one little cold sore which was nothing compared to what I used to get.
Another great thing is that I no longer suffer with headaches, OK I have the odd one now and again who doesn't, but these days I wake up feeling great and I have more energy. One thing I love is turning that energy into growing my own food.
Some of you may know that leading up to Christmas it was a very stressful time. My Dad was very poorly and after 3 months of worrying times where he was rushed into hospital 4 times, had two operations and had to stay in hospital for over a month, we were all pleased that he managed to be home for Christmas. After daily visits from the district nurses I'm pleased to report that he is making good progress. Thankfully even though it was an extremely stressful time my health didn't suffer and I managed to stay in tip top form to support my Dad along side my Mum and sister.
These Christmas holidays I have been surrounded with people who are ill, hubby has had a nasty chest infection which made him ill all over the Christmas holidays and is only just starting to feel better. All my friends and family have been prone to an illness of some sort too, mainly with nasty colds and coughs. Everywhere I go I seem to be the only one who isn't ill! When I went back to work earlier this month it was like walking into a doctors surgery waiting room!
So, I am very fortunate not to have succumbed to one of the nasty bugs flying around. Don't get me wrong there have been days where I have thought "O-oh I'm coming down with something" but after a good nights sleep I wake up the next day feeling fine.
So, what do I put this down to, diet? sleep? exercise? aromatherapy?
Then there is aromatherapy, some time back I did a course on aromatherapy blends and it was one of the best things that I ever did. I always have an oil burner on the go or I use a room spray that I have made to combat bugs. I love my aromatherapy baths where I can soak for what seems like ages in total relaxation. I also use it to help me sleep and a quick spray of one of my blends on my pillow always helps me drift off into dreamland.
Now, don't get me wrong, I am nowhere near where I want to be with my health and wellness but I've started my journey and I'm enjoying the ride.
I could still be healthier in what I eat, yes I do fall off the wagon and indulge in a whole family size bag of crisps or a whole packet of biscuits, always vegan of course! Sometimes I wish there was no vegan junk food to tempt me! But then again, a little every now and again can't be too bad for you. You would only end up craving it more. My one big thing with my diet is portion size! I just LOVE food! There I've said it, if something tastes good then I want more of it!
The Journey Continues - 2015
Looking to the future and how my journey to becoming a happier, healthy and less stressful individual continues. How I am going to do this?
I'm working to get my cravings in check, by understanding my triggers and knowing how to combat them, I will control my portion sizes, and learn to identify when I am full! I hope to ditch refined sugar by utilising natural sweeteners such as dates. The benefits of doing all this is to hopefully lose some weight.
I also need to find some other form of exercise! Ideas in the comments please!
The excuses: I've tried running but I get bored, running with Marco is not ideal as he always wants to go faster than me! I love Orienteering but its an expensive sport and in order to partake in an event each weekend you need to travel a lot, and I mean a lot!
The enjoyed: Walking Marco, sometimes we are out exploring all day so its a great way to burn up calories. I also enjoy my gardening which is a great calorie burner, but I need to find another form of exercise that I enjoy. I'd love to be able to start up my yoga again, which I had to stop due to injuries which meant I didn't enjoy it as much. Every time I try to start it up I inflame one of my injuries. It's a catch 22!
One other thing I want to master or improve on is my meditation, I truly believe those that meditate are less stressful and more healthy individuals. You don't need any fancy equipment to meditate and you can do it anywhere so there are no excuses, you should give it a try if you don't practice already.
Record of Progress
Of course, my blog will be a place where I will record my progress to becoming a happier, healthier and less stressful individual. It will also be full of tasty healthy food for you to try as I share my 'improved health through food' journey with you. This month I'll be focusing on nutrient rich food and how you can incorporate them into your diet.