What I learned from my Vegan Keto Experiment Part 2

I learned that I can do Vegan or Keto and not both and actually that’s not even true. I have never been successful at keto.

Vegan diet came easy to me. There were no big struggles, other than learning what to cook. I never felt deprived or restricted. If I do, I have a little dairy or once every few months I’ll have seafood. Mostly, I eat vegan though. I am not plant based for ethical or moral reasons. I do believe it benefits the environment, but primarily I am health driven.

Vegan pasta bowl with farfale, red pepper, green lentil, carrot, tomatoes and green leaves.
Vegan pasta bowl with farfale, red pepper, green lentil, carrot, tomatoes and green leaves.

As I mentioned in Part 1, my first 2 weeks of vegan keto, my primary driver for trying keto were mental health and diabetes prevention.

Well, today I cracked. I could not do it a second longer. I was craving every food under the sun. I have felt like I was hungry for 3 days no matter how much “fat” I added to my diet. I sat and asked myself do I want to eat meat to be able to sustain this? My answer is a big fat NO. I am 100% convinced that plant based is better for you and have had tremendous health benefits from going plant based. I was not willing to give that up. Besides, I have really missed my fiber fueled diet filled with fermented fruits, my weird concoctions of vegetables. I’ve really missed beets and fennel and lentils and all my other strange things I like to eat.

Jar with Fermented Fruits
Jar with Fermented Fruits

Tonight I’m acting like a normal human being. I’m having chocolate and ice cream and a veggie burger with ketchup and vegan mayo. (I do eat dairy, usually once every couple weeks.) I’m good with that. I was happy the way I was and I’m not sure why I am always trying to fix myself.

I did however, learn a bunch from trying vegan keto and I think it will actually help me have a more fulfilled diet. I tried a bunch of new foods and recipes. That was fun and I will definitely incorporate them into my regular diet. During my experiment, I was forced to learn about new choices for protein that were low in carbs. A lot of plant based protein options are high carb. I now love hemp seeds and I also discovered sacha inchi seeds. I found a new protein powder which I love! It tastes great and I will continue to use it.

homemade yogurt with berries in a glass. blueberries and cranberry
homemade yogurt with berries in a glass. blueberries and cranberry

I learned how to make yogurt from tofu, yum! I modified this recipe here slightly. I used 2 tbsp monkfruit sweetener instead of the 1/4 cup it calls for and used 3 tbsp lemon juice instead of 2 and added a tsp of almond extract. It’s high protein and goes perfectly with my fermented fruit!

I had never planned to stay on it long term and planned to cycle keto with high carb/low fat. I thought I could make it 30 days to 6 weeks. I made it 2 1/2 weeks. Oh well. What I learned most is this is not sustainable for me. Whether there are benefits to it or not, I can absolutely not adhere to it.

I will continue to try and eat lower carbs and increase healthy fats in my diet, but ultra low carb, is not going to work. Ketosis I do not thrive on. I was hungry. I was tired. I may have had better impulse control, but not substantial enough to torture myself with this absurd diet for any longer. It is NOT impossible. I do think some people can maintain this. I am just not one of them.

Stay tuned for more plant based stuff from me, but this adventure is coming to an end.

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