I can’t eat gluten, some beans and I’m vegan! So what can I eat?
And how do I make sure to stay fit, with a balanced diet and a healthy gut?
Let’s start with what I DON’T eat:
I’m highly intolerant to all the above. Meaning I get cramps, dodgy tummy, gass etc and generally don’t have loads of energy after eating them.
I did an intolerance test from Life Lab and found out I couldn’t have the above. Prior to this I already knew I couldn’t have gluten and some dairy. But I hadn’t cut out eggs as I felt they were necessary. Little did I know they were part of the problem!
Instead of eggs, I have foods like organic tofu (you can get this in almost all supermarkets now, even CoOp), Tempeh and Ackee.
Instead of cooking the above with vegan butter I would often use an oil like Canola or Avocado. These have a higher burn point than Olive Oil and less saturated fat than Coconut Oil.
The substitutes for yoghurt and cheese are SO good now! Again most supermarkets have some great options but Wholefoods and Planet Organic etc have some amazing options now. ALWAYS look out for added sugar. Get a plain vegan yoghurt, nut yoghurts are good and plain ones are even better. Then add what you want that way you can control the amount of sugar. Plus all good vegan yoghurts have probiotic cultures in meaning they are good for your gut health.
Anyone looking to improve their diet is usually suffering from some kind of gut issue. I think most of us are as we eat so many processed foods. The gut is literally the root of many health problems and can often be the trigger of autoimmune issues. Read this article about the link, and you can find many others too.
Both my parents have long-term autoimmune issues and by changing their diet they have seen a huge improvement in their health.
Another tip is Rennie, which I’m sure you have all heard of. If you do get some bloating and feeling uncomfortable from food they really help. They also have this really useful blog post about bloating here. I really like their idea of these little changes you can make to help combat that bloated feeling. They are really simple and useful.
This year I added fermented foods to my diet and it’s really improved my energy levels and my ability to fight off colds.
Tempeh – a form of fermented soybeans that are compacted. It’s firmer than tofu and has a nuttier taste.
Sauerkraut – an acquired taste but I love putting it on everything!
Kombucha – again not to everyone’s taste but for me it’s in replacement of a fizzy drink that would otherwise be bad for me.
Vegan Kefir – I put this in smoothies and it’s so easy to drink that way. You can also buy fruit ones or even chocolate ones, but be aware of the sugar. To be honest, a little sugar is fine, it’s just good to know!
My biggest downfall is carbs, it’s quick and easy on the go to grab a cereal bar or biscuit. (Hack – Sainsburys and Tescos both do Vegan, Gluten Free choc chip biscuits and they are my downfall haha). When I have time to plan to have fresh fruit and veg and eating veg sticks and dips like humous or quick tofu with tomatoes, black beans, avocado etc can be great.
It’s just so easy to eat some pasta and mix it with some vegetables. There’s nothing wrong with that but it may be better to have carbs like quinoa, brown rice etc.
Yoghurt topped with gluten-free oats or low sugar cereals, and fruit, nuts and seeds. Maybe add a little natural jam or agave syrup.
Toast such as Schar Wholesome Vitality Loaf with Quinoa, Chesnut and Sunflower Seeds is a healthy option. I top this with natural nut butter, dates and banana.
Lunch and dinner options:
Ackee with avocado and tomatoes on toast (see toast above).
Bowls: Lettuce leaves, Brown Rice or Quinoa topped with nuts, seeds, spinach, various vegetables and black beans, lentils or chickpeas (full of protein). Tofu, Tempeh etc too…
Also Sweet Potato filled with vegan cream cheese, topped with sauerkraut is one of my favourite easy dishes to make.
My skin has hugely improved since totally cutting out eggs and dairy. I hardly ever get any spots now and I’m often told how great and clear it looks. Before this, I had been having lots of issues with mild adult acne and trying every cream etc under the sun.
I do use Elemis products and swear by them. But I think the real improvement has come from within. Often your skin is showing you what your gut is feeling. I’ve seen this with both my parents who have suffered from psoriasis until cutting out dairy. It’s crazy, but always listen to your body is my advice. If it’s showing you something odd, it’s trying to tell you something odd is happening inside.
I hope this post has been useful. I’m just sharing my personal insights, so thank you for reading them.
Also just a note:
Rennie Peppermint. Rennie Heartburn, Indigestion & Wind Relief. Always read the label.
You should always consult your doctor first, before cutting certain food groups out like wheat, gluten or dairy.