Cheat Days When You are Vegan and Gluten Free: The Adventure Continues

Being kind should first and foremost include being kind to yourself. Sometimes a kick in the pants has to happen in order to be reminded of that. I renewed my vow to myself as a New Year goal to eat WFPB, cut out the last bit of dairy from my diet, and eliminate overly processed junk foods. I was doing well until: A) Super Bowl and B) an all day work event on Wednesday that culminated in a cocktail reception with an abundance of tasty treats.


First of all, let’s talk about Super Bowl. I made a delicious vegan caramelized onion dip and a fresh, awesome (also vegan) chickpea salad spread. I brought potato chips and Simple Mills almond flour crackers. Guys, if you haven’t tried these yet do yourself a favor and pick up a box! I love these crackers. They taste like a *normal* cracker, but without the simple carbs that most gluten free crackers are made with. Vegan, gluten free and a very satisfying crunch.


I always make sure to bring something with to an event like that so I have something delicious and don’t feel deprived or left out. I was all set. Then I had a glass of wine. There was a veggie tray with definitely NOT vegan ranch dip. I had a *little* of the dip and lots of the veggies. I ate my vegan dips and spreads with some potato chips and the cracker I brought. I had another glass of wine. Then I hit up the queso dip and taco dip. Not a lot, but some of each. Both, again, defiantly not vegan.


I had a hard time sleeping that night. My digestive system was not at all happy with my little *cheat day*. I told myself I would not do THAT again!


Then I got to the cocktail reception after our long day on Wednesday. Again there was wine. And there was a really awesome veggie tray with hummus. Score! I had my wine, I had my veggies and hummus, and then I spotted the mac and cheese bar. Wheat based pasta, dairy based cheese sauce, loads of ad-ins. I had a *little* with lots of veggie ad ins. (are you seeing a pattern here?) More wine, and then I decided what the hell, I’m going in for the avocado spring rolls. Deep fried glutinous deliciousness. And there was lemon curd cake. Again, just a little.


Let’s just say, it was NOT a good night. I had indigestion, heart burn and nausea all night. I woke up covered in hives. If *cheat days* are supposed to be a treat, this was the exact opposite of that. This was not a kindness to my body. And disassociated eating, not acknowledging where the ingredients are coming from, does not negate the cruelty that occurs from making them.


Eating kind, vegan and gluten free has been an adventure. It is an ongoing learning process. I don’t beat myself up about these two incidents, because they were great learning experiences that confirmed that not only is a vegan lifestyle vital for the health of the planet and the kind stewardship of the animals, it is a true kindness to my body as well. Not in a philosophical *love and kindness* way, but in a physically acknowledged way.

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