Tag Archives: serenity

Four keys to staying vegetarian/vegan abroad

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Dinner served on Iberia Airlines. Photo by me.

Hello everyone! It has been a while since my last entry. Surprise… I am blogging from Salamanca, Spain. I began my study abroad here on June 23. Over the course of my travel I have learned a lot. I am staying with a host family and I am provided three meals a day through my program.

#1 Request vegetarian/vegan food during your flight.

I took a group flight to Madrid, Spain. My friend Maria, a fellow vegetarian, developed the brilliant idea of calling ahead to ask for vegetarian meals to be served to us. During the course of our 11 hour flight, we received two vegetarian meals and several snacks.  According to Iberia Airlines, you must call at least 24 hours ahead of your flight to receive vegetarian options.

#2 Learn local terms for animal products.

For example here in Spain, milk is leche, jamón is ham and meat is carne. Learning the language can be easy with foreign language apps and language dictionaries.

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First meal with host family. Photo by me.

#3 Eat your protein! 
During my first few days in Spain I felt very sick. I endured migraines and stomachaches. My vegetarian meals on the airplane lacked protein. In addition, my first meal at my homestay was iceberg lettuce, tomatoes and french fries. Obviously that was not enough. I had to nurse myself back to health with protein and hours of sleep. My favorite forms of protein are beans, quinoa and green peas. There are a plethora of  protein options to help you while traveling.

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Veggie sandwich at Madrid Airport. Photo by me. 

#4 Don’t be discouraged.

No matter your destination – you are not the only herbivore! Be aware of your surroundings. After just two days in Salamanca, I found two farmer’s markets and a small store that sells organic goods and A LOT of tofu! In addition, there are many tools available online that will help you find vegetarian/vegan food no matter where you are.

Overall, enjoy your trip. Travel is powered by exploration. Go out there and find the foods that work for you. It is a very exciting time! I recently found one of the best veggie burgers at at a location near my university here in Spain.

P.S. I can’t wait to share my vegetarian finds with each and every one of you!

 

 

 

 

 

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Honest review: 10-week vegan lifestyle

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Photo taken by Maria Singh at Sage Vegan Bistro in Culver City, California.

Plant-based protein is essential.

While on my 10-week journey, I lost more than five pounds. This was due to the fact that I didn’t always fill up on protein.

Sometimes, I would eat a few vegetables and fruit and call it a day. Other times I would get creative and incorporate seitan, tofu or soyrizo. All of the weight I lost was muscle. So, I sincerely encourage you all, if you plan on living a vegan lifestyle, treat your body right. From beans to quinoa, there are so many plant-based protein options.

Not everyone accepts veganism.

I remember when I took my friend out to her favorite restaurant for a birthday dinner in April. While ordering, I asked the waiter if there was bacon in the green beans. Believe it or not, he laughed in my face! Another time, someone offered me a piece of their chicken salad. I said no thank you and they inquired why.

After telling them I was vegan, they said
“Just try it once!” However, this is not the sole response I received from everyone. Some people are very accepting and want to help you succeed as a vegan. One day my roommate even brought me home a chocolate vegan donut from Whole Foods. Let me tell you, it was amazing!

Living a vegan lifestyle made me healthier.

For some reason, this quarter at school was filled with endless opportunities for free food, which included pizza, fine cheeses and more. I was unable to enjoy the festivities. However, a lot of it was junk food so it worked perfectly! My vegan lifestyle saved me.

I truly enjoyed being vegan.

Prior to my 10-week journey, I was vegetarian for four years. Since I do have a love for animals and my overall goal is to be healthy, being vegan just felt right. My proactive lifestyle sometimes shields me from leading a fully nourished vegan lifestyle, so my goal is to carry many vegan values for the rest of my life, choosing vegan options when possible. I now “officially” live a vegetarian lifestyle. After much research and after feeling fantastic, I am positive I will never eat meat. So, have no fear, I still have a lot of tips, exciting recipes and my favorite –restaurant reviews. Yum!

Happy Mother’s Day to all mommies

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From animal mommies to human mommies – all moms rock. Without my mother, I would not have even been able to make this blog!

“If women wanted to shut this country down, all they would have to do is not go to work and not come home.”

-Pharrell Williams, American singer and record producer 

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A sheep explores with her lamb at Cal Poly Pomona University. Photo taken by me.

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Earth Day: Embrace nature and go vegan

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How does someone celebrate something they have known all their lives? Do you throw an earth themed party? Do you plant a tree? This year I chose to celebrate this beautiful world with food and exercise.

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View from Steep Canyon Trailhead. Photo by me. 

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Four reasons why vegan restaurants should not scare you

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Veggie Grill’s Buffalo wings, vegan ranch dressing and celery sticks. Photo taken by me.

1. Yes, there is food that you will actually want.

At first sight, vegan cuisine can be intimidating. You look at the menu and see photographs of what appears to be meat and yet it is not meat at all.

However, take a closer look. There is usually an “about” section of the menu that explains the food. If not, there are nutrition facts, for example dairy free, antibiotic free and hormone free. You will not be disappointed.

Tuesday night I visited Veggie Grill in Pasadena, California. I am no stranger to their delectable carrot cake, and I have indulged in their crab-free crab cake. So, as a new vegan I decided to try their Buffalo wings, and let me tell you – there is nothing to be afraid of. Read the rest of this entry