Sunday, January 24, 2016

Eating high-carb vegan food for energy, recovery and health

I've been building up to this change of diet for a while and have been following it for just over a week. It's a radical change for me as it means finding new 'favourite foods' to replace eggs, cheeses, cakes (made with milk & eggs) and of course, Mum's roast lamb. Tough, but so far, so good. My reasons for trying a high-carb vegan diet are primarily the promises of increased energy, faster recovery after training and improved health. It means plant-based eating — the full nutritional requirements for good health can be obtained from a vegan diet, even vitamin B12.

The majority of food in a regular supermarket is vegan but that doesn't mean that eating 'vegan' equates to good health. A diet consisting solely of coca-cola, chips and bread spread with peanut butter isn't going to be healthy! Many processed (canned) vegetables have large amounts of sodium, so I'll spend most of my time in the fruit and veg section of the supermarket as reading the tiny nutrition information print on processed food is a pain in the proverbial. I'll let you know how I'm feeling about my change of diet in a month or so.

There are many impressive vegan athletes in the world, most notably (for runners), champion ultramarathoner Scott Jurek, author of Eat & Run. The two that have left an impression with me are cyclist Christine Varderos (see her talk on Youtube) and Rich Roll, author (with his wife, Julie Piatt) of The Plantpower Way and a memoir, Finding Ultra. Rich is a great speaker and in the following off-the-cuff interview, he talks about his life and vegan diet (beginning at 6:15).