Food School: a 31 day course (day 17) What is Vegan?

What is Vegan?

This was a question that I had via Facebook!  Thanks for your question Anastacia.

I’m not exactly a vegan.  I’m an Accidental Vegan by way of being compassionate and I have kids with food sensitivities and one kid who refuses to eat a “dead animal”, so I have her chose different words while showing respect for her choice.

This is my back story.  One morning I woke up and the world looked different.  My husband was more handsome than ever, my kids were funnier than ever, the grass had shades of green that I had never noticed before!  Was I crazy?  Menopausal?  or did I merely wake up to my calling in life?  To really see life for what it is, an amazing journey,  while standing in my own truth.  Whatever you call it . . . her I am!  An Accidental Vegan.

After that morning, I began listening to how my body felt when I ate certain foods.  I realized that coffee with half and half was not serving me well!  I noticed that when I ate salads with homemade dressings–I felt lighter and more open.  It was difficult to not drink coffee.  After all, that IS what I do in the morning.  I needed to get past the grip of habit.

I have been a bigger woman for longer than I would like . . . for 13 years now.  One day, I woke up so happy to finally be pregnant!  It was so incredible to know that months and months of trying everything–finally, I was at the perfect season of my life–motherhood!  But my first go around with motherhood only lasted 14 weeks.  I was . . . devastated.  Now, years after we started trying . . . we were starting over.  

Good news, bad news:  My second pregnancy was successful.  I decided at that moment, if I had to lose a baby to get one I would.  But I NEVER thought that I would actually lose another baby!  My third pregnancy ended at 16 weeks.  Food was now my friend, counselor, therapist, ob-gyn, and mom!  You see–I found out that I was pregnant for #3 the morning of my mom’s funeral.  I lost two babies and my Mom in less than two years–that’s a lot of emotion, heartache, joy, sorrow, self-doubt the list goes on and on.  

Why do I mention these tragedies as part of “what is vegan?”  I think that our life stories create the person we are going to become.  I know that if I did not have those experiences that I would NOT be mindful and intentional.  So I urge you to look upon your life with compassion and see if it leads you in a direction . . . invite your own transformation.  I’m living a compassionate life, for me that means not eating meat–will it always be like this?  I don’t know.  I know that I will chose compassion but I don’t know what that will look like on my plate.

Back to the top:  What is a Vegan?

Vegan:  a person who does not eat animals or use animal products.  A vegan diet is different from a vegan lifestyle, that does not use any animal derived products or products that harm animals.

Pescatarian:  does not eat meat but does eat fish.

Semi-vegetarian:  eats mostly vegetarian diet but will eat meat on occasion.

Lacto-ovo vegetarian:  do not eat the flesh of animals but will eat eggs and dairy.

Ovo-vegetarian:  do not eat the flesh of animals but do eat eggs.

Raw vegan or a Raw foods diet:  consist of unprocessed vegan foods that have not beeen heated above 115 degrees.

If all of that isn’t confusing enough we have the Atkins diet, Paleo Diet, Mediterranean  Diet . . . 

I eat a mostly an organic plant-based diet because it makes me feel good.  This is what I DON’T EAT:

  • dairy–milk just makes me feel really ill–I’ll spare you the details!
  • eggs–they just don’t taste good to me any more.  
  • HFCS–high fructose corn syrup–because it is made with genetically modified corn
  • GMO containing foods.  I just don’t want to eat genetically modified food.
  • meat–I don’t “knowingly” eat the flesh of any animal.  I just don’t want to harm any living thing.  
  • food that is harvested by exploiting humans. 
  • food that is harvested by exploiting the earth.

That morning when I woke up and life looked different.  I had no idea the direction that I would be moving into.  I had no idea what it was like to finally stand in my truth.  I had no idea how much I would love my life.


Be Blessed.

 To receive a free copy of my Blessed by Breakfast cookbook, please go to and sign up! I send updates that include; family tested and approved recipes, video tutorials, tips and tricks on how to begin your day with the blessing of food.

cookbook coming soon

Books I suggest: The Omnivore’s Dilemma: The Secrets Behind What You Eat,

Young Readers Edition The Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals

Hope’s Edge: The Next Diet for a Small Planet

Some of my friends have also joined the 31 day challenge:  

Anastacia Maness

Racquel Narciso…/

Pamela Hodges

I’m linking up to these blogs


Share and Enjoy

  • RSS
  • Email
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google Plus
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
2 replies
  1. Anastacia Maness
    Anastacia Maness says:

    Thank you, Renee! This really helps me a lot.
    I’ve been so mixed up with all the different eating trends. Your post really helps put it into a clearer light for me. I’m bookmarking this page for future reference.

    • Renee
      Renee says:

      So glad that it helps–I still get confused. When I say–this is a Vegan meal people ask tons of questions. I love answering questions!

      Be Blessed.


Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>