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Vegan Girl: The Benefits of Plant-based Living!

‘What on earth can you eat? Where do you get your protein? Isn’t that unhealthy?’

This is the usual reaction when I tell people I am a vegan.

To be perfectly honest, not many people understand what a vegan diet entails – I myself never even knew until a couple of years ago. Quite simply, a vegan diet is one that eliminates any animal based products. Instead, vegans eat plant-based foods including fruit, vegetables, wholegrains, legumes, nuts and seeds. A balanced vegan diet provides all the necessary protein sources, vitamins and minerals that our body needs to sustain itself. After finding all this out, it was out with the chicken dippers and in with the houmous!

But what prompted me to make this change? Originally, I decided to go vegan for ethical reasons. After making the connection between the food on my plate and its source, I couldn’t bring myself to take part in it. I’m a massive animal lover and have always had a fascination with these incredible beings with whom we share this Earth. But what I want to share with you today are the incredible health benefits of a plant-based diet! From a first-hand perspective, these rewards have rejuvenated and revitalised my everyday life in ways I hadn’t anticipated when I started out on this journey two years ago.

The first change I noticed was a dramatic improvement in my energy levels. I went from feeling lethargic and half-asleep every morning, to waking up as fresh as a daisy and full of energy! I was never a morning person until I cut out meat, dairy and eggs. Now I’m hopping out bed and always on time for my nine o’clock lectures – if you were ever a student, you’ll understand the immense difficulty of the task! Not only that, my concentration in work and university has improved tenfold and I have a newound motivation to exercise more and seen an increase in daily productivity.

Changing to a plant-based diet is also great news for your skin! Compared to typical meat and dairy diet, vegan diets typically involve a lot more vitamins and antioxidants that help give your skin a radiant glow. Vitamins C and E are abundant in plant-based foods and have been found to help fight wrinkles and give the skin a youthful, plush look. They are also powerful in combatting spots – as was certainly true for me! Goodbye acne, hello beautiful!

Need a way of finally shifting that weight you’ve been trying to lose for years? The healthiest and easiest way to get that toned and strong body you’ve dreamed about is by changing to a plant-based diet. When I became vegan I went from being a size 14 to a size 10 gradually over the space of three months. The key here was that I never saw this as a ‘diet’ to lose the pounds, it just became a part of me. There was no special secret, no calorie counting that monopolised my life – just the right foods for me in the right portions. It was so easy to maintain this new healthy weight as I was eating all the normal meals I loved, just minus the nasty animal products!
Don’t just take my word for it – check out all the super-healthy, beautiful vegan celebrities such as Hollywood actress Anne Hathaway, tennis legend Venus Williams, and every woman’s favourite TV presenter Ellen Degeneres.

I dare you all to try veganism for a week and see how easy and rewarding it can be! It’s changed my life for the better and I’ve never looked back!



  • Amy Tocknell says:

    Well hello fellow vegan! It is funny, the questions we get asked again and again. I never really mind, I’m just glad people are interested enough to enquire rather than trying to force feed me fish!xx

    • Sian Catahan Sian Catahan says:

      The funniest question has to be “Do you eat grass?” Haha!
      I agree, if we show everyone it’s a positive lifestyle then they view it more positively and take more interest! Always pleased to connect with fellow vegans!

  • dalepeterbarham@gmail.com dalepeterbarham@gmail.com says:

    I can totally relate! I always had the worst spots in the world and NOTHING would touch them! Since I went vegan, they just disappeared almost overnight!

    • Sian Catahan Sian Catahan says:

      That’s great to hear Sheila! I’ve spoke to and met so many vegans who have said it has really changed their life around!

  • You’ve actually made veganism sound appealing, you’ve almost convinced me if it’ll fix my skin! But I really don’t like enough vegetables to survive!x

    • Amy Tocknell says:

      I have to admit a secret here, as a vegan I LOVE Walkers prawn cocktail crisps! They may not be as healthy as quinoa but they are my go to treat snack! xx

      • Sian Catahan Sian Catahan says:

        And Amy, I agree us vegans cant be healthy all the time! Haha I have to admit to splurging myself on chill heatwave doritos on the odd occasion! x

    • Sian Catahan Sian Catahan says:

      The trick is to try as many different types of fruit and veg as you can – there will be enough out there to satisfy you and fulfil all the nutrients you need! Smoothies are a great way of combining a lot of antioxidants all in one and you can flavour them pretty much how you like! :) I hope this is helpful, and I’m glad you feel inspired! Best of luck!

  • Thats it… Amy… Im going to try this! See if I can go a whole week without dairy and meat :-/
    So on an average day… what do you eat exactly? Give me an example of what you eat in one day? Im not exactly a veggie lover and I hate nuts.. but I love fruit? Is there hope for me? 😉 xx

    • Sian Catahan Sian Catahan says:

      Great news Brooke! Here’s an example of what I would eat on a typical day:
      Breakfast – Porridge topped with fruit/Avocado on toast/Fruit smoothie
      Lunch – Jacket Potato with Beans & Salad/ Portobello Mushroom Burgers and Salad/ Falafel and Houmous Wraps
      Dinner – Vegetable Curry made with coconut milk (throw in whatever veggies you love!) /Vegetable chilli & Rice/ Vegetable Pasta

      For snacks if you love fruit – then you’re sorted!

      • Amy Tocknell says:

        This is a really good average day meal plan to be honest. I am a big fan of fruity porridge, I usually throw some seeds and things in there too, just to make sure it sees me through half the day! xx

        • Sian Catahan Sian Catahan says:

          Yep flaxseed is good too! There’s so much variety to a vegan diet, so many great ideas and recipes online too I find new ones every day that inspire me! x

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