My 1 Month – Vegan & Gluten Free Challenge – Diary

This is a completely new approach to me. I usually eat absolutely everything that comes to my path, I do not overthink about the ingredients, never do sport, drink alcohol, specially wine, love meat, cheese, butter (oh gosh specially butter), love croissants (which have both gluten & butter), chocolate & well everything really.

However, lately I feel like I have reached a limit to my body, I feel bloated, I gained 5 kilos, feel tired, kinda stuck on my routine, I try every Monday to be better without any success & I just need a CHANGE! I have no will to become full time Vegan nor let go my morning croissant, but 1 month a year can make an impact on my body and also to the planet (imagine if everyone would do the 1 month challenge?!). So I decided to ship into this adventure and register the steps, the recipes I tried, what I went trough, the challenges, the people I met, the reactions I got from people etc.

I got inspired by a book and blogger: Deliciously Ella. I got the book for my B-DAY (last July 20th, thank you Charles 🙂 ) so it got me all excited about the recipes and how it changed her life. I will be sharing a lot of her recipes along the way! Also I decided to NOT accept any blogger events during the month of August to avoid temptation and post things that I will actually not be eating 🙂

ONLY EXCEPTION – On August 12th is my husband’s Birthday so we will celebrate accordingly, so it will be like my mid-way reward!

Are you ready?!? I am not … so I will need you support and courage so I do not demotivate myself.Geneva Lifestyle Blog: Livingeneva - Vegan

Basic Rules:

There are tons of NOs in this section it is a little discouraging … :s .

  • No Lactose
  • Vegan (no meat, fish, nothing that comes from animals)
  • Gluten Free – nothing that comes from wheat
  • No Alcohol (Ahhhh)
  • No fizzy drinks…. bye bye Coke Zero(sniff)

There are some Yes to the challenge too!

  • Lemon Water every morning!
  • More sport – I plan to do 2 times a week some kind of activity
  • I will try to walk more, 15,000 steps per day
  • 2.5lts per day of water – It is a hot period so I do not want to faint somewhere in the middle
  • More fruits and veggies – I love them, so I am happy to spend more time with them
  • More beans, nuts and seeds

DIARY:

Day 1 – Monday, August 1st 2016 – South of France (bank holiday)

I was really anxious on what was going to happen on this day. I felt like I was psychologically ready, but not sure how by body was going to handle it. I also had a lot of fears such as, what am I going to eat? Will I be able to resist the temptation?  Are people going to judge me? (stupid I know, but I was thinking that).

It was kind of hard to explain to everyone why I was doing it and the comments back are kind of tiring to answer. Yes I will eat. No I will not be eating only grains. A lot of people do it. I am not becoming a bird and YES it can taste good 🙂

Breakfast: 1 Peach + 2 corn gallettes with honey
Lunch: Melon slices, Ratatouille, Hummus & corn gallettes
Dinner: Melon, rice & ratatouilleHumus Recipe

Day 2 – Tuesday, August 2nd 2016 – Geneva

First day at work as a VEGAN – Gluten-FREE person. I felt like a new me! Also a little anxious on how I was going to put it out there. I had a lot of support and also it was when I posted it on INSTAGRAM and SnapChat and people were very positive about it. I did not felt any hunger during the day nor any specific cravings, so far so good!

Breakfast: Chia Pudding + cranberries
Lunch: Rice & ratatouille
Snack: I found healthy VEGAN, Gluten-Free bars at work and was pretty good.
Dinner: Red beans salad with carrots, onions, yellow pepper, Melon & green salad. I also had a piece of dark chocolate.Beans salad

Day 3 – Wednesday, August 3th 2016 – Geneva

I woke up super energetic and light! I am not sure if it is because of the eating changes or purely psychological, but all day I felt super happy & HEALTHY! I wanted to scream to the world: HEY VEGAN IS BEAUTIFUL! A great day, no cravings, no hunger and a lot of energy! I also attended my first PILATES class, so I felt kind of a HEALTHY GURU, almost cliche hahahahah

Breakfast: Chia Pudding + cranberries &  1/2 banana
Lunch: Red beans salad with carrots, onions, yellow pepper,
Dinner: Chick peas & onion salad, green salad & Melon

Day 4 – Thursday, August 4th 2016 – Geneva

This has been the hardest day so far, I am kind of tired of beans….I guess it is a little my fault since I haven’t been very creative on the menus. Mostly because of time, I cooked 2 kilos of red beans for the salad, and underestimated the fact that you do not eat that much, so they last long. I am craving Coke Zero like hell, I think I am like going through a rehab moment right now… So not an easy day, but still all good!

NOTE: I went for the very first time to an Organic Store and found soooo many things Ella talks about in her book. Quinoa Flour, Dates from Medjou, Raw Cacao, Acai, etc etc etc.

Breakfast: Chia Pudding + cranberries &  1/2 banana
Lunch: Red beans salad with carrots, onions, yellow pepper – Kinda tired of it!
Dinner*: 2 Chocolate Chia cookies + strawberries & a glass of almond milk

*I was soooo cranky and desperate I had no idea what to eat. I finally started doing the cookies and were amazing so I just ate that!

Day 5 – Friday, August 5th 2016 – Geneva

After my mini-breakdown yesterday I am feeling much much better :). I decided to step into the scale today and to my big surprise I lost one entire kilo! It is nice to see some results, in addition to the feeling good and with energy. I prepared myself a nice lunch consisting on 2 types of Quinoa and vegetables and had a Chocolate Chia Cookie for lunch too! I was really happy about the result on the cookies , they do taste amazing! And the texture is like brownie? More or less…
FYI- I am not planning on eating red beans for quite a while LOL! Happy Friday!

Breakfast: Chia Pudding + cranberries &  1/2 banana – this has not changed much, but I love it so no change for now.
Lunch: Red and White Quinoa Salad with carrots – Fresh Strawberries and a Chocolate Chia Cookie!
Apero: Cherry tomatoes & olives. *
Dinner: Melon, Baked potatoes with Salad & Strawberries. **

*First time we “go -out” since I started. We were first invited to a friend’s house for apero and there were cold-cuts, cheese and other things; however, I only ate the cherry tomatoes & olives. Level of frustation: low.
**After the Apero we went to another friend’s house for dinner. This was a little more complicated since the main course was BBQ …. oops. But it was not that complicated, I only ate the potatoes and the salad that was super good. The hardest thing was to give up on the champagne at the beginning …. super tough!

Day 6 – Saturday, August 6th 2016 – Geneva

First weekend! I was so happy to finally have a day-off, even if the week was short, it felt quite long! We woke up mega late (11am) so we kind-of brunched immediately. I was not that hungry and wanted to have a lot of fruits. After we went grocery shopping!!! First time at Satoriz  that is a 100% organic super market that sells all types of food for gluten-free, vegan, raw and vegetarian diets. You will need to go to the French-side of the border, since they do not have one in Switzerland, but they have 6 stores close to Geneva, very recommended!

Breakfast: Chia Pudding + cranberries & almonds, 1 peach, strawberries, figs & bananas.
Lunch: (My FAV so far!) Home made Vegan Mexican Tacos, with Mexican tortillas, avocado and pico de gallo (fresh spicy sauce with tomatoes and onions) I accompany this with my Salsa Milagrosa!!
Dinner: Same as lunch! I just loved it!!

NOTE: After we went out to the Fetes de Geneve and Les Terraces for a drink, I of course only had water or sparkling water with lemon to spice things up! (NOT) hahahaha. I actually do no miss alcohol whatsoever, however I DO miss my Coke Zero … 🙁Geneva Lifestyle Blog: Livingeneva - Vegan Shopping- vegan tacos

Day 7 – Sunday, August 7th 2016 – Geneva

My first week is done!!! I can’t believe how fast it went by! I realize it is very hard to go out and have a social life with this type of eating. I was always taught that it was un-polite to refuse what people offer you and also to implement your way of eating to others. In the physical side everything is going great!
PS- I miss coke Zero!

Breakfast: Corn Gallettes with peanut-butter (I ♥ PEANUT BUTTER) & strawberries.
Lunch: Melon, Potato salad & Strawberries. *
Dinner: Gluten-Free Pasta with Ratatouille Sauce + Vegan Brownies from Deliciously Ella

*We were invited for lunch, it was a little complicated so I only ate what I could. Not many options… but it was ok. However, around 5 I baked some sweet potato brownies and ate like 4!!! I realised I was kind off (a lot) hungry.Geneva Lifestyle Blog- Livingeneva - Vegan Shopping- VEGAN BROWNIES

Day 8 – Monday , August 8th 2016 – Geneva

First week behind me phew! 25% Done! It has been an interesting path so far. I think that the hardest thing for me and what I miss the most are eggs, I eat a lot of them, either in omelette or soft boiled in salads, or like a quiche. If I become Vegan it would probably be the thing I would miss the most, not meat nor dairy.

Breakfast: Fresh fruits & corn gallettes
Lunch: Quinoa couscous with cucumber, tomatoes & onions + Vegan Brownies (pic below)
Dinner: Melon, Huge Mixed Salad with avocado, tomatoes, onions, cucumber etc+ Vegan Brownies  with peach

Day 9 – Tuesday , August 9th 2016 – Geneva

First restaurant going out today! I met up with the lovely Sofia Clara for lunch at Ou Bien Encore at Quartier des Bains. It is a great restaurant for Vegan, Vegeterians & Gluten-Free people. I had a HUGE Mezze plate with Ginger & Apple juice! Simply delicious! The rest was same old, same old 🙂

Breakfast: Fresh fruits & corn gallettes
Lunch: 5 Mezzes at Ou Bien Encore + Ginger & Apple Juice (Pic below)
Dinner: Rice with Ratatouille & tofu, Apple Sauce with cashew nuts & cranberries*

*I was not sure what I wanted for dinner, I was a little cranky and desperate. Not sure if it was because of the eating habits or the day in general; it was raining all day. So I just cooked some rice and heated the ratatouille I had done a couple of days ago and added grilled tofu. Not bad :). Level of frustration of the day: mid-high

Daily menu at Ou Bien Encore

Daily menu at Ou Bien Encore

Day 10 – Wednesday , August 10th 2016 – Geneva

I cant believe it has been 10 days already! It is also cool to keep a diary in general, haven’t done this since my teens :).  There is nothing in particular that I crave, this really surprises me. I have been wondering that becoming a vegetarian will be super easy (do not panic honey I won’t).

I also started to realize that some people claim to become vegan for the planet, really? And you bring your avocados from Mexico & Peru and your coconut milk from Indonesia, and your Almonds from Cali…(that kill thousands of bees BTW)…. hmm I am not sure this is something the planet needs. I think that we need to be more careful of what we claim and saying that eating chia pudding will save the planet is A BIG STATEMENT. That is why I wanted to interview 5 Vegan people to discuss more about their regime, their habits, their reasons, their constraints, the benefits and the obstacles. Also, I will dig a little bit more on the impact the food we consume has on the planet… more to come!

Breakfast: Chia Pudding (I missed you) with cashew nuts + 1 peach
Lunch: Home made rice noodles with zucchini & cashews, avocado toast.
Mid-day Snack:
2 Kiwis + a TREK bar with coconut. I prefer the one without the coconut.
Dinner: Zucchini, Olives & fresh tomatoes bread – I invented my first recipe!! I had this with chocolate Chia Pudding and a lot of almonds and nuts. Trek bar

I found the bars on Amazon and ordered a bunch for my Vegan Month and later. Great deal! The image is click-able to the Amazon purchase.

Day 11 – Thursday, August 11th 2016 – Geneva

I ate a lot of bread, I actually finished my bread that I baked last night. I find it very hard to just come home and cook something; it is actually impossible. Unless you have tons of Gluten-Free Pasta at home (NOTE-TO-SELF) or you do a lot of cooking in advance and freeze stuff. Regarding afterworks, it is hard without the alcohol, but I had a delicious Virgin Mojito, ignoring my NO-SUGAR-ADDED bullet-point…. I cant do everything at the same time…. 🙂

Breakfast: Chia Pudding + Watermelon
Lunch: Zucchini bread from last night + Watermelon
Afterwork: Virgin Mojito with Solene & the bloggers at the FloowTwo Terrace —> FB Album
Dinner: Melon, Zucchini bread & tons of nuts

Day 12 – Friday, August 12th 2016 – Geneva

I was getting excited about my dinner at Tse Fung from LA RESERVE! It is my first “Free-Meal” since I started the challenge, so I was really looking forward for it! I mean who wouldn’t? It is also my husband’s birthday, so we went to have lunch together at Grütli Cafe and there I discovered they  have a Vegan Menu option on Fridays and Vegan-Gluten-Free Burger every evening! Yei!

For dinner we had the Esmeral  Degustation Menu —- Article here

Breakfast: Chia Pudding + Soy Matcha from Boreal Cafe 
Lunch: Mixed Salad, Chickpea Menu + Vegan Cheesecake from Grütli Cafe
Afterwork: Virgin Mojito with Solene & the bloggers at the FloowTwo Terrace —> FB Album
Dinner: Esmeral Menu from Tse Fung at La Reserve – Article here.

Day 13- Saturday, August 13th 2016 – Geneva

The weekend again…. we woke up quite late (around 10am) and had a normal breakfast – I had some gallettes and fruits. Then we had a delicious and light lunch and then we went for a BBQ – I had BBQed vegetables – which is great! I also made some Vegan Brownies again, still great, but I am pretty sure the recipe can be better 🙂

I ended up cooking a lot during the weekend, which made me notice that you cook A LOT when you decide to become Vegan. My Magimix has never worked so much in his life!

Breakfast: Fruits & Nuts – not very hungry after the huge dinner
Lunch: Fake – Tomatoes – Mozza Salad with Tofu (instead of Mozza) and Vegan Fajitas with white rice
Dinner: BBQ at a friends- I had vegetables grilled on the BBQ and a delicious avocado salad + my home made vegan brownies.

Day 14- Sunday, August 14th 2016 – Geneva

Sundaaaaaaay, the weekend always passes by so fast right? Already the end of it. I have to admit I cheated on my challenge …. 🙁 I do not feel very proud, but there was no option. I was invited for the Parc Des Eaux Vives Sunday Brunch, which is super mega lovely and had to try everything…. meaning I will do 1 extra vegan meal after I finish to compensate. Just to make you feel better, I felt super bloated and had a hard digestion after it… I guess because of the gluten. Oops.

Breakfast: Tea with corn gallettes & almond butter (delicious BTW)
Brunch: At Parc Hotel des Eaux Vives – Not vegan nor gluten-free #notproud
Dinner: Vegan Chickpeas curry with wild rice + vegan mousse au chocolat!

Vegan Mousse au Chocolat

Vegan Mousse au Chocolat

Day 15- Monday, August 15th 2016 – Geneva

Monday again… I feel really good physically, energized and healthy. However, I am getting a little tired of cooking … I love cooking so do not get me wrong, it has just been too much. For everything else, I haven’t had a MAYOR craving, really like meat or diary related, so far so good. The weather has been amazing, so very easy to make fresh things and enjoy the fruits and vegetables out there!

Breakfast: Corn gallettes & almond butter
Lunch: Vegan Chickpeas curry with wild rice
Dinner: Nah.. not bother to make dinner… I just stuffed my face with home made hummus, carrots, a grapefruit & mousse au chocolat.

Day 16- Tuesday, August 16th 2016 – Geneva

I have a funny story for today. Emmanuel went crazy from eating plants and went and bought a huge COTE DE BOEUF and grilled it for himself. I had no need to take a bite nor even wanted to, I guess boys are more carnivorous than girls. I wonder how is proportion of MALE/FEMALE on the Vegan world…

Breakfast: Homemade Vegan-Gluten-Free Scones!! *
Lunch: Ratatouille + 1 kiwi
Dinner: I finished the Humus from last night, dark chocolate & baked potatoes

*The recipe is good, I would add another flour and some baking power, they can taste like carton if you do not put enough “fun” ingredients aka. strawberries, chocolate chips, etc.

Day 17- Wednesday, August 17th 2016 – Geneva

I went Vegan grocery shopping for the first time to COOP in Geneva. It was interesting to find many thingS. However, I was disappointed not to find gluten-free pasta. I bought some vegan burger paties, tofu, some salty snacks, vegan chocolate, vegan gummies (delicious BTW) & many other things, I will post my grocery shopping in another post!

Breakfast: 1 Banana + berries
Lunch: Salad with tomatoes, tofu & nuts
Dinner: 1/2 burger, rice, olive stuffed mushrooms & fresh salad with tomatoes, mushrooms & onions. A LOT OF CHOCOLATE!!!

Day 18- Thursday, August 18th 2016 – Geneva

We went for a quick after work at Cafe de la Bourse. They do home made iced-teas which are great! I was happy to find an option that was not sparkling water for once 🙂

Breakfast: Corn Gallettes and a Banana
Lunch: The other 1/2 burger + rice with mushrooms + 1 kiwi
Afterwork: Homemade Mint Iced tea from Cafe de la Bourse
Dinner:  Fresh salad with tomatoes, mushrooms & onions

Day 19- Friday, August 19th 2016 – Geneva

Thank God it’s Friday!! Surviving the week and finally the weekend. We went to the new terrace of the Metropole Hotel – Big 5 – the new Burger concept! I was of course limited to French fries … and Romanette (which I discovered there!) that is a kind of local Sprite… quite nice! The view is splendid, so no regrets on the No-Burger.

Breakfast: Green tea, blueberries and corn gallettes
Lunch: Beetroot salad with Palmitos
Afterwork: Paid a visit to 5 Burger Bar & had a local lemonade & french fries
Dinner: Tomato salad with basil, corn gallettes, blueberries, vegan gummies (so random)Burger 5 -

Day 20- Saturday, August 20th 2016 – Geneva

On weekends I feel more comfortable since I know I have time to cook all the things I want to eat! I have energy, time and dedication to discover new ways of cooking and new ingredients. I decided to make some Pancakes! I L-O-V-E pancakes, and I really wanted to have some for breakfast. The day was super cloudy and rainy so it was the perrrrfect day to stay at home, live in PJs, cook some pancakes & stay at home 🙂

Breakfast: Homemade Vegan-Gluten-Free Pancakes (picture below)
Lunch: Green Gaspacho +Homemade Vegan Curry with wild rice + Vegan Chocolate Mousse
Dinner: We actually ate super late lunch so we did not have dinner.

Vegan-Gluten-Free Pancakes

Vegan-Gluten-Free Pancakes

Day 21- Sunday, August 21th 2016 – Geneva

Breakfast: Homemade Vegan-Gluten-Free Pancakes
Lunch: Green Gaspacho +Homemade Vegan Curry with wild rice
Dinner: We went to NOODL to have dinner at Eaux VivesGeneva Lifestyle Blog: Livingeneva - Vegan Shopping

 

Day 22- Monday, August 22nd 2016 – Geneva

Breakfast: 2 Kiwis + gallettes & peanut butter
Lunch: Quinoa Bowl with Ratatouille
Dinner: Chic-pea salad with baked potatoes and green salad. For dessert we had a pear & vegan chocolate mousse.

Day 23- Tuesday, August 23rd 2016 – Geneva

Breakfast: Chia pudding
Lunch: I went to Vert Attitude. I was a little disappointed with the Vegan options they have.
Snack: Manu Gelato – Mango and Chocolate Sorbet
Dinner: Vegan Curry + Wild Rice  with Green Gaspacho

Day 24- Wednesday, August 24th 2016 – Geneva

Breakfast: Tons of fresh fruits & bowl of muesli with almond milk
Lunch: I was finally able to go to Wild Girls Deli!!! I had a Loca Tortilla Tapioca, an Avocado Toast & a frozen pop.
Dinner:  

Day 25- Thursday, August 25th 2016 – Geneva

Breakfast: Chia Pudding – my FAVE!!!!
Lunch: Green Salad with nuts, figs & quinoa
Dinner: I went to Bistrot 23 with some friends- IMPOSSIBLE to eat Vegan Gluten Free !! I had the vegetarian option that was pasta (gluten) filled with cheese (not-vegan) but it was the closest option I had.

Day 26- Friday, August 26th 2016 – Geneva / Vacations!!!

Breakfast: Fresh apples
Lunch: Grilled vegetables & white rice
Dinner: Tomatoes, apples & nuts + dark chocolate

Day 27- Saturday, August 27th 2016 – South of France

First official day of holidays!!! Yei!! We went to Le Domaine de Capelongue in Bonnieux for a drink and then we moved to Le Fournil for dinner. Both places are so so so recommended!

Breakfast: 2 fresh peaches
Lunch: Tomatoes with olive oils, tons of baked potatoes & 1 peach
Aperitive: Home-made non-alcoholic drink from Edouard Loubé (Michelin Star Chef)
Dinner: Vegan dish prepared by Le Fournil (thank you!!!) Peach & mint cold soup for dessert

Day 28- Sunday, August 28th 2016 – South of France

Breakfast: 1 peach , non-gluten cereal with almond milk
Lunch: 1 full melon -& Saint-Hubert Vegetarian Dish for dessert lemon sorbet
Dinner:  Fried polenta & ratatouille

Day 29- Monday, August 29th 2016 – South of France

Breakfast: 1 peach + 3 gallettes with mermelade
Lunch: baked potatoes, tomatoes & 1 peach
Dinner: Polenta, epautre, cold zucchini soup & lemon sorbet

Day 30- Tuesday, August 30th 2016 – South of France

Breakfast: 1 peach (I ate a lot of peaches) + 3 gallettes with honey.
Lunch: Melon , White rice with tomatoes & raspberry sorbet
Dinner: Baked potatoes, green salad & fruit

Day 31- Wednesday, August 31st  2016 – South of France

Breakfast: Gallettes with peanut butter
Lunch: Delicious market olives, dried tomatoes & epautre
Dinner: Melon, polenta & green salad.

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Yeeeeeeeeeei!! I can’t believe I managed to do it!

What did I ate just after? My husband bought a huge piece of meat, I was kind of disgusted just by seeing it. But I ate a tiny piece. Then it was little bit little that I started to intake normal things, however I do not eat much bread anymore!!!!

Also, Coca-Cola I got rid of it!!! So happy happy, like 2 weeks after I finished my challenge I ordered a Coke Zero at the restaurant and could not even finish it. Finally I am free.

What did I missed most? Definitely Eggs, it sounds weird, but it it true. I appreciate having a soft-boiled egg for dinner. Or Omelette for breakfast. I realize I am not a huge meat eater, however I love eggs 🙂 . And if you eat organic, free living chicken-eggs they are are amazing source of protein.

What was my favorite Recipe? The vegan curry by Deliciously Ella was awesome!!! I will keep doing this all Winter long!!

How did I feel? Amazing!!! Full of energy, great digestion and not frustrated; actually there is some kind of self assurance and super healthy self-esteem (if that even exists)

I am preparing a full resume soon! Keep posted!

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2 comments

  1. Lucie says:

    Super !!! I know that you can do it you are a superwoman. J’ai lu et beaucoup rigolé. (Specially with de coca zero and red beans)
    You should maybe check but some vegan do not eat honey because it’s made by animals too. I am not an expert. Je te soutiens <3

    • Diana says:

      Coucou!!! Oui, LOL!
      I know, some do and some not, but I am eating honey it is a lovely gift from bees <3!!!
      See you soon darling!

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