Vegan Challenge Day 4- Cravings

With the worst flu that I have had in well over a year I have to admit that the 7 Day Vegan Challenge got easier simply because I lost my appetite for nearly 32 hours. Its pretty simple to avoid cheese when you can't stomach the thought of eating anything at all.

Today I decided that appetite or not I needed to get some nutrients into my body to help myself get back to health. While nothing seemed overly appetizing I figured the best bang for my buck was an antioxidant fuelled smoothie.

I call this my Come Back to Life mix- frozen blueberries, strawberries, raspberries and blackberries, grape juice and 2 handfuls of baby spinach. I forced down two big glasses, despite the nausea (and the brain freeze that ensued from the gulping).

I also made myself a wrap with leftover bean salad

I managed to get through half and pushed the rest to the side. Still not ready for it, although I am not surprised. I love me a salad on a good day but when I'm sick or sad (or in today's case most of column A and a wee bit column B) I want comfort food. I even had a dream about Pizza Pops during one of my six naps today. They were filled with pepperoni. I don't even eat pepperoni when I'm not trying out veganism. What is up with that?

Which leads me to my vegan topic of the day:

Do vegans get cravings?

Do vegans crave cheese/ice cream/chicken wings?
How long until the craving subside after you make the switch?
Is the natural transition vegetarian first then vegan or do people go cold turkey (pardon the pun!)?

When I became I vegetarian at age 14 I did it overnight. I made the decision, then the announcement and stopped eating meat immediately. It was hard at times (my first Christmas without turkey was rough) but I'd made it known that I had made this change and wasn't about to back down on it.

Cravings were another thing though. I missed Chicken McNuggets, hamburgers and that good ol' holiday turkey. But being a vegetarian meant something to me and I got through it for 7 years (and seven Christmas dinners)

During this challenge I have found myself having cravings. An ooey-gooey slice of cheese pizza has been a recurring thought. Brie and goat's cheese have crossed my mind too. Mostly I think that its a case of "Wanting What You Can't Have". Much in the same way that restrictive weight loss diets fail because they push people to crave the items that have been labelled as bad, I am craving the things that I usually eat but have been told (on account of participating in the challenge) to stay away from.

That said, I am really starting to appreciate those individuals who live by a vegan diet and not because of their will power. I admire their conviction to a belief and a cause. So I'm not really sure if vegans get cravings and I suppose the experience is different for everyone but what I do know is that vegan eating requires you to change your lifestyle because you believe in something that is worth that change. That's pretty darn cool if you ask me.

Check back tomorrow for a guest post from a vegan named Rachel who blogs over at Rachel Runs. She will be sharing her insights on another interesting topic: Vegans and Honey

Until then, I've got some getting better to do and some American Idol to watch. G'night!

So tell me, what cravings have you been having lately? Ever crave something you don't ordinarily eat?Are you a vegan with a craving?


  1. The first week of my sugar-detox I get sicker than I'd been in years - I wonder if there is something about the detox process that causes that - part of making such a radical switch in our diets maybe?

  2. So sorry you've been sick! I've heard that it takes your body, after being on a different diet, a few days or even weeks to get rid of hardcore (physical) cravings. I call these physical cravings, because your body is being physically deprived of something it's used to getting. I then hear that after your body adjust, it's all mental cravings.

    I experienced this on my 4 weeks of Paleo eating. Once I got over the physical cravings, I was fine and it got easier.

  3. I hope you are feeling better soon! I think that everyone gets cravings when you give up something that the body is used to getting often and they would lessen over time. Looking forward to the guest post tomorrow!

  4. I had the flu last week, it was worst than everything I've been thru before, 3 days of intense fever, not even capable of lifting a glass of water...!!!! I went vegan last may 2010 and did it overnight, after reading the kind diet by A. Silverstone. Despite the fact that the rest of my family is still eating meat, the process was not as difficult as I anticipated it. The thing a still crave at time is Ben & Jerry ice cream and sushis! Hope you get well soon!

  5. I have sugar cravings all of the time. I love candy. It's horrible! :) I think everyone has a craving now and again!

    I hope you are feeling better soon!

  6. Since going vegetarian almost 8 months ago I have had almost zero cravings for meat (I smelled bacon once and it smelled good! Haha). BUT, let me tell you, since starting this vegan challenge I have had MAJOR cheese cravings! The Daiya cheese just does not do it for me. It's definitely been more of a challenge than I thought it would be!

  7. Your wrap looks delicious!! i get major cravings incredibly often-sometimes so bad that I'll wake up in the middle of the night because i'm craving it so much! My latest craving is cottage cheese. Weird one, right? But I just can't get enough of it!

  8. You poor thing! The flu is so miserable. I'm a vegan and I used to get cravings a lot but now, not so much. I do crave cheese sometimes, and bacon, whenI smell it cooking. But otherwise, it's become pretty easy.

  9. I agree with you in that I'm realizing a new respect for vegans by doing this challenge. I'm not a vegetarian but eat like one most of the time, so I've not had cravings for meat so much as for cheese and sugar. I almost never eat baked goods like muffins but I've been cravings those as well - I think it's definitely the 'want what you can't have' mentality! Good luck with the rest of the challenge and I hope you feel better soon!

  10. I won't lie, sometimes I crave things I don't eat anymore. But the craving passes quickly, and I always remind myself why I'm vegetarian. I don't think the cravings are because I actually want these things, but because I see other people having them. It's weird, but it passes, and I'm okay with it. Feel better!

  11. I'm a vegan and really don't have cravings anymore. Much of what I used to eat (animal products) turn me off now. I think it takes a good 3 to 4 months to lose your taste buds for something you do love, however. I went a full year without ANY REFINED SUGAR. Yup, I did it. It was tough for about 3 months. After that, not really tough at all. When my friends would share a dessert after dinner out, I just stopped caring about that dessert. Now I might or might not take a bite. But usually if I do take a bite, it's not all that pleasing to me.

  12. When I was pregnant and wasn't aloud certain foods (too much tuna, alcohol, deli meat), I craved it because I couldn't have it. I would give in to the tuna and the deli meats every once and awhile because what is one or two times...but the alcohol I definitely steered clear from. So I can see having those cravings bc you can't have it...

  13. I was vegan for six months and I used to get really strong cheese / yogurt cravings! Now I crave meat sometimes, but very rarely.