Food: I turned him vegan!

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By: Ameera Rouse

Being such a huge sports fan, I've always enjoyed hanging out with my fiance and his friends at our local bar watching the game. I am totally that girl that is yelling at the screen when the ref makes a bad call. He would enthusiastically bring me along to watch the games: I would chug beers, down 25 cent wings and debate with his friends about why my team was better than theirs. Needless to say, all those late night chicken and beer binges eventually took their toll!

I remember waking up one morning, after eating whole family of chickens the night before, and reading an article about how the hormones they pump into chicken can cause irregular breast growth, weight gain and a whole slew of other symptoms. Imagine my surprise, fresh off an all night chicken feast as I stared down at my 38DD's and swollen body-- I decided it was time to make a change. Now, many women would look at me sideways when I said I was concerned about my rapidly growing breast size, but considering that only three years prior I was barely filling out an A cup leaves room for concern. My whole body had changed; I was constantly feeling sick and burdened by the weight that I had put on.

Later that day I made a trip to whole foods and purchased a basket full of vegan foods and when I saw him later that night, I broke the news-- "I'm going VEGAN." I didn't get the dramatic response I was hoping for; he quickly brushed it off as yet another one of my, many, failed endeavors. But when I whipped out the vegan culinary creation a.k.a vegan nachos (not the healthiest choice but I was making baby steps) he began to realize I was serious. He approached his meal that night with great caution and after massive persuasion he reluctantly scooped some of the nachos into his mouth. Much to his surprise it was delicious-- this meant a lot coming from a certified carnivore and snack connoisseur (seriously, his college nickname was Snack-a-Velli).

Anxious to try new recipes, I did my homework and began to explore all that being vegan had to offer. The meals got healthier and his reluctance to vegan food quickly transformed into a preference. We completely changed our way of eating. Trips to the grocery store changed, while we would typically spend the majority of our time perusing the inner aisles (home to processed and packaged foods), we found ourselves frequenting the produce section.

While I still haven't found the courage to stop wearing my favorite leather boots I can report that both my fiance and I continue to live and eat healthy. He occasionally eats meat on special holidays, but for the most part he has maintained a meat-free diet. What started out years ago as my personal attempt to become healthier became our full time commitment to lead more natural, fit and healthy lifestyles.