I stopped meat for 6 months | Why I went Vegan – The Full Story

Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food – Hippocrates – Father of Medicine

The Context

As some of you may know, on the night of my 25th birthday, I made a decision :

Stop eating animal products and going full on a plant based diet AKA no meat, no chicken, no milk, no cheese, no fish, no pain au chocolat, no croissant because no butter.

Wait what? Yes, you heard it I decided it, I made that decision, that’s what I wanted to do.

Just so you know, I’m the master of making completely crazy decisions in unexpected moments

Read my article on why I woke up at 5 AM for 50 Days, and This is What I learned

I started posting pictures, recipes, and documenting my journey towards veganism and its benefits.

Due to my Moroccan background, my followers were completely in a “WTF” mode. Why the hell would you let down all the tajines, bastilas, and other Moroccan delicious food ? For the sake of what ?

To be honest, that was not a complete “2 seconds” decision, It was well documented and backed up with strong scientific reviews.

The Start

It all started 5 years ago, when I met this girl in the gym, she was pushing it hard in the gym and I invited her to a restaurant where they do great grilled meat.

She gently replied if they had vegan options. I didn’t even knew what that word means. What the fuck was vegan ?

So she told me that vegans don’t eat animal products, from eggs, to milk, cheese, honey, meat, fish & chicken.

My first reaction was : Okay, so what can you eat ?

– Well you can eat fruits & vegetables…

I was confused, how can people live only on fruits & vegetables, is it sustainable. I didn’t ask that much question, and passed.

The Why?

5 years later, I’m in the work life…

Feeding myself the right way was a huge topic.

When you sit all day working in front of a laptop, you start questioning yourself about health, well being, etc…

Even if I train on regular basis, there is always this question on my mind : What is the best diet one can have to optimize his life ?

So I started checking studies and researches. 6 months ago I watched “What the health”. A documentary about how a plant based diet can enhance your health.

I read also a book called “How not to die” :

“The simple truth is that most doctors are good at treating acute illnesses but bad at preventing chronic disease.”

1a1

I immediately told myself : Ok let’s GO VEGAN.

The first days

On March 26th, 24 hours after my decision, I decided to test a “vegan” restaurant in Paris, I wanted to start my journey by eating delicious vegan food to convince myself that it can be plant based AND delicious.

I went to Mykitchen ( 82 rue Lemercier, Paris XVII), and I ate one of the best food of my life. Simple, tasty, healthy & vegan dishes and deserts.

The owner was vegan for +10 years, she shared with me her valuable advice on how to maintain a healthy vegan diet such as cooking the right vegetables in the right season, I understood that veganism is not simply a diet, it’s a community, a way of living, an awareness that the planet is for both humans AND animals

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Vegan Chocolate “Fondant” with Goji Berries

Here’s a list of the 3 best vegans places I visited in Paris :

  • Le potager de Charlotte
  • My Kitchen
  • Hank Burger / Hank Pizza
  • Cloud cakes

Health Benefits

During March, April, May, June & July, I was a strict vegan : Absolutely 0 animal product.

The only moments I cheated it’s when I had a hand made ice cream in Venice, Italy, or when I ate fish in that restaurant that just because they had no other vegan option.

Otherwise, For 5 months, my diet consisted of a lot of vegetables, fruits, and supplementing with vegan protein powder for muscle growth.

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My face right after running 15KM for the first time (3 months vegan)

I also wanted to test if a vegan diet had any impact on my overall health, so I did a 15 km run in Versailles. I wanted to challenge myself and see if I can run for over an hour without feeling any pain or weakness.

It went amazing

 

 

I discovered that food is not only about animals…

My plate was full of delicious, unexpected vegetables with great spices, nuts and seeds..

I realized that seeds, nuts & vegetables are full of powerful nutriments that I wasn’t even imagining.

I learned that you can eliminate diabetes and other health issues by eliminating animal products from your diet.

Results

  • I lost fat, I could see more muscle definition. I always felt very light with overall well being.
  • I don’t feel sleepy when I get back at work at 2 because I almost eat vegetables & rice at lunch.
  • Also, I lost complete interest in chicken and meat, I don’t miss it, and it’s not appealing to me anymore, I’m convinced that my taste has changed since I stopped eating meat.
  • It’s just another way of living that suits me, I feel great, alert, powerful, fast.

    My conclusion

I’ve watched my father struggling with his health in his mid 50′, many of my uncles and aunts are suffering from diabetes, high blood pressure, cholesterol and obesity.

I believe that a human has 3 dimension : Physical, intellectual & spiritual.

These are the 3 pillars that allows you live your life to the full potential.

It’s all about balance. I eat to nourish myself, considering that my body is a finite, sacred space that allows me to navigate through life, I also read books to enrich the intellectual experience of my brain. I meditate and engage in deep philosophical conversations to have a transcendent experience in this life beyond the material and the “seen”.

Veganism invites you to think deeper these 3 pillars.

After 6 months of being Vegan, I don’t believe it’s a must, and that everyone should go vegan. After all, saying that you have the ultimate truth is the best way to make sure you are wrong. However, I do believe that a plant based can help you feel great physically and mentally. It’s an experience I recommend you to have at least for few days just so you acknowledge the fact that you are not eating enough fruits, vegetables, nuts & seeds.

Our health is the greatest asset we have, it’s what allows us to live life to the fullest, I want to be able to run, jump, squat and climb for as long as i’m on this planet.

Do what’s good for you.

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6 Comments Add yours

  1. Ahimsa_tim says:

    Hey Zakaria! Nice article, my story is so similar i was so suprised. I had a bigger influence from the animal welfare side too though. We’ve definitely chosen the right way forward though! 😀 In the end, less animals harmed and us healthier, so all is good! Take a read of my article if you get a chance man (: (www.ahimsa-vegan.com) Tim

    Like

    1. Thanks for you me feedback!
      I’ll check your article 😉

      Like

  2. Amanda says:

    Really insightful and personal post, thanks for sharing.

    One thing I would keep in mind is that veganism is an ethical movement about the animals, so maybe try to focus a bit more on that aspect so you can widen your “why” for the lifestyle 🙂

    Like

    1. Indeed, animal rights are a huge topic that needs a dedicated article.

      Thanks for your great feedback ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Ledone says:

    Hi Zakaria,

    I’m planning to go vegan after being vegetarian for 6 months. Any advice ?

    Are you still vegan or was it an experiment ?

    Like

    1. Yes, moving slowly towards begin vegetarian in order to keep a normal social life. It’s hard to find vegan options in restaurant. When you adjust the menu, you almost nothing for +15 €.

      Like

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