This year’s Vegetarian Food Festival features a full day of Yoga. Click here for details.
Hey there! My name is Lisa and I’m the food blogger behind Je suis alimentageuse. I started volunteering for the Toronto Vegetarian Association (TVA) this summer, but some of you may have seen me around at some of the events like the Vegetarian Food Festival last year and the Vegan Bake Off (I had the lemon donuts). Today I’ll be talking about my vegetarian journey and my ongoing love for yoga! (Two things that are going to be huge awesome parts of the food fest this year!!)
Some of you may be familiar with why I became vegetarian from listening to one of the TVA podcasts a couple months ago, but here’s a recap in case you didn’t. I went vegetarian for about a year when I was in grade 9 because when I ate meat, I started feeling really sick. However, I was still living with my omnivorous family, and my family found it hard to adjust to my diet so I was sort of forced to go back to eating meat.
However, in December 2011, my eczema flared to monstrous proportions to the point where I couldn’t sleep because my skin was so dry and I was so itchy. After countless years of seeing dermatologists and doctors, my family decided that Western medicine was just not doing it for me. I was also starting to be really skeptic about the amount of steroid creams they were prescribing and I didn’t want any more steroids in my body. So I consulted a Chinese doctor and he deduced that I had a lot of toxins in my body that made me allergic to meat. He prescribed a really intense herbal tea (it was so dark that I was almost sludgy) and said that I couldn’t eat meat until after the cycle of herbal tea was done (about 3 months).
During that time, I just stopped eating meat. I felt better, my digestive system was more regular and I just felt happier and cleaner. Then I watched a couple documentaries like Food, Inc. that just made me really reluctant to go back to eating meat. Ever since, I’ve been vegetarian, both for health and ethical reasons. I’m also transitioning to a vegan diet, and I’m hoping to be vegan by December.
My yoga journey has been a little bit longer and has come and gone in waves. I grew up dancing and doing ballet for about 8 years. I moved to a new city and I didn’t want to start up with a new ballet studio, so I just stopped dancing altogether. I started doing yoga when I was in university, intermittently taking yoga classes and discovering the amazingness of hot yoga.
It wasn’t until this summer that I started taking exercise and keeping my body healthy more seriously, and I started to do yoga everyday. Last year, I took the free yoga with Duncan at the Vegetarian Food Fest, and I was hooked! His yoga flows are energizing, challenging, and afterwards I felt so great. I started doing his yoga flows from YouTube at home, and then I started practicing my own flows with intermittent strength training. I’ve committed to doing at least 20 minutes of yoga a day, and my body feels so energized, strong, and healthy. How did I ever survive without doing yoga everyday?
Of course, I’m still learning and practicing yoga, and I post updates both on my blog and on my blog’s Facebook page. I hope to see you around on my blog, my page, and especially at the TVA Veg Food Fest. I hope you try some of the yoga classes at the Veg Food Fest this year!