Audrey - While I haven't experienced "exactly" what you have, I'd still give it time. When I've eaten non-healthy/non-vegan stuff, such as cheese or processed sugar (those are my vices, not eggs, as they are for you, Audrey), I usually also feel yucky afterwards. I think the amount of time you feel bad is related to how much of the bad stuff you ate. And it sounds like you ate a lot of eggs. Since you said you're feeling *better* I'd still hold off going to the doctor (personally) and see if you continue to improve. Focus even more on eating super healthy stuff. Superhero foods! When I've been on a unhealthy food tear, I found it's best to go back to the simple stuff of brown rice and steamed greens, for a couple of days. Not EVERY meal, mind you, but for dinners primarily. I stick to my tried-and-true oatmeal with blueberries for breakfast. But the main point is to go back to non-processed, unrefined, whole foods as MUCH as possible, until you feel better. Listen to your body. It'll tell you what it needs if you listen carefully enough.
I think it's really important not to think of the lifestyle in terms of foods you're 'giving up.' Health problems (read The China Study), extreme animal cruelty (read Eating Animals, watch Food Inc or Earthlings), and environmental detriment (watch Food Inc or End of the Line, read Eating Animals) . . . how are those not good things to be turning away from and 'give up'?
Think of what you are gaining - health, compassion, environmental awareness - and dare I say it . . . adventurousness! Vegan is not dull or boring. Is it difficult? Sure, it can be, but nothing worth doing is easy. Being vegan can expand your food horizons. As your taste buds change as your body eliminates nastiness, you will taste food as never before - and be it simple whole foods or all the amazing ethnic foods out there - you can experience food the way omnis don't. If you search out the amazing variety there is, you will have a more varied food experince than your typical omni. You are taking on a challenge to go to a different level that may put you at odds socially and culturally at times - but great change takes time and perseverance. I just think it's important to look at all the positives, because I think they far outweigh the negatives.
Hazel - Very well said and excellent points!! I couldn't agree more. It's easy to focus on "I'm giving up cheese, or milk, or eggs, meat, whatever." But you're SO right that in fact what we're really "giving up" is poor health, higher disease rates, and incompassion towards animals and the environment. I'll give that up ANY day!
Also, I haven't read many of the books you mentioned. I'm sure they're great though. But I have read "The China Study" and that book changed my outlook on the whole vegan lifestyle 100%!
Hazel, such great recommendations. Whenever I feel tempted to stray from my vegan ways, I think back to the envoronmental, animal cruelty and health issues associated with meat and animal products and it really helps me stay on track. Rebecka, what really helped me make the transition (I've been vegan for about a year and was a full omnivore before that) was instead of looking at what I couldn't eat, instead focusing on trying new dishes. I also first phased out eggs before going crazy over reading ingredients to see if there were any eggs cooked into things. Yes, a slower transition, but since it was less extreme it made me shift my focus from excluding things to including more flavorful and different foods.
I have been toying with vegetanarianism since I was about 6 when on a family trip to Portugal we stopped at a farm in Satarem that served the most amazing lamb - and then I met the other little lambs outside and got so upset I wouldn't eat meat for months afterwards. Although, the resolve of a 6-yr old isn't very strong. It wasn't until running my first marathon a year and a half ago that I started realizing that my runs and energy levels were better on days on and following meatless days. I used that as my motivation to drop meat (plus I'm lactose intolerant), so then I just made the full switch to vegan. It really helps having a few strong motivating reasons that you can pull upon when you're in a moment of weakness. And of course - most of us slip, but it's not the end of the world. I will sometimes have a bite of sushi and then the guilt and way I feel after will set me straight again and all is well. Good luck!!
I'd heard about Alicia's book & got it for Christmas. Went vegan (more "flirt" really, but completely cut out meat and dairy) on Dec. 26. It was going great for almost three weeks ... my skin was clearing up, my sinuses were completely clear for the first time since November -- I was pretty much the only person around here without a raging winter cold. Had tons of energy, which hasn't been the case at all in quite a few months.
Then came this past week, where I got stuck in a hotel in another city for a few days due to bad weather. It was an economy hotel, so no room service, and the roads were too bad to trek to the store. So ... I went vending machine junk-food crazy. And I over-indulged in the free breakfast, eating sausage and eggs one morning and a cheese omelet the next. Now I'm really feeling it. My skin immediately broke out again, my nose is stuffed up and I've had a bad sinus headache, and all I feel like doing is laying around, being miserable.
Alica says in her book that there's no judgement, and I really like that. You fall off the wagon, then you can just climb back on, and you shouldn't feel bad about yourself.
But I kinda do feel like a loser -- I'd almost gone a whole month eating and feeling healthy! I absolutely could have made better food choices at the hotel, but willingly chose not to. I'm disappointed in myself.
But I'm going to try again. I've already made it one whole day :)
For all those people suffering from cheese cravings I may have a remedy. It's nothing groundbreaking but I've not felt the urge to eat cheese since I became vegan and I attribute it all to the wonder of tahini sauce (simply tahini + lemon juice). It is not only my go-to taste-substitute for cheese but my make-any-dish-tasty trick. Today though, I used different ingredients and it seemed like I had recreated the taste of this smoked cheddar I used to love. It was incredibly cheesy (in taste only though) so I thought I would share it in case it helps satisfy the cravings for others. It would definitely work mixed in with pasta sauces, over salads, in fajitas/tacos, etc. I can't give exact measurements but I used about 1.5 tsp tahini and added mostly rice vinegar with a couple of squeezes of lemon juice, olive oil, and soy sauce. Mix it all together to your desired taste and consistency and eat guilt-free!
And to everyone who does feel guilty if they submit to a meat/dairy craving - we're only human!! Think of every day you didn't eat it and pat yourself on the back. :)