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  • Seeing your typical day is so interesting to me! After going vegan in February (after 7 years as a vegetarian) I find that I am eating much more frequently, which is similar to what you described in your post. I’ve never really thought about it before this, but I wonder if that’s a typical experience and what the mechanism might be. I’m sure part of it is just being active people, as I started training for races around the same time as the dietary switch. In any case, very interesting stuff. Thanks for the insights!

    1. I also started changing my diet at about the same time that I adopted a much more active lifestyle. And I never noticed any increase in meal/snack frequency until the last few weeks when my training for my first marathon ramped up into the 40+ miles/week range. Before that, even as I eliminated meat and dairy, I basically still ate three meals a day with very small snack between them. Since going more plant based, I’ve experienced an overall increase in energy level and duration. I suspect that it’s the active lifestyles driving these eating habits more than the diet makeup itself.

  • Thanks Matt. I understand getting that question often (vegan for 20yrs). While I don’t necessary need to know, my husband (who has been a vegetarian for a year now) will I think benefit from seeing what a father of two who is athletic eats throughout the day. It is a close comparison for him although he works in a more corporate environment.
    If you have a moment, I am trying to help get my blog post some attention. It seems my 5 year old daughter’s PTA is set in their ways to keep a game at our annual fundraiser that awards kids a 2 liter bottle of soda as their prize! I sent a nice letter requesting a chance and got a very stern response back saying that game brought in a lot of money therefore will not be removed. If you have the time (which I know you rarely do these days) the post is here: http://trailmomma.com/2013/10/dear-pta-president/ Thanks!

    1. Well, since the goal is fund raising, perhaps you could offer to donate another “prize.”. Something that the kids would like and would be just as enthusiastic about. If they still insist on the soda, at least the kids could choose. Several years ago, I was very surprised at a similar event, when children were given a few options, several chose a bottle of water! You never know what kids will go for! I just returned from Holland where some elementary schools are pushing a healthier lifestyle…also for events where parents donate the treats. Hope this helps.

  • Your words on slow, gradual change are so true. If I’d set out to drop everything and go vegan right away when I first started adjusting my eating habits three-ish years ago, the ice cream-loving side of me would have probably given up. Instead, I just aimed generally for more fruits/veggies and less processed stuff, and began to realize bit by bit that I liked this way of eating/living a whole lot more! Cheers to plant-based life 🙂

  • I love this post. It is very helpful to see what a plant based individual eats in a day. Our day is very similar to yours. Some of my favorite cook books are The Vegan Table by Colleen Patrick-Goudreau and Vegan Cooking for Carnivores byRoberto Martin ( he is Ellen DeGeneres chef).
    Matt I also make my own veg burgers and have them quick to grab out of the fridge. I try to keep some already cooked grains Quinoa,black rice etc. so we can add them to salads or burritos. Joe loves to have cold baked potatoes and dip them in hummus.

  • Matt, having been a regular reader since 2009 I feel that this is one of your most informative posts. As someone who juices a lot I feel it is really important to show people what we eat/drink on a daily basis. To show folks how its done is so important.
    It was your blog back in 2009 that showed me that nutrition was just as important, if not more so than just exercising (helped me to lose 80 pounds and run 4 half marathons.) Here you give people a step by step blueprint on how to live on a vegan diet. Since hearing you speak at NYC I have decided to go vegan for 30 days and see how I feel.
    I also love the fact you are honest about having a beer. That is why your blog is inspirational and informative, you could have left that bit out but you decided to be totally honest with your readers. Like you I enjoy a beer but I know it is not doing me any good but I do not want to live the rest of my life in ‘monk mode.’
    Great post!

  • This was a great post, thank you for taking the time to spell out what you eat daily. I’ve struggled with snacks and breakfasts and I’m really tired of oatmeal!
    Thanks again, so glad I found your blog
    @hippygyrl

  • Hey Matt!
    It’s great to see that you eat as many times/as frequently per day as I do! People are always surprised at how often I eat during the day. Eeriely our diets are very similar. I eat pretty much the exact same foods at the exact same time, minus the alcohol. I stopped even that indulgence about 6 months ago.
    I won a copy of your book on Nicole’s website (Life Less Bullshit) and can’t wait for it to arrive!!

  • Seeing your typical daily diet is so interesting, thanks for sharing. I’m considering more frequent smaller meals because breakfast smoothies aren’t holding me to lunch more often lately even with protein powder.

  • Check my blog ⬆️ for my expirience as a vegan , long distance runner, on the road as a professional musician . Similar to what you’re going through on a book tour.
    Thanks
    Bobby

  • You lost me at “food at 3” and “running at 4″… I am doomed unless I’ve had all night to digest 🙂 Seriously though, thanks for the helpful examples…I know the book wasn’t “about you” but head knowledge isn’t very helpful without application.

  • Thank you for posting this! Sometimes it is incredibly interesting/helpful to see how someone who successfully balances fitness/athleticism with veganism actually eats on a daily basis. It gives us ideas for how to organize on our own. 🙂

  • Matt, your practical advise and real life examples help me to eat a plant based diet. I enjoy your posts and the research you put into each one of them. I also try to read many of the books you list in your articles. Thanks alot!

  • I see nothing wrong with how you eat everyday and each of those things sound very good. Maybe this whole vegan thing is not as bad as I make it out to be. The only question I have would be is eating like this good even if you are not working out during the day everyday?

    1. Marty,
      I am not Matt (obviously), but the benefits of a vegan diet are not only for athletes. A vegan diet is good for everybody, it maintains normal blood pressure, normal blood sugar and normal weight. While I work out, I also have periods when I work too much. I am 55 and have maintained my weight since age 23 and I still wear the same size clothes as I did then (size 2). I credit a vegetarian/vegan diet for this. There are scores of studies that show that a plant-based diet improves health and prevents high blood pressure, diabetes, cancer and obesity. Plus it has more vitamins and minerals than the “standard American diet”. If you are interested in scientific facts and research studies and a good read i would recoomend “How Not To Die” by Dr. Michael Greger.

    2. I agree with Andrea. I’ve been vegetarian since 1964. Now I’m working on vegan…very gradually! Another good resource is “The China Study,” the author slips my mind at the moment, but you can probably find it at the library or on Amazon with just the title.

  • I would think you’d save some money if you assembled your salad from the items in the produce department rather than getting them from the salad bar. It would take buying more at a time and keeping them in a cooler in your car. Not so practical in the summer but do-able at other times a year. I can just see you now washing your stuff in the hotel sink !!!!

  • Thanks for sharing your daily vegan regimen, Matt. I’m vegetarian transitioning toward vegan and hike 4 miles a day. You answered my questions about pre- and post-workout snacks. My blender is a MicroBullet.

  • Great article! I also appreciate your honesty about what you do, the things you have in your book (that allow a variety of approaches), etc. I know there are still LOTS of myths about being either a vegetarian or vegan, so having real, practical information like this is very helpful. It’s how I choose to share & educated as well

  • I work at Wendy’s and I am going to school, and I am also an aspiring vegan. When I wake up or get home from being on my feet for eight hours, the last thing I can fathom is throwing together 10+ ingredients… the average person can’t spend half their day focused on food, shopping for it, preparing it, or eating it, much less fit in some exercise or downtime. I am overwhelmed trying to eat a whole foods plant based diet and feeling like it is for an elite group of people with unending supplies of either energy or free time. But I can’t keep living like I’m living. I’m fat and miserable, and I get exhausted just looking in the fridge or cupboards. How the hell do you guys do it?

    1. I applaud your perserverence – something about your post resonated with me. When I first started eating a plant-based diet I, too, was overwhelmed. With a little planning, though, I began to save loads of time by preparing vegetables before putting them away in the fridge so it was quick to throw a salad together later. My freezer and pantry eventually held all the nuts, seeds, berries, almond milk, etc. I needed to throw in the blender for a morning smoothie…just start adding bulk items you want over a few shopping trips, and slowly get rid of (and stop buying) the processed food you wish to stop eating. Replace meat with beans, sweet potatoes, etc., experiment with spices…give yourself time to adopt this lifestyle. You’ll be so happy you did!

    2. Preparation is everything. If possible take one day a week and prep your meals. Have stuff in the fridge ready to, that way you can take food with you and won’t be tempted to buy crap. Try easy recipes: tomato sauce with different veggies, stir fries, beans with green and brown rice. If you havea Trader Joe’s near you they have frozen stuff that you can use to prepare easy meals. If you have beans (in cans) and brown rice ready you can add various vegetables or sauces and presto a meal. Make some salad dressings, cut up lettuces and vegetables and presto – a salad. It doesn’t have to be complicated.

    3. I think what you describe isn’t really different from regular cooking. Going vegan doesn’t really mean you have to go from cooker to non-cooker or vica versa. Most fruits, vegetables and nuts are perfectly good for eating raw (heck, there’s even a “raw vegan” movement that claims it is healthier to) whether you buy them fresh or frozen. You should probably buy an electric vegetable steamer (again, no preparation required) which requires zero work if even soups sound too time-consuming for you. (Though they are pretty easy once you get the hang of it.)

  • Thanks so much for taking the time to post this. It’s a great framework to kind of compare and contrast my own. I’m freshly vegan and so I’m trying to soak up as much info as I can. I stumbled upon your blog by happenstance and already it’s been sooooo helpful! Will definitely check out the book.

  • I have been plant based for 9 months now. I am 54 and had high cholesterol and high blood pressure for last 10 years (I smoked also) Last May they put a stent in my artery and life changed for the good! I quit smoking- couldn’t take all those pills they give you “post stent” so I did some research and decided to go plant based opposed to the “pills” and WOW did it work fast! I run 2 miles every other day- go to gym on days I don’t run- dropped 35 lbs and started to LOVE, LOVE cooking now (go figure). Blood pressure is 110/60 ish- cholesterol ok and doctor cant believe the turn around. WHY is this way of eating not presented to cardiac patients as a therapy to bypass surgery, stents and other illness? I know its not a cure all but needs to be an option for all! OH YEAH- I too make dinner thinking lunch next day…..It is an energetic lifestyle!

    1. Because if doctors actually cured illnesses rather than just manage illnesses – a lot of money would be lost. Check out who sponsors some of the biggest groups like The American Heart Assoc. It’s shocking. Gotta keep everyone is biz! Sad, but true.

  • Thank you for this outline of a typical day. It is exactly what I was looking for. My husband and I and our 14 kids are just starting on our vegan diet, and it has bee n tricky thinking of things to eat through out each day. This was extremely helpful.

  • This sounds like a great way to go healthy. I want to start on this diet – or way of eating – but being in another country, there are some of the plants I have never heard of, like: chia seeds, hemp hearts, tempeh. What is similar to these items? What can I use instead of these?
    I could not find the Ezekiel bread recipe on your Recipes page. Could you please send it to me via my email. Thanks.

  • of all the diets WHOLE FOOD VEGAN is the HARDEST go figure.. once you cut the salt oil sugar store bought sauces and dressings and fermented crap you are left with fruit and then all these vegetables and seeds that arent edable on their own haha meanwhile your contemplating with yourself if you should go raw for maximum health but you dont wanna fight the cooked adiction ;p

  • I was wondering how you get your Vitamin D. Do you take a supplement and if so, what supplement? If not, what do you do? Thank you!

  • Thank you for this! I’m working on transitioning my whole family (me, my 3 yo, and my meat and cheese loving husband) to a plant-based diet. Needless to say, going has been slow and inconsistent. Alot of this is because I’m still adjusting recipes and learning how to cook withkut

  • Sorry hit post before I was done….
    But I’m learning to cook without meat after being raised behind a deli counter and in a hunting family. The hardest part though is Always being hungry.
    This is the most realistic meal schedule I’ve seen yet and the timing makes so much sense! I’d love an article on some of your favorite kid friendly recipes – and any you think would satisfy a heavy meat eater (who very patiently eats my plant based dinners even if he isn’t very satisfied)

  • Thank you so much for posting and I am going to get your book. My concern for me is I am female and I need to drop about 10 pounds. Seems like eating all day might not achieve that. I went quickly through all the comments so not sure if anyone else posted something similar. Can I lose weight on that much food? I am very active run about 10-15 miles a week but I am just at a stand still in weight. I can’t get down and I am eating primarily plant based foods. help

  • Thank you for posting this! after watching the last video where she said to eat 3 times a day I thought oh no I will truly starve. I do not have a weight problem. I ride a bike instead of run but my eating pattern is similar to yours minus and the beer.

  • This was so great to read! I’m starting to eat more plant based and to focus on my carbs being beans and sweet potatoes as opposed to processed grains. However I find if I eat a salad for lunch and workout in the evening, it wreaks havoc on my stomach. My digestive system definitely has trouble when I add in more raw veggies, even the slightest amount. What time of day do you usually do your workouts, and do any of you have advice for easing the stomach pains the plant based diet can cause for a while?

  • Thanks for sharing….I think Im more curious what your WIFE eats in a day….& you should have her on the podcast more. Her chef AG weight loss was very inspiring.

  • Thanks for posting the beer/wine. I thought that I was the only plant based eater that enjoyed a drink after reading blogs /viewing youtube channels of fellow plant based peeps. Not one of them mention alcohol as a daily intake.
    I admit, that I have daily drinks to unwind at the end of the day. However, I have more than your one. For example, I might have one as soon as I walk in the door from work. Another at the dinner table. I usually have my last one after the toddler is in bed. I know that I shouldn’t count calories but the calories in these 3 beers add up especially if they are craft beers.

  • Thank you very much Matt. This information is very interesting. Its always insightful to hear what other vegans eat during the day. One question: Is this a typical day for you during your off-season (when you are not training)? As, I am a marathon runner myself, I find I eat much more often and take in substantially more calories than you do.
    Thanks,
    Brett

  • I wouldn’t be too worried about oil on your salad; my father has eaten it every day on his salad and he’s 91 now. But he doesn’t put in on everything, just that, so maybe that’s the key.

  • I’ve been reading your posts for some time now and my diet looks very similar to this in spring and summer. My question is: do you change anything about this typical diet in fall/winter? When it’s cold outside I rarely feel like drinking a cold smoothie as my first meal of the day. Same thing for a cold salad.
    Thanks for the post!

  • Great article, consolidates for me that I’m doing and eating the fight foods, your body tells you what you need and whole foods as nature intended will sustain us ❤️? Thank you

  • Can you give an idea of the calories in this? I can’t see more than 600-800 before dinnertime, it doesn’t look like much for an adult male runner! I have been trying to stick to this kind of eating plan for the past year (in an effort to be more environmentally friendly) and while I love vegan food, I have unintentionally lost weight and started feeling faint while running.

  • My husband and I are trying to begin whole-plants-based diet. This was very helpful, but it looks like it would amount to about 20 cups of food a day for my husband and let’s say 12 cups for me (I am smaller). This seems like A LOT of food to process (both in terms of cooking and in terms of digesting) compared to a traditional diet. Can someone please comment on this?

  • Hi, is it OK to follow this diet if I am not a runner? I have been following it since 12/29 and am not feeling hungry which is great. I currently am overweight and trying to change over to not eating meats. Im 5’5 at 174 last time I checked

  • As the mom of a high school athlete, I would love any input on a typical days meal plan for when your goal is to put on weight and muscle. Since I’m new to your Facebook page, I may have missed an earlier post. Thanks!

  • In the past 6 mnths my wife went plant base , I followed her and I’m Whole Foods plant base for couple o months, I find myself eat more frequently, but I’m experiencing something new that happened to me twice already and I’m not sure what is it from… for the past couple of days I’ve been experiencing stomach aches that I can’t even stand straight after a meal.. usually dinner.. I eat the same mostly since started this diet..the pin is horrible.. goes away over night… together with stomach ache I’m experiencing weird back pain.. not sure if related… anyone experiencing the same. Thanks.

  • Hi! I’ve been vegan for 4 years and I have been noticing this past year that I’ve been dealing with a lot of bloating. In the morning I will have a flat stomach and feel great but by the time I’m home in the evening my stomach is puffed, it feels full and tight, and its uncomfortable. I came to your page to compare our diets to get a an idea of what I might be doing. Our days look very similar – smoothie in the morning, salad for lunch, and some type of vegetable and grain dinner. I do notice that I eat a lot of potatoes which you didn’t seem to mention as well as tortillas. Is bloating like this something you’ve come a crossed?

  • Thank you. I have been plant based for awhile and have gone to whole foods over the last year. I however just started adding in exercise in the last several months and I noticed I feel hungry most of the day. I am doing weight training and building or circuit training 4 days a week for at least an hour. One day of straight cardio and I do at least one hike a week for about 4 to 6 miles. I am worried I am not eating enough of the right foods which leaves me hungry more often than not. I am also worried if I overeat it will be counter productive for my muscle building and weight loss. I haven’t lost a pound in 2 months of the extensive working out even though I am getting smaller.

  • This has been very informative! My husband and I have had a mostly plant based/vegan lifestyle for a year and a half. We’ve given up all meat and dairy but still occasionally have fish. We feel so much better overall! However, we have not perfected what to eat and when to eat so we get caught in decision fatigue often. Thank you for spelling out what and how you eat everyday. Your explanations and reasoning behind your thoughts are insightful. The links in the article are informative too. This has been very helpful! Thank you!

  • A boring, insipid, monotonous & empty diet.
    Forget the pleasure of food.
    Nothing here except penance, pain and…. nothing.

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