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Plant Based Christmas Food

GUEST BLOGGER: Julian Campbell

Christmas Food My Way

I’ve been a person that did not like meat for many years.  I love fish so much that stop eating it would be an understatement. I didn’t care much about red meat and when I used to eat meat, it was mostly fish, chicken and turkey. However, I would eat red meat on Christmas day.

In April of 2016, I stopped eating all meat, except fish. In 2017, I was forced to eat meat, because my iron and hemoglobin level were low. In January of 2018, I said no to red meat, chicken and turkey, but I was still eating fish. It was not until November of this year, I finally said “no to fish”.  So this Christmas is going to be very different.

I’ve embarked upon a whole new diet. I struggled with inflammation from in my early 20s and was having difficulty with almost everything I eat, especially dairy products. I was in and out of the doctors’ office for years with symptoms of vomiting and chronic pain in my left side from eating certain foods. The doctors were not sure what was wrong with me and thought it was just acid influx, heartburn and indigestion. They would send me home with a large paper bag of Pepto Bismol. It was not until I went to pursue my undergraduate studies in the states, I shared my symptoms with a student who experienced the same symptoms and told me she was lactose intolerant. I discovered that I was also lactose intolerant. My symptoms grew worse, whenever I consumed dairy products.

Currently I’ve been researching what type of foods to eat to reduce inflammation. I discovered that, foods that are high in estrogen, increased inflammation and by eliminating them, there was a huge difference in how I feel.

My new diet is completely plant base. I don’t eat every vegetable or fruit, including ground provision, because some are high in estrogen. I don’t eat wheat products and I stay away from gluten. Maintaining a special diet in Barbados is economically challenging, but I am looking forward to a creating my own recipes for a very hearty, plant based Christmas lunch.

Here’s a sample of a typical day’s eating plan for me.

Breakfast - a cup of herbal/lemon and ginger tea, a fruit and a bowl of cereal with coconut milk. I like to sprinkle, hemp seed/chia seed/sesame seed on my fruit.

Lunch – lentils/beans, ground provision, squash, eggplant, and ripe plantain with vegetables

Dinner – If I have a heavy lunch, dinner will be light or vice versa. Dinner is usually a large fruit bowl or vegetable bowl with nuts and pumpkin seeds.

Beverages – I consume mostly water, sometimes coconut water, and natural fruit /vegetable juice

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