Naturally, my ear is to the ground when it comes to perpetuating my body issues. And this year has been a dietary goldmine.
The scale had tipped past low carb, past no carb, past paleo, past vegan, and into some of the most restrictive diet realms in recent memory: the gluten free, sugar free, vegan diet.
You read those rules right, folks. And who is the she-witch behind this torture? Queen Bea herself- The Yonce. Beabea wants us all to waste away so she can control our minds more easily and secure her seat as ruler of all women.
Originally, YonYon gave us measly glimpses of what her super-diet was. Finally her and her “exercise physiologist” (ugh) and personal trainer, Marco Borges, collaborated with her to release a meal delivery program to bring these vegan “treats” to your door.
There was only one thing keeping the little people from following this diet: it cost fucking $630 to get 3 weeks of meals delivered. To break that down for you, that’s fucking $30 a meal. $30 for meals like “oatmeal and berries” or “quinoa eggplant stEW.”
Needless to say, the baby Beas were not happy. Luckily, in June, 2015, Grown Bea made a “special announcement” about the release of the novelization of this diet plan. Unluckily for her, people were all “HOW COULD YOU EVER CALL THIS SHIT A SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT?” which, in their defense, is quite unclear.
So now the book is on the shelves of your favorite amazon store under the title of The 22 Day Revolution. The premise being that it takes 21 days to break a bad habit, so if you can stick with it with 22 days, you’re set for life (malarkey).
What you can eat is this:
- Vegetables (including potatoes YAS)
- Complex carbs (a la quinoa, bulgur, oats and other gypsy grains)
- Natural fats (olive oil, maple syrup, coconut aminos etc.)
On top of being vegan, gluten-free and sugar-free, the rules are broken down as so:
- Don’t eat processed foods. No vegan hot dogs and the like. Marco affectionately calls these “frakenfoods.”
- Eat only three meals a day and IF YOU SNACK, YOU LOSE, GOOD DAY SIR.
- Exercise 30 minutes a day. If you’re me, walking counts.
- Aim to eat 80% carbs, 10% fat and 10% protein. I found this rule comically under explained.
- Drink a lot of water and not much else as far as liquids go. Start your day with hot water and lemon, naturally. Coffee is unspecified so I chose to believe drinking a black cup in the AM was OK. No drunken love.
I was ready to live the life of a soaking wet blanket for 22 days. But being boring has never stopped me before! Let’s do this.I decided to follow the diet three different ways- 1 week of following the recipe plan laid out in the book, 1 week meal planning for myself, and 1 week of meal delivery (1 meal a day).
As I started to read the book, a few key rules stuck out to me. Marco’s attitude towards being vegan is less “I know it’s hard, but do it!” and more “obviously this is the best way to eat, you’re all idiots.” He requires you to weigh yourself every morning to keep your accountable. He recommends eating only to 80% fullness. He allows two vegan “sweets” for the entire month. He tells anecdotes of “embarrassing” clients who had lacked portion control abilities. In other words, this bitch is a mean girl.
I perused the first week’s shopping list and recipes. The first annoyance that struck me was that the shopping list had no amounts specified, so you’re left to figure out much jicama is realistic for you to purchase. Any food blog enthusiasts would find themselves scoffing at the other glaring faux pas: the recipes did not specify how many servings were being produced. AMATEUR HOUR.
After spending an ungodly amount of money at the grocery store buying indescript amounts of quinoa (might I suggest using Sprouts for your vegan grocery purposes? They are largely organic, have all the good shit in bulk, and have their own brand a la Trader Joes!) I was ready to begin recipizing.
Recipe #1, a “Lentil and Quinoa Salad,” bummed me THE FUCK OUT as it was literally just lentils, quinoa, carrots and cumin (Meanie loves cumin). Also because if you know anything about those 4 ingredients, you know they take forever to cook. At least I only ended up with 3 meals worth of the shit (bummmmmmmmmmer).
That recipe is actually pretty indicative the Meanie’s meal plan as a whole- it takes forever, you always have a ton of it left over, and hardly any of it is worth writing home about. I would shout out a few meals as “not so bad” but as a whole, my week on the Meanie meal plan was prepping a lot of meals for the next day, buying a lot of food I couldn’t finish, and crying a lot of tears whenever I went out with my friends.
This was not ideal during a week where your body is basically going through sugar withdrawals. THE ADDICTION IS REAL.Week 2, I felt the bliss of being in control of my own meal plan. My pinterest (yes I have a pinterest, it’s great for recipes and I don’t have to explain myself to you) was blowing up big time with WiLd&CrAzY vegan madness!
I made great beautiful sweet potato bowls, amazing vegan caesar salads, wacky chia puddings, and other concoctions that essentially require throwing all of your peaking vegetables into a bowl and adding sauce. It’s not a bad way to live!I was on to week 3, and the time had arrived for my meal delivery to begin. The process of ordering consisted of going to the site, choosing your plan (I choose 7 days/1 meal a day) and paying the dang $125 (that’s about $17 a meal). This was what I spent at the grocery store for 2 weeks of food, so I was feeling PPPReeeettTTTTTttYYYY bourgey.
The food arrived in a GIANT STYROFOAM CASE filled with basically a thousand superfluous ice packs. What was revealed were 9 lean cuisines in identical packaging. I have no idea how they decided to send me 9 meals, or what rhyme or reason they used to decide which meals to send. There were many duplicates, and they even threw in a few triples of the most boring sounding mush.This is an insane flaw. First of all, quit sending me an embarrassing amount of styrofoam that I have to somehow dispose of. I live in Echo Park! I need to keep up the appearance of caring about the environment or I’ll be mauled to death by a bunch of 4-eyes.
Additionally, how dare you assume that I will want two eggplant stews with quinoa. HOW. DARE. YOU. Why didn’t you let me choose my poison, Queen Meanie?!
As far as packaging goes, all of the meals had identical heating instructions (3 minutes in the microwave) and all of the meals partially melted if you put the tray in there with it. I repeat, do not heat the trays of your vegan mush!
I wasn’t going to let my $17 meals go to waste (that’s THREE LITTLE CEASARS BACON WRAPPED DEEP DISHES) so I ate every last one. BeYAWNcé, amiright friends (“how does she think of this stuff?!”)
The strangest thing about my week of delivered food was that my weight loss plateaued that week. MARCO ARE YOU EFFING KIDDING ME. And yes, I know this is a caps heavy article. Once you read Marco the Meanie’s book, you’ll understand my capsized ‘tude.
Life during these three weeks is a bizarre trip. It takes about a week for you to kind of accept your fate as a dietary annoyance. After week two, I easily asked for vegan and gluten free options at the various restaurants I tried out (LA has infinite options for such demands).
Your body adjusts to not having sugar withdrawals, your stomach shrinks a bitty bit, and you feel generally less DIGUSTING. I hate to admit it, but I felt a lot better physically than I had in a long time. I had discovered what I always feared…my lactose intolerance was my downfall. Curse you curds and weigh!
I felt less tired, less bloated, and had some kickass bathroom times that would make any person high five themselves.
As for my social life- that shit was grim. People do NOT like hanging out with vegans who don’t drink. They are wettest of wet blankets. They can make any party shrivel up and die just by saying, “oh, nothing for me, I’m on a diet.”
I found myself immediatly qualifying my choice to go on a wacky restrictive food plan. I would say “I’m doing this for an experiment!” or “someone double dawg dared me and I couldn’t say no!”
The shame that comes hand in hand with making people feel uncomfortable is something you have to expect. People are genuinely offended if you don’t have a drink with them when you’ve met for a drink! I get it!
Going to a party and bringing a three-bean salad is no picnic either. The more you plan to show just how hip and with it vegans can be, the worse!
The psychology of coming to terms with your choices can be a drag. Put that on a pillow and throw it in the CCL etsy store. But it wasn’t all bad.
ALRIGHT FINE I WILL NOW REPORT MY WEIGHT LOSS, you pound hounds.
I lost a little over 11 lbs on this diet, and I rarely felt hungry. Did I feel deprived? Absolutely. A little bit of FOMO when cupcakes were in the office like every damn day? Totally. But I felt super in control of what was going in to my body, and I felt crazy healthy for having that knowledge.
After 22 days, I came off of the diet hard- I made my best pals meet me for Masa and got too drunk off of wine. My body revolted. I felt like HELL from eating chz and glute. Body, quit harshing my buzz! We get it, you think you’re better than me now.
2 weeks after my diet has ended, I’ve kept off 9 of the lbs, and have a new outlook on my eating habits. When I go out with my pallywallys they affectionately call this new version of their glutten baby New Carly. New Carly tries to stay as dairy free as possible (lolz) and may even opt for a gluten free meal where it’s fitting (2xlolz).
My thoughts are this- eating so cleanly is absolutely achievable for a not crazy amount of money. For some reason, Queen Bea and Queen Mean took a healthy lifestyle and turned it into the Rich Persons Guide to Alienating Your Friends (!!! Title alert!)
If you folks are looking for a way to make your body feel awesome and gain control over your eating habits- try sticking to veggies, fruits, legumes, nuts, healthy grains and fats. It sounds limiting, but the combinations are endless. You will truly begin to view food as this kooky natural energy source. I can say very honestly that I wish I had done it for longer! Good news though- nothing’s stopping me from going back on it (except the goodies of a trip to the east coast…forget it I’ll be vegan when I’m dead.)
Keep the habits, nix this plan; another fad diet debunked.