Wednesday, January 10, 2018

The Alcoholic Vegan

Leye - Every other Wednesday

People say love makes the world go round. People are wrong. The correct answer is coffee. Coffee makes the world go round. It makes people get up, get out, and go to work. Without the legal high of coffee propping me up throughout the day, I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to get anything done. So, appreciate my instant shock, followed by total dismay when the doctor told me to cut down on caffeine.

Well meaning, no doubt, and qualified to give such extreme advice, but who the hell does he think he is, suggesting I stop drinking coffee for a week at least? A week. One whole week. I wonder where he got his medical degree. Trump University?

I innocently went to see him about a slight problem of constantly having to clear my throat at night. That’s all. He promptly proceeded to asking nosy questions, followed that up with pompously declaring indigestion, and then the sadist that he is, he coolly suggested that I should stop drinking coffee - or at least stop for a week and see. See what? If I survive? If I’m still Leye after the week? If I manage to get out of bed, get stuff done, hold on to my job, keep my life together? The bastard.

Leaving his office that day, I wandered if he ever tried to stop drinking coffee for a week. Surely he takes coffee. Everyone does. Right? I truly suspect that doctors and the like (people who tell other people what to do, ostensibly for the good of the ‘other people’) often dole out advice they themselves do not take. I mean, show me one dentist who flosses every day, avoids sugar, coffee, and red wine. One. Just one.

Here I was, thinking it’s 2018 and I’m fresh out of rants, and he tells me to stop drinking coffee. Said coffee causes indigestion. Fake news, that’s what I say.  Fake medicine. Hell, fake doctor!

Stop drinking coffee. SMH.

Anyway, I did stop drinking coffee for a week. He’s got a medical degree, after all. And it did sort out my indigestion. The problem is, I also did other stuff that week. I stopped drinking wine, for one. And I cut out all animal products in my food. Yes, yes, I went vegan for one whole week. No coffee, no wine, no steak, no taste. So how do I know it’s the coffee what did it?

Now here’s the thing, I gained weight. I cut out all the stuff that’s meant to be bad for me, but rather than see the belly go down, the number on the scale went up. I’m fatter for living healthier. How could this be?

Well, I think the answer is in the bucket loads of carbs I consumed after being on a low carb diet for so, so long. I decided to go vegan and I went mental on carbs. Pasta, rice, rice noodles. I couldn’t get enough of the stuff. It was like when I stopped smoking and immediately upped my drinking game.

Ok, I can’t blame the sadist for my weight gain, and in all fairness he didn’t tell me to go on a vegan diet; that’s the fault of a documentary I watched on TV, but now that I’ve discovered that there is life beyond animal food, I think I’m going to stick to the vegan thing. I think I can do this. I can get all the nutrients my body needs without eating dead meat, or drinking food meant for baby cows, or frying the unfertilized baby chickens. I can do it. I’ve been doing it since the beginning of the year and I’ve not gone bat crazy for a sirloin steak yet. Yet. But there is just one problem. Wine.

I’ve gone back to drinking red wine. In moderation. But it turns out that my second favourite thing in the world is not vegan. Well, not unless it says so on the bottle. None of the bottles I’ve had, including the organic one I brought back from Bulgaria, has had the vegan symbol on them.

Wine is not naturally vegan? No? Why, God, why???

But hold on. Does this mean I will not get the health benefits of the vegan diet if I drink wine?

Hold on one minute. How much animal derived produce is actually detectable in wine?

This brings me to the distinction between being vegan and following a vegan diet. You see, while I totally abhor cruelty to animals in any form, including all manners of animal exploitation such as riding a camel (which I discovered I’m uncomfortable with during a desert safari in Dubai), I am not about to throw out all my leather shoes and belts and bags and currently in-vogue leather bracelet. Some people will say this makes me not vegan and I will not argue. I’m only doing the vegan diet for purely health reason, even if I do care about the treatment of animals. And I have no plans to stop drinking wine. Red wine. South African, preferably. I am, I guess, an alcoholic vegan.

And as for covefe: I now take my reusable cup with me to buy my coffee.


  1. Leye, I've never heard of wine made from cows - certainly not South African wine. This is fake news again. That documentary got its medical degree from Trump university!
    My advice is - go back to coffee and see how that feels.

  2. The vegan womble will keep you right Leye, she's my constant companion in any supermarket and the vegan society do a list of vegan wine....err Moet is vegan!

  3. Cut out the carbs, sugar and booze and you will be an Adonis....but Indon’t believe he was vegan. :(

  4. Leye, I am an omnivore and intend to remain such. But my body has begun to punish me with pain and rashes if I eat certain foods—almost all of which are vegetables, fruits, or considered extremely heathy. Fortunately, my drugs of choice—wine, chocolate, and coffee—don’t hurt me at all. Hooray for that.