Plant-based diet. Benefits, tips and recipes to try

Plant-based diet. Benefits, tips and recipes to try

Recently myself and a few colleagues ditched the typical midday desk munching, and went out for a proper burger-joint lunch.

What happened next took me by complete surprise.

There we sat, civilised chat, much needed vents and menus primed. We laid our eyes over the options…A typical burger-joint selection of beef patties and chicken breast burgers, and string fries. Nothing unusual.

Then our eyes moved over to the right-hand side of the menu – Beetroot? Mushrooms? Chickpeas? Beyond Meat? Polenta Fries? We were intrigued.

The orders commenced – “2 Beyond Meat Burgers, 1 Chickpea Burger and 1 Beef Burger please.”

How times have changed.

The Western World is going plant-based at an exponential rate.

According to The Vegan Society, the number of vegans in the UK quadrupled between 2014 and 2018. And even more interestingly it’s not just vegans or vegetarians eating meat-free, with a staggering 92% of plant-based meals consumed in the UK in 2018 by non-vegans.

My colleagues and I were a case in point of this phenomenon. We were made up of 1 vegetarian, and 3 meat eaters with all but 1 choosing the meat-free option.  

So, why is this happening?

  • People are demanding more natural, less processed foods.
  • There’s a lack of trust for food industries and companies worldwide. Take a look at documentaries like Cowspiracy, What the Health, and Vegan Everyday Stories and you’ll see why.
  • We share an increasing collective concern for our environment and its inhabitants, and eating a more plant-based diet generally has a lesser impact on the Earth (if done properly).
  • It’s healthier and significantly reduces our risk of developing Heart Disease, Obesity, stroke, and some types of Diabetes and Cancers.
  • Eating a plant-based diet is typically much cheaper than a traditional Omnivore diet. A 2015 study in the Journal of Hunger & Environmental Nutrition found that a plant-based diet could save Americans about $750 a year!
  • There’s a common misconception that plant-based meals are bland but that’s simply not true, they’re delicious! There’s a world of fresh and colourful ingredients out there, and if you use your creativity and stay open-minded the options are truly endless.

The power of plant-based.

There’s no denying the vast benefits of following a plant-based diet – But what I love most about it is the beautiful ripple effect it has on not just our own health, but our external environment too.

It’s a movement making a change and reshaping our traditional ways of doing things – Our health and school systems, agriculture and farming practises, food and drink industries, and even politics.

Going plant-based is not just for yourself, but taking a stand for others! And when enough of us are demanding more and saying no, the big players can’t turn a blind eye to us anymore.

My plant-based journey:

The plant-based diet I follow is as simple as food writer Michael Pollen’s advice, summed up in 7 words:

“Eat food, not too much, mostly plants.”

There’s no ‘buzzwords’ in that, no fads, no craziness. Just simple, honest, humble advice.

I’ll be honest, my journey adopting a more plant-based hasn’t been smooth sailing. Naively I thought as soon as I adopted this diet i’d feel full of energy, my skin would clear up, and i’d lose weight.

But that simply didn’t happen.

  • I felt bloated
  • I was tired all the time
  • I had breakouts
  • And I had a lot of gas (thanks beans).

What I realised is it’s a process, and requires an investment from yourself to get educated and seek the right advice to know what the right foods for you are, and what support you need to ensure your vitamin and iron levels are ok.

Lesson learned…you can’t just swap chicken for mushrooms and expect to be the epitome of good health!

Apart from these downsides eating a more plant-based diet has been a fantastic journey – I’ve learnt to appreciate simple ingredients, to cook new and interesting recipes, I feel healthier, and am supporting a greater cause that I truly believe in.

My top 10 tips and recipes.

Throughout my journey i’ve learnt some great plant-based diet tips, and have discovered delicious recipes that are not only nutritional but easy to make, low-cost, and great to put leftovers in the freezer for lunches and dinners.

So if you’re just starting out, wanting to try more plant-based meals, or you’re already following a plant-based diet I promise there will be something in here for you…

My top 10 tips for a plant-based diet:

  1. Start slow, first with plant based breakfasts, then lunches, then dinner
  2. Eat seasonal fruits and vegetables
  3. Opt for local produce
  4. Get pantry stables like beans, peas, rice & lentils
  5. Start your own vegetable or herb garden to save more
  6. Don’t splurge on gourmet alternatives
  7. Plan your meals ahead to stop temptation
  8. Make your plate a rainbow, the more colour the better!
  9. Find plant-based alternatives to your favourite meat dishes
  10. Opt for fresh or home-made over produced, just because a packet says ‘vegan’ doesn’t mean it’s healthy.

My top 10 plant-based recipes:

1. Vegan BBQ Black Bean Meatballs

  • Perfect for family dinners with salad or grains, and freezes well.

2. Creamy Coconut Lentil Curry

  • I absolutely love this dish, it’s so simple and my go-to mid-week meal.
  • To inject even more veges you can add more to the recipe, I like to add peppers and spinach.

3.  Crispy Zucchini Fritters

  • These fritters are so versatile, super simple and quick to make!
  • They’re perfect for weekend brunches, lunches, or even dinners.
  • I like to serve them with roasted tomatoes and a fresh salad.

4. Fennel, Sage & Kale Pasta

  • If you love pasta (and wine) as much as I do this one is a winner, a fresh warming pasta salad packed with veges.

5. Sweet Corn Polenta with Eggplant Sauce

  • When I first saw this dish I thought it looked odd, but after reading the reviews I decided to stop being quick to judge and gave it a go.
  • And i’m so glad I did!
  • This little gem is truly delicious, it’s made from a corn and feta polenta base with a hearty aubergine and tomato sauce.

6. Vegetarian Chilli

  • This dish is perfect for when you’re craving something Mexican!
  • I like to make this with homemade guacamole and tortilla chips.
  • To make the tortilla chips simply slice up the tortillas into strips, glaze with olive oil and pop in the oven on low heat.. in 5 minutes you’ll have your very own tortilla chips. A perfect pairing with this vege-packed chilli!

7. Slow roasted cauliflower salad with sweet potato hummus and nut Dukkah

  • If you’re after something a little more fine-dining this dish is guaranteed to impress!
  • It may be easy to make, but damn it looks beautiful on the plate!

8. Roasted Cauliflower and Chickpea Soup

  • This dish is so tasty and filling, and perfect for cosy winter afternoons.
  • Make it with homemade vegetable stock to up your nutrients!

9. Roasted Mediterranean vegetables with feta and grains

  • Fresh grains, roasted veges, nuts and feta… a beautiful combination!
  • This dish is so simple but so tasty, and great either as a meal on it’s own or as a delicious side dish.

10. Vegetarian Skillet stuffed shells

  • It wouldn’t be right for me to only include 1 pasta dish on this list.
  • This dish is a little bit naughty but so tasty – cheese and spinach stuffed pasta shells smothered in a rich tomato sauce.
  • If you don’t eat dairy this one can easily be compensated with your favourite vegan cheese alternative.

I hope you’ve found value in this post, and have gained some tips and delicious plant-based meals to try!

THE LADDER GIRL

How to cut through the BS of health and wellness ‘buzzwords’

How to cut through the BS of health and wellness ‘buzzwords’

Health buzzwords. Vegan, pescatarian, paleo, minimalism, mindfulness, yoga, and meditation… It’s amazing how these words were once seen as obscure and foreign concepts.

Images conjured up of hippies out in flower fields eating kale, listening to acoustic music, braiding daisies into each other’s hair and talking about the rolling power of peace and love.

These were once the ‘oddballs’ of society.

But what’s fascinating is how over recent years these health ‘buzzwords’ have become normalised and accepted as part of our societal norms. No longer if you’re Vegan or practise Yoga during your lunch breaks are you seen as unique or an ‘oddball’.

It’s become normal.

And it’s not just people like you or I who have caught onto these buzzwords, companies have latched on too.

In my job where I work with big FMCG companies to help design and market their brands i’m seeing more and more briefs come in that focus on branding products as ‘Vegan’, ‘Natural’, or ‘Raw’. I even once sat in a client meeting and was asked the question “So, what’s the next Avocado?”.

And this got me thinking, what is the next health ‘buzzword’? What’s driving these buzzwords to become normalised? And is this ‘goodness’ actually doing us good?

Well, it depends on how you absorb it.

These health ‘buzzwords’ in themselves are intended for good. They’re often derived from ancient and sacred practises. And when applied properly they can make us happier, healthier and more connected with ourselves, with others and our planet.

But what’s happened over time is these words have got caught up in a storm – Whirling through social media, through companies, products, and advertising, and what was once originally intended for good has transformed into a means to sell, to become famous and to make a lot of money.

They’ve lost their meaning.

When these buzzwords are powered by celebritism and money-making over anything else, what we’re reading, watching and consuming is not necessarily going to be true or ‘good for us’.

Don’t be influenced.

Is a product Vegan because the brand cares for the environment and animals? Or is it using the word ‘Vegan’ as a way to make money and as a marketing ploy?…The company could actually being doing really harmful things to the environment or animals through its manufacturing processes.

Is that influencer really practising ‘mindfulness’ when they’re posting a picture of themselves doing Yoga with perfect makeup and a sunset in the background?… Isn’t the act of taking a photo of yourself doing Yoga looking perfect the complete opposite of what mindfulness is all about?

I’ve been there.

I’ve bought products because I saw on Instagram how this pill can make your hair super long, or how much weight you can lose from drinking this tea. I’ve been to a Yoga class and made sure I had perfect makeup and the newest gym gear to ‘look the part’.

This is not ‘goodness’, this is not helping us with our health, our relationships or our happiness.

Mindfulness shouldn’t be about how you look, but about how you feel. And Veganism shouldn’t be a benefit label on a product, but a practise for good health and an expression of our own personal beliefs.

We need to get back to the source.

We need to be careful, to digest information with a level of skepticism, and find sources that we can trust.

We need to unfollow, unlike, and to turn away from sources that are feeding us the wrong outputs of these ‘buzzwords’.

We need to choose sources from real people – people that show vulnerability, passion and are not concerned with how the world perceives them.

Develop a personal source library.

Developing a personal source library will help to ensure you get information that is reputable, trustworthy, and aligns to your own personal values and beliefs.

Within your own source library I recommend you create a suite of ‘channels’ where you get your information from. For me I have 3 channels, and these are:

1. Personal relationships

  • Family and friends.
  • These are the people that know me best, whom I share similar values and beliefs with.
  • I’ve learnt a lot from my family and friends on an array of health and wellness matters by listening to their own experiences, advice, and stories.

2. Digital aids

  • These are everyday people who host Youtube channels, Podcasts or Blogs.
  • I call this group of people ‘digital aids’ as they are exactly that, people I resonate with from the online world and who aid me in life to learn, make decisions and to grow.
  • What makes these people special is they often have a profound passion for something, and they use their platforms to share their voice, knowledge, and stories to help others.
  • I’ve learnt a lot through my own digital aids, from everyday life hacks, through to diet and mental health advice.

3. Masters of fields

  • These are real-life masters – Practitioners, nutritionists, scientists, lecturers, spiritualists, and naturopaths.
  • This group is particularly important if you’re wanting to understand more about your own health and what’s right for you, your spirituality, and/or learn about a specific subject matter to do with health and wellness.  
  • You could access these people either in person, through lectures and classes or elsewhere through books, online, and papers.

It is by building these parameters, being a little bit skeptical and knowing where to get your information from that you will harness the good in these ‘buzzwords’, and in fact they’ll never be ‘buzzwords’ to you, but healthy practises to help you live a more fulfilling and happy life.

So go on, harness your own personal source library, talk to your friends and family, listen to Podcasts, go to classes, and never stop questioning or asking why?

THE LADDER GIRL

How to save money on groceries and make your food shop go further

How to save money on groceries and make your food shop go further

Have you ever gone into a supermarket intending to buy a punnet of eggs and some milk, only to come out with 2 bars of chocolate, some of that new fancy organic shampoo, and a ‘treat yourself’ snack?… Then you freeze mid-exit, a bag full of unnecessary luxuries and think “wait, what was I here to buy again?”.

…If you’ve done this you’re not alone.

Supermarkets are smart, really smart. Each year the industry spends an exorbitant amount of money on advertising, consumer and market research, and shopping data to create strategies that will increase our ‘basket spend’.

That bag full of luxuries you walked out with? Well that’s just proof their strategies work.

I’m not saying supermarkets are evil, but when their main objective is to get as much money out of you as they can it pays to have some tricks up your sleeve to say “stick-em”, keep your pennies and make your grocery shop go further.

Here are my tops 9 tips to save money on groceries and make your food go further.

1. Write a list

  • There’s a reason this is a top tip for saving on groceries, it really does work.
  • Think about it, if you walk into a supermarket without a list you’ll most likely end up buying things that don’t go together or make complete meals. Curry sauce and lasagne sheets? Biscuits and baked beans? Creative perhaps, but also a recipe for food wastage and money poured down the drain.
  • Take a look through your recipe books, your mum’s handed-down family favourites, or create a recipe board on Pinterest, and pick meals you want to make for that week. Have fun, and try new things!
  • Write down your list of ingredients and any necessities you need before you go into the supermarket. And stick to the list.
  • As you walk through the supermarket tick off the items once they’re in your basket, and don’t stray.  
  • An extra way to make sure you stick to your list is to set yourself a maximum time to spend in-store. I set myself a timer and try to aim for 10-15 minutes max. Not only does this mean you save on your shop and only buy what you need, but you save on time too!

2. Plan meals with similar ingredients

  • This trick is a game-changer, by planning meals with the same or similar ingredients it’ll ensure your shop goes further across the week, you save money, and there’s zero food wastage.
  • Pick your key ingredient for the week, such as a large whole chicken and plan meals around this ingredient – Think a roast on Sunday, pie on Tuesday and risotto on Wednesday.  
  • Or you could pick a cuisine like Italian, and buy ingredients from within this cuisine family. Think pasta, risotto, spinach, tomatoes, mozzarella, anchovies, polenta, salami, olives, and fresh herbs…
  • By picking key ‘family’ ingredients that you can use for multiple meals it’ll save you a tonne of money, and channel your inna Nonna within!

3. Don’t buy pre-chopped veggies

  • I get it the onions bring you tears and chopping a pumpkin feels like a 10 minute bootcamp you’d rather not endure. Buying those pre-chopped veggies takes out the hard work, but at a cost.
  • Those pre-chopped veggies might save you the tears and the muscle power, but they’re a lot more expensive in the long run.
  • My advise, 1. Pre soak your onions in water before you chop them to rid the tears, and 2. Invest in a knife sharpener.

4. Buy Own-Label

  • I’ll let you in on a little secret, most of the supermarket own-label products are the exact same products as your favourite branded labels! How do I know this? I work with a lot of big brands in the UK who produce these products for supermarkets.
  • Supermarkets on their own don’t have the factories and infrastructure to produce the tens-of-thousands of own-label products they offer, so they partner with brands to produce these products for them. It’s a win-win for the brand and the supermarket.
  • When you buy brand all you are paying for is the name, the advertising, the and the packaging.
  • So next time you’re in a supermarket, instead of buying the fancy branded yoghurt, rolled oats, tomato sauce, or soup try buying the own-label equivalent. You’ll be surprised at how little (or no) difference there is.

5. Freeze your leftovers

  • When cooking meals, try to make large enough portions so that leftovers can be frozen and reheated for lunches or dinners.
  • Having leftovers in the freezer is a lifesaver for when you’re skint on time. As instead of popping to the takeaway store for burger or supermarket for a ready-meal you can pop in the freezer and pull out something you’ve pre-prepared to eat.
  • Some of my favourite frozen meals are veggie lasagne, moussaka, pie, and meatballs. They often taste better after being reheated too as the flavours have had more time to absorb. Making this one is delicious saving hack!

6. Make it yourself

  • I used to buy everything pre-made… sauces, drinks, cereals, hash browns, guacamole, the list goes on.
  • The truth is there’s so much we can make ourselves that will not only save us money but be far more nutritious than the store-bought version, which often has a tonne of  artificial ingredients and additives in it.
  • The below is a list of things we make at home that are simple and fun to do!
  • Kombucha: All you need is a scoby, some sugar, water and tea
  • Sourdough Bread: Get yourself a starter, look after it and it’ll look after you for life
  • Curry Paste: Homemade curry paste is ten-fold tastier than store-bought
  • Snack bars and energy balls: Pinterest is your friend here, think peanut butter balls, raw date bars, and coconut bliss balls
  • Sauces: Again, homemade pasta sauces are so much tastier and more nutritious
  • Juices: Get yourself a decent juicer and you’re set!
  • Muesli: Grab some of your favourite dried fruits, grains, nuts, seeds, and spices and get creative!
  • I recommend giving these a go and having a look at what other things you can make at home, think beyond food too. What cleaning or beauty products could you make to replace store bought?

7. Shop online

  • I was recently opened up to the world of online grocery shopping, mostly out of necessity as I don’t have a car in the UK, and was often too optimistic with how much I could carry home…which made for some pretty challenging shopping-bag hikes.
  • Online grocery shopping has so many benefits – It saves you time, is convenient, and they often give you freebies with your order. But the best part? It enables you to have more control of your shopping budget and to stick to it.
  • The strategy of writing a list remains, but the thing I love about online grocery shopping is before you reach the ‘check-out’ you can see what your total is.. if you’ve gone over you can review your shop and cut back or buy the cheaper alternative if needed. It would be a bit awkward if you did this in a real store, as I don’t think Billy in the que behind you would appreciate you trecking back for the cheaper feta!
  • My two favourites are Ocado and Amazon Fresh. And thanks to Amazon Fresh they’re offering a free trial to new customers! Click here to find out more.

8. Don’t go shopping hungry!

  • A simple trick, but one that’ll set you up for success is to never shop on an empty stomach.
  • If you shop on an empty stomach 2 things will happen, 1. you’ll fill your trolly with foods you don’t need and 2. you’ll choose more high-calorie foods as your body is craving energy.
  • To avoid this, try shopping just after you’ve eaten or keep a snack in your bag to avoid feeling peckish.

9. Eat more plant-based meals

  • Eating a more plant-based diet is a great way to save on your weekly shop, by replacing often expensive meat ingredients with cheaper vegetarian alternatives.
  • Pick a couple of meals a week that are vegetarian and get creative – play with colour, new types of vegetables and experiment!
  • Some of my favourite meals are vegetarian (and i’m a meat eater). I love slow-roasted cauliflower with polenta, spinach and feta stuffed pasta shells, vegetarian chilli, and kale and lemon pasta.
  • I’m not saying you have to make every meal you eat plant based, but by replacing 1 or 2 typical meat dishes with the vegetarian alternative you’ll save on meat and get more variety in your diet too.
  • For some plant-based inspiration, check out my Pinterest board here full of recipes i’ve tried and love!

I hope you’ve enjoyed this post and have taken away some tips and tricks to save money on your own grocery shop and to make your food shop go further. Now, time to write that list! (and stick to it).

THE LADDER GIRL

My top 10 budget-friendly places to eat out in London (that aren’t Pret)

My top 10 budget-friendly places to eat out in London (that aren’t Pret)

London is known for its wide range of cuisines from across the world, a melting pot of spiciness, freshness, bitterness, sourness, sweetness and saltiness… it’s lively and effervescent, but it’s not always cheap.

With its growing living costs not looking to slow down anytime soon, Londoners and tourists alike have been putting the breaks on going out.

But as much as we’re enjoying our homemade lasagnes and spag bols at home or in our hostels, to live or visit this city without exploring some of its culinary treasures would be like visiting London without seeing a red bus or Big Ben, pretty tragic.

So to help you enjoy a delicious meal on a minimal budget, here are my top 10 places to eat out in London. From the classic avo on toast, to the best Ramen in town, all less than £10 pounds per meal…it’s time to lap up the sauces, and savour your pennies.

1. Padella

Located in the heart of Borough Market, this Italian gem serves fresh hand-rolled pasta dishes to share. Get yourself on the waiting-list, then head into the market for a pint of Guinness and explore the market stalls.

Then, on to enjoying a buttery gnocchi dish with a £4.50 price-mark. I promise you it’s well worth the wait!

2. Broadway Market

This is hands-down one of my favourite food markets in London.

Located in trendy Hackney, what a lot of people don’t know about this market is it’s over 3,000 years old, and once a busy cart-track bringing food supplies to London. Turn the clock forward to 2019 and it’s still delivering food to Londoners.

Arrive on Saturday morning and enjoy tasty British treats like Scotch Eggs, mouth-watering Haggis and caramelised onion toasties, and finish off with a red velvet doughnut to share.

Walk off the indulgence by taking a stroll alongside the nearby canals, walk past the house-boats until you reach leafy Stoke Newington and check out the boutique shops, and another treat of course.

3. Dishoom

Located in various boroughs throughout London, Dishoom has earned its stripes as a must-visit culinary treasure.

It’s a Bombay restaurant serving delicious Indian brunches, lunches and dinners – think bacon naan rolls, spicy omelettes and bottomless Chai for breakfast, through to traditional samosas, grilled meats and hearty curries for dinner.

It has something for everyone’s spice (and price) level and my advice, go balsy! Pack on the spice.

4. Kanada Ya

This authentic Ramen house has 3 locations throughout London and is well worth the trip.

Come here if you love a good brothy bowl with lots of hearty toppings! From pork, chicken, vegetable and truffle toppings, I promise you if you love Ramen it won’t disappoint!

5. Honest Burgers

As the name suggests this joint does burgers, honestly. No frills, just good buns and good fillings.

It is home to the plant-based Beyond-Meat burger, so if you’re vege or keen to try a plant-based burger that feels, smells, and even bleeds like meat it’s well worth it.

Located throughout London, my personal pick is the Brixton location – they have the best service!

6. Brixton Village & Market Row

Number 5 leads us on nicely to this tucked-away South London gem, Brixton Village and Market Row.

Exit the Brixton tube station, take the first 2 rights and you’ll find yourself in a colourful culinary paradise.

It has something to offer for everyone’s taste buds. From Federation Coffee serving classic breakfast dishes and great coffee, to Japanese omelettes, French Crepes, Caribbean stews, and middle-eastern cuisine. It’s well worth the trip to the end of the Victoria line!

7. Lanzhou Lamian Noodle Bar

This is my go-to place for an after-work or late-night noodle fix!

No frills, just great food and yummy homemade noodle dishes! Walk in and watch the chefs at work as they pull, kneed, and cut their noodles to shape.

From thick and chewy, to light and slurp-able you’ll be lapping up the noodles and their sauces here. Be warned wearing white here (unless sauce on your shirt is your thing) is for the chefs only!

8. Grind Coffee

Great coffee, great breakfasts, and great late-night cocktails.

Grind in Covent Garden is my go-to for a guilty millennial flat-white and avocado toast fix.

Beautifully designed interiors and branding, Grind is guaranteed to get you positively caffeinated without paying a fortune for the pleasure.  

9. Carluccios

Simple Italian dishes, cooked the way Italians like them.

Carluccios is the real-deal, and I have my Italian colleague to thank for helping me discover this place – she goes here almost everyday for her fresh pasta fix.

Starting at £4, enjoy a daily takeaway spread of freshly cooked pasta dishes, meats, salads, and breads all topped with grated Parmesan.

Little tip, I find it better to eat takeaway, it’s cheaper and you can enjoy it outside admiring one of the great London sites!

10. Pizza Pilgrims

No big city would be complete without a pizza joint, and if you’re going to have one pizza in London make it a Pizza Pilgrims Pizza.

Located in various boroughs throughout London, expect a humble environment and classic flavours like Margarita, Gorgonzola, Olives, Mushroom and Salami, all supported by the freshest, softest and doughiest base. Starting at £5.50 a pizza, I think that means you can have two, right?

I hope you enjoy this list, and can make it to some of my favourite food spots in London. I promise you great flavours and saving on the pennies. Enjoy!

THE LADDER GIRL

Stop pouring your money down the liquid brew

Stop pouring your money down the liquid brew

Coffee is one of those things that if you’re like me you couldn’t go without – although hopefully, you don’t end up as cranky as I do without a liquid fix in the morning…there’s nothing worse than an uncaffeinated Holly.

Despite my dependence and borderline addiction to the stuff there’s so much to love about coffee and the culture surrounding it – walking into a cafe in the morning and smelling the morning buzz, exchanging banter with your favourite barista, watching the creamy liquid being poured into a perfect fern shape, hearing the sizzle of the steam nozzle – it’s electric and it’s addictive.

With the start of the new year I wanted to get an overview of just how much I was investing into this little liquid love affair, so I did a tally of coffee spend in 2018, and it added up – £1,006 to be exact (yes I geek sheeted this out). My daily morning routine stopover at F Mondays for an Oat Flat White the largest proportion of this amount (at a £2.90 per cup) – quite a staggering amount considering that could have paid for a trip home and back.

Coffee is something I enjoy and adds value to my life, but I knew this amount was going overboard – the thing is if you enjoy something and it’s not doing you much harm you don’t have to give it up (and I certainly wasn’t going to put up with an uncaffeinated self anytime soon), but you can be more intentional with how you allocate your money towards what you value.

I’ve seen people carrying their reusable cups in the morning, imagining some kind of dishwasher liquid swimming around under the rim, but if I wanted to reduce my spend and do good for the environment I needed to suck it up, stop being a snob, and give it a go!

Cam had a nice Frank Green reusable cup, so I gave it wash, purchased some supermarket ground beans, a bottle of Oatly, and pulled out the flatmate’s French Press – to my suprise I enjoyed the taste too.

Going to a cafe everyday isn’t essential, and not necessary to enjoy coffee. Being more intentional means cutting back and ultimately valuing more. I’ve pulled back on my weekly coffee spend and still enjoy a cafe brew on the weekends, but now when I do go out I value that liquid fix so much more.