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Vegan in China


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Hi everyone.


I came to live and work in China more than 2 years ago.

We're planning to travel to the UK next year with our son, who is 7 months old today! It will be the first time I've travelled outside of China since I came here! I'm so used to the culture here now, I think I will experience some culture shock going back to my "home country"!


Before I came to China, I read parts of The China Study, by Dr. T. Colin Campbell. I found it fascinating.


In this thread, I hope to answer questions about what it's like to live in China.


As some of you know, I decided for myself at the age of 7 that I didn't want to eat "meat". I didn't like the idea of harming animals and I didn't like the idea or the taste of meat. When I was 16, I decided that I also didn't want fish to be part of my diet. When I was 21, I decided I didn't want eggs or dairy to be part of my diet.


And that's when I joined the Vegan Bodybuilding & Fitness forum: in 2005!


Well, you've seen my progress in other threads: I did really well on a balanced vegan diet: made some great gains. Then I went down the road of the raw vegan diet, and then the "fruitarian diet". It was an interesting experience, and definitely a part of my journey that I would not change, but I returned to a balanced vegan diet, eating common staple foods such as rice and potatoes, many kinds of vegetables, beans, some tofu, some bread, and still as much fruit as possible of course: plenty of bananas.


Living in China and following a vegan diet is no problem in my experience. There's a vast amount of fruit on offer: you can try fresh durian, dragonfruit, mangosteen and any other fruit you can think of.


A speciality in the region where I live is fresh bamboo shoots, which are a great source of energy. As well as being eaten after they've been freshly harvested, they can also be dried and used in soups in the winter time!


A popular activity is to eat at a "hotpot restaurant" or to eat "hotpot" at home. This involves having a pot of simmering water in the middle of the table and cooking each item that you want to eat as you go along! It's a nice social occasion, and the best part of it is the amount of greens you can consume! What we know as "pak choi" is really cheap over here, and I especially like eating it as part of a hotpot meal! Another hotpot item that my wife and I both like to eat is "winter melon" aka "white gourd". You can also add different kinds of cruciferous vegetables (namely different varieties of broccoli and cauliflower), noodles and tofu.


Other specialities include fresh steamed pumpkin and sweet potato (yellow and purple varieties!), served in a kind of "steaming basket" with monkey nuts! That's a really nice dish!


There's also a kind of "steamed bun" filled with mushrooms, tofu and chopped greens. The same kind of filling is also used in the "wonton dumplings", which I'd be happy to eat every day!


There's much more to say on this topic. I will continue in the next post, and reply to any questions you have!


I have a video of one of our hotpot evenings to post on my personal blog soon!

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