Roxy Pope and Ben Pook

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» Roxy Pope and Ben Pook

Recipe developers, business owners and new parents

When we turned vegan, we fell in love with cooking all over again. We’ve always been passionate foodies, but adopting a vegan diet reignited a spark in both of us. We learned new techniques to cook tasty food and discovered lots of wonderful new ingredients (nutritional yeast, anyone?) Ultimately, this is why we love vegan cooking and developing delicious recipes.

It feels like a very special time to be involved in the vegan scene right now. There's a real sense of creativity and innovation, with lots of chefs, brands and fellow foodies really pushing the boundaries of what's possible with plant-based ingredients. And to play just a small role in that as SO VEGAN feels amazing.

A healthy balance

We've both always lived relatively active and healthy lives, but as vegans we're now a lot more aware of what we put into our bodies to make sure we're giving them everything they need to thrive. Not only can a vegan diet rich in lots of whole foods, fruits and vegetables help lower your risk of conditions like heart disease and diabetes, but it can also give you so much more energy throughout the day and improve your mental health. Don't get us wrong - we love a cheeky take-away or a sugary snack – but we believe part of thriving on a plant-based diet involves finding a healthy balance to still enjoy the things we love.

We're constantly learning about the array of ingredients we use in our recipes and which ones are a rich source of important nutrients. Whether it's using pulses and beans for protein, nuts like walnuts for omegas or leafy greens like kale for calcium – our fridge and kitchen cupboards are usually well stocked so we can rustle up a quick and easy meal when we need to. This also means we can cook up delicious and nutritious meals in batches, which we can stock in the fridge or freezer for another week. Batch cooking is honestly a life saver when it comes to following a healthy diet.

New parents

As you can imagine, looking after a new-born and running a business at home can be stressful at times. As a result, we need to make sure we're fit and healthy to not only run our business successfully, but also give our daughter Maya the love and attention she deserves from the two of us. The best thing about a vegan diet is it gives us everything we need to thrive while doing both these things.

To be honest, we think there can be a lot of pressure put on vegan parents to live up to very high expectations. We're lucky in some respects that Maya has breastfed since birth and we're excited about weaning her onto lots of healthy vegan foods when the time is right. We can't wait for her to discover weird and wonderful things like broccoli and carrot!

Ultimately, we want what is best for Maya and we'll always follow the latest advice from medical professionals. Every baby is different, and your instincts will tell you what's best for them. Becoming parents was without a doubt the most incredible moment of our lives and every day is a journey of new discovery.

Follow Roxy and Ben at @SoVegan and stay tuned for their amazing new recipe app this summer

Has going vegan helped you to thrive? If you have a story to share, please get in touch.

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