Hi Cherie, can you tell us about yourself and what motivates your vegan lifestyle, was it a decision you made on your own or something that you have grown up?


Hi! I’m Cherie (@thrivingonplants), a young and passionate blogger who strives to inspire people from around the world to live a healthy, ethical lifestyle.

I jumped onto the vegan lifestyle on the 20th of January, 2014 (meaning I was only 15 at the time). In the beginning, I became aware of veganism because of various Youtubers who posted up both recipe and educational videos relating to veganism. I thought to myself “I also want to eat in abundance while knowing that I’m doing something amazing for my body”. I was so sick of feeling guilty for eating. I was so sick of depriving my body of the energy and nutrients it craved for. I was desperate to stop yo-yoing on diets which encompassed calorie restriction and excessive exercise. I thought to myself, “What do I have to lose if I give this a go?” and since then I’ve never looked back. Throughout the journey however, I came to realise the ethical and environmental side of things, where as a result of educating myself eventually I was able to say that I’m vegan for ethical reasons, the health side being just an added bonus.

 

 Posts from @thrivingonplants


What are your plans now that you have graduated high school?

Ever since I've officially graduated from high school, there have been a lot of big decisions that I’ve had to make.  Originally I was planning to take a gap year in order to pursue social media full-time for a year and work on myself as an individual (honestly, I wasn’t even sure of what I wanted to do so it made no sense for me to jump straight into university). I even turned down a scholarship offer because the course I originally applied for no longer appealed to me anymore. However, I thought about it for a while and realised that my past interest in the nutrition course still lingered today. After I found out that I was accepted into the course, I thought, this is what I want to do. Although plans have changed now, I’m still going to continuously post on my social media accounts because it’s what I love to do. I’m now extremely motivated to manage my time well in order to successfully do well in all aspects of my life!

 

Do you plan to take your photography and cooking further or are you heading into the health & wellness industry or something else entirely?

Vegan cooking and photography is now a part of my life. It’s not only something that I enjoy doing everyday, but it is also something that I love sharing with everyone around the world through social media. Now that I’m planning to study nutrition, I’m sure that it’ll tie in nicely with everything that I do. It’ll not only allow me to understand the impact that food has on the body, but it’ll also provide me with credibility which is particularly important and beneficial if I ever decide to give nutritional advice (in a YouTube video or if I write an ebook for instance).

 

 

How did your Instagram feed start and how did you feel when your numbers started climbing? 
What do your friends think of your Instagram success, do they have their own feeds?

I started my Instagram account just over one and a half years ago, a few months after I jumped onto the vegan lifestyle. Never in my wildest dreams did I ever imagine my following to grow so much. When the numbers began to grow, I realised “Hey, people must be interested and inspired by everything that I post”. Also, it allowed me to realise how amazing the online vegan community was. I felt inspired and motivated everyday knowing that there were so many people supporting me and eager to see all of the meals I ate. Initially, a lot of my friends were quite shocked/surprised at how drastically my following count grew, but they were always so supportive of what I was doing. Many of them also have their own accounts, but they’re personal accounts, which is what mine started off as.


Has your social media success influenced your life-after-school decisions? 

Definitely. Social media opened up so many different pathways for me, and I came to realise that I shouldn’t be afraid to do something out of the norm. Social media will forever be a part of my life, and regardless of what career path I decide to pursue in the future, I will always be active on my Instagram and YouTube account in order to inspire and teach others.

 

How has your new YouTube channel been received? Is this something you enjoy?

I’m extremely pleased and flattered with the reception of my new social media platform. I was always so eager to make YouTube videos, but I didn’t know where to start (not to mention, I didn’t even own a camera to begin with). However, I realised that I would be able to help and inspire others to an even greater extent through YouTube, so I decided to invest in a good quality camera and play around with editing programs, until eventually I finally uploaded my first few videos. Now, I enjoy it more than ever. I’m not going to deny how draining it can be in terms of the amount of time and effort you have to put into each video, however in the end it’s so worth it for me. In only a matter of weeks my subscribers and view counts shot up drastically. The amount of support I was given by people all around the world was and still is amazing. I’m slowly becoming better at filming and editing as the days go by and I can’t wait till I can look back onto my old videos in a few years time and realise how far I’ve come.

 

Check out Cherie's "What I Eat in a Day" videos :)

 

What is the best advice you can give other young people that are considering taking up the vegan lifestyle?

You’ll never know if you don’t try. Don’t jump to conclusions based on things that you’ve heard of assumptions that you’ve made. I, myself had no idea about veganism a few years back. Back then I thought “They probably just eat lettuce and carrots all day…”. Oh boy was I wrong. Not only is veganism exciting in terms of being able to eat food that is healthy and delicious in abundance, but as an individual you undergo so much growth and happiness in realising that you’re able to live a compassionate lifestyle. Some tips I’d give to those considering taking up the vegan lifestyle would be to

  • Educate yourself: watch documentaries (Earthlings, Cowspiracy, Forks Over Knives, …) and follow a bunch of vegan social media influencers to see what they get up to in order to have a greater insight into what the lifestyle encompasses.
  • Be open-minded: Like I said, you’ll never know if you don’t try. My whole perception of veganism began to completely change as I continually gained more knowledge about the lifestyle and my own body and mind. Veganism allows me to feel so much mental clarity and gives me so much energy to do the things that I want to do everyday. I’ve never felt so sure about a lifestyle, and finally I’m able to be at ease because I know for a fact that I won’t ever have to jump from diet to diet anymore. Beyond that, I’m so glad that I no longer will support animal-cruelty and the destruction of the environment anymore either. 
  • Get creative in the kitchen! A lot of people assume that as a vegan, everything is bland and tasteless. So not true. Whatever I was able to eat before I went vegan, I’m still able to eat now. Try out a bunch of different vegan recipes. You’d be surprised at how amazing the food tastes. Also, you won’t end up having to deal with the heavy and uncomfortable ‘food comas’ anymore!
 
Power Super Foods Organic Cacao Powder, Organic Maqui Powder and Organic Coconut Sugar
 

Do you have a favourite Power Super Foods product and can you share a couple of your fave recipes with us?

PSF’s Maqui Power is definitely my favourite! Tastes great, an awesome addition to smoothies and has such an amazing rich purple colour.

As PSF’s Maqui Powder is #1 on my favourites list right now, I’ll be sharing a simple yet super tasty smoothie recipe for you all to try out!

Also, who doesn’t like a creamy, rich chocolatey smoothie. I’ll leave a recipe for that below as well! 

 


BANANA, PB & CHOCOLATE SMOOTHIE

Ingredients:
2-3 frozen bananas
1 fresh banana
1 tbsp PB2 or ½ tbsp peanut butter
1 tbsp PSF’s cacao powder
1 tbsp PSF's coconut sugar
¼ cup oats
2 cups unsweetened almond milk
Method: Add all ingredients into blender and blend until smooth. Serve!

 

 




MAQUI BOWL

Ingredients:

3-4 frozen bananas
1-2 cups frozen blueberries
1tsp PSF’s maqui powder
1/2-1tbsp of PSF's coconut sugar (depending on how sweet you like it)
1-2 cups of almond milk

Method: Add all ingredients into blender and blend until smooth. Serve!



Thanks so much Cherie!!

You can connect with Cherie on Instagram @thrivingonplants

and on her YouTube channel - thrivingonplants

From The PSF Team!