Whitney Lauritsen, otherwise known as Eco-Vegan Gal, is a plant-powered superwoman. I’ve been a big fan of hers since I first came across her YouTube channel a few years ago. Please take a few minutes and get to know her, and I think you’ll become a fan too.
Chic Vegan: What motivated you to become vegan? Was it an overnight switch or a more gradual shift?
Whitney Lauritsen: A friend of mine inspired me to go vegetarian in 2003. I wish I remembered exactly why; I guess it just felt right. It was an overnight switch. I LOVED being vegetarian and found it to be very easy. A few months later I became curious about the vegan lifestyle, so I transitioned into it. It was a more gradual change than when I became vegetarian, but once I was fully vegan I never looked back. Everything about the lifestyle resonates with me and I’ve been feeling good for 11 solid years!
CV: You’ve got so many neat things going on – great YouTube videos, a book club, and message shirts. How do you manage it all?
WL: I love helping people and I feel extremely driven to spread the message about healthy, happy, compassionate living. Even on bad days I still get out of bed feeling determined and ready to work. Managing all of my projects takes a lot of time, focus, flexibility and patience. Every day is a new day and I’m constantly learning new information to share and strategies to reach as many people as possible. My secret is to plan and prioritize. I schedule EVERYTHING in my life based on what is most important and needs to happen first. I thrive on structure, and stay flexible because it’s rare that things work out perfectly and smoothly.
CV: What is your latest project?
WL: I have a lot of projects in the works right now! One of the most exciting projects for me has been the “Healthy, Organic Vegan on a Budget” ebook. I spent 4 months researching and crafting tips to help people learn how to eat well without spending a lot of money. My aim is to debunk the myth that it’s too expensive to eat vegan and organic. The book launched in late October and has received a tremendous response. Readers have saved upwards of $85 per shopping trip following the advice, which really warms my heart to hear.
My other projects are focused around helping vegan bloggers, content creators and business owners. I launched The 4 Week Vegan YouTube Plan with Cobi from Veggietorials, the Pick My Brain business strategy sessions, and I have several more courses and ebooks in progress. I love supporting other vegans in their endeavors to spread the message about the lifestyle and find ways to monetize their efforts.
CV: What do you typically eat in the span of a day? Are you a snacker?
WL: I usually don’t eat breakfast, so my day starts with lunch and definitely includes snacks. After writing my ebook I started meal planning and this has helped me save money and make more food at home. Even though I eat gluten- and soy-free my meals are always diverse, often consisting of a grain (brown rice, quinoa, gluten-free pasta or bread) plus a ton of organic vegetables and a homemade sauce. My favorite snacks are homemade french fries, store-bought chips, kombucha and chocolate.
CV: What is your favorite vegan indulgence?
WL: It is very specific: Jem Organic Chocolate Hazelnut Spread. This is my favorite treat right now and I consider it an indulgence because it’s $11-13! Which would be fine if I didn’t it all in one sitting, but it’s really hard to resist.
CV: When people learn that you are vegan, what is the #1 question they ask and what is your response?
WL: It’s rare that I’m asked a question in this scenario. In most cases, as soon as I mention that I’m vegan people start telling me about what they eat or how they don’t think they could be vegan. My response is to listen politely and if they ask me a question I reply as kindly as possible. Usually people feel surprised that I don’t start verbally judging or attacking their choices, and many times I find them saying things like, “I probably could go vegan but I love cheese too much right now.” I really enjoy listening to what people have to say about the way they eat because I pick up ideas for future content and conversations. Plus, I find it more pleasant than starting an argument.
CV: What vegan product could you not live without?
WL: Kombucha. It’s rare that I go to the store without buying a bottle of it. Although, it’d be hard to live without chocolate and nut butter…tough question!
CV: In your wildest dreams what will your life look like in 5 years?
WL: I’m a very driven woman so it’s not a matter of wildest dreams, it’s just a matter of time! I intend to continue to blossom as a healthy-living and vegan advocate, especially in visual mediums like video. Considering that my passion for business and money continues to rise, I imagine that I’ll be focusing my work on that a lot more as well.