Interview with Vegan Instagram Star, Katya Elise Henry

Katya Elise Henry

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We talk to Katya Elise Henry who is a vegan health and fitness star with an Instagram following of 5.1 million fans!

When did you choose to become vegan? Why did you choose to transition to a plant based lifestyle?

My sister Tanaya had a pretty big influence on my decision to try it out; she has definitely flourished since going plant-based and this is what initially generated my curiosity. I also wanted to see how it would affect my training and physique. There are a lot of people out there who say you can’t gain muscle on a plant-based diet, so I was interested in finding out for myself if this theory held any water. Since switching to a plant-based diet, I have gained muscle mass and am living my beliefs that we should be living in harmony with animals, rather than at their expense. It’s been uplifting to take real action in a way that could make a difference in relation to animal welfare. It’s been almost 2 years now and I really don’t see myself going back to my old lifestyle.

Have you noticed any benefits or changes since transitioning to a plant-based diet?

Since transitioning, it’s become easier to stay lean and my energy levels (and moods) don’t seem to fluctuate as much as they used to when I was eating more processed foods. I’ve also seen a big improvement in my skin; it has less flare-ups. And my digestion is better, too!

How have your strength and fitness levels changed since you started following a vegan diet?

A lot of people think that going plant-based will make them really tired and that they will lose all their gym gains, but this is simply not true at all! If anything, I feel that I have even more energy to exercise and I’m less focussed on calorie burning since my body fat levels are now naturally sitting at a lower level than when I was eating a more traditional diet.

Are there any supplements you take to help support your vegan diet?

I regularly use Blessed plant-based protein for my heavier workouts, if I’m on-the-go (as a snack), and in lots of my smoothies and recipes. I also take EHPlabs BCAAs to help me perform in the gym and improve my recovery, plus they contain the full B Vitamin spectrum.

Katya Elise Henry

What is your favorite go-to vegan recipe?

I can make a really mean vegan pasta that is always a hit when I cook for friends! It’s super quick and simple, and so tasty. I make it in bulk so I can take it on the go for quick snacks as well. Enjoy: https://vimeo.com/268335900/3603d07c68

Katya’s vegan pasta
Green pasta – cook for 10 minutes
Once cooked add the following:
Cubed cucumber
Sliced pitted black olives
Then drizzle with Italian dressing
Sprinkle vegan parmesan cheese to serve

I am also a huge fan of smoothies because they are loaded with nutrients, easy to digest, and they’re so quick to throw together. This is one of my favorites:  https://vimeo.com/268335819/550b12dd53

Katya’s Tasty Avocado Fruit Smoothie
Add the following ingredients to a blender:
Sliced avocado
Mango
Raspberries & strawberries (could be substituted with pineapple – whatever is in season)
Almond milk
Blend together and voila!

What are your best tips for young women looking to move towards a more plant-based lifestyle?

Take the time to transition slowly, step by step, and ALWAYS listen to your body throughout the process. I also suggest getting encouragement from friends, family and health professionals – having a strong support network made the process really uplifting for me. If you want to make the changes for health and ethical reasons, but you’re not super informed about diet, it’s pretty important to have guidance or follow a plan, to help make sure all of your body’s requirements are being met. Since transitioning myself, my team and I have put together meal plans that aim to smooth the transition to a plant-based lifestyle for others.

What is the best vegan restaurant you’ve ever visited?

Planta South Beach & Green Bar in Ft Lauderdale – they have delicious, 100% plant-based meals and an amazing vibe!

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