Inspired by the lack of plant based food options in her city, this Columbus, GA based vegan yogini became a self sufficient meal planner. Friends began asking, she began sharing and The Mobile Veganista was born. Her dream is to eventually become a restaurant consulting service and literally bring more plant based options to the table everywhere. Read on to find out what her biggest challenge is as a business owner and why she thinks it’s important that you consider the vegan diet.
Wellness has not *always* been a priority, because *I* was not always a priority. When *I* became a priority, my wellness followed suit. - Dana
What inspired you to start The Mobile Veganista?
I was inspired to start The Mobile Veganista for a couple of reasons. Practicing a plant-based lifestyle is not something that is common here in Columbus, Ga. There are rarely any options when eating out, so i am forced to cook most of my meals. One day, a friend of mine asked me to make some things for her. I declined at first, but i thought about how i felt wanting to have “better” options, and not being able to access them. So, i thought, “why not?”! I cooked a meal and delivered it to her the next day. She posted about it on her social media, and suddenly, i had requests from others to make meals for them as well. I whipped up a menu, and shared with a few people, and it just grew from there. Sometimes I’d find myself cooking an entire week’s worth of meals for some people. When people are introduced to how GOOD Real, Whole Foods are, they tend to just want more of that and less of the other stuff.
You also teach yoga, have you always made wellness a priority?
I do not teach yoga, but i manage a yoga studio. Wellness has not *always* been a priority, because *I* was not always a priority. When *I* became a priority, my wellness followed suit. In 2013, i earned a certificate in wellness coaching. The journey to caring for yourself can seem cumbersome when you don’t know your own value. I feel that I’m purposed to remind people of their value...so that they and their wellness can become a priority for themselves. I do have plans to pursue my 200hr yoga teacher training this summer.
Why do you think it’s important for people to consider the vegan diet?
I believe that our bodies were designed to be fueled by plants...or at least mostly plants. It’s pretty sad the way that meat is such a big part of the modern, American diet. It’s literally killing soooo many animals, but not only that, it’s killing us as well. Our bodies just weren’t designed to digest meat in the quantities that it is served and consumed. I’m not some gung-ho, animal rights activist, but a lot of what goes on is just inhumane. Slaughtering something so you can eat it is not ok to me. You take a life and there is no way to reproduce it from it’s killing. To reproduce plants, you simply replant its seeds. That just seems more like right. And our bodies and well-being are better for it. It’s also so much more than just the foods we eat. It’s makeup, clothing, skincare, etc. Care for ourselves and the environment we live and thrive in should be most important. There is so much more i could say on this topic, but i will leave it there.
What are the biggest challenges you’ve faced starting your own business?
The biggest challenge I’ve faced with starting my own business has been more mental than anything. It’s just you doing all of the work...which is fine, but it’s just you...doing ALL of the work. Lol. There are lots of times, you just wish there was a way to automate everything, but then, you lose touch with why you started in the first place. A close second would be getting others to pay you for your work. It’s my passion, but it’s also my job. People don’t often realize it, and will knowingly and unknowingly take advantage of the passionate side. I never wanted to start this for the money, but it’s how i eat, pay bills, and live. So, i have to keep that in mind. It’s tough to do when you are just wanting to help people though.
What’s your vision for the future of The Mobile Veganista?
I eventually would like The Mobile Veganista to become more of a restaurant consulting service. I may still cook and serve occasionally, but my reach would be much further if i was able to collaborate with locally owned restaurants and their chefs to get more Plant-Based options on menus.