Food is often the center of many things, family gatherings, the beginning of a new relationship or even political discussions. For some, food is fuel to be consumed while others feel should be explored for its healing qualities. For Lauren Tregoning, it began as an experiment that changed her life.
Tregoning is a very spiritual person, she said. She spends some of her time reading different philosophies on a great number of things.
In her exploration, she came across a philosophy book by Thich Nhat Hanh that centered around the idea that you are what you eat. The book further explained that “when you’re eating animals, a lot of them are killed in a state of pain, so when you eat them it affects your energy and emotions and your mental state,” Tregoning said.
Jiving with this idea, Tregoning decided to experiment and switch her diet to a vegan diet.
“For me it was an experiment … for my health,” she said.
For her, it was not about physical health but spiritual health. Not long into the experiment, Tregoning said she felt better. This feeling increased as she researched more about the climatological impacts of animal farming.
“I felt more energized and it felt easier to get going each day,” she said. “I felt happier, clearer, more mentally clear.”
Deciding veganism was a new way of life for her, Tregoning — who lived in South Carolina just a year ago — began searching for food options that supported veganism.
Disappointed in the lack of options outside her home, she sought out an area that seemed to support vegans and discovered Colorado. She moved to the area knowing she was going to begin a business that supplied more options for vegans.
Tregoning fell in love with the culinary arts in high school where she participated in classes that supported a small restaurant. In college, she received a degree in business management while working in several restaurants.
The experience left her confident that she could combine all her skills and passion for making vegan cuisine and share it with the greater community.
Tregoning sets up her shop, Resilient Roots, at the Boulder County Farmers Market each week and has recently expanded to attending the Boulder Farmers Market and MECO Coffee Collective.
In her booth, she sells hot foods such as zucchini boats filled with quinoa salad or chickpea stew and vegan macaroni cheese. Peanut butter balls are her best sellers, she said.
Not only are her foods healthy, but Tregoning sources her food from local farmers as much as possible.
Tregoning is excited to get her start at the local farmers markets, however, she dreams of beginning a quick-service restaurant.
“This year is about me figuring out what people want and what people are willing to buy … I’m doing my best to walk that middle line between food that is healthy and food that is really common, ” Tregoning said.