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Founder of plant-based vegan company Hippie Lane on why her whole family are eating meat

The mother and founder of the plant-based app and vegan cookbook Hippie Lane has revealed why her entire family now eat meat after she followed a vegan diet for years, and how she manages her kids’ diets as they get older.

Taline Gabrielian, 38, rose to prominence for her colourful, plant-based recipes, but she said she and her two children now enjoy wild caught fish, organic grass-fed meat and chicken in their diet.

‘To be totally honest and transparent, as my two have grown from infants into school-age children, it has become much more challenging to keep them keen for health foods,’ Taline posted on her blog.

She said that up until they were five or six, she was able to ‘lead the way’ with what her kids ate, but now they are older keeping up a ‘100 per cent whole, gluten and dairy-free diet has become a challenge’.

‘In particular for Seb, my eldest. It’s his feelings around why he eats differently from his friends and school mates and why he can’t have what they have that is the main hurdle for us,’ Taline said. 

As a result, the mum said over the past year, she has had to become ‘more relaxed’ with what she allows and doesn’t allow them to eat.

‘I’ve had to re-align my personal agenda which has always been what I believe is best for him nutritionally and reconsider what is important now – his mental health and overall happiness,’ she said.

Whereas before, Taline and her children Seb and Camille would have eaten foods like lentil bolognese, quinoa berry porridge, rice and beans and roasted veg, nowadays the 38-year-old said she allows chicken, organic meat and wild-caught fish. 

Taline also eats these foods herself, as she was diagnosed with adrenal fatigue in 2015, and ‘functional medicine specialists’ told her she would have to change her ‘ethical’ lifestyle in order to recover. 

Adrenal fatigue is a term used to describe a collection of symptoms, such as body aches, fatigue, nervousness, sleep disturbances and digestive problems. 

It occurs when your adrenal glands, which control your stress levels, become ‘burnt out’. 

‘I had to stop all forms of exercise, transition to a wholefood diet (not plant-based), take 15 vitamins and herbals each morning plus another eight more at night, reduce work to casual or part time, sleep a minimum of 8-9 hours and meditate for 20 minutes morning and night,’ Taline said previously.

While it seemed extreme at the time 12 months of following the program saw her ‘brain fog’ lift and moodiness disappear.

‘My personal experience is that a plant-based diet contributed to the decline in my health during the peak stage of my adrenal fatigue,’ she said.

‘There is no one size fits all method. Some people can make it work plant-based, but based on my health record and decline, it was not working for me.’  

These days, the Gabrielian family all eat a little of what they love, which for Seb is goat’s cheese three times a week and for Camille might be a dumpling at yum cha over the weekend. 

Taline’s children are also allowed to eat entirely as they wish at the weekends.

‘There’s no point chasing the nutritional benefits when the chase is causing stress. I know too well how stress can impact your quality of life, and no amount of well-ordered eating is going to make up for the mess that stress creates,’ Taline said. 

When it comes to her own diet, Taline is still gluten-free and avoids eggs because of her food intolerances but has added ‘moderate amounts of ethically sourced organic animal protein’ into the mix. 

Hippie Lane started from humble beginnings, with Taline getting into wholesome food while experimenting with recipes at home.

After finding out she was sensitive to gluten, egg, dairy and refined sugars, she made it her mission to come up with healthy and delicious recipes free of these things. 

She sold these treats to cafes around Sydney in 2011 and after her Instagram took off, the motivated entrepreneur simply couldn’t be stopped and her first cook book was released in 2017.

Since then, Hippie Lane has gone from strength to strength and Taline now has close to 500,000 followers on Instagram.

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