Embracing the plant-based lifestyle in Malaysia

About Davina

Photo by Subashini Raj

Davina’s plant-based inclinations can be traced back to her childhood fascination with nature and animals. Her active pursuit began in the year 1999. As a college student, she frequented a vegetarian food stall. A year later, she met her first vegetarian friend. Although her parents did not allow her to be vegetarian due to their own views on a healthy diet, Davina started reducing her meat intake, and did extensive research on the lifestyle through books, articles and documentaries. Eventually, as an adult who was afraid of open flames and didn’t know how to fry an egg, she taught herself to cook.

On 8th March 2012, intentionally coinciding with her participation in a PETA demonstration to promote vegetarianism, Davina made the conscious decision to stop eating meat for good, and witnessed her mediocre level of health dramatically improve in a few months. Becoming a vegan in early 2016 has empowered her to pursue impressive fitness goals, having swum and kayaked 18km around Perhentian Island in May that year to raise awareness and successfully crowdfund RM23k for marine conservation. She has also completed her first-ever half marathon, in July 2017, coming in at 11th place out of 400 participants in her category.

Her plant-based lifestyle persona, Davina Da Vegan, is the platform she uses to share recipes, green living tips and places to enjoy plant-based meals within the Klang Valley. Her online video, Where Do I Get My Protein From,  went viral with over 15,000 views. She has since collaborated with health food clients such as Spoon Health, Diet Angel and Yukiguni Maitake, vegan ice cream chain Kind Kones and food and lifestyle portal Dish By Ili, been a guest chef on board the Greenpeace ship the Rainbow Warrior, and has been featured on leading global vegan portal Livekindly. She regularly performs public cooking demos and delivers talks about her plant-based journey. Her greatest aspiration is to spread awareness of the benefits and joys of a plant-based diet for a healthier Malaysia.