Congratulations and good luck! You'll soon reap the benefits of a healthier lifestyle!
! I hope so!
I'll probably never go total veg, but eat meat less and less. Not for any particular ethical or health reason. Just don't feel like it. Like making things like greek salad, couscous and tabbouleh. Couscous must be the best fast food ever. Five minutes and done.
I love hummus, myself. A few pieces of whole grain pita, and some garlic hummus, and I am in heaven.
Robert Maxwell wrote:
I really like meat. I think I could only do without it if I ate a lot of Indian food. I just love savory flavors and that's the thing I'd miss the most about meat.
For those of you here who are vegetarians or vegans, as long as it works for you, more power to you.
I'm probably going to figure out how to curry some veggies. I love the taste of curry, and that would add a real punch to some of the dishes I'm learning to make.
Mr. Laser Beam wrote:
I know I could never go vegetarian or vegan. I just like eating meat too much. It's not a philosophical/moral issue that I can see; it's just that I eat meat, I enjoy it, I believe it's safe to do so (I have no health issues that would make it unsafe), and I leave it at that.
Now I also love eating vegetables, of course.
As long as you're happy and healthy, I say more power to you!
Also, as a fellow baseball fan, I understand the necessity of having the occasional hot dog at the ballpark.
I think the flow on benefits from going veg will be a change in taste which will lead to less over fatty processed foods. That salad you describe is perfect IMO, you let the natural juices and flavors develop.
I'm not veg but grew up in a health food family (didn't have white bread until I was at least 15). My mom was a poor, single parent hippy type and we existed on lentils, millet, tofu and miso and brown rice and vegies. There's a certain style of Veg food (moosewood era, if anyone knows that) that while I will eat it brings back too many mom and hostel days memories for me. Like Robert Maxwell says I love savory flavors and years of eating mostly asian has meant I don't do the blandness of a lot of traditionally vegetarian meals. And there's no reason for it either.
J. if you like red onion a small amount can really zip up anything. You don't need much and they last for a long time in the fridge. I love it but it's one food that gives me a headache oddly, still it's a great way to zip up a meal.
Are you following a Low G.I. diet for the most part?
I'm pretty much following the G.I. diet, yes. For me, it's the safest way to go. I informed my doctor about what I'm doing, and he mentioned his love of steak and fish, but said that if I wanted some information, he had a couple of Glycemic Index booklets to give to me. Then he reiterated his enjoyment of steak and wished me luck.
When I was growing up, we had the "country cooking" diet, save that my mom used vegetable oil instead of lard. Otherwise, it was mostly heavy foods like pork chops, mashed potatoes, meatloaf, greasy salad, pot roast, lasagna, and so on.
That's awesome J! I can't do pure veg because I like beef too much, but I keep cutting back here and there. And yes the only time I really don't miss meat is when I'm in India because there is still so much flavor. I can only do that for like a month, tops, though.
One of the nice things about having to learn these recipes is that I get to experiment with spices that I've never tried before, and I'm learning to like some veggies I once hated *cough*mushrooms*cough*.
As I said earlier in my post, I'm hoping to learn some good veggie curry dishes, as I like hot, spicy food.
Like J., I turned vegan a few years ago for various health reasons. I've never regretted my decision.
I admit it was a very difficult change. I too thought I liked meat way too much. Buffalo wings were my vice. I experience cravings for months, and really had to resist temptation. Then there was the period of detoxing that just made the whole experience worse.
However, a month or two passed, the cravings went away and I started feeling better than I ever had since high school. I had endless amounts of energy and the daily aches and pains a felt went away. I also lost about 40 pounds (and kept it off) without making any other changes to my lifestyle.
The hard part is finding stuff you like. It's easy to get into a rut of just eating the same things over and over again, and that's not very healthy either. One piece of advice I would give people who are thinking about it is find some recipes and try some things before you fully commit.
For example, I finally found a supplement to my buffalo fix. I take some of that Earth Balance spread and melt it in a small sauce pot. I add some garlic cloves, celery seed, finally chopped onion and cayenne pepper, some lime juice and let it simmer for awhile. Then I pour it into a zip bag with two whole portabellas and let them marinade over night.
I grill them up the next day and lay them on a toasted whole wheat kaiser bun with some tomato, red onion, romaine lettuce, and a spread I make by mashing up some avocados and mixing them with veganaise. It's delicious. I make it for myself every now and then and totally don't miss the buffalo wings.
Another word of warning is, like a traditional omnivorous diet, one still needs balance. Things like beans and other lentils, nuts, and whole grains are still important, as is a mix of fruits and vegetables. Fruit, for example, is very healthful on its own, but if you don't balance it out with other stuff, it will cause problems.
Also, it's important not to undertake something like this half-hearted. Removing meat (or animal products) can have an adverse effect on your body chemistry. The longer you go, the more true this is.
There are various anecdotes of people who went years without eating meat and then feasted during a holiday or whatever only to end up very sick--even in the hospital.
But as long as you do it right, it's a life style change I would recommend to anyone.
I would also suggest to those who might be thinking about it (or even those who aren't) to watch Forks Over Knives. It's available on Netfix, Amazon Instant, and iTunes. It provides a wealth of information.
Ooh, I like the buffalo mushrooms idea. That might get me to actually enjoy mushrooms. I've been told for a vegetarian, mushrooms are as close to "meat" as it gets. There are things I'll have to learn, but I want to learn them, and what's nice is that this way I'm saving money. I've bought $8 worth of veggies and spices over the past two days (the spices being the most expensive part), and I haven't gone hungry once. My food is costing less than half of what it costs me to feed every other member of the family.
That's me. I recognize how meat is still an important part of being human. True, you can get by without it, but if you've been raised as an omnivore your body is well accustomed to (and benefits from) the intake of meat. The trouble that most people get into is eating too much of it
, and often heavily fat saturated kinds. While I don't condone the Neanderthal diet (they did die out, afterall!), raw vegetables are very good for you but so is cooked meat on occasion
But if health reasons necessitate eliminating meat, so be it--health is what is most important. However, if you can still be permitted to eat fish, pork, and chicken, I'd try not to eliminate those. Just eat sparingly. I find that when I do, I enjoy them all the more when I do eat them.
Well, as I said in my initial post, meat was a take it or leave it kind of thing. I ate it because it was there, and because it was cheap, but now that I'm finding ways to save money while eating much healthier, I feel like I don't have to oblige the food budget by eating meat.
Still, like I said, if you can eat meat, and be healthy, and you're happy, I say more power to you!