Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Choosing Vegan, Mostly Vegan, or Vegetarian. It’s not like choosing a religion.

Why you choose to eat fewer animals and animal products is your own personal choice. Some people are adamant about it all ... Vegan shoes, handbags, cosmetics, soaps, etc. I talk to thousands of people about their choices, and they are as diverse as the people themselves.

We’ve all seen the secret videos taken in the commercial meat industry and have been horrified at the cruel conditions and violent deaths of animals raised for the commercial meat industry. If you are a vegan for ethical reasons, you probably abstain from all animal products because of the processes that you have witnessed.

Some common questions that people ask me are “Don’t you ever miss eating a juicy bacon and cheese burger?” “Don’t you miss pizza with pepperoni and cheese?” The answer is yes, and yes. Of course I remember the days of hamburgers and pizza. It brings to mind that tasty late night patty melt from Denny’s. Or, speaking of Denny’s, the hangover sausage and eggs breakfast with gravy on the hash browns. Oh, I’m getting choked up just thinking about those things. For me, I have made some of my decisions because of the animal trade, but others for the sake of keeping cholesterol low and because I feel like a million bucks!

The thing about making food choices is that being a vegan isn’t like being a religious zealot. There are no rules or commandments here. You need a balanced diet for
your body. You need to pay attention to your daily intake. If you eat the same bowl of cereal for breakfast, and the same salad for lunch every day, you are not getting a balanced diet. You’ve got to diversify. Choose a variety of colors each day. Greens, reds, purples, and yellows, in fruits and veggies, and a variety of grains. If you had potatoes for dinner last night, have a grain tonight, etc.

If you are an older woman with bone loss, you should monitor your calcium intake. If you are an older person, eating less or no meat is a good idea for your cholesterol and overall health, but adding some skim milk to your coffee, or having some yogurt with your fruit might be something that you could choose. Being a vegetarian and eating low fat choices of dairy products and an egg now and then might work for you. Calcium is found in greens and grains, and you can find the nutrients that your individual body needs in a solely plant based diet too. This is your choice. If you have decided to go completely Vegan, then you must educate yourself about nutrition. There is a Vegan food pyramid to consult with too.

Click on the nutritional data link on this blog and you will find the
Self Magazine nutritional search engine. When you are in the beginning of a change to plant-based meal planning, I recommend that you study this nutritional information to take the guess work out of it. Compare the nutritional information of nuts and beans to see how it compares to meat and fish. You should know this information.
Spring Rolls With Rice, Carrots, Spinach, Glass Noodles

Changing over to vegetarian or vegan diet can make you feel like a completely different body, but it’s imperative that it be done right. Have fun, and you might discover some incredible meat and cheese free recipes!

Checkout my Vegan spring rolls full of rice and vegetables wrapped in oversized rice paper. The great thing about this type of meal is the dipping sauce choices. I use a French salad dressing and they are flipping incredible!

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