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A Plant Based Diet? Me?

A week or so ago I posted a blog that included en excerpt of a letter from a friend who recommend I cut out processed foods "and animal products".  I nearly laughed out loud when I read the animal products part because she pretty much knows how I feel about "animal products".  Her advice, however, spurred me on to attempt a change (though I told her I just pretended not to see the "animal products" part.)  Her advice included some Netflix documentaries for me to watch.  

During our 3+ hour flight delay while waiting for our plane to Las Vegas (and BTW, for those who saw the blog . . . it was a tight fit with the seatbelt) I watched "Forks over Knives".  OMGosh.  I have never felt so compelled to become vegan immediately and wondered if there was any way I could do it.  While in Vegas I gave this a lot of thought.  Is it something I WANT to do?  Yes, definitely.  Is is something I CAN do?  I'm not sure.  I still have that lingering doubt as to whether or not I can discipline myself to follow a plant-based diet. 

Now I have to tell you . . . I could never understand why anyone would ever be a vegetarian!  And Vegan??  Well that was just ridiculous.  What would make someone do that?  In my mind there was no good reason for making those kinds of dietary restrictions.  While I respected their life choices I certainly didn't understand them. 

On the return trip I watched a second documentary -- "Hungry for Change" and I realized that I AM hungry for change.  Something they talked about in this program was basically a transition to the change.  Adding vegetables and fruits while decreasing the processed foods, reducing the sugar, eliminating the fried.  It was kind of a "don't jump in with both feet method"  but promised as you add the good things to your diet and slowly eliminate the bad, you will feel so much better that it will become easier and easier to continue that way of life. 

So I have begun formulating a plan.  Immediately I will begin increasing vegetables and fruits.  Second I will contact a few people who I know live a lifestyle of either vegetarian, vegan, or totally sugar free to get their input on making this transition.   Lastly I will start to experiment with recipes to discover how to cook this way.  If I can't learn to make healthy, wholesome, tasty foods I will fail.  

Can I do this?  I don't know.  But I do know that the documentaries I have so far watched inspire me to attempt a transition to a plant-based lifestyle.  I have nothing to lose by trying!

27 Stimmen + -

23 Kommentierens:

conniehv40 schrieb vor 6 Monaten:
I am almost 60 days without dairy, grains, and sugar--and if you knew me, you would think I'm lying. (my nickname is crackers and my favorite meal is cereal with milk after a cup of coffee that is more half and half than coffee). The one thing I have allowed myself to do with my new plan is 1) plan--I have actual menus and shopping lists and 2) spend more money on the fruits/veggies that look great! I have shopped a few stores to see what strawberries just look incredible, blackberries, where is the thinest asparagus and best green beans etc. I have spent my "snack money" on great looking fruits and veggies!! I bought some new spices, I use nice plates now for my one piece of protein and veggies, and I even bought a cute water bottle to drink my 90oz of water.... So, treat yourself to the new things that you will be incorporating into your plan!! Good luck!!
joanthemom8 schrieb vor 6 Monaten:
My sister has been vegetarian for 30 years, but not for dietary reasons - for the ethical treatment of animals. She has a slew of health problems... not because she's vegetarian, but because she still eats unhealthily. I also had a friend on MFP (he's since left) that was vegan (again, for ethical reasons) and was 100 pounds overweight. He did lose the weight here on MFP and stayed vegan. I think if you go this way for HEALTH reasons, you will be successful. But if you don't change your mindset about eating in general, I don't think any "restriction" will work. My sister and form MFP friend were that way.
I do think it's worth it to try it because you are thinking of your health and that's the key.
PAnn1 schrieb vor 6 Monaten:
It's all about feeling better. If you try and it doesn't work for you, at least you tried something new that really intrigued you. Not everything is a one size fits all way of life. For me, it doesn't intrigue me at all to cut out certain things like poultry and occasional steak, but others have no problem with it. It sure won't hurt you to try it. If you find it's not your thing, you at least gave it a try and didn't lose a thing, but gained an understanding of something different.
OatmealBowl schrieb vor 6 Monaten:
Vegas has so many vegan options now available in all the restaurants. I watch Fork over Knives... definitely makes you want to go veg immediately.
Zinka61 schrieb vor 6 Monaten:
I've been vegetarian for 28 years and began eating vegan 98% of the time within a couple of years, usually whole foods plant based, but at times over the years my diet has been better than at other times, even while being plant based. I've been a thin pb eater and a heavy one, (at 5'6", my lowest weight was 124lbs and my highest 170lbs. My goal here is 140-145lbs, but I'm maintaining more easily a few lbs over that. So going plant based isn't a magic way to lose weight, but cutting out sugar and refined carbs and added fats certainly will help! With my ups and downs in weight, my cholesterol and blood pressure have remained in a "normal" range, despite a family history of problems in those areas, and I believe the pb diet has helped that (just going vegetarian all those years ago made my cholesterol drop 20 points right away). Do read up on vegan nutrition and consider supplementing B12 at least. Some other supplements vegans often take are omega 3, DHA, and vitamin D. When I log here, I log for iron, calcium, potassium and vitamins C and A in addition to protein. Good luck to you on your PB diet!
Anonymous schrieb vor 6 Monaten:
Have you heard about Neal Barnard and 21 day kickstart...lots of great support
StevLL schrieb vor 6 Monaten:
I understand how you feel. I was a meatatarian for 54 years. Last February I ended up in the cardiac unit with a high BP of 192/145 and a thankfully incorrect test showing I had a heart attack and I say thankfully because while i did not have a heart attack my stay revealed an aneurysm and kidney disease. By May my kidneys were at 39%. I did research and everything pointed to WFPB and after watching FoK, What the health, hungry for change, plant pure nation and a slew of other documentaries. I went WFPB at the end of May and as I near the anniversary of my cardiac visit, I can report, I do not miss the meat. I occasionally have parmesan and sometimes a little feta cheese, but otherwise stick to a WFPB very little oil, no added sugar, no added salt and very little processed foods. When we find our why we find our strength to do what it takes to get healthy. 114lbs down, Type 2 resolved after 7 years, kidneys back up to 74% and hopefully higher at the next check, Cholesterol down, aneurysm shrunk, BP at 122/75 on 3 meds versus 8 and I can honestly say, "Nothing tastes as good as healthy feels!"
I began eliminating stuff in March last year as order, so by May the jump was doable, but in hindsight had I known how quickly I would reverse my health and feel better I would have started the day I got out of the hospital.
Give it a try and find your "why" it will help make your choices sustainable. Good luck!
domesticlydiva schrieb vor 6 Monaten:
Sustainable is the key. I went vegan for several months after my daughter had success eliminating her psoriasis through a vegan diet...she lost 40lbs also....likely more from cutting pop & other highly processed items. It is doable as some of the above comments prove, but it is difficult to sustain especially if dining out at other people's homes. Anyway, I slowly went back to eating animal products many months after seeing "What the Health" & thinking at that time that I never wanted to eat meat ever again. My daughter also has been struggling to maintain that lifestyle also...It is a discipline & commitment for sure. It sounds great in theory, but is difficult especially if you have to cook for others who aren't vegan. Sounds like you are going to take it in stages & are leaning toward transitioning to plant based rather than both feet in....sounds sensible....like you said though you can "try" and if it doesn't work for you, it doesn't work for you...that's all....here's to trying!! And I hope it does work for you...
rundgrenrocks schrieb vor 6 Monaten:
I’m adding more ways to eat vegetables, because it’s healthy and lets me eat more, and because my teenager is now a vegetarian. Today I learned how to make carrot “bacon”. It’s good but it’s not bacon. But, I can think of a whole bunch of ways to use it and since I don’t really like carrots, that’s a win for me!
_Motherofcats_ schrieb vor 6 Monaten:
Although I've never been a meat-addicted, I am still struggling to keep a strict discipline on what I eat in general, and on animal products in particular. I'm Italian, and I can tell you that it is almost impossible to say NO to some mortadella or Pasta bolognese. But in the last years I've started founding my way out, allowing myself to some "cheat days", which are those when I go in restaurants with no real vegetarian options, or when I am invited at friends' homes and I don't want them to bother about my restrictions. I think that, although not being 100% veg, my food choices are still sustainable choices. And that was for me eyes-opening: being able to succesfully switch from milk to other options is a great achievement, no matter what other achievements I still didn't get. Reducing meat to a 3 times per month is something I have to be proud about. If we all would reduce to such a ratio, animals conditions would already be soooo much better.
Don't let yourself tell you "if I cant' be a 100% veg I give up", that's a kind of excuse we give to ourselves when we WANT to give up. Sadly this is also something people who don't event want to START thinking about sustainable choices like to say. When I hear it (mixed between other sentences like "you not eating meat will not make any change" or "so you sometimes eat meat, where is your ideal?"), I just feel sorry for those people and hope one day they will find the same strength they are envying so much to start their own journey into eating healthy and sustainable.
Hope you will find your way soon xoxo
Anonymous schrieb vor 6 Monaten:

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mt_mama schrieb vor 6 Monaten:
Once I started looking at meat (animal products) as dead decaying flesh it lost it's appeal to me. This came on slowly but one day as I was rinsing off some chicken breasts before cooking I realized this was a dead body. I looked over at my precious dogs and thought how I would NEVER eat them. From that day on I had a hard time eating any thing from an animal. Over time I just stopped. I also had the good fortune that my own DR (the only physician within 30 miles of my remote home) was plant based and he heartily encouraged me getting off anything from an animal for health reasons. As I sought out plant based recipes I began to learn more and more about this "lifestyle" and cooking techniques. I am now a "McDougallete" and follow Dr McDougall's Starch based diet. My health has improved A1C down from 6.0 to 5.6. BP down and overall more energy and mood. Now I am calorie counting as I tend to overeat for comfort. Over the past week of counting my calories I am down 4 pounds. I feel like I am really beginning to get my bearings on how to more forward.
gravija01 schrieb vor 6 Monaten:
You can absolutely do this! I began slowly moving toward a vegetarian diet (vegan is my eventual goal) a few months ago by giving up red meat. In the last month, I've begun to drop every other meat from my diet as well, starting with seafood and turkey, until I was only consuming chicken twice a week. When I went to the store today for my weekly groceries, I didn't get any meat, only loads of fresh fruits, vegetables, and grains (and I still consume dairy, so this is very much a work in progress).

Slowly transitioning to an entirely plant-based diet is completely achievable. You'll need support and confidence in your food choices, but the fact you WANT to make this change at all is telling of how successful you'll wind up being.
Aarjono schrieb vor 6 Monaten:
I am 342 days into a pescatarian diet. I never thought I would be someone who would give up meat, but I don't miss it and I feel better than I have in years. Good luck to you!
SmashleeWpg schrieb vor 6 Monaten:
Watching "What the Health" on Netflix will add fuel to your fire as you begin this journey to a more plant based eating style. Good luck!
OlderGuru schrieb vor 6 Monaten:
I went through the same - watched the movies mentioned above, then some more videos on YouTube and decided to give it a try.. Stopped eating animal-based foods entirely and found it to be not too bad with so many alternatives.
I had blood work done 4 weeks into this and was very pleased with my new Cholesterol and Triglycerides levels which went down SO much, that I am pretty determined to keep this dietary change for life..
Good luck!
cvendsel schrieb vor 6 Monaten:
I've been vegan for 5 years. I made the change for the ethical treatment of animals but in doing so I found that I physically felt so much better. I had more energy, slept better, digestive regularity, and no phlegm and inflammation from dairy products. I agree with going slowly if plant based/whole foods eating is not in your wheelhouse. Transition slowly and find new recipes to replace your old and maybe less healthy ones. I'm rooting for you!
healthyi7 schrieb vor 6 Monaten:
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shishirhegde123 schrieb vor 6 Monaten:
Go for it and I will assure you, it helps for your health for sure. I started my Vegan journey 4 months back. I use to be a vegetarian but for ethical reason and yes netflix documentaries like Fork over knife, Cowspiracy (and few more which netflix suggested), I made my mind to go for vegan. No cheese, no egg, no milk. I use to love egg and curd. Now I don't miss them any more. Soy milk is best replacement. If you are yogurt fan (I am, my meal is not complete without yogurt and rice mix with Indian pickle) then you can make Soy yogurt. It is a right replacement. But for better health, make sure you walk. Walk everyday. Take your dog to walk even when you don't have one. Cheers to life. Take Care.
shishirhegde123 schrieb vor 6 Monaten:
And yes, don't take any supplementaries just because you feel you are vegetarian/vegan now and you will lack of nutritions. It is myth. Choose your vegetables and fruit wisely and you will be good. Also watch netflix Hungry for change, Vegucated. Good Luck and stay healthy (you will)
TammyLML schrieb vor 6 Monaten:
I am not vegetarian, but I switched to a plant-based diet at the end of November last year. It has changed my life in so many ways! Have lost 16 pounds, have a LOT more energy, and best of all, I am no longer hungry all the time. Before, I was trying to live on a 1500 or less calorie diet, working out like a fiend, and was always hungry. (I didn't have a diet plan, just basically trying to eat at a calorie deficit.) I now eat roughly 2000 calories per day, and most of that is fresh vegetables, fruits, & legumes, but also dairy and small amounts of lean meats. Honestly I was SO skeptical that I could increase my caloric intake to that degree, but it's been amazing. Content matters - I haven't cut anything out of my diet specifically, but I use very little butter or oils, eat hardly any breads, and almost zero processed foods. It does take a chunk of time and effort - fresh fruits and veg require more prep time than a processed foods diet, and it took me a while to find a balance with regard to time spent in the kitchen. I followed a plan from Fitness Blender to get me started - basically a fantastic guide to show me what healthy, clean eating really is - but now I mix up their recipes with my own, which I've adapted for clean eating, and I just love it. Some other folks here mentioned that you can be a vegetarian and still eat very unhealthily, and that is completely true. There are tons of helpful resources online - a little homework can go a long way! :) The program I used from FitnessBlender.com is called "FB Meal Plan - Eat Real Food & Feel Great", and I think I paid $25 for it. They have other meal plans as well and can be adapted for vegetarians or vegans. My plan included a wonderful instruction booklet, FAQ, grocery lists for 4 weeks and recipes too. (I don't work for them or anyone else, I just really love what this plan did for me!) In the end, you don't NEED a plan, though, or to follow a fancy "diet", or take pills (or supplements, if you are getting the right nourishment from your foods). It is all within your reach, and I think you will do marvelously! :)
rccsinger schrieb vor 5 Monaten:
There are some great vegan YouTube channels. I like Caitlin Shoemaker and Sweet Simple Vegan. They do not use much processed food at all (tofu occasionally) and focus on whole plant foods. There are others that I like such as No Egg Craig, Vegan Zombie, Edgy Veg and Cheap Lazy Vegan. Check out several "What I Eat In A Day" and "Meal Prep" videos from different channels to see what might be the best fit for you. Many of these channels also give tips on how to transition to a vegan lifestyle. Good Luck on your journey!
YourVeggieCoach schrieb vor 5 Monaten:
Lots of good idea and encouragement here.

The advice I'd add is to reach out and find some vegans locally. But also see which of your current friends are vegan-curious or vegan supportive. I have many friends who are almost vegan or not vegan, but still love to eat vegan food and we get together and make different dishes and enjoy them together. Food is often most enjoyable as a communal activity, so don't feel you have to go at it alone!

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