Have you thought about becoming a vegetarian? I know plenty of people who have decided at one time or another that have considered becoming a vegetarian without knowing all that may be involved with making this change. I have been a vegetarian for over two years now, and for me, the process was pretty easy. Before becoming a vegetarian, I did not eat very much red meat, pork or seafood.
According to the dictionary, a vegetarian, as a noun is a person who does not eat meat, and sometimes other animal products, esp. for moral, religious, or health reasons. There are different categories of vegetarians, so do you research.
Vegetarianism is not for everyone. Many believe it is too hard and don’t have the will power to make this lifestyle change. If you are making a change, you should do some research to learn different meal options and how to make sure you are eating a balanced, nutritious meal.
Here are some tips you may want to consider.
1) Have a good reason. What is you motivation? (Health, Religious, Lifestyle, etc.)
2) Research and read-up on vegetarianism and types of vegetarians. Do you know the difference between a vegetarian and a vegan?
3) Find good recipes. (www.tryveg.com is an example of a website that has recipes)
You can find plenty of recipes online. Then you can try them out to see what you like and dislike.
4) Try meatless substitutes. I like Bocca and Morning Star products and use them when I prepare spaghetti and chili. You can still enjoy many of the meals you ate before, just learn to use meatless substitutes. I also use tofu to prepare a lot of the dishes I used to use chicken in, like General Tso Tofu.
5) Start gradually… remove red meats, then pork and then chicken and seafood. Some people have to start gradually and stop eating this items in stages. Others may have to go cold turkey, like I did. Do what is easier for you.
6) Consider dairy & eggs- vegetarians vary widely on this….this is where research comes in.
7) Be a healthy vegetarian. There is such a thing as an unhealthy vegetarian. You cannot eat more junk food then you did before.
8) Plan meals and cook ahead.
9) Try vegetarian snacks: whole grain cereals, fruits, veggies, hummus, kashi crackers, etc. Try out vegetarian restaurants, vegetarian convenience foods. It gives you an opportunity to try difference types of cuisines.
10) When you cut out meat, you are cutting out fats, specifically saturated fats but also cutting out proteins as well. You will need to make sure you are replacing the proteins that you would get from meat with something else.
Visit these websites for more information:
www.vegsoc.org – Vegetarian Society
www.vegcooking.com – Veg Cooking