Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Eating Vegetarian: Staying the Course

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(c) Toni Boyko
Delicious Meat Substitute!
Hello again! I hope to find you all in good health, and I hope you have enjoyed my first few posts on vegetarianism. Those posts were meant to be informative and I know they were not terribly entertaining to read, but I hope you found them useful. Now, however, we need to address possibly the most important aspect of the situation. How to stay on track and motivated with your diet when temptations may arise. One thing however, I would like to say before I go on, is that, I know in previous posts I have referred to vegetarianism and alike as "diets", however, I feel that the term "lifestyle choice" is more appropriate and will from now on use this phrase to refer to them.

The beginning is perhaps the most difficult. Adjusting to any new type of lifestyle, whether it is a new school, a home, a new job, etc. is extremely stressful on the body and the mind. A new lifestyle choice such as a vegetarian diet can cause your body some stress in the first few months depending on the foods you are substituting for meat. Things such as meat cravings can occur if you are not getting adequate amounts of protein from the appropriate sources. However, in time they typically pass once you learn what you like and what your body needs.

Things like "mock meats" are great for new vegetarians. Today there are tons of plant-based proteins that come in all meat shapes and tastes. These are much healthier than true meat, and are an excellent source of protein for vegetarians. A personal favorite of mine are the Morningstar Corn Dogs. I swear to you, they are better than the real thing!
For a more comprehensive list of meat substitutes

Morningstar makes lots of vegetarian products that taste just like the real thing. Their website also offers hundreds of vegetarian recipes and other valuable information about vegetarianism.

Once you have become comfortable with your diet, it is fairly easy to restrain yourself from those cravings you used to have. The easiest way I find to keep from having a slip, if ever a craving arises, is to remember why I chose this lifestyle; remember my reasoning behind no longer eating meat, and the craving passes. Another trick is to be sure and always keep vegetarian food in the house. Try not to let your food supply get too low as to temp you to go grab a quick burger from McDonalds.


FYI, we've discovered that my meat substitutes from Morning Star are quite an attraction for our little Papillon, Oliver. I suppose that's a good sign of the meaty aroma he detects. You can read more about Oliver and his antics over at All Things Dog Blog and 5 Minutes for Fido.


Hopefully this information is useful for those of you making the transition. The first few weeks are definitely the hardest, but I promise it gets easier! If you have any questions, comments or concerns, post them here, or at our Facebook page! Be sure to watch my tweets on Twitter about upcoming posts!

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