6 Tips for New Vegetarians
When you are starting your vegetarian or vegan journey it can feel very overwhelming. Like it or not, meat is a large part of what we commonly eat (at least as an American) In fact, many people truly believe that you can not live without meat in their diet. But that is not true if it was there would not be a flourishing community of vegetarian, vegan and plant-based folks out there.
So how do you get to a healthy vegetarian diet?
Eat Enough Food
This is one of the biggest mistakes beginners make. Most plant-based foods are lower in calories and higher in water and nutrients. If you find yourself hungry and/or tired it may because your caloric intake is too low. Keep a loose log of what you are eating to make sure you are eating enough.
Switch It Up
Including different plant foods in you get full and stay satisfied. Try making a goal to try something new every time you go to the grocery store. Things like tofu, tempeh, dragon fruit, star fruit or quinoa are really good examples of where you can start.
Another really good tip for this is eating what is in season. By doing this, you will have a new set of fruits and vegetables to work with 4 times a year. Try one of The Smoothie Vegetarians’ recipes for even more variety!
Get Enough Nutrients
There are certain nutrients that can be difficult to obtain on a plant-based diet. In most cases, there are vegan supplements you can take to correct these. Start off with consulting a nutritionist and a doctor. Getting a blood test and going over it with your doctor is a great step to making sure you are getting all of the nutrients your body needs.
Eat Fiber Rich Foods
It is recommended that women get 25 g a day of fiber and men get 38 grams of fiber a day. Fiber prevents constipation and helps control blood sugar/cholesterol levels.
If you are not currently using fiber supplements or eating a high fiber diet, gradually up your intake of fiber to prevent abdominal discomfort.
Spice It Up!
Did you know that most spices and seasonings are vegan? Not to mention all of the herbs out there you can use.
A lot of vegan and vegetarian foods take on whatever flavor you put on them. Having a wide verity of spices and herbs on hand will make all of the difference!
Being prepared is all about setting yourself up for success and is essential for successfully transitioning to a plant-based diet. Keep plant-based snacks in the places you spend the most time (like your car, desk or purse).
When you are going out to eat at a non-plant based restaurant, look at the menu beforehand to see what options are available for you.
Transitioning to a plant-based diet doesn't have to be as hard as everyone cracks it up to be. Take the time to prepare yourself and you will ease right into it!
If you are at the beginning of your plant-based journey or if you have been at it for a while, we have a group just for you! Click here to join!