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  • M.S. Livingston

Ugh! I am not a Vegetarian . . . Yeah! I am not a Vegetarian!

In the beginning of the year, I went to a plant-based diet. The definition of a plant-based diet that I followed was you can eat the occasional meat, but treat it as a condiment/side dish same with dairy. Prior to this switch, I was a clean-eater and was eating meat 2-3 times a day and cheese every day.

Now on the plant-based diet, I was down to eating meat once a day and some days not at all and I would only eat cheese occasionally. The cheese I did eat was organic and from grass-fed cows and my chicken was also organic. I pretty much gave up red meat and pork. I swapped out organic milk for quinoa milk for my morning latte and I substituted mushrooms in a lot of my dishes. I was eating a lot more vegetables, beans, grains, and fruit. I was trying so many new recipes. I felt fantastic!

Time passed and the more I read, the more beneficial being a vegetarian sounded, for my health, for the environment, and for the welfare of animals. I gave it a try. All my great recipes I tried to substitute lentils or mushrooms in the place of meat. Some worked, others, not so much. I found myself staring in the refrigerator looking what to make for dinner each night. Some days I was discouraged and I stopped cooking.

I slowly realized that I wasn’t eating healthy since I wasn’t getting my variety of fruits, veggies, beans, etc. Going vegetarian for my health was actually back-firing. I went back to the plant-based diet. I felt excited again about new recipes in the plant-based world. I felt relieved that I can make my daughter’s favorite recipe when she comes home to visit from college. Maybe one day I will attempt it again, but for now, I am happy with my success on the plant-based diet.

So for all those of you who won’t climb that hill because they want to conquer the mountain, won’t write that blog because they want to write a book, won’t run the track because they want the marathon, take the small successes and feel good! : )

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