Eating a Vegetarian diet is highly controversial. There are a number of reasons for this, which is why I decided to open up and write this post! Read on to find out what I Learned While Eating Vegetarian.
8 Things I Learned While Eating Vegetarian
- It’s Not That Hard – Well, it wasn’t that hard for me anyways. Before I actually went ‘vegetarian’ I really didn’t eat that much meat, even bacon wasn’t that appealing to me. Cutting meat out completely was not that difficult for me. It would definitely be harder for those who eat the typical meat-heavy western diet though.
- It’s Not Expensive – People think a vegetarian diet is expensive, it’s really not. This is one of the biggest reasons why people say they can’t go vegetarian. If you are smart, shop sales, eat a variety of frozen, canned, and fresh produce, and shop in the bulk section you are going to find that it’s not expensive at all. For example, my husband and I eat lentil soup for lunch most days. It’s 1 cup lentil soup mix, 1 can crushed tomatoes, and 1 container of broth, this makes 3 meals each and costs just $2.75.
- Concern for Protein – One of the first things people ask when you tell them you are a vegetarian or vegan is “Where do you get your protein?” The answer is: everything. Almost everything has protein in it. Veggies, beans, legumes, nuts, seeds; they all have protein. Plus, vegetarians still drink milk and eat cheese and yogurt, lot’s of protein in those items! There is such a huge concern for protein but a lot of people don’t think about fiber, which is what we should really be concerned with. Fiber aids in digestion, weight loss, and can even help prevent cancer. We are so concerned with eating protein with every meal and snack, but not with making sure we get adequate Fiber, which is at least 25 grams a day.
- Finding Alternatives is Easy – Now a days, there are SO many meat alternatives out there! You can find vegetarian sausage, burgers, chicken burgers, chicken nuggets, and tons more. There are lots of different brands too. My suggestion is to give a couple different options a chance. You may have to try a couple different brands before you find one you love!
- Eating Healthier – I load more veggies onto my plate, I snack on fruits, I meal prep a lot more, I eat a lot of soup, and I have been trying a lot of new, healthy foods. I’ve tried not to ‘replace’ meat and instead just eat a lot more fruits and veggies.
- You Can Still Eat Unhealthy Foods – People think ‘vegetarian’ and think it’s all fruits and veggies but that is not the case. There is still a lot of vegetarian junk food out there like processed foods, frozen meals, and big fast food chains like Burger King even have a vegetarian burger. These foods are fine once in awhile, but if they are the base of your vegetarian lifestyle you are’t eating healthy.
- I Don’t Want to Talk About It – People have very mixed feelings on vegetarianism and opinions can even be borderline aggressive. I really don’t like to talk about it too much because people can be very judgmental, especially those who are close to you. There is a stereotype about vegetarians having to let everyone know they are vegetarians, but a lot of us would rather not have the awkward conversation at all. You eat your food, I’ll eat mine.
- Meal Prep is a Must – I think this goes for everyone trying to eat a healthier diet but I have to meal prep at least once a week. In that time I fry mushrooms and throw them in the freezer, clean any fresh grapes or berries, chop up veggies for snacks, and cook my soups for lunches. If everything is ready to go then you are much more likely to make the healthier choice.