vegan diet 2014Hope Everyone Had a Happy Christmas!

Now that THAT’s over with, the next big holiday is right around the corner.

Chances are between Thanksgiving AND Christmas, we’ve all packed on an extra pound or two.  And of course now all we want to do is get rid of those new unsightly rolls before the warmer weather arrives next Spring.

And so every year about this same time, we all start thinking about next year….

losing weight, getting healthier, yep I’m finally going to do it…..  

We call them the dreaded…..

 

New Year’s Resolutions

  • Lose Weight
  • Eat Healthier
  • Join a Gym
  • Exercise More
  • Quit Smoking
  • Blabby Bla Bla Bla

 

We’ve all made them.   And we’ve all broken them.  Sadly, most New Year’s Resolution

Just…Don’t…Stick.

Want to give yourself the best chance of finally sticking to that new diet?

 

Here are 5 Easy Ways to Start a Vegan Diet in 2014

 

 

#1  Ease Into It

 

Don’t think you have to do it all at once.  While some people are great at jumping in with both feet  – others need a more gradual approach.  Start slow.  Try to eat out less and at home more often.  You may have to cook a little bit more, but chances are it will be healthier than fast food.  Maybe make one meatless meal a week, or choosing a salad for lunch instead of that greasy burger and fries.

 

#2  Find Just a Few Vegan Recipes You Like

 

There are literally hundreds of Vegan Recipe sites out on the net, and just as many cookbooks.  Find one you like and experiment.  Many Vegan meals are designed to imitate the comfort foods we grew up with.  Just find a few recipes that you like and make these over and over.  I started with Soups and now have 2 or 3 Soups I make all the time.  And don’t forget a big pot of soup with lots of veggies will last for several days.  Mix things up and pour your soup over a Baked Potato one day, Rice or Pasta the next.  Another thing I did was find a good Vegan Gravy recipe like this one from Happy Herbivore,  I mean come on – everything taste better smothered in gravy – right?

 

#3.  Add a Green Smoothie a Day

 

If you absolutely can’t stand the idea of eating a vegetable – try drinking them!  Of course many experts agree you should chew your calories and not drink them (they won’t fill you up) –  but you know yourself better than anyone.  And if you know you will never chew a vegetable anytime soon, then go ahead and drink them.  At least you’re getting your vitamins and fiber even though it’s not exactly the best method.  Green Smoothies may sounds gross because … well … they’re green …  but honestly in this Green Smoothie recipe all you taste is banana.  Give it a try!

 

#4.  Eliminate Just One Bad Food a Month

 

Giving up ALL meat, Eggs, and Dairy can sound like a huge, horrible, task.  So don’t do it all at once!  Try giving up just one bad food choice a month.  Maybe start with something you really don’t eat that often anyway.  My example would be fish.  Ok so in January I will not eat any fish.  Done.  See?  That was easy.

Next month add something else.  Again in my example I would add eggs to the list, since I used to eat them so rarely.  In February I will no longer eat Fish or Eggs.  Next month add another.

Or – maybe start with the worst option for you.  Processed meats are full of unhealthy fats, preservatives, and nitrates.  Break them up individually if you have to.  Cut out Hot Dogs one month, cold cuts another, and yes – bacon is in this category so sooner or later……

If the though of cutting them completely horrifies you – try substituting a healthier option.  JennieO Turkey products are at least healthier than the real thing.   Then maybe move on to a Veganized option like Morning Star or Tofurkey.

Believe it or not, after just 30 days your taste buds will  change.  Soon you won’t miss them at all and in some cases they will taste so disgusting you’ll wonder how you ever stomached them in the first place.  Seriously – it will happen.  Just takes time.

 

#5.  Don’t Beat Yourself Up – Just Keep Trying

 

The reason so many resolutions fail is we just give up or give in.  If you do cheat – just pick yourself up and start again the next day.  No big deal.  Hey, you’re trying – right?  What helps me is to remind myself  WHY I’m doing this in the first place.  And if you need support, there are hundreds of blogs and forums (like this one) you can come to with like-minded people for inspiration.  We’ve all been through it, and we’re all here to help.  It really is a supportive community if you give it a chance.

Just remember – one step at a time.

To your success in 2014!

 

Image Source: Flickr/Dan Moyle

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