Sunday, August 16, 2015

The 30 Day Vegetarian

The first week of my vegetarian challenge has been a success! No meat has been consumed by me in the past seven days. The goal is to be a vegetarian for 30 days as part of 35 before 35*. It is also an early birthday present for my vegan friend Jessica. Happy eight months early Birthday!

The week has gone smoothly. I've done this challenge in previous years. This time I haven't been dreaming of meat or longing for bacon(yet?). And I haven't been counting down till I can eat steak again. I think that is growth. Yesterday was the hardest. I was walking past stand after stand of temptation on a boardwalk. The glossy ads were enticing but it was the smell of barbequed hamburgers and hot dogs that nearly did me in. Does anyone have a good veggie-dog recommendation?

A special thanks goes to my friends Nicole and Frank. They had me over for supper the first night and helped launch my week with a wonderful vegetarian pasta dish. I think my success has been largely because of there support that first day.

The experience has got me thinking about food. Not cravings thoughts, but what we eat and why we eat it. I find food culture and our relationship to food fascinating. Today I watched three food related documentaries on Netflix Bite Size, Vegucated, and Hungry for Change. The first followed four obese children. It was heartbreaking with glimmers of hope. I felt pretty down after watching it. The second was about three New Yorkers who tried to be vegan for six weeks. I liked it the most. The last was groups of experts talking about negative effects of dieting and food consumption in North America in general. It was the most inspiring. They had me convinced I need to buy a juicer.... so I am glad all the stores are closes as I write this because a juicer is quite the impulse buy.

I'm also planning to reread Michael Pollan's Food Rules: An Eater's Manual. Today's rule "Eat Food." As well I'll be reading What to Eat? by Hattie Ellis, it has been sitting on my TBR pile for far too long and fit my current thinking. Each chapter is about a different food related question from "does any diet work?" to "should I eat like a caveman?" I hope it is an enjoyable read and at the very least informative. So far I like the opening, "Food has become very complicated. It use to be stuff on our plates." The first question is "What is a Good Apple?" I already know the answer to this one, whatever apple Mr. Michael (an apple farmer) tells me. I wonder if he and the book will agree. I'll let you know my findings next Sunday.

 *30 Day Vegetarian Rules: Any time I can choose a vegetarian option I must. That means cooking at home, meals out, or snacks at a party will all be vegetarian. The one exception is if I've been invited over to someone's house I will eat what is served even if it is meat. If it is a meal with a vegetarian option or a potluck I will take the vegetarian option.

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