what better way to begin a new diet than with a cross-country move? an empty fridge, bare pantry, fresh new house, all waiting to be filled with foods. did you know that the word 'diet' means nothing but the kinds of foods you eat? it isn't restrictive, limiting, boring. it's simply what you choose to nourish your body. you can be consuming a diet of cheerios and potato chips and it's still called a 'diet'. or, you can choose to consume plant-based meals and call it a 'diet'.
for me, i'm choosing to go with plants. and without animals. over the past year i've been taking little steps towards eliminating animal products from my kitchen and from my diet. putting almond milk in my coffee, trying new ways to cook vegetables, even trying soy ice cream. it hasn't been easy and it hasn't all been delicious. the more i've learned about how animal products end up on our grocery shelves, the more inclined i am to be a part of that cycle. the final straw was an episode of the podcast 'how i built this' about a man who grew up on a farm and saw first hand how animals were treated (ex: cows being shipped cross-country in little double-decker buses and when the cows on top need to relieve themselves ... well you can imagine where that waste goes...) he decided to create a product from plants that looked and tasted like animal meat.
now, my diet will be mostly plants, i don't love the idea of eating imitation meat. i also have the training and knowledge as a future nutrition educator to know how to approach my diet in a way that will still nourish my body and get me the essential macronutrients and vitamins i need. and i don't expect the rest of my family to follow my vegan diet either. i can't imagine brad giving up meat and cheese (although he's 100% with me on the subject of cows) and the kids can absolutely still have animal products as they please. but as i'm the one making the grocery lists and the menus and actually cooking and preparing most of the food, the majority of everyone's diet will be vegan as well. maybe eventually they'll all switch over and eliminate animal products for good, but it's not my place to make that decision for them. all i can do is explain to them why i'm choosing to eat this way and give them all the information they (1) need and, (2) can handle.