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I recently switched to a plant-based diet. I’m sure you’ve heard about this in the news, online, or from friends, and you may have many questions. Is it vegan? Do you eat meat? Is it healthy? Are you going to eat like this for the rest of your life? What do I eat at a restaurant or at a friends home?

Years ago, due to some health issues, I stopped eating meat, chicken, fish, dairy and most processed, unhealthy type foods, and tried to eat whole, organic real food. This meant lots of vegetables, grains, beans, etc. Within 2 weeks, I felt better, aches & pains went away, and my “issues” disappeared. As time went on, I began to revert back to my old eating habits, gained weight, and began to feel achy & old.

So earlier this year, right after the holidays, I remembered how good I felt when I ate mostly vegetarian and decided to make this a permanent change to my diet. I’ll admit, I’m not 100%, but I would say 90% or so most of the time and I’m OK with that.

What do I eat? Whole grains like oatmeal, quinoa, brown rice, whole wheat pasta, lots of veggies, some fruit, beans, nuts & almond milk. I also stay away from oils if possible, and sugar. Sugar is what really makes me feel bad and I find I’m super sensitive to it and strange things happen to my body when I eat too much.

I do eat an occasional egg, and I’ll eat a veggie pizza with cheese. Have I cheated and ate meat? Yes I have, maybe once every few months, but usually for special occasions like on vacation eating Kansas City BBQ!

Does my husband eat like this too? For the most part. He takes his “meat” sandwiches for lunch, but he eats whatever I make for dinner. I’ve found so many good recipes online and it’s fun to try them. Like anything else, some are good and some are meh!

The hardest part for me is eating out. Fast food is basically out and many restaurants will have a variety of salads or pasta choices that aren’t covered in cheese or sauce, but many don’t. So, in my area, I know where to eat. It’s a harder choice when out of town, but then those will be my cheat days. Also I will make sure what I do eat is as healthy as can be and make sure other meals make up for it.

If eating a plant-based diet is of interest to you, here are some websites that could help you get started:

*https://www.forksoverknives.com/

*https://plantstrong.com

This will definitely be a permanent lifestyle change for me. The health reasons far outweigh the costs of going back to the way I ate before. I’m feeling too good!

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