Once we understand the benefits of avoiding meat and dairy products, we still, at times, slip backwards. Here are some tips that may be helpful:
- Explore new foods. I find one of the most exciting aspects of eating a new and different way is trying different foods. There are so many different recipe databases on the internet to try, the possibilities are endless.
- Think short term. I encourage people to think short-term....just focus on what you will be eating for the next week or even the next few days. One day at a time works for many people....anyone can do anything for a day. The next day you start over again....once you get into this habit and are feeling good, you won't want to stop!
- Get a family member or friend to join you. Sharing health goals with someone else can be extremely motivating. It's just like having an exercise partner, you are held accountable to the other person. If other family members in your household join in, you can keep only healthy foods in the house--vegetables, fruits, hummus, almond milk, nuts, etc., the chips, soda, cookies, ice cream and other junk foods won't be there to tempt you. When you eat out, you can motivate each other to choose much healthier meals.
- Track your weight loss. By eating healthy, high-fiber, plant-based foods and cutting out the meat, dairy and high-calorie fat foods, you will lose weight!! There is not a more powerful motivator than shedding those unwanted pounds!
- Feeling healthy. When you actually FEEL better, you will continue doing what you're doing. Improvements in your health will include a drop in your blood pressure, cholesterol levels, blood sugar levels...you will have so much more energy to do things you thought you would never do. I started running....I never ran a day in my life!! It started with the Freihofer's Run for Women, a 5K. They offered a training program for people who never ran, I joined, and haven't looked back. Just to let you know, my youngest son is 20, my oldest son is 29....I'm not in my 30's.....If I can do it, you can do it!!
- Think of what you've gained. You are on your way to a healthier, happier life with increased energy, not to mention reduced risk of serious diseases including cancer, heart disease, diabetes, stroke, and high blood pressure. As a result, you will have more energy to do the things you love.
Focus on the most meaningful reasons to stick to your new way of eating. The key is to figure out what motivates you the most and focus, focus, focus.....
- Add your tomatoes to a blender or food processor. Bend on low until smooth. Add in 1 cup of veggie broth.
- Pour the tomato mixture plus remaining veggie broth in a large soup pot and bring to a boil.
- Add in the spices, bay leaves, frozen veggies and reduce heat to a simmer. When the frozen veggies have broken up and appear cooked through, add in all remaining ingredients like the finely chopped kale and rice. Season to taste, adding more spices and salt if desired.
- Simmer on low until ready to serve. Remove bay leaves before serving and top with fresh parsley if desired.