I have dreams…dreams of one day being a glorious veggie-only gal. But, alas, there’s no hope. My love for bacon is too fierce. So, what does one do when they love consuming veggies on the regular but just can’t seem to give up those certain carnivore crutches? You do the next best thing: you become a part-time vegetarian!
What exactly is a “part-time vegetarian” (aka, flexitarian)? Well, it’s basically when you mostly don’t eat meat but sometimes do. And that doesn’t mean that it’s an afterthought, like that a non-meat meal only happens when we run out of meat. At home, we try to make a conscious effort to plan meals that—6 out of 7 days a week—are mostly veggie. That said, we also include fish (so, maybe a true “pescatarian” if we’re keeping score). I love salmon far too much and know that the health benefits are amazing, so I would hate to cut that out of my diet!
Here’s our favorite go-to, all-veggie meal: Roasted veggies with roasted chickpeas on bulgur wheat with a yogurt garlic sauce. Side note: toss the chickpeas in some curry powder for great flavor!
Other than being an avid lover of vegetables, there are also health and environmental benefits that make the effort to include them in our diet worthwhile. For starters, some of the best nutrition around can be found in non-meat eats like veggies and seeds. We’re talking lower levels of saturated fat, cholesterol and animal protein, as well as higher levels of the “good kind of” carbs, dietary fiber, magnesium, potassium, folate and antioxidants…and the list goes on. There’s no doubt living a more veggie-forward lifestyle is better for your overall health. And to top it off, vegetarian diets are better for the environment! Why? They use less water and fossil fuel resources. Plus, there’s usually lower amounts of pesticides and fertilizers, and fewer antibiotics used to prevent and treat animal diseases. Which is all really good, good-for-you, good-for-the-environment kind of stuff, right?
But in the end, as I always say, it’s all about balance. We all do what we can where we can, and that’s half the battle. So, wherever you may fall on the carnivore-veggie spectrum, indulge from time to time in whatever it is that makes you happy, be it meat, candy or relaxing on a beach. YOLO!