7 Steps To Transitioning To A Flexitarian Diet – Less Meat, More Veggies

 

The healthy eating culture has exploded in recent years and covers everything for whole food eating to eating a clean keto diet that involves eating only the highest quality of meats, fats and vegetables.

In the wake of so many people turning to the choice to eat only whole, clean foods, there has arisen a new trend called, flexitarianism. But what is it, you might ask.

Well, flexitarians are people who are part-time vegetarians in order to have a healthier diet, but who also consume some meat and/or seafood.

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This differs from a mediterranean diet in that most meals are vegetarian or vegan with occassional meat added to some meals.

Today, every supermarket stocks vegetarian foods and every food magazine and website offers vegetarian recipes. But the abundance of information available can be overwhelming for someone who is new to the flexitarian lifestyle. For all those interested in reducing their meat consumption, here are 7 steps to take to transition to a flexitarian lifestyle and a couple of resources that may be of help.

1 – Start gradually. If you’re used to meat-heavy meals, try eating vegetarian once a week. Check out  this long-standing website called Meatless Monday . This is a newbie-friendly site dedicated to lowering consumption of saturated fat by, of course, eating less meat.

2 – Buy a vegetarian cookbook and keep trying new dishes. Trial and error is the best way to develop your taste and find favourites. Still want your meat, even that one night? You could try hybrid foods which combine meat with vegetables or grains like a chicken stir fry.

3 – Use smaller portions of meat in your meals. Avoid the misperception that the meal has to be centred on meat. A balanced diet is based on balanced meals. Reducing meat portions in favour of other parts of the meal is an easy change that does not require great effort or expertise.

4 – Look to other areas of the world. Faced with the immense variety of meatless foods out there, it can be smart to zone in on one region. If your ancestors were immigrants, try the meatless foods that their region has to offer like vegetarain pizza or lentil soup.

5 – Make healthy lifestyle choices. Diet changes are much more effective when accompanied by these. You are also more likely to stick to such changes when you are already experiencing them on your plate. Add exercise to your regime and minimize unhealthy habits such as drinking.

6 – Use resources smartly. Here are 2 useful sources  (find linkes below) for the beginner flexitarian:

The Flexitarian Diet: The Mostly Vegetarian Way to Lose Weight, Be Healthier, Prevent Disease, and Add Years to Your Life – This resource is helpful because it contains a detailed nutritional breakdown for each recipe, giving you the confidence to cook and eat flexitarian while knowing that you are not getting less but more nutrition.

Mostly Plants: 101 Delicious Flexitarian Recipes from the Pollan Family – This cookbook focused on the flexistarian lifetyle and contains recipes that satisfy or can be adapted to almost all dietary needs; vegetarian, vegan, gluten free, and dairy free. Making this a very useful book when cookign for a family.

7 – Finally, do what feels right to you. With popular movements such as healthy eating,  come guidelines, tendencies and many people eager to share their ideas with you. Flexitarianism is meant to allow you to choose your own path. Don’t worry about whether you are up to date on the latest trends.

Moderating your meat consumption is an important step towards limiting your fat intake, preventing heart disease and balancing your diet. By taking these first few steps, you can be well on your way to a healthy lifestyle.

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