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Eat food, not too much, mostly plants.

This beautiful title is actually the words of Michael Pollan, author of Omnivore's Dilemma and Cooked, and they are words to live by. I do. My family does. It's sound advice, and it works.

A simple sentiment. In fact, looking back it was the way I was raised. Unintentionally mind you, but none the less, it was the staples of my diet growing up. Mostly because my parents are from Europe and unintentionally, their diet was mostly plants. And the other bit is because meat was (is!) expensive and feeding a family of 5 was not cheap! Either way, I grew up eating mostly plants.

When I met my husband, his family ate mostly meat. So when we moved in together, got married, had kids, I cooked meat. We ate mostly meat. Being a nutritionist, I was always trying to sneak in more plants, hiding them in sauces and casseroles. Fresh fruit for snacks and desserts, but meat and carbs were the center of our plates. Then things changed.

We looked at each other one day, we were tired. We were sick. We were sick and tired of being sick and tired. We were in debt, drowning under piles of our own out-of-control consumerism, over weight and just done! Done with our hamster-wheel choices.

We worked together, came up with a plan and tackled our life. One dollar at a time, one decision at a time, one meal at a time. Paid off our consumer debt in 10 months, gave away and sold so much stuff the kids thought they were next and ditched meat! I always knew in the back of my mind more plants would feel right. Help us feel better, eat off the land more, less out of a factory. But hadn't really made the leap.

We educated ourselves and agreed, unless we could eat meat in the most ethically sourced way, meat goes too. Bye-bye debt, bye-bye excess stuff, bye-bye meat. When we first embarked it was a little daunting to figure out how to disguise black beans and tofu into something the kiddos would eat, but then it dawned on me! I grew up eating mostly plants! Not tofu per se, but beans. A lot of beans. And veggies and fruits! Why was I trying to reinvent the wheel? I can cook, I know food, and I remembered what my childhood food tasted like. I got this!

Beans with cabbage and rice, beans and pasta with kale or broccoli in tomato sauce, plain pasta in a tomato sauce. These were staples my whole life! Perfect vegan dishes. Then I moved to dishes we liked but wanted to make vegan - tofu tacos, Chick pea curry, stir fry with edamame. I read every cookbook, I practiced, avocado toast took it's trendy place on our breakfast table. But it worked. We ate food. Not too much. Mostly plants. My husband and I lost 20 lbs the first year! We've never felt better! More energy, good sleep, great digestion. We've tasted a little meat here and there in the last few years, but we never feel great after.

We eat food. Great loaves of bread - I love to bake and it's the easiest thing you can do in the kitchen! And while we're on the topic of baking, almond flour chocolate chunk brownies might be a staple in our house. We eat plant based sausages and burgers, or I make black bean ones. We eat breaded and air-fried tofu. We don't eat too much. Long gone are the days we eat until we're "stuffed". You know, that uncomfortable bloated tight feeling around your middle? You wake up the next day and you're still not hungry? Yea, that doesn't happen any more. We choose healthy portions and pack leftovers away for lunches. 3 meals, 2-3 snacks, we're happy campers. We agree though, no matter what and how much, it will always be mostly plants.

Check out the recipes and templates section of our website for some great plant based meal ideas! Book a nutrition counselling session with Lina to chat about incorporating healthy choices into your life!

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