About six months ago I decided to stop eating meat entirely. I did it, not becasue I wanted to lose weight, or I wanted to try something new, I did it for a personal reason, and have been a vegetarian for six months now! It has been very hard at times as I was a huge meat eater. In fact I was the guy that lost 45 lbs on the Atkins diet that consists nothing but meat! I have been reading a lot of different religious books and found a book to be very interesting. It is titled The Science of Self-Realization by his Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupade. It is a book you can read along the Bhagavad Gita as it is. It helps you understand God and our purpose in this life. One of the many lessons that I took from this book is the value of life….for all creatures. This book opened my eyes to the eating of animals. Now I am not one of those individuals that preach about religion or try to pursue people to follow my religion. I strongly believe that any religion that you choose is a great way to begin a healthy lifestyle. I am not telling you to follow any religion. I am just simply telling you my choice that I have made to eliminate meat from my diet. Again, becoming a vegetarian has been very hard at times, however, I do feel a lot better about myself and have noticed that I have lost aproximately 15lbs. Some of you may have thought about becoming a vegetarian for religious purposes, or lifestyle changes. Whatever the reason may be, always consult with your doctor if you plan on doing anything as drastic as becoming a vegetarian. I have found a great article that I posted below. This article may help you get started. Good luck to you and I wish you nothing bu happiness!
W. Troy Goings
What’s the best way to become a vegetarian?
by Kate Wertheimer
The importance of protein The 10 percent to 15 percent of calories you need each day from protein can easily be met by eating high-quality plant foods, including vegetables (vegetables contribute 2 grams to 3 grams of protein per half cup serving) as well as beans, lentils, nuts and seeds. Typically, more than half of the calories in a vegetarian diet comes from carbohydrates, found in vegetables, fruits, whole grains and legumes.
Don’t forget fat Fats serve multiple functions, such as maintaining the integrity of our cell membranes and fighting inflammation. Essential fatty acids in plant foods, including flax, hemp, soybeans and walnuts, are provided in the form of ALA, which the body can then convert to those fatty acids found naturally in fish (EPA and DHA). Or, take a vegetarian omega-3 Natural Healing supplement that is made from algae.
Take your vitamins Supplements, in conjunction with diet, can help you get enough of four crucial vitamins and minerals found in animal foods:
Vitamin D: There are receptors in every cell for vitamin D, shown to aid in immunity and cancer protection. You need a minimum of 600 IUs per day.
Zinc: Important for optimal immune function, zinc is found in nuts, seeds, whole grains and wild rice. Zinc absorption may be slightly lower for vegetarians, so it’s important to make sure you vary the number of zinc sources you get in order to meet the recommended 8 milligrams to 11 milligrams per day.
Iron: Vital to the health of red blood cells, iron is essential for energy and immunity. Fresh fruit, dark greens, beans, tofu, whole grains, nuts and seeds can provide the recommended 10 milligrams to 18 milligrams per day along with a hefty dose of vitamin C, which helps the body absorb the nonheme iron found in plant foods.
Seek inspiration Vegetarian resources are essential to help create a balanced, whole foods eating plan and avoiding the pitfalls of a convenience-based, nutritionally naked vegetarian diet. Celebrate your choice (and seek out support) by sharing your new eating habits with your family and friends. — Kathie Madonna Swift, M.S., R.D., L.D.N., creator of myfoundationdiet.com, a glutenfree, dairy-free and whole foods guide to vegetarian and flexitarian diets.