Meat Free Monday, launched by Sir Paul, Mary and Stella McCartney in 2009, is celebrating its 10th anniversary this month. Meat Free Monday is a global Meatless Monday partner mutually aligned on our mission to raise awareness and action around the benefits of meat consumption reduction. Meat Free Monday partners with celebrities, schools, businesses, restaurants and country organizers to encourage people to help slow climate change, conserve precious natural resources and improve their health by having at least one meat free day each week.
This month, Meat Free Monday is celebrating a decade of action and advocacy with a new campaign encouraging people to join the global meat reduction movement. They are launching #MFMCountMeIn anniversary campaign which aims to bring celebrities, businesses, not-for-profit groups, educational institutions and individual supporters together, to celebrate what people are doing on the meat free front and inspire even more people to get on board.
Hubby and I both did a ton of research. On my end I was checking out vegetarian, fruitarian, vegan and flexible nutrition plans and Keith was checking out keto and intermittent fasting plans. I know in the past I blogged about the direction we were headed with nutrition and food and I thought I’d update on what we finally decided works best for us and is as “clean” as possible, and steps forward as far as going vegetarian and ultimately vegan healthily.
Vegetarian Mediterranean nutrition plans are vegetable heavy, so we experimented with recipes. Tried veggies in different ways, like cauliflower crust pizza. We eat kale or spinach salad with roasted sweet potato, eggs and peppers often for breakfast. And we have been working on making our three meals a day very balanced. I know we both used to eat barely anything in the morning and minimally at lunch, with dinner being our heavier meal. We are trying to balance that out and move towards breakfast being our heaviest meal and lunch being somewhat lighter and dinner being our lightest meal.
Think about it, we wake up after not eating for around 10 or more hours, shouldn’t our big meal be in the morning? We don’t need as much fuel when we sleep, do we?
We’ve also been doing the intermittent fasting thing on the weekends. This where you eat your daily worth of food between certain hours and then “fast” the rest of the day/night. On the weekends we finish your last meal at around 8pm and then don’t eat until 12 noon the next day, so we are technically fasting for 16 hours between meals. It is generally recommended that women only fast 14-15 hours, because they seem to do better with slightly shorter fasts, so I eat a small snack, like a handful of nuts, around 10am.
Taking it Vegan
Vegetarians who follow the Mediterranean diet “rarely need to worry about a deficit in protein if they eat a varied diet including nuts, beans, seeds, dairy, eggs, tofu, and high-protein whole grains such as quinoa.” ` Jennifer McDaniel, MS, RDN
And if you want to take a Mediterranean Diet Vegan, stay healthy with a Vegan Omega-3 supplements. Omega-3’s help with mood, eye and brain health, and can improve risk factors for heart attack. Omega-3’s are a great inflammation fighter and studies link higher omega-3 intake to decreased age-related mental decline and a reduced risk of Alzheimer’s disease (73, 74, 75). The list goes on and on, so this is not something our bodies should be deprived of, even as Vegans, Vegetarians or humans for that matter.
ps…I’m always in search of new vegan and vegetarian tried and true recipes so if you have any to share drop the recipe or link in comments!
Green leafy veggies
Squashes (mostly winter, I think summer squashes are bitter and nasty)
Fresh and frozen
Frozen pitaya & acaii packets
Two or three times per week
🌰NUTS & SEEDS
🍞WHOLE GRAINS/NO GRAIN
Whole grain pasta
Whole grain bread
Whole grain pizza crust
Milks (coconut for me, almond for my hubby and Oat for random other things)
🥥OILS & HEALTHY FATS
Organic coconut sugar
Raw, local honey
100-percent pure maple syrup
La Croix & Bubbly
Unsweetened almond & coconut milk
🍵SUPERFOODS & SMOOTHIE EXTRAS
Raw cacao powder
Eat locally and seasonally
Eat a variety of fruits and vegetables
Eat more beans
Lower meat consumption, and eat more plants
Reduce food waste
*”Scientists estimate that switching to a Mediterranean diet can reduce greenhouse gas emissions by up to 72%, land use by up to 58%, energy consumption by up to 52%, and water consumption by up to 33%. Remember, we do not inherit the earth from our ancestors; we borrow it from our children. Your children and your children’s children will thank you!”
This light and fresh Cucumber and Black Bean Salad is the perfect side for all your summer grilling, but also works great as a taco topper, base for a bowl meal, or even a chunky salsa for chip dippin’. The freshness of the cucumber balances the earthy black beans, and the tangy homemade vinaigrette keeps everything light and fresh!
4 servings of soba or brown rice noodles, uncooked
3 cups vegetable broth
3 cups water
1 cup julienned carrot
1 cup julienned zucchini
1 cup thinly sliced shiitake mushrooms
1 cup broccoli florets
3 Tbsp miso paste
1 (14-ounce) package firm tofu, cut into 1-inch cubes (optional)
¼ cup chopped green onions
1 sheet roasted nori seaweed, broken into pieces
Prepare the noodles according to the instructions on the package. Set them aside.
2 In a medium saucepan over high heat, bring the vegetable broth and water to a boil. Add the carrot, zucchini, mushrooms, and broccoli, reduce the heat, and simmer for 5 minutes.
3 Use a ladle to transfer 1 cup of broth to a small bowl. Use a fork to dissolve the miso paste into the broth, then return it to the pot. Add the tofu, green onions, and cooked noodles, then simmer for 1 more minute, until everything is warm.
4 Transfer to bowls and top with the nori seaweed.