Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Introducing: Forty Days of Foliage

I think I'm going to go vegetarian for Lent (2/25-4/12) this year. I don't eat a lot of meat as it is, but I'd like to eat even less, as it's not great for the body and it's even worse for the environment. It's something I've been wanting to try for a while, and while I'm not particularly devout, Lent provides a useful not-too-long, yet not-too-short time span for me to try this out. Although I don't feel like I could ever go completely vegetarian, I think this could be a great opportunity for me to really expand my view of what food can be. Also, I came up with a neat title: Forty Days of Foliage! But here's what I need from you, dear readers:

1.) Should I include fish? My reasons for going veggie are environmental, so I don't feel a particular moral need to not eat fish. Although there are obviously still environmental impacts to fish harvesting, I feel like these are more easily mitigated by smart fish selection. But I also don't want to "cheat," and I think if I become too reliant on fish (which I hardly ever eat currently) I might miss out on the key "lessons" of all of this. Maybe I can only have fish once a week? Once a fortnight? SUGGEST.

2.) I don't like beans (pretty much none of them), so I need you to tell me what other things I can be using as a protein substitute. RECIPES PLEASE.

3.) I need encouragement. Tell me how great this is going to be and how much better I'll feel and how it's going to change my life. Because here's how I'm viewing it right now: The next two months will probably be the most stressful of my life (ack finishing grad school ack) and I'm giving up something that would otherwise comfort me in favor of adding another stressor. CONVINCE ME.

Assuming I go through with this, I'll be writing about my experiences on here every few days during Lent, partly as a document of the experiment and partly as a way of shaming myself if I fail. I hope you'll stick with me as I do this, because I am really going to miss bacon and I'm going to need your friendship to help me through it.


Kristin said...

I think that's great, 40 days of detox. However won't you miss this:

Eric said...

Sounds exciting...and hard. I don't think I could do it. Do eggs count? That's what I would use for protein, but maybe you aren't eating those. I heard tofu has lots of protein. You might consider buying a protein powder to supplement protein during this time. There are some pretty good tasting ones out there. Good luck!

ylime said...

I am proud of you.

Some encouragement/ advice.

1. Fish- Go for once a week. Follow these guidelines.http://www.montereybayaquarium.org/cr/SeafoodWatch/web/sfw_regional.aspx?region_id=6 I think they have a page that is printed so it can be easily folded for wallet storage.

2. Tofu, tempeh, nuts, beans, eggs. There are other sources that taste and look a lot like grains. Sprouted Quinoa and sprouted grain breads are also very helpful. Might want to swing by the Co-op and pick up some chelated iron supplements. Protein is easy- iron is kinda rough. Recipes- there are a million on the web or you can come over to our house and borrow one of 30 veggie cookbooks. All asian restaurants will have great veggie options for you.

3. It is not that hard. I am POSITIVE you can do it. Just be mindful of the balance. Monitor your starch- tragic tendency of veggies to turn to quick starches. This is what might make you feel icky. There is another bonus: When I went veg- it can made life easier by reducing the amount of options. I know that sounds so anti- american. But it means that you spend less time hemming and hawing in restaurants and grocery stores.