Apr 17 , 2020
Amongst Family members.
You can start with your close ones by introducing some healthy food concepts gradually. Do not force others to follow. Guide them through slowly and allow time for them to change. They must enjoy the change and love what they are eating. Look up for some interesting vegetarian recipes and prepare some fantastic dishes.
In social gatherings or potluck and family get-together you can offer to cook some healthy, wholesome food for them to try out.
When family members make healthy choices, you praise and show your appreciation and when they make unhealthy choices, you can tell them with all respect that you love them, and are concerned for their health and general well being and hate to see them hurting themselves and suffering from illnesses.
It is good to practice a moment of silence before a meal or to give thanks. You can make it a point to pause for a few seconds before you eat, to slow down. Take time to relax and be mindful while eating. It aids your digestion too.
When you want to buy a gift for a friend or family members, you can consider a fruit basket or a mixture of fruits and vegetables that you have painstakingly arranged yourselves. How about some homemade dishes, soup or savoury? You are encouraging a healthy diet for them.
You can still eat out when you are a vegetarian. Although the choices of restaurants are few for vegetarians, you can request for a special meal. You can tell them what you want and most restaurants are willing to prepare it for you. Stick to simple things like rice, baked potatoes, spaghetti (with mushrooms, tomato sauce and no cheese), salads (without eggs, ham, fish, etc…), or steamed vegetables. Sometimes several side dishes can make up a meal quite well.
You can go to restaurants that serve your favourites. Chinese restaurants are good for noodles, and vegetable dishes. Italian restaurants have pasta dishes and wide choices of salads. East Indian restaurants are good places for rice curries and some of them serve vegetarian food only. Natural food restaurants are good places to get meals based on tofu, tempeh and other wholesome ingredients.
If you happen to eat in a restaurant that serves only meat option, it would be good to impress upon them that how much you and many others would like to see this changed. A lot of food chains are introducing some non meat options to their customers.
You can prepare your lunch at home, and take it with you, even to business meetings. A healthy lunch gives you more energy and is able to help you meet the challenges of the day. Sometimes unhealthy lunch causes sleepiness, drowsiness and tiredness and this leads to a tendency to drink more coffee to keep awake.
If you are travelling on a plane, you can request from the airline to serve vegetarian meals. Do make arrangement at least 24 hours in advance of your flight.
You can be the role model for others to follow. You can be an encouraging force, bringing love and awareness into the lives of all you meet. Your effort to reduce meat consumption is a direction towards a future that is healthy and sustainable.
Why be a vegetarian?
The average age (longevity) of a meat eater is 63. I am on the verge of 85 and still work hard as ever. I have lived quite long enough and I am trying to die, but I simply cannot do it. A single beefsteak would finish me, but I cannot bring myself to swallow it. I am oppressed with a dread of living forever. This is the only disadvantage of vegetarianism.
- George Bernard Shaw
Vegetarian lifestyle was frowned upon, belittled, ridiculed and totally misunderstood, even by medical professionals. Today, being vegetarian is just a mainstream, if not more “in”, than eating a meat-based diet, as we find increasing numbers of trend setters becoming vegetarian.
Researches, nutritional organizations and doctors now concluded that:-
- The most up-to-date dietary guidelines for Americans recommended a reduction of fat intake and increased intake of fruits, vegetables and whole grains. A well-planned vegetarian diets can effectively meet these guidelines and the recommended dietary allowances. Vegetarianisms can be a healthy dietary alternative.
- A vegetarian diet reduces the risk of obesity.
- Vegetarians generally have lower mortality rates from chronic degenerative diseases.
- Vegetarians generally have lower blood pressure, lower rates of diabetes, and suffer less hypertension, lung cancer, osteoporosis, kidney stones, gallstones and colon diseases.
- A varied vegetarian diet consumed daily provides adequate amounts of amino acids and proteins. (Lower protein intake in vegetarian diet is associated with lower risk of osteoporosis).
- Plant-based diets are lower in total fats, saturated fat and cholesterol than meat based diets (lower risks of heart disease and some cancers).
- It is not true vegetarian will be calcium deficient.
- Our meat consumed are tainted with growth hormones, antibiotics, and chemicals which finds its way into our bodies.
- Besides health aspects, there are other important reasons to be vegetarians.
Preservation of the environment by eating foods low in the food chain. (Plants instead of animals). Livestock farming pollutes our water table through animal wastes.
The solution to world hunger – It takes 16 lbs of grains to feed a cow to produce 1 lb of beef, while it tales 1 lbs of grain to produce 1 lbs of bread.
Cruelty to animals- Current animal farming is unethical and cruelty is inflicted to the animals to assured of high returns. If we believe in the law of karma, it is best to abstain killing even though, we are not the one slaughtering the animals. Adopt the attitude of ‘Live and Let live”.
We are what we eat. A clean diet produces a clean body, brings forth calmness, clarity of the mind and harmony in our body system.
- Live in harmony with Nature -