Over the last few years, every January as I am considering my goals for the New Year, I have been thinking about making the change to eating as a vegan. I have been a vegetarian since I was 16 years old and eating less and less animal products as the years go by.
Gratitude Tip: Giving thanks before we sit down for a meal is a wonderful gratitude habit. Are we also giving thanks for the animal(s) that may have given up their lives for our meal? When we eat, are we consciously paying attention to what is going into our mouths and what we are consuming? Conscious eating is not only about being mindful of what we are eating but also what we are putting on our plates.
I want to be clear that the decisions that I make of what foods to put into my body are the decisions that I feel are best for me. I have spent almost a decade studying nutrition and health and I realize that everyone is different and we all have different tastes and diets. However, I do recommend that all of us can benefit from a diet that is more plant based, not just from an environmental standpoint, but from a nutrition standpoint as well.
The biggest challenges that I see? The labels we are putting on the way that we eat – Paleo, Vegan, Blood Type diet, Vegetarian, Low GI, Grain-Free – the list is endless. What if we simply agreed to eat foods that serve us well? Foods that make us feel energized after we ate? Foods that taste really great and also serve our planet well? Yes, I label myself as a vegetarian yet that doesn’t truly describe how I eat. Painting ourselves into little boxes of what we can and cannot eat is very tiring.
Here is my commitment for 2016: To be a more conscious eater. To pay attention to what I am putting into my mouth and how it serves me. To eliminate refined sugar. To reduce the amount of animal products that I consume and find suitable alternatives. To extend my conscious eating lifestyle to the other consumer products I purchase, paying attention to whether or not a product is made from animal by-products.
And I start today. I am doing my yearly 5 Day RESET Jumpstart, the vegan version. It’s a program created by USANA Health Sciences and I’ve coached over a thousand clients through it over the years. I choose to do this program to break free of the sugar cravings that have crept up in December. My husband will be doing it with me as well. We have a group starting on Monday and an even larger group starting on Jan 11 and 18th. For those that have goals beyond the 5 days, we can support you with a 30, 60 or 90 day program.
What are you doing in 2016 to be in your BEST health?