It Was Harder Work
In a house where the cooking pot feeds more than one mouth, going veggo meant spending extra time preparing a separate dinner, and I’ll admit to accidentally having a bite of pork on my first meat-free day. I struggled to think of tasty ways to hit my daily protein intake and ended up repeating a lot of meals (I need a break from quinoa and roasted veggies for a while). The hardest part? Definitely the food envy. My resolve wavered a few times when I ate out with friends or there was a roast dinner at home.
I Stopped Over-Eating
The biggest problem I have with my diet is over-eating. I’m generally healthy during the day but overdo it at dinner, which leaves me bloated and lethargic. Before I started my meat-free week, I assumed that a vegetarian dinner wouldn’t leave me completely satisfied and I’d have to supplement my meals with snacks. Surprisingly, it was the opposite. I ate until I was full and had fewer post-dinner cravings to satisfy my notorious sweet tooth. I didn’t feel too full after my meals, so I hit the gym more often during the week. Result!
I Had A Flatter Tummy
This was the only physical difference I noticed after a week. I woke up with a flatter tummy after my first day and, although I wouldn’t say I had more energy, I did feel lighter without the post lunch and dinner bloat.
My View Of Meat Changed
I became a more conscientious eater. Avoiding meat made me more mindful of all the ingredients on my plate. Did I have enough iron? Was I eating too much sugar? It inadvertently led to me eating healthier overall. I have a newfound love of legumes, nuts and seeds and also experimented with some vegan dishes (this green curry has turned into a favourite weeknight meal). I realised that my body functions well on vegetable-based proteins and that they can be just as filling as a good schnitzel. This experiment definitely helped me understand my body better. Although I will keep meat in my diet, I no longer consider it a daily staple. Meat-free Mondays, consider me sold!
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