The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Lifestyles

January 2, 2013

Amanda Stone: Meatless Mondays could make a good resolution

JOPLIN, Mo. — I can't imagine a person so complete that she can't come up with a New Year's resolution or two. If she exists, I don't think we would be friends. If you're drawing a blank on how you can improve upon your own perfection, I have the solution: Meatless Mondays.

I like to have an obtainable resolution. I'm not trying to set myself up for failure. Meatless Mondays are simply a way to focus on healthier eating.

Eating meat is not inherently unhealthy, but choosing to go vegetarian at least once a week should force you to eat more vegetables. That life lesson has been pounded into your psyche for your entire existence. This year, make it happen.

I was a lazy vegetarian for 15 years. I love the idea of it, but I wasn't very good at it. To be a good vegetarian, one must hunt and gather. I ate far too much bread and cheese and not enough protein. It's a great way to go, but in order to be fit and healthy you must be diligent about your diet. As it turns out, I was simply too lazy to continue vegetarianism. Pitiful.

I'm older and wiser now. I pay more attention to my health. Having a kid will do that to you. I could be a good vegetarian at this point, but I've developed a taste for meat. I may go back at some point, but not yet. To compensate for my meat guilt, we go meatless a few times a week at our house.

Try taking a baby step toward a healthier year with Meatless Mondays, or Thursdays, or whatever works for you. Choose at least one day a week to really focus on what you're eating.

Unfortunately, I can't take credit for the concept of Meatless Mondays. It's been around for ages. It started as a campaign to reduce intake of resources during World War I, and has become a household term regarding our health and the environment. Meatless Mondays are now observed internationally, as well as in many schools and dining halls.

Try these family friendly vegetarian recipes for breakfast, lunch or dinner. I'll bet no one will care what's missing.

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