by Carissa Wong
Can I go vegetarian for a month and what will happen when I do so?
Going vegan or vegetarian is slowly gaining traction amongst us, so I decided to take up the challenge. The thought of giving up meat entirely can sound daunting (I love my Bak Chor Mee and Bak Kwa). The myth of a balanced diet was something I was equally concerned about.
Even being a fussy omnivore can lead you to nutrient deficiency. Eating chicken alone or a particular protein group can and will make you lack other important nutrients. Similarly, you will have insufficient nutrients if you keep eating the same salad - I ate a large variety of food that balanced it out and what surprised me was what was available out there at the markets and the other home cooks who were in this with me.
Being vegetarian didn't simply limit myself to salads and shakes! Instead it broadened my perspective on a different spectrum of food items that I once took for granted. A variety of nuts, grains, pasta, rice bowls, sushi, and even veggie burgers are just some of the new options that were, let's say underrated. *Take note of your Iron, B12, Zinc and Omega 3 intake as they are harder to find in non meat food.
And in a month - I did it and here are 5 things that will happen to you!
1. Weight loss
Your hair and skin will improve, and so will your overall health. Despite eating more volume, I was eating whole foods which led me to consume less fats. In my short time of going vegetarian for a month, I ate larger portions but I definitely felt less bloated after eating. I felt more energetic and did not suffer from "food coma". My weight loss was not as significant as I hope but if I had gone on longer (and included an exercise routine) I would definitely have trimmed down on my waistline.
2. Stronger nails
Surprise, surprise! Many think that milk gives us strong teeth, bones and nails (thanks to milk commercials!). This is true, but vegetables play a big part too. Tofu (soy beans), almonds and broccoli are just some examples of high calcium foods. Plus, the linoleic acid from food such as flaxseed, soybeans, and oils, prevents your nails from peeling. My nails were strong before, but now they are so strong that it is difficult to cut them! Now it's time for a manicure!
3. More energy
Not only will your outer appearance improve, you will feel better inside too. Unless you are eating take away/fast food/convenient food daily, you will be eating more wholesome foods, which leads to more energy. I had less food coma moments and was feeling less lethargic! Also, the high amount of fibre will also prevent constipation.
4. Save money
There is a preconceived notion that vegetarian food is pricier, but if you skip the overrated cafes and branch out from the organic section, it IS cheaper. Who says you only have to eat food like quinoa, acai, couscous and avocados? For instance, a 3 vege dish from the mixed rice stall is cheaper than a 3 meat dish. And if you like, there are food lovers out there on the Share Food mobile app who are conscientiously selling their home made vegetarian cuisines.
5. Save the Earth
Money isn’t the only thing you will save. Did you know that the red meat factories contributes more CO2 than cars on the road? Vegetables and grains require less water and produce less emissions.
Thinking of going vegetarian?
Download Share Food mobile app and check out some of the vegetarian cuisines today!
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