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Tracie's Food Philosophy

I don't know that I've ever talked about it, but for the last 3 or 4 years, I've followed a diet all my own that I call "Mostly Vegetarian" or "Flexitarian". The idea is that for the most part, I follow a vegetarian lifestyle, with the occasional serving or two of meat when I feel like I need it.

A few years ago, I was going through a rough patch. I had gained a few pounds, and my only vegetable intake was in the form of salsa or V8. So one January as I was trying to identify some goals for the year, I decided to eat 2-3 servings of vegetables a day, and I would start strength training. I started working on those two things, and an unanticipated result was that weight started to come off. I ended up losing about 15 pounds, and I found that I enjoyed vegetables so much (who knew?) that I started eating more of them. And the more vegetables I ate, the less meat I ate.

Over the years, I've felt so good for the most part that I've stuck with it. And along the way I've made other adjustments. Frustrated with all my allergies and sinus infections, I cut out cow's milk and switched to Almond milk. I love Greek yogurt, but I've given that up in favor of coconut milk yogurt. To make sure I get plenty of protein and then some, I eat a lot of nuts - walnuts, peanuts, cashews, etc. I also eat a lot of avocados and I go for butter over margarine.

I haven't sworn off meat entirely - But I try to follow the LDS Word of Wisdom, which says meat is good for you, but it should be eaten sparingly - "only in times of winter, or cold, or famine". When I do have meat, I go for salmon, tuna, or shrimp. Having done a lot of reading and watching of food documentaries, I very seldom have poultry or red meat. Although occasionally I go for a burger (usually around my birthday or when I have a big craving).

Now, by no means is this a perfect solution, nor am I perfect at living it. Sometimes I eat more junk than I should, and my single lifestyle means I tend to eat out a lot. Definitely there are times that I eat way too much homemade popcorn. But for the most part the solution has worked for me, and I've kept the weight off. And I went two years between sinus infections, so that's saying something. I guess you could say that I try to follow the advice of food writer Michael Pollan: "Eat real food; mostly plants, and not too much".  


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