Before we jump into food I want to share why I made this choice. The transition was a process. I gave up beef for a year in 2008 for health reasons. I have never been big on beef; pot roast, steak, etc. It grossed me out. What I did enjoy was ground beef in the form of burgers. I figured it would be healthier just to give it up. The next year I also gave up poultry & pork; now for animal rights reasons. This left me with fish, eggs & cheese.
In September 2010, I attended a series of classes called Food for Life through the Cancer Project. They focused on cancer prevention & increased survival. Studies have shown immense benefits from a plant based diet. What is plant based? Fruits, vegetables, grains, nuts, seeds, beans. The benefits of this diet are that it is low fat & high fiber as well as loaded with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants & phytonutrients which all play a role in cancer risk.
With years of school & two degrees in nutrition, it only made sense to follow one of my favorite quotes, “Let food be thy medicine.” Side note, if anyone wants to try to help me talk my husband into getting that as a tattoo, feel free.
I have learned through further research of texts & studies that a plant based diet is not only very healthy, but is safe. Yes, I get plenty of protein. Do note, B12 should be supplemented. For curiosity, I had a full lab work up, B12, iron panel, vitamin D, etc. My iron levels are now higher than they were when I ate meat. I eat much more leafy greens & beans now which are also good sources of iron.
I do not expect everyone to follow in my footsteps. If you choose to, I will support you. But everyone could benefits from trimming some fat from the diet, increasing fiber intake & increasing fruits & vegetables.