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Transitioning to a Plant-Based Lifestyle

I remember that daunting day I decided to go plant-based. I opened up my refrigerator and thought, “I can’t use meat, eggs, or dairy. What do I eat then??”  I had always been a confident cook, I had my tried and true recipes from feeding a family of six for 20 some years… and now… there were crickets singing loudly in my ears as I stood there feeling lost, looking into the depths of my fridge. I had a choice to make, run back to my old ways, or press on and embrace this new way of life.

I realized that I could be ready to take on this new lifestyle and be up for the challenge, but my family may not be.  So not only did I stand there wondering what to eat but I was also wondering how to lead my family down this new path without a lot of kicking, screaming, and resistance.  I wanted my family to enjoy eating the meals I made, but I also wanted the health problems that we were dealing with to disappear.

The first step for me was replacing the dairy products in my house with a non-dairy alternative. I started with almond milk to replace cow’s milk.  So I started using it in recipes anywhere that called for regular milk, it worked beautifully. Some of my family members were still eating cereal for breakfast so I started mixing the regular milk with almond milk but leaving it in the milk jug that everyone was familiar with. Much to my surprise, no one noticed, so I kept adding more and more until it was totally almond milk. I tried a social experiment, I then put the almond milk jug beside the regular milk jug (which was now full of almond milk) and everyone still ignored the almond milk but used the one they were familiar with. That is the moment the light bulb went on in my head. That principle is what I used as I slowly started introducing new things into our diet.  

I realized that the resistance was in the habit of what was familiar, not actually in the new products.

So for the next six months (it won’t take you that long), I would bring the “new” thing into our life, mixing it in the old packaging then finally transition completely to the new product.  I did this with milk, mayonnaise, yogurt, butter, sour cream and cream cheese.  I also replaced the plant-based products in recipes where it called for the dairy counterpart.  So that is how I got started, I’ve grown and learned so much since that point in time but I am so glad I made the first step. Follow me on my blog as I go through the steps of how to transition not only to a plant-based lifestyle but how to transition a family as well.

 

Remember – life is just a series of baby steps.

Bambi

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