Are you interested in adopting a healthy, vegan diet but don't know where to begin? Maybe you’ve tried the diet before but it didn’t fully “stick” and you're ready try again. Today I’m sharing with you 5 transition tips to help you start eating plant-based tomorrow.
5 Tips for Transitioning to a Plant-Based Diet
Transition tip 1: Know your “great rate.”
Your “great rate” is the rate at which you’re most likely to succeed over the long-term when adopting a plant-based diet. Is your “great rate” adopting a plant-based diet 100% tomorrow (comparable to diving into a pool) or do you need 3 weeks to research and cook new recipes before you make a full attempt (tip-toeing into a pool)?
There’s pros and cons to both “great rates” but knowing which is best for you is key to your success. Be realistic and know that whatever rate you choose is not just okay, it’s “great” because it’s the rate at which you’re most likely to succeed over the long-term.
Transition tip 2: Plan, plan, plan.
You’re more likely to succeed in adopting and maintaing a healthy, vegan diet if you plan. I can’t stress this enough. Set aside one hour every Sunday to plan what meals you’d like to eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner the following week. Use the cookbooks and recipe website recommendations in my free resource guide (don't have it? Sign-up for free resources on the bottom of this page) to help you find recipes or meal inspiration. Remember to factor in left-overs for lunches and batch cooking for freezing when planning.
Then, write the meals you chose in your planner. Seriously. Next, schedule the dates and times you’ll shop for groceries (will you need to go to a specialty store for any certain ingredients?) as well as the dates and times you’ll cook.
Making a plan doesn’t mean you have to stick to it preciously (although it’s encouraged), but you’re more likely to eat better if you spend a little extra time up-front each week planning versus just winging it.
Transition tip 3: Drop the guilt.
"Cheating" doesn't exist here. Just because you have a bad food day or eat a treat outside the context of the recommendations doesn’t mean you cheated, sinned or that you “blew” the diet and it’s all over now. Eating a healthy, plant-based diet doesn’t work that way. Instead, the very next meal or the next day, you just start eating better again. That’s it. Just get back to it. No need to feel guilty.
Transition tip 4: Sanitize your surroundings.
This is one of the most important tips I teach. Keep foods to avoid and treats outside of your controllable surroundings and fill your home and office with healthy foods you can eat in unlimited amounts (don’t know what foods can be eaten in unlimited and limited amounts and which ones to avoid? Watch Food Guidelines: what to eat, what to avoid). If you don’t sanitize your surroundings, it’s only a matter of time until the ice-cream, chips and other foods to be avoided start calling your name and you eat them. Don’t tempt yourself! Instead, get rid of it, and keep your pantry and fridge filled with foods you can eat in unlimited amounts.
Transition tip 5: Find support and accountability.
Additional support and accountability may increase the likelihood of you succeeding. Transition with a friend to support one another; tell your family and co-workers what you’re doing (but don’t preach) for additional accountability or, schedule a person session with myself (30 days of free email support included) for professional support and accountability.
Now I’d love to hear from you by answering today’s question by clicking “comment” below.