Meatless* March

Andrew recently told me he’d like to go meatless. (Temporarily, of course.) After I picked my jaw up off the floor, I asked him to elaborate, and he said he’d like to make some changes to his diet for health reasons.

I don’t know if it’s because he recently turned 40, or maybe it’s the steady diet of pizza and chicken wings we Western New Yorkers eat, but I’ll take it!

Specifically, he said he wants to avoid red meat and pork, and increase his fish and seafood intake. (He might include some poultry if the occasion calls for it.) Additionally, he said he’d like to transition our family diet to have less red meat and more fish over time.

Again, I’ll take it!

*And just to be clear, this is ANDREW’S goal; I personally have made no commitment to avoid red meat or pork for a month. I do, however, intend to generally follow along with the meatless plan, cook compliant meals at home and am truly looking forward to eating more fish and less ‘heavy’ meals.

I DID feel the need to remind him that simply replacing the meat with more carbs (i.e. pasta or bread) WOULD NOT lead to the health goals he had in mind. If it were up to him, he’d have pasta five times a week and bread with every meal! I’m also a little concerned about his protein intake, as he doesn’t like beans or want to include any plant-based protein, like tofu. (I have at least one recipe with tempeh I’d like to try!) It will be a bit of a challenge for me to come up with pescatarian and vegetarian dishes I think he’ll like with sources of protein.

As a dietitian and someone who actually LIKES kale and such, it’s been impossible to maintain my ‘desired diet’ while living with a partner who doesn’t share those same diet goals, especially while having a toddler. (Honestly, it’s been so long since I even ate according to my ‘desired diet’ I’m not even sure what that is anymore…) I serve way too many fish crackers and microwave mac and cheese cups for my liking. So, I’m delighted to have Andrew on board with some food-related changes around here, even if it’s just one aspect (meat). Hopefully it will spread to our candy drawer, which is currently overflowing…ugh.

His ‘last supper’ of sorts before starting his new ‘diet’ tomorrow was his favorite childhood dish, hamburger stroganoff. I make it infrequently, as it includes canned soup and I just can’t get 100% behind that. He may cheat and eat the leftovers tomorrow (March 1), but overall he’s dedicated to his goal.

I’m really proud of him for trying something new and am excited to use my expertise this month to cook new, delicious meals that we can incorporate into a regular rotation.

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