There is a growing movement worldwide, which is quickly gaining ground; the “Meatless Monday Movement”, has been taking the world by storm. Numerous countries have joined the cause as restaurants, schools and even hospitals are joining the movement to promote meatless proteins. If you are one of the many people who are shaking their heads and commenting, “You can’t live without meat”, think again, it’s only one day a week.
Vegetarians, vegans and other individuals throughout the world have lived with no meat for centuries. The fact is that plant proteins can replace meat. From wheat and grains to vegetables and nuts, protein is found in many plants. If you want to join the Meatless Monday crowd, eat your protein in the form of wheat and grains, nuts, fruits, plants like soy and bulgur wheat and rice. You’ll be healthier because meat protein can create a host of health problems like diabetes, cancer and heart disease. Red meat, pork and chicken are full of cholesterol and fat.
Some of the great substitutes for meat protein are, tempeh with vegetables, vegetarian chili with bulgur wheat, tofu sloppy Joes, quinoa, black bean burgers, soy beans with wild rice, lentils, legumes, nuts, seeds, nut butters, soy products, soy burgers, vegan cheese, soy products like soy burgers, soy bacon, soy sausage, soy milk, rice milk, almond milk and more.
There are companies which make many types of soy patties and sausages. Morning Star Farms and Boca Burger are both great meat substitutes. They both make black bean burgers, traditional soy burgers, oriental variety burgers and patties, chicken flavored patties, Portobello mushroom burgers and many more.
These patties all make great sandwiches, burgers and more and you can cook them in the microwave, conventional oven or on the grill, just like regular burgers. They don’t contain the fat and cholesterol of red meat burgers. When you add lettuce, tomato, onion, pickle, mustard, ketchup or even barbecue sauce or soy sauce to them or eat them plain on a bun.
Making soups with quinoa is very filling and healthy while vegetarian chili made with bulgur wheat is just as filling and tasty.
Bulgur wheat can be purchased at many Indian and health food stores and when cooked it has a texture similar to ground beef. It’s extremely rich in vitamins and minerals and can be added to many casseroles, soups and stews. Add it to shepherd’s pie or a potpie or use crumbled soy burgers.
You can actually make your own soy burgers; there are recipes at Cooks.com and Life123. These are very tasty and easy to mix in a bowl or in your food processor. You can cook the beans in a crock-pot or soak them overnight in water and salt for faster cooking.
Create other patties by adding vegetables like corn, peas, zucchini, mushrooms and other vegetables. You can add bulgur wheat to help hold them together.
Since nuts of all kinds, provide plenty of protein, you could always pack that peanut butter sandwich for lunch. Add a granola bar or make your own granola and snack bars.
Going meatless for one day a week can help your health in many ways. You’ll feel lighter, more energized and less fatigued at the end of the day. Go ahead, enjoy yourself and join the Meatless Monday crowd. Your body will be grateful for the healthy break.