Quick question: what if you could reap the benefits of a vegetarian diet, or even a semi-vegetarian diet, without a lot of hassle? And also without giving up everything that tastes good to you. Would that ring your chime...and maybe even start you thinking about a few dietary changes?
If so, you can find some helpful tools at this site, regardless of whether you simply want a slimmer body and/or better health or whether becoming vegetarian is a conscious philosophical choice.
You can also find ways to maintain your gains with mindful but uncomplicated vegetarian eating. Well, you can IF the day-to-day you is prepared to handle such a diet/lifestyle. Maybe you are, maybe not, but what will it cost you to give this a try?
Making It Work for You
If you're fairly new to vegetarian eating, try tackling your transition by degrees. Sure, jump right into that bushel of veggies, but don't attempt a dietary one-eighty in a single day. Both your body and your mind might put up quite a fight.
Instead, start with a simple modification: eating one more vegetable (and/or fruit) every day, for example. Then gradually begin cutting back on meat, moving as quickly or as slowly as feels right to you. You could do that—we both know you could, particularly if you buddy up to flexibility and compromise.
For example, let's say you have this huge letch for meat today, possibly including your own arm if it comes to that. So, fine: make some kind of "faux" meat the foundation of your next meal...or eat only half the meat you'd ordinarily put on your plate. Perhaps make (or order) a chicken salad instead of a heavier steak, pork, or sausage dish. You could live with that, right? BTW, here's a cookbook that might help you with the meat cravings; I really love it myself: The Vegetarian Meat and Potatoes Cookbook.
Holding the Line Stay at half-portions of meat for a couple of days, and then make another little change—such as not eating any meat at all until dinner, perhaps. Or you might test the waters with meat-free days now and then.
As you cut down on meat, add more veggies and a greater variety. (See this list of vegetables for ideas.) No drama, no big speeches, no blanket No's: you're just working step by simple step toward a way of eating that might be healthier for you...and that might make you feel better in some other ways, too.
Getting Enough Protein Wondering about that, perhaps? Again, no worries: you will have So Many tasty ways to build protein into your diet. Vegetarians can choose among not only faux meats, but also umpteen grains and legumes. Moreover, if you're not vegan, you've got the whole spectrum of dairy as well. And don't forget that vegetables themselves contain some protein.
Any healthful change in your eating habits is a cause for celebration, so please don't beat yourself up (or permit anyone else to do so) if/when you decide to take a break—whatever that means for you within this context. Instead, whenever you're ready, just get back on the path you've chosen. And, yes, it really is as simple as that. Why not go for it?