Thanks in part to a certain famous firefighter, a lot of people have been exposed in the last year or two to the “plant-based diet.” Maybe some of you have tried it or thought about trying it. Maybe you even bought that red and yellow cookbook. But, you know, your friends looked at you funny when you mentioned it, your ever-helpful relatives sent along a box of steaks for the holidays, and it just kind of didn’t happen. Or maybe you’ve just seen all this new stuff at the grocery store and wondered, “Who eats that?” “Does it taste good?” “Is eating that way really healthier?”
Well, starting on March 1, you’ll have the opportunity to get all of your questions answered, your curiosity satisfied, and your efforts rewarded by more support and positive reinforcement than you know what to do with!
That’s because every March is also known as “No Meat March,” a whole month set aside to try out a plant-based diet for yourself. Originally a local initiative started by The Girls Gone Green, an organization based out of Jacksonville, Florida, dedicated to “exploring environmental, animal and health issues,” the effort has since spread far and wide, even to other countries!
So here’s how it works:
1) Go to the No Meat March website
2) Click on the “Take the Challenge” tab
3) Pledge to not eat meat for the entire month, or even add in dairy and eggs
4) If you’re on Facebook, “like” the No Meat March page (Trust us, this is key.)
That’s it; just a few mouse clicks…so easy!
And here’s what you’ll get out of signing up:
1) Daily emails full of info, tips, recipes, support, event announcements and more (“Daily” might sound like a lot, but you’ll quickly realize that you look forward to them, if for no other reason than that when you see the “No Meat March, Day X” title, you really feel great about sticking with something for that many days.)
2) A pledge card that entitles you to discounts (woo hoo!) at select No Meat March-area (Jacksonville, Daytona, Orlando and Tampa) restaurants
3) Invitations to tons of different events throughout the month: speaking events where you’ll hear from experts, demos, fundraisers, potlucks, field trips, good old parties and more (Seriously, there are so many! Keeping track of all the invites is just one of the reasons connecting on Facebook is a good idea.)
4) A community of people ready, willing and able to support you (This is another great reason to connect on Facebook: share your successes and challenges, get answers to your questions, find support from like-minded people no matter what your reason for taking the challenge.)
5) Better health and healthier habits (If nothing else, really thinking about the food you’re eating for a month might provide the impetus for making some healthy changes. Maybe you’ll find you didn’t realize just how much you snack or how big today’s meat portions have gotten. You never know until you try. One thing’s for sure though: You will feel better by the end of the month. The first thing most people taking the challenge report is that they feel less sluggish and have more energy. Hey, that alone is worth 31 days, right?)
First up in this exciting challenge is the No Meat March kickoff event on February 28. This is really going to be a great time. There will be an animal product-free dinner at 6 p.m. at Latitude 30 in Jacksonville for those who purchase VIP tickets. That will be followed by a screening of Unsupersize Me (click to watch trailer), which will be followed by a Q&A with two experts in the fields of health and fitness. We’ve got the details below, but to purchase your ticket (either VIP or just movie/Q&A), go to the No Meat March event page.
Of course, there’s a lot more we could say about No Meat March, but there’s nothing like having the experience yourself.
And we here at TOA will be right there with you the whole time. We’ll be doing a series of No Meat March-related posts, answering reader and client questions, from now through the end of March, so comment with your questions, stories, suggestions, recommendations or whatever else you’ve got, or use the contact form to send your thoughts directly.
If you’re ready to take the challenge, we can help! Your custom consultation can include nutrition issues, eating-out guidance, meat-free cooking at home (How about a private lesson or a small-group demo with friends?), reading labels, shopping…we’ll even go to the store with you (in person if you’re local or via phone if you’re not); you don’t have to make that maiden meat-free shopping voyage alone!
Finally, whether you’re ready to ditch the animal products entirely or not, there’s a lot you can do for your health and the health of the planet. Use the contact page to schedule your consultation today. (Remember: We also do mini-, one-question consultations!)
Happy No Meat Marching!