I'm Going Meatless for World Vegetarian Day--Are You?

By , SparkPeople Blogger
Today is World Vegetarian Day! And while most of us have already eaten at least two meals and maybe a snack or two, there's still one meal left to go meat-free.

While a 100% vegetarian lifestyle might not be for you, we can all benefit from going meat-free a few meals a week. Chances are, you probably only eat meat one or two meals a day as it is.

Forgoing meat can really benefit your health. According to the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, vegetarians have lower rates of cancer, heart disease, hypertension, diabetes, and asthma. In the world's "Blue Zones," where people reach age 100 at higher-than-normal rates and live longer, meat is often used as a side dish or condiment.

So will you go meat-free for the rest of today (and perhaps a few more meals each week)?

I've gathered some of SparkPeople's best meat-free resources to help you get ideas:

Trying to Eat Less Meat? Here's Help

Want to Live Longer? Me, Too!

Meatless Meals Benefit Your Health

How to Feed a Vegetarian

How to Meet Your Protein Needs without Meat

My Meat-Free Fridays blog series

Will you go meat-free today? What is your favorite meat-free meal?

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We eat several meatless meals per week. I find the less meat I eat, the less I want. I will probably never be a vegetarian but I feel good about eating less meat. I like pasta dishes without meat. Report
Not me--at least, not on purpose! I like veggies and grains, but LOVE my meat! Report
nope sorry !!! Report
I missed vegetarian day but I am going to try two meet free days each week. I'm sure my teenage boy will complain but it will be good for him too. I've been thinking about this anyway. I do have a concern though that I don't get enough iron - I'll have to double up on the greens Report
My husband and I have been vegetarians for over 30 years. The only hard part is social occasions where there aren't any options for us -- usually catered affairs. Report
Fridays are meatless days for me. I've been doing it for several years. I still find it a challenge to get enough protein, since I'm not really fond of soy.
I'm always looking for ways to get my protein without the meat. Report
I make a veggie frittata at least once a week for dinner. It's filling and super delicious and nobody seems to miss the meat! Report
my favorite meat free meal is a black bean salad wrap with brown rice and steamed veggies on the side. yum! Report
No. I have no moral issue with eating meat, and when I did try to go vegan for "health reasons" I felt the worst ever. Clearly I did not find the balance, but I'll admit, it's hard. Report
Well, unbeknownst to me...my DH decided to eat as little meat as possible when he became concerned about his cholesterol...guess I'll try to do that as well to make it a little easier for him. It's probably a good idea - but it'll be hard for me - I was raised a meat & potatoes girl! Report
No, I eat very little meat to begin with. However, I think most Sparkpeople are having a hard enough time trying to come up with healthy menus, period, and I, for one, cannot handle any more complications. This isn't easy. Report
I try to go meatless one day a week. My favourite is baked beans with brown bread (homemade) if I can get it. YUM! Report
I'm diabetic, and eat low carb to manage my diabetes with less pills. I don't do meatless. LOL Report
I enjoyed my meatless day. My daughter (not SP member) did it with me. Report
I have been a vegetarian for 28 years and I never knew there was a day set aside. Report
I never knew there was a vegetarian day Report
Depends on what is considered "meatless". There's way too much protein in chicken, turkey, fish & many others to exclude them from our meal plan. Beef has a very high iron count. Why not just eat all in moderation? Isn't that what life is about...moderation in all things? Report
Have been a 7th day adventist where folks are 95% vegetarians/vegan, they are no more healthy than people than eat meat. I have watched my husbands friends 16 years. Unless you have a super knowledge of nutrition forget it, I don't see any difference in the ratio of people getting life style illnesses.. It is also expensive to eat vegetarian food and nutrana products are highly processed!!!! Report
I didn't know about it but honestly I won't do it. I enjoy the taste of chicken, seafood, beef and pork. It is a nice idea though. A meal without some kind of meat would seem incomplete for me. Report
I celebrated Vegetarian Day. I often go Vegetarian many days, not a huge meat eater. Report
How about a heads up next year! I would have done it, and often try to do meatless Wednesdays and Fridays - but I do eat fish - so I don't know if that counts. Report
I didn't see this yesterday so I did have some ham on my salad last night for dinner. Otherwise the rest of my day was with no meat. I used to think that it would be hard to eat without having meat in the meals. But I have noticed that I tend to have mostly meatless meals now...mostly by accident...and I really don't miss it. Sometimes I do get concerned about getting protien though because I don't really plan my meals with all the nutritional aspects in mind! I don't buy tofu or other meat substitutes. I usually just load up on veggies and add a bit of wheat pasta once in a while. The dinner I had a few nights ago was extremely satisfying to me and it was meatless and super-easy...a baked potato loaded with stir fried veggies on top...YUM...and very filling!! Report
I'm a vegetarian every day. Growing up in a "meat" with every meal family I've found I enjoy food better without meat. When I decided to leave the meat behind I started just like this blog--once a day and so on until my body was happy without any meat. It also gives more chances to get all the veggies and fruit into your diet without meat filling you up! Report
Am I? No I am not. Report
Well I'm a vegetarian so I go meat-free every day, althought one wish I have is that I tried real fish sushi before I turned. Report
i have been thinking about a meat-less nutrition challenge for days now. i could have started it had I known. but it's still in my goals, just for a week or two, don't know if I could ever go veg but i'll do the challenge to try it out Report
Didn't know anything about it. I find that the less meat I eat the better I digest, but I happen to like meat. Report
Drat! I just had a taco salad for lunch! I do have meat-free days at least once a week though. My favorites are lentil dishes, especially tacos & chili! Report
Didn't know about the day until today. I can go without meat, but do like the taste of meat. I'm trying to learn more about meatless options and how to fix them (tofu, tempeh). Report
I am not. My vegetarian husband bought me meatloaf for lunch at work today. lol Report
I didn't go meat free yesterday, but we often do so. My teen-age daughter is a vegetarian and while she was living at home, I would fix several meals a week that were meat-free. I describe myself as a flexitarian - i can go without meat, but i also enjoy having it. I don't think I would ever be a complete vegetarian for several reasons one of which is the attitude some vegetarians have toward those who don't agree with them. I say to each his own - do whatever works best for you and respect those who don't agree with you. Report
I wasn't aware of vegetarian day. Ironically , we did go meatless for dinner with burritos. My husband and son are huge meat eaters. We've cut back some, and eat maily chicken fish, and pasta. I am learning to like more vegetarian foods, not so sure that my family will follow. I figure as long as we are eating healthy were doing okay Report
Unfortunately didn't know about yesterday, but I love meatless meals...with meat as expensive as it is we eat a lot less meat and are much healthier for it. Report
I often enjoy vegetarian meals. They can be just as tasty and hearty as any meal with meat! Report
I often go meatless - turns out yesterday was one of those days. We're in the middle of enjoying our garden harvest, so we had patty pan squash and tomato filling, rice, and apricot pie for dinner. No preservatives. Yummm :) Report
I go meatless everyday!!
Favorite meatless meal - tofu pad thai Report
Favorite meatless meal: Eggplant Parmesan.

I haven't eaten any meat yet today, so maybe I'll give the vegetarian-for-a-day thing a shot. Report
Eating less red meat can actually lead to a longer life. It gives your liver and kidneys a break from all the hard work they do every day.
Going meatless for a day is a normal part of life for those whose faith involves fasting on Wednesdays and Fridays. Orthodox Christians become vegans twice a week, and for 7 weeks during Great Lent and Holy Week before Pascha (Easter, to you western christians). Their fast means no meat, fish, dairy, alcohol, or olive oil (don't ask me why that one's in there). Report
Not me - I like meat too much! Report
No. I have no issues with eating meat. Report
I do like to fix meals with no meat - so yes I will go the rest of the day with no meat. Report
I'm going out right now to get some tofu to have with my vegs. for supper. Vegetarian day yeah! Report
It seems to me like there is too much prep work to be a vegetarian. The food requires more preparation. And I don't meal plan very well, so I'm not sure that it works for us. But there's nothing wrong with trying at least once a week. Report
didn't. my favorite veggie dish though is black bean and rice burrito. Report
NO! Report
I've had a vegetarian house guest since 15 August and I feel great - have only had an occasional meat or fish meal since then. I still have to think carefully about meals but apparently I'm doing pretty well! I certainly feel great :) Report
I only eat chicken twice a week.. I am mostly a veggie person.. Report
Been there,
done that,
doesn't work for me.

I was thrilled I could tell my hubby & son that it was World Vegetarian Day! I usually can only "get away with it" when my vegetarian daughter is home from college, but I was thrilled to be able to convince them to go meatless yesterday too:D Report
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