PLANT BASED BASICS

Preparing for Change

The Mer Made Way is my own personal spin on a Plant Based Lifestyle. which is eating 98% Plant Based, and 2% your call.   The goal is to remove as much processed junk from your lives as possible, and get back to whole food nutrition. 

The idea is to reduce and/or limit your consumption of all animal products, including dairy and eggs.  You may decide to completely forego consuming any animal products at all, and that is awesome, but it must be a personal choice.

What are the benefits of eating plant based?

In addition to eating a variety of delicious and healthy foods, how about:

-Increased Energy
-Better physical performance and recovery
-Reduce your risks for High Blood Pressure, Heart Disease, Cancer, Type 2 Diabetes, and more
-Weight loss
-Reduce high Cholesterol levels
-Reduce high Blood Pressure
-Sleep better
-Alleviate Depression
-Improve skin, hair, nails


What you won’t have to worry about while eating a plant based?


-Portion control (except when consuming “convenience products’)
-Time restrictions
-Counting calories, macros or the like
-Tracking your intake (however, journaling can be very helpful for some - so go for it if that's your
thang!)


Here is a short list of some of the delicious foods you will be enjoying:


All Leafy Greens
All fiber rich starches such as sweet potatoes, and whole grains like quinoa, farrow and brown rice
All Legumes (Beans of every variety!!!!)
All Fruits
All Vegetables
All Spices and Vinegars
All Unsweetened Plant Based Milks (Almond, Oat, Soy, Rice)

Try changing things up one item at a time.  For example,  try swapping out your dairy milk, for a plant based beverage like Almond or Soy milk, in your coffee, cereal or to drink.  Alternatively, pick one meal a day and remove all animal products.  Many have found that breakfast is a great place to start.  For example, you can have toast or a bagel with avocado and tomato, or your favorite nut butter.  A smoothie with all kinds of frozen fruits and maybe even add some spinach and a splash of juice or plant based beverage to blend it up.   The bottom line is that each day you consider making better choices, and try to add more plant based foods onto your plate. 

The Mer Made Way is about helping you transition to a more healthy way of eating and living.  You decide the pace of your transition, and I am here to help you every step of the way.  


Who has the time or money to taste test all the plant based products and recipes on the market to date?  Check out the "Kitchen Staples", and "Mer's Favorites" pages below to help you make shopping a bit easier, as I have personally taste tested all products listed. However, feel free to do your own taste testing and find what you and your family like best!  


Feeling overwhelmed?  Contact me  here on this site.  I will do my best to respond the same day, but no later than 24 hours.  

 

KITCHEN STAPLES

In addition to fresh (or frozen) vegetables, and fruits, here are some staples to help you get started.  These are items that are used frequently, and will help make your transition  a breeze.  

Please know you don’t need to have everything at once, but over time you will want to build your pantry.

Keeping your pantry and fridge stocked with good stuff, makes healthy choices so much easier.


-Cashews, raw and unsalted

-Brown rice

-Dry and/or canned beans (Garbanzo/chickpeas, black beans, cannellini, navy, ALL THE BEANS YOU LIKE )

-Whole Wheat Pastas (You can also have brown rice pastas, red lentil, and spinach pastas)

-Quinoa

-Couscous

-Lentils

-Whole Wheat Bread Crumbs and/or Panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)

-Whole Wheat Flour

-Garlic Powder

-Flaxseed Meal (ground flaxseeds)

-Nutritional Yeast (Braggs and Bob's Red Mill are both great options)

-Agave and/or Honey and/or Pure Maple Syrup

-Apple Cider Vinegar (I prefer Braggs, but use Any and all vinegars that you like)

-Braggs Liquid Aminos (or use a Lite or Less Sodium soy sauce)

-Tomato Sauce, puree, crushed

-Jackfruit in Brine (Amazon sells  Aroy-D brand / if you have a Trader Joe's where you live, their brand is good too)

-Plant based beverage (I use Silk Soy, and Silk Protein Cashew, Pea and Almond - Husband likes Silk Oat Milk in Extra Creamy for drinking and for cereal)

-Tofu (Extra Firm, Super Extra Firm, Silken - Nasoya brand is my favorite)

-Whole Wheat Breads and Whole Grain Breads, flatbreads, tortillas, pita, etc.

-Rolled or Old Fashioned Oats


Appliances:

High speed blender, Immersion Blender, Nutribullet and/or food processor,  (these will help make your cooking experiences so much faster, and ultimately, tastier.  If you don’t have one of these items, perhaps consider investing in a Nutribullet.

 

MER'S FAVORITES

Taste is Everything

Non Dairy Products/Refrigerated Items

-Silk Soy Milk

-Silk Oat Milk - Extra Creamy  
-Forager Plain and Vanilla Yogurt

 -Violife Cream Cheese, Feta Cheese and Cheese Shreds 

-Ciao Cheese Slices and Shreds

-Go Veggie products are also delish
-Nasoya Organic Super Firm and Extra Firm Tofu

- Sabra or Cedars Hummus (any flavor you like)
-Country Crock Plant Based butter

-Field Roast "sausages" all varieties

-Lightlife Smart Dogs

Bakery
-Mission Spinach, Roasted Red Pepper or Whole Wheat Flour Tortillas

- Joseph's Lavash Bread
Pantry
- Hellman's Vegan Mayo
-Braggs Apple Cider Vinegar
-Newman's Own marinara and salsas
-Maranatha or Smuckers Natural Nut Butter of choice
- Bob’s Red Mill Ground FlaxSeed Meal
- Bob’s Red Mill Corn Polenta (grits - you can buy instant grits if you prefer)
-Braggs or Bob's Red Mill Nutritional Yeast
Frozen Foods

-Any and all Gardien products (Meatballs, burgers, crispy tenders, crumbles, etc.)

-Morning Star products (veggie dogs, corn dogs, veggie burgers)

-BEST BURGER TO DATE:  IMPOSSIBLE BURGERS

 
Sports Shoes

START MOVING

YOU GOT THIS!

Whether you are new to exercise or an old pro, one thing you can't let happen is to be sedentary.  Exercise is a HUGE part of healthy living.  There are no excuses.  Walking is something most of us can do.  Make time each day to simply - Walk.  Whether its walking with a friend (two -legged or four -legged), or parking as far as you can from the entrance of work or a store, get your walk on!  Your ultimate goal is to walk consistently for 45-60 min. a day!  Come on, YOU GOT THIS!