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Vegan bicep and chick

Photo Credit: Kelly Garbato

There are lots of variations of vegetarian-ish diets — flexitarian, pescatarian, weekday veg. I’ve taken to calling mine vegan leaning. It’s a slow but directional journey to eating fewer and fewer animal products.

I may never get to zero, but by following three simple principles, I’ve dramatically changed my diet for a healthier me and a healthier planet. Want to lean with me? Here are my core guiding principles.

1. “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.”
In a world where every food choice we make has unexpected and conflicting issues, Michael Pollan’s advice is the simplest guiding principle.

2. Eat lower down the food chain
Every meal has options. I started by swapping out resource-intensive and more sentient animal proteins with choices further down the scale. Like turkey instead of beef. Small fish instead of tuna. Eggplant parm instead of chicken parm.

3. Seek the deliciousness of local, plant-based foods.
I’ve dedicated myself to experimenting with ways to prepare vegetables, legumes, fruits, seeds and nuts in interesting, tasty ways.

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