Think a little differently about dinner tonight!

Change your mindset and improve your health!  Improving your health is usually about changing habits.  Vegetablarians change the traditional habits of basing meals around protein or pasta and having vegetables as a side dish, afterthought, or requirement.  Vegetablarians use vegetables to build a meal.  In fact, according to myPlate, the Harvard Healthy Eating Plate and Pyramid, and the African American Heritage Pyramid, 1/2 (or more) of your plate should be vegetables (especially green, leafy);  that sure sounds like the main portion!  Just like a main course salad, switch it up and feature your vegetables as the highlight with protein (lean fish or poultry) or starch (brown rice, quinoa or potatoes) as "mere" accompaniments. The first step?  When planning your next meal, skip that habit of thinking about which fish, chicken or pasta, and start with: what vegetable(s) do I want?  Don't limit yourself to a single vegetable - mix it up with a fun medley!  Any vegetables in season will likely taste the best and be easiest to find - use a seasonal vegetable guide for your area (see Regional, Seasonal Eating) - or, do what you feel and choose that vegetable you love and maybe haven't had in a while.  Experiment with various ways of cooking it; you just might discover something new you want to keep in rotation!

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Tanya Leake

Tanya Leake is the founder of EmBODY WELL and is an American Council on Exercise (ACE) certified health coach, group fitness instructor, specializing in Zumba, dance fitness and sculpt.  She teaches a variety of modes of dance, is certified as an Advanced Sports and Exercise Nutritional Advisor, with additional certifications in Natural Health Fundamentals, Behavior Change and Nutrition Therapy.  She is also a certified instructor for Oldways’ “A Taste of African Heritage” health through heritage program.   She brings a wealth of knowledge from a holistic perspective on health and well-being.