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I just wanted to introduce myself. I am interested in becoming a vegetarian, but I'm really nervous about it! My DH is really supportive, and I don't mind if he eats meat, I just don't think it is for me anymore.

The main concern I have is that all my life, every meal has been centered around meat. I love tofu grains and beans, and I tend to pick around my meat when I eat. I'm just concerned as to how difficult it will be to learn how to cook all over again. I don't plan on giving up fish right away, but I dont' want it for dinner every night either. I might give it up one day, but baby steps, right?

I'm reading the FAQ's and they are really helpful. Is there are good starter cookbook for vegetarians? My DH will eat veg meals so long as they are high in protien since he lifts a lot of weights.

Where to begin!? I feel so clueless, but I really think this is going to be the right thing for me.

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Hi Alice. Welcome. Your food preferences sound alot like mine--if I had my druthers, I would follow a totally vegan diet. I became a bit concerned about all the tofu I was eating, as well as other soy products after learning that it may negatively impact thyroid levels in some people. (There are thyroid problems in my family). I also lift weights and need additional protein for that. So in a compromise, I now predominantly follow a lacto-ovo diet, with some (very little) fish/seafood (mostly canned/pouched tuna) out of sheer convenience as well as for variety.

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DW and I have probably about 20-25 vegetarian or near-vegetarian cookbooks, but the ones that get the most use by far are the ones from Moosewood. I especially like the "New Classics" cookbook.

Another good one for quick meals is the one by Rachael Ray.

DH will probably get plenty of protein; lack of protein is a problem that was way overblown, and almost never is an issue. Besides tofu, just about any grain/bean combination will work, and contrary to what was preached in the 70s, they don't have to be at the same time.

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I am interested in becoming a vegetarian


Is there are good starter cookbook for vegetarians?

I'd recommend "Moosewood Restaurant Cooks at Home" as a very good starter cookbook. It gives serving ideas too, like "Make this with the side dish from page 119 and the dressing on page 238" etc. has a New Veggies message board, and a Recipes board, both of which have great recipes posted.

Also, you should probably pick up a basic nutrition book just so that you won't worry about things like protein, and so you can answer all the annoying questions you'll undoubtedly receive. :-) I very highly recommend "Becoming Vegetarian" by Vesanto Melina, Brenda Davis, & Victoria Harrison.

Where to begin!?

One day at a time, the same as the rest of us do. It gets easier after a while, trust me.

And feel free to post back here with more questions! We're a quiet board but respond back quickly when there's a new question...
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