no meat for old mona

Last week, I took a radical step and cut dairy and meat out of my diet completely.

Long before that move, I had been experiencing varying levels of crappiness–from end of the workday fatigue to what it must be like to wear Rachel Ray’s underwear as a ski mask (for 30 minutes! Blecch!). My schedule is tight and goes like this: I wake up between 5:30 and 6, get ready, and make Nathan’s breakfast. Then I make breakfast, let the eagles soar, dress and run out the door to catch the bus. After work, I come home to a little boy who wants to eat chicken nuggets and be read Where The Wild Things Are. And then there’s Nathan!

I am exhausted by this time and this early evening lethargy cancels out any hopeful plan I had that morning like, “Hey, maybe when Nathan goes to sleep, I’ll go to the gym!” or “Hey, maybe when Nathan goes to sleep, I’ll catch up on my correspondence!” But sadly, when I put Nathan to bed, I fall asleep, too.

I know my diet is a huge factor. Groundbreaking, right? All those powdered and dried pasta sides and chemically-engineered tater tots are affecting me, turning me into the female version of Chunk from The Goonies because my body jiggles so much that every step I take is the Truffle Shuffle.

In this past week of eating bean burritos with avocado, tomatoes, cucumber and tofutti sour cream, baked potatoes with salsa and kashi cereal and soy milk, I have noticed significant changes. My energy level has skyrocketed. I can stay up past 8 PM! No more asking Mike what happened in the last five minutes of CSI Miami!

I have attempted and failed at diets in the past, as is my pattern with many novelty experiments, like the time in eighth grade when I decided to become a reggae singer, but quickly realized that I didn’t want to sing reggae, I just wanted a legitimate reason to shout in public: LAWDA MERCY!

But this time I’m not looking at this as a diet or even as a “lifestyle” change. Every time I have the chance to eat, it’s a simple question: Will this make me feel crappy? I’d rather spend three dollars on an avocado than on a burger, fries and shake (even though in the dark crevices of my brain, I am screaming, “WHAT THE HELL WHOLE FOODS?!? THREE DOLLARS FOR A DIGGITY DANG AVOCADO?”).

I am fortunate to live in a city where there are a plethora of vegan options. I’m probably going to go buy Veganomicon (thanks Ashley) because there are 118 holds on the cookbook at the public library. Though, since I am still Seattle’s fattest vegan, I could just bodyslam my way to a copy.

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  1. Type (little) a says:

    Your not doing that there Oprah cleanse are you?

  2. Type (little) a says:

    Oh , and WHOOPS! How could I have neglected to mention the Rachael Ray underwear remark?



  3. No, this is not the Oprah cleanse. Sistah can afford a chef.

  4. Fiona Picklebottom says:

    No meat? You are a stronger woman than I. And bean burritos all week is A LOT of bean burritos. Now’s the time to get in on a farting contest. You know, if you ever planned to participate in one.

  5. grrltraveler says:

    Avocados at Costco. Their cheap and they are good. You put 5 of them in the fridge and leave one out for ripening at a time (well, I do, since the munchkin eats them slowly). Anyhow, one thing I can say about them is their fruit and veg is good. šŸ™‚

    Good luck on the healthier eating. I just don’t think I could give up meat. But you mentioned McDonalds so you really aren’t giving up meat but rather meat by-product, right? šŸ˜‰


  6. @ Fiona: You’re on.

    @Grrltraveler: Thanks for the Costco tip. I don’t eat any meat or meat by-products.

  7. Chickenbells says:

    Oh…congratulations!! Good luck with the new diet…

  8. annenahm says:

    Lulz. My colon feels cleansed after listening to most of that Eagle Soaring stuff. But sadly, I could not finish it. Good luck with teh lifestyle change. Will be reading eagerly.

  9. Angella says:



    Garbage in, garbage out…or so the saying goes.

    The Rachel Ray bit had me snickering šŸ™‚

  10. Patreesha says:

    I’m sure you’re well-informed on nutritional necessities, but a bunch of my friends who cut out meat really neglected their protein intake. Instead, they loaded up on carbs (I witnessed someone eating a bagel with Fritos crammed inside… horror of horrors). Just a friendly reminder to balance it out with tofu and soy burgers all of that good stuff!

    Also — I just can’t bring myself to go to Whole Foods anymore. Their pricing is truly ridiculous. Here in NY I love going to farmer’s markets and buying local produce. I Googled and found this link…


  11. mrs. blogoway says:

    I’m so proud of you, Mona! I really think you can do this. I’m trying to work my way towards vegetarianism. (You know fruits and vegetables are really the bulk of what we should be eating anyway). I want to look for that book you mentioned. Trust me, there will be no holds on it at the East Texas library. LOL.

  12. Good luck with the cleanse. Read in Defense of Food, and/or Twinkie Deconstructed for some explaination for why you feel so craptastic. These were fun reads too as far as food expose’s go.


    How can you be SO Hilarious every single second of the day? You are like a machine. (That was a compliment I swear!)


  13. Go Mona, go Mona! You have more willpower than I.

    3 avocado’s for $5 at Safeway! Which is handy, cause then you can have guacamole with your avocado. šŸ™‚

  14. stfu? nfw. says:

    So, um… I’m going to ask you a dumb question, and just bare (bear? wtfever, I’ve been building a frigging patio for six weeks and my brian is jello) with me because I’m completely serious. How do you stay full?

  15. stfu? nfw. says:

    (haha – I just said *my brian* is jello!)

  16. MONA!! Good luck, girl. Especially with a chamorro family!! Aren’t you going to Disneyland soon?

    I tried going vegetarian a couple times. When I told my family, they thought I was weird and teased me with bbq ribs.

  17. Patreesha says:

    Wow, totally late on this, but just wanted to add that I JUST got the “No Country” reference. Nice!

  18. shirley eugist says:

    I’ve been a vegetarian for fourteen years, and I’ve never looked back. I am toward veganism, although I rarely hit it. The next time you find yourself in Portland though, there are a plethora of restaurants, grocery stores, etc., that you’ll love!

    I wish I could give you a vegan cupcake from Sweetpea Baking right now, or a tempeh-lettuce-tomato sandwich from Red and Black Cafe, as a congratulations. Once you taste either of these wonderful selections, you’d never look back either. : )

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