Why Everyone Should Adapt a Meatless Monday
Have you adopted the Meatless Monday trend? This simple lifestyle change can have drastic improvements on your overall health. Plant proteins (yes, plants DO contain lots of protein) differ largely from animal proteins that we tend to over consume. Here is just a high level list of the amazing affects of swapping out some animal protein for plant sources:
1. Increases Life Expectancy
2. Reduces risk of heart disease and diabetes
3. Reduces risk of certain cancers
4. Prevents long term weight gain
What is the major reasoning for the first 4?
Plant Protein sources contain the same levels of protein as your animal sources do, but they contain significantly lower levels of fat and no cholesterol. Plant proteins also contain higher levels of vitamins and minerals you do not consume while eating animal proteins.
5. Better for the Environment
6. Easier on your wallet
Below is a great protein packed salad recipe to make for your family. It contains one of my new favorite products; Ancient Harvest Lentil & Quinoa Pasta. This pasta has two ingredients: Lentils & Quinoa…literally that is it. It is an amazing way to add protein into your diet AND get the great taste and sensation of eating a pasta dish without the gluten and carbohydrates from regular pasta. Just one serving of this pasta contains 14 grams of protein!!
The other ingredients in the salad can easily be swapped for other vegetables; especially as the seasons change to make a great meal all year round:
Summer Arugula Pasta Salad Recipe
– Arugula (1-2 bags)
– Cherry Tomatoes (2 cups, sliced in half)
– 1/4 cup of sun-dried tomatoes
– Ancient Harvest Lentil & Quinoa Pasta
– Onion (1/2, sliced)
– 2 tbs olive oil (plus more for dressing)
– 2 tbs minced garlic
– Parmesan Cheese
optional : 1/2 – full avocado diced in cubes
1. Cook the Ancient Harvest Pasta as directed on the box. Once finished and drained, rinse with cold water and let cool on the counter.
2. While the pasta is cooling, turn a skillet to medium heat and add two tbs of olive oil, two tbs of minced garlic, and the sliced onion. Heat for 10-15 minutes or until the onions are cooked and caramelized.
3. Place your arugula, sliced tomatoes, sun-dried tomatoes, onions, pasta, and Parmesan cheese in a large salad bowl and toss. Drizzle olive oil and white vinegar and toss again. Optional: top with diced avocado.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: MICHELLE MCGUINNESS
I work as a Financial Analyst at Boston Scientific and live in Natick, MA. I wanted a project outside of my 9-5 responsibilities and started Sunshine & Superfoods as a way to share my healthy recipes and fitness ideas with friends and family. I am obsessed with trying the new fitness classes, I love cooking & experimenting with food, trying new restaurants & eateries, traveling, and hanging with family and friends. You can find me in an early morning PureBarre class or strolling through my local Whole Foods.