Real Men Eat Tofu!
It’s macho to eat meat. Nothing more manly than throwing that steak on the bbq. And, men need that animal protein for muscle mass, right?
With Father’s Day approaching, I’m thinking about the men in our lives, and how they have been at a disadvantage for eating healthy. I know most men love eating meat, and think that they could never “give it up”. But, our culture has taught our men that they need to eat meat to be strong, be manly, provide for their family by literally bringing home the bacon. And, with this we train our palates to desire foods like meat and dairy.
In fact, Bob Harper from “The Biggest Loser” recently made the shift to eating vegan from vegetarian, saying “I enjoy living a plant-based diet because it makes me feel clear headed and strong, not to mention my genetically high cholesterol dropped more than 100 points”. Harper encourages contestants of the reality TV show to eat plant-based diets, offering options like quinoa and legumes as protein sources.
Need more proof that you can be buff on veg?
Look no further than Brendan Brazier. A professional Ironman triathlete, Brendan is also famous as an author, speaker, and creator of whole foods nutritional products. His books detail how he fuels his professional athleticism with a plant-based diet. In fact, the dietary program Brendan outlines is one that excludes more refined foods like wheat products, and instead focuses on nutrient dense and raw whole foods – leafy greens, vegetables, fruits, seeds, nuts, pseudograins, legumes and healthy fats – which deliver an abundance of enzymes, phytonutrients, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals.
A vegan diet that is high in these whole, raw foods and low in refined, processed foods also helps the body maintain an alkaline state, which promotes vibrant health and helps prevent disease. Meat and dairy consumption are linked to prostate cancer as well as heart disease – and also impotence. Nothing manly about that.
Let’s do the men in our lives a favor this Father’s Day – and every day after. Cast off those tired caveman associations that have our beloved men charring the cut of the day. Modern day men need to take care of themselves, and eating more plant-based foods is one of the best ways to start.
As for what to feed your dad or hubby, it doesn’t have to be tofu (it’s not my husband’s first choice). There are plenty of other delicious foods to eat that will appeal to the tofu-averse (or generally vegan-uninitiated). Here are a few ideas:
Moroccan Phyllo Rolls with Balsamic Maple Sauce; Sundried Tomato Pasta with Toasted Almonds and Pine Nuts; Thai Coconut Corn Stew; Mushroom Pecan Burgers; Walnut Pecan Balls; Chickpea Ratatouille; Kalamata Walnut Tapenade; Mexican Bean Soup with Chipotle Avocado Cream; Warmly Spiced Quinoa Chickpea Casserole with Figs.